Seasonal Care

Clipping is one of those jobs that many horse owners despise — it’s messy, time consuming, and too often can be stressful for both horse and owner. But you don’t have to dread clipping your horse. If you know how to use the clippers correctly and keep the horse calm and relaxed throughout the experience, you can end up with a horse that looks like he’s been to the groomers, rather than just having survived a fight with a lawnmower.

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Equine Metabolic Syndrome (EMS) and Equine Cushing’s Disease (also known as Pars Pituitary Intermedia Dysfunction, or PPID) are reasonably common conditions we encounter in our horses. This article will deal primarily with EMS, but because PPID can be a cause of increased insulin levels in horses, it needs to be mentioned as well.

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Your parasite management program should give some attention to stomach bots and tapeworms. To control these parasites more effectively, it helps to understand their life cycles.

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Grooming is an enjoyable way to bond with your horse, and most horses love to be fussed over, but cleaning a male horse’s sheath is an unpleasant chore that owners and riders tend to avoid. From potentially being kicked, to lack of knowledge or squeamishness, those with geldings and stallions often shirk the task altogether. However, veterinarians agree that cleaning and inspecting a horse’s sheath is a necessary and regular part of maintaining their health.

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Ticks are a nuisance that can often go undetected. Because of the risk of disease transmission (Lyme disease, Anaplasmosis, Equine piroplasmosis), it is important to frequently examine your horse for the presence of ticks, and to take steps to lower risk of exposure.

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Spring is upon us and so is the prevalence of gas colic. Equine Guelph is sharing many strategies to prevent it. First, Equine Guelph recommends that every horse owner refers to its FREE Colic Risk Rater Tool to help them assess their management practices, such as introducing new feeds slowly to reduce their colic risk. An excellent video discussing safe introduction to spring pasture with expert in equine nutrition, Don Kapper, has just been added to the valuable resources housed on the Colic Risk Rater web page.

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Each season brings with it certain needs for equine care, and an annual horse health care agenda can help with some of the planning as the months rapidly roll by. Horse owners are good at knowing the value of organizing and preparing ahead to help their horses stay healthy, and to budget for the more expensive seasonal needs ahead of time.

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