How to recognize the early signs of laminitis

Catching laminitis early can help minimize permanent damage to the internal structures of the hoof. However, the signs can be subtle. Laminitis can be sudden — brought on by a fever or an overload of carbohydrated — or it can be gradual. So, what should you look for? Keep in mind that no one symptom […]

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Knowing when to call the vet

One of the only things I don’t like about being in a co-op barn is that when a horse looks not-quite-right, it’s up to the person feeding that day to a) notice, b) know what to do, and c) decide whether you have identified a problem or are just being alarmist. No one thanks you […]

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Current thinking on the role of spring grass in laminitis

During the spring our pastures are closed for two reasons: first, we need the grass to get established and second, I’ve always worried that excessive amounts of lush, spring grass might be the cause of health issues such as laminitis. However, according to an article on Fran Jurga’s Hoof Blog, it’s a bit more complicated. […]

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Change your horse’s feed gradually

For horses, consistency in their diet is key to good health. Horses develop a microbial population in their intestines that is specific to what they are being fed. Changing it can cause digestive upset that can lead to colic and, in extreme cases, laminitis. According to a recent SmartPak Webinar, 10 Guidelines for Smarter Feeding, […]

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Free Laminitis Diagnosis Webinar

Several years ago a pony at my barn foundered. She had looked ouchy for awhile and her owners took a wait and see approach. Finally, one day I looked at her and as she stood there, she was shifting her weight in a way that I had read laminitis can present. Still they didn’t call […]

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The Great Escape: Van and Freedom on the Loose

Yesterday I got one of the calls that all horse people dread: my horse and his pasture mate were loose and spotted about a mile from the barn running on the road. Someone had opened the gate and the two horses had simply left. I drove the five minutes to the barn in record speed. […]

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Grass Clippings Don’t Make Good Forage for Horses

Every couple of years a “kindly” landscaper or home owner offers our horses grass clippings from their lawns. Their intentions are good, but the consequences to horses can be severe. Yes, horses eat grass, so why not grass clippings? There are several reasons why it’s not a good idea: When grass is mown and especially […]

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