Vol. 7
April/May 2009

Reins of Communication

April/May2009Reins of Communication10/9/2018 Page 1

Meet Lady Chaser…………………….1

Spring Shot Clinics……..…….….…..2

Reducing the risk of Colic…………..2

Fire Extinguishers …………….….….3

Worming Schedule ………………….3

Coming Events ………………..……..4

Legacy Farms

The Reins of Communication

Newsletter by:


Any news, comments, or pictures that boarders would like to see added to the newsletter may be given to Legacy Farms Proprietor Paula Lafferty for inclusion in the following newsletters

Barn Etiquette

Good manners are something that most people do not think about. But when we forget the littlest things become the biggest of problems. Please try to think about etiquette while you are here.

Sweep Your mess While using the main barn cross ties, the tie racks at the long barn and by the main barn and on the wash rack please remember to clean up your mess. Brooms and apple pickers are provided in various locations around the barn for your convience to clean up. The manure, horse hair and trimmings from the horses feet belong in the muck bucket, Especially this time of year with all the winter coats shedding out, we need to keep the loose hair swept up Please gather as much as you can before it blows all over..

Meet Lady Chaser

Meet Lady Chaser--he’s the Grey Thoroughbred in the pasture closest to the house, known to most as “Blue”. Blue was born in January of 1992 in Gilroy, CA. It was then that he began his life as a racehorse. Little is known about his track life except through race records I obtained from the Jockey Club shortly after purchasing him in 1998.

On February 9th 1996, at the age of four, Blue was entered into his first race at Santa Anita Race track in Arcadia, CA. He then went on to race three more times at Santa Anita, twice at Golden Gate Fields in San Francisco, and ran his last race at Santa Rosa Fairgrounds on August 4th 1996. During his second race at Golden Gate Fields, Blue placed 3rd in an 8.32 furlong race. It is unknown as to why Blue never raced after the 1996 season. I can only assume that Blue may have gotten into a training accident after his last race. If you look at his left eye and nostril there is proof of an accident. His eye is a cloudy white-blue (suggesting why he is called “Blue”) and his left nostril is larger than the right side and has scars from stitches.

I purchased Blue in 1998 on Halloween day from a mother and daughter in Montara, CA (near HalfMoonBay) where I grew up. They had owned Blue for about a year and had decided to sell him as the daughter was just out of high school and “didn’t have time for him.” After two lessons and a vet check, my parents decided to purchase their/my first horse! I had been riding horses and been involved in the United States Pony Club Association since the age of seven but had always leased horses. After leasing three different horses for multiple years, at the age of fifteen I finally owned my own horse. On Halloween afternoon after signing all of the paperwork, I hopped on top of my new 6 year-old, 16.3 hand dapple grey and walked him home to a new boarding facility within riding distance from were he lived.

To put it simply, Blue became a handful almost instantly after bringing him home. He seemed very different than the horse we thought we had bought. Within days of owning him, we found out he had no ground manners. He reared while he was tied up, had no respect for me, and most of all didn’t like the trailer. Unfortunately, because we had walked him home, we didn’t know about this problem. So, in order for me to be able trailer to shows and other Pony Club events I had to fix these problems. After many months of “trailering lessons” we finally got Blue to the point where he felt some what comfortable getting in and out of the trailer. Much of the problem stemmed from his limited ability to see out of his injured eye. We wondered if his injuries had come from a starting gate or trailering accident—he did not like confined places.

As time went on Blue began to progress and we began traveling to different events and competitions. During my second year of owning Blue we were getting ready to attend a Dressage competition in Watsonville, CA. After getting Blues legs wrapped for the trailer I went to load Blue up. He decided that he wasn’t going get in the trailer so he turned around and went to take off. As he pivoted on his back legs and went to take off, he kicked out with his left hind leg and happed to nail me in the middle of my left side. We never did make it to the show that day…instead, I was taken by ambulance to StanfordHospital where it was determined that the kick had caused a ruptured spleen, bruised liver, and multiple broken ribs. I spent two weeks in the hospital and a month on bed rest at home. All of my friends’ parents, who I grew up riding, with told my parents that they needed to sell Blue because he was an unsafe horse. After much discussion and explaining that I didn’t want to give up on him, my parents decided to let me keep him.

After four months of not being able to ride, I climbed back up on Blue. We continued to work through his trailering fears and continue to take jumping and dressage lessons. During the summer after my recovery I had being jumping quite intensely and had two lessons in one day. It was closely after this time that Blue came up lame.

After multiple lameness examinations x-rays and ultrasounds it was determined that at the age of nine, Blue was suffering from the beginnings of Navicular Syndrome. Over the next three years we tried numerous shoeing techniques, none of which fully worked. During this time I continued to take Dressage lessons but had to stop jumping and showing.

After graduating from High School I took Blue with me to college in San Luis Obispo where we spent his days living in irrigated grass pasture and being casually ridden. I brought Blue home with me for the summer in 2004 and decided that as a last resort, in order to make him more comfortable, he would have a neurectomy on both front feet. He spent most of that summer recovering from the surgery and spent the first few weeks back at school in a stall. After fully recovering I put him back out to grass pasture. The neurectomy was successful and helped ease much of Blue’s soreness but didn’t fully correct his unsoundness. It was at that point I realized that I would never be able to compete with Blue again.

While in college Blue spent his days grazing while I spent mine studying. The ranch where he lived had a large road around its perimeter that we would ride around about every other day. The next two summers Blue and I stayed in San Luis Obispo and had a blast. During the summer of 2007 I left Blue in the ranch owners’ care while I went of to Minnesota for a summer internship. He was ridden twice a week while I was away and did very well. I was so excited to see him when I returned to the ranch in September. I went out to the field to catch him and I immediately noticed something was wrong. Blue whinnied at me like he normally did but he wouldn’t move. I went up to him and put his halter on and gave him a tug and he took a few steps but acted like he was drunk. I opened his mouth and found his gums were a pale white and he was starting to loose his balance. I quickly called the vet and we decided it would be best to take him to, AlamoPintadoEquineMedicalCenter in Los Olivos, CA. After a simple blood test is was determined that Blue was bleeding internally. I had two choices which were either to give him a pricey blood transfusion or to put him down. Being a college student, and having no money to pay for this, the decision was once again in my parents hands. Thankfully my parents agreed to give him the transfusion. The transfusion quickly began to stabilize him, although it was still unknown what had caused the bleeding. After three blood transfusions, fluids, ultrasounds, and three weeks in the intensive care unit at the vet hospital, I finally brought Blue back home. It is still unknown what caused the bleeding but it is likely that he got kicked out in pasture and ruptured an artery.

I graduated from college in June 2008 and moved Blue to Legacy in mid July. Blue just turned 17 in January and I will have had him for 11 years this coming Halloween. He has slowed down in the last few years. He barely sees out of his blue eye anymore and doesn’t test me very much anymore. These days he enjoys getting out of his pasture to eat grass and Equine Senior. Although he is still lame, I ride him every other day without trying to push him too hard. We continue to have so many enjoyable times together and every day I am thankful that my parents backed me up in my decision to keep him after my injury and to try to save his life when he was near death in 2007. After all we’ve been through together, I consider him my best friend!

Spring Shot Clinics.

Friday April 17 2pm Dr. Tobias

Friday April 24 2pm Dr. Bruce

Sign up sheets are in the main barn

Article: Reducing The Risk of Colic
By Scott L. King DVM, Purina Mills LLC
The word colic strikes fear in the hearts of all horse owners. This fear is not unfounded. Colic affects approximately 10% of the horse population. It is diagnosed almost twice as often as any other disease. To watch a healthy animal suddenly be stricken with intense pain is traumatic for the owner as well. The fact that there is no known reason for many types of colic is even more disconcerting. There are however, some interesting factors that can increase the risk of colic.
Risk Factors
A recent study conducted at TexasA&MUniversity identified several dietary and management factors associated with equine colic. This study found that a recent change in hay increased the risk of colic 9.8 times. This is thought to occur because of the wide range of quality in hay type. Protein content, digestibility and mineral content varies tremendously in hay. It is theorized that these variables can affect gut motility. A recent change in diet increases the risk of colic five-fold. Therefore it is recommended to change diets gradually over a period of 10 days. A previous history of colic increases the risk of colic 3.9 times. Changes in weather increase the risk of colic 3.2 times. This could be related to other factors associated with weather changes. Often, inclement weather changes a horse’s exercise schedule. These researchers found that a recent change in stabling increased the risk of colic 2.3 times.
According to this study, it appears that pelleted rations are less likely to be associated with colic in the horse than other types of feed. This finding renders the theory that pellets cause colic a myth. Purina Mills LLC, the inventors of the pelleting process, has been making easily digestible pellets for many years.
Causes/Unknown Causes
Most cases of colic are mild. These are usually caused by a spasm or small obstruction of the intestine and are treated without surgery. Veterinarians are quite proficient at differentiating these types of colic from the more complicated cases requiring surgery. The diagnostic capabilities of veterinarians enable them to determine many causes of colic such as gastric ulcers, impactions, twists, enteritis and others. Sometimes surgery is required to reach a diagnosis and facilitate treatment. The reason for intestinal twisting or displacement is unknown. It is a widely accepted fact in the veterinary community that twists are not caused by horses rolling. There is no known cause for this abnormal movement of the intestine.
While Purina Mills cannot predict weather changes, we can predict the consistent quality of our new Purina-branded hay product. If your horse is 9.8 times more likely to colic with each load of new hay, then providing a consistent quality hay could be of benefit. It is recommended that 1.2-1.5% of the horse's body weight be fed in the form of roughage in order to reduce the risk of colic. This higher amount of fiber will help maintain a healthy gut with normal motility. This works well for pleasure horses, but it is often difficult to meet the energy needs of the performance horse following these guidelines. The small intestine is like a reverse assembly line. Starches, fats and amino acids are pulled off the ingested feed as it moves by. If too much starch is on that conveyer belt it ends up in the hind gut.

Fermentation of this starch in the hind gut lowers the gut pH and can reduce fiber digestion as well as cause other digestive upsets. This reduction in fiber digestion can lead to impaction colic. Because of this, a horse’s increased energy demands can be met by feeding a diet higher in fat. Strategy with 6% fat works well in this situation. Purina’s new Race Ready has 7% fat with beet pulp built in. Equine Senior can be fed to reduce starch and increase fiber and fat levels. Athlete has 14% fat and is balanced with other nutrients. It can be added to any ration to increase the amount of calories coming from fat without diluting the other nutrient levels as do other fat supplements.
Unfortunately, thousands of horses will die of colic this year. In many cases it will be impossible to determine the cause. If you pay close attention to the risk factors associated with colic and follow proper feeding recommendations your horse’s risk of colic can be reduced.

Fire Extinguishers

Do you know where the fire extinguishers are located? There are two in the barn at both ends of the aisle-way. The big silver ones are for paper,wood,grass fires. The red ones are for all types of fires. Do you know how to use them?The fire hose is located on the paddock-side of the arena. There is a red-handled lever that is pushed down when turned “on” at the last telephone pole of the covered section of the arena.This is a fire hose with a lot of pressure do not try this yourself get assistance. Please check the locations and remember them. Fast response time can save lives, yours and your horse’s, and property.

Implementing A Horse Worming Schedule

By Jeffrey Rolo

It is surprising how many horsemen do not incorporate any form of horse worming schedule in their routine, seemingly just choosing a box of horse

wormer at random and thinking that will do the trick. While it is true that there are many fine horse worming products available to horse owners, ultimately if you wish to keep your equine friend as protected against the multitude of parasites just dying to infest your horse you will need to draw out an effective plan of action.

Yes, this means you must incorporate the various forms of horse wormers into an organized horse worming schedule that targets the various parasite groups during the times of year they are most a threat.

As a quick side note, technically the terms we should use are de-worming and de-wormers, but since most horsemen remove the "de" when discussing this topic we will do the same.

Before jumping straight into the actual recommended horse worming schedule I would like to put out this caution: if your horse is already seriously infested with parasites you should be very careful about giving him a dose of paste wormer. A paste horse wormer could conceivably kill too many parasites at once, thereby causing them to bunch up in the horse's veins, intestines and colon. While this can kill a horse, more often then not it will just cause significant discomfort… but do we really want to cause discomfort to our equine friends?

In such cases I would start the worming process with a pellet wormer such as Strongid C2X. Since pellet-based wormers are mixed with a horse's feed daily, the potency is far lower than actual pastes. This lower potency allows for a slower and healthier parasite kill and removal rate. I advise putting a parasite-infested horse on a pellet-based wormer for at least one week before advancing to the standard paste regimen.