Latest articles


West Nile virus revisits horses in the Prairies

Horse Health: There can be cycles of this disease, which are subject to a complex interplay

Since the first horse was detected with West Nile virus (WNV) in Canada in 2002 the prevalence of the disease has cycled annually through peaks and troughs. The initial peak prevalence occurred in 2003 following its introduction. In the following years much fewer cases were reported until 2007 when the incidence of the disease spiked […] Read more


Some points for a horse hay shopping list

Our own senses are wonderful tools for making informed choices about hay. Choose hay that is as fine stemmed, green and as leafy as possible

Hay selection is an important aspect of horse ownership. The type and quality of hay the horse eats can make a big difference in its overall nutrition, and its value in a horse’s diet is unquestionable. The extra dollars spent on sourcing good-quality hay and its proper storage is invariably cost effective on many levels […] Read more



Expiry dates matter to horses too

Keep an eye on the freshness of everything from medications to feed

Modern horse keeping carries a responsibility of housekeeping that pertains to periodically reviewing the expiry dates of products routinely used in the care of the horse. Most horse owners will immediately consider the expiry dates of drugs and medications, however, there are other items that also carry expiry dates that may be even more relevant […] Read more


horses

Be on guard for neurotropic equine herpesvirus-1 (nEHV-1)

Symptoms range from none through mild respiratory infection to abortion and paralysis

A diagnosis of neurotropic equine herpesvirus (nEHV-1) in a horse displaying neurological symptoms has recently been confirmed in Saskatchewan. Prior to diagnosis this horse had travelled to a number of rodeos in Alberta and thus there is the potential for exposure of numerous horses. As a result, horse owners have been alerted and are advised […] Read more



When horses yawn — good or bad?

Horse Health: The horse’s yawn hasn’t been closely studied but there is a close connection to some welfare issues

Horse enthusiasts often question, “What does it mean when a horse yawns?” and, “Is it a good thing or is it bad thing?” The short answer is it all depends, and here is why. Both humans and horses yawn, however, the triggers for yawning in horses is not the same as that for the yawn […] Read more


Proper use and placement of the bit seat

Horse Health: Equine dental care is about the health of the horse, not performance

The terms “bit seat” and “performance float” are often used to indicate a seemingly higher, more sophisticated level of dental care for the performance or sport horse — implying that the horse will perform better with such dentistry. The duty of the equine dental provider is not to make horses perform better — even though […] Read more



The shedding horse

Horse Health: This annual event arrives with spring and can be a barometer for certain health conditions

Shedding of a horse’s winter coat is a complex physiological process that can reveal information about the horse’s general health. Many — well actually all — horses look cosmetically “messy” during the shedding period with a thorough shed usually occurring over a six- to eight-week period. This transition period often accompanies the fickle weather of […] Read more


Don’t horse around with dental health

Horse Health: Modern equine life is causing an explosion in dental issues

The horse’s tooth, like the tooth of any other species, is subject to decay. It is only recently that the nature of the tooth decay and its implications to the health of the horse have been recognized and identified. The reasons for this are twofold. The abilities of the equine dental provider to recognize and […] Read more



Feeding fats and oils to horses

Too much of a good thing can cause a myriad of problems for horse health

Over the past two decades feeding a variety of fat and oil sources to horses has become an increasingly commonplace dietary practice. The role of fat in the horse’s diet has been oversimplified to that as a fuel source. Although this is partly correct that fats can act as fuel molecules, it is equally critical […] Read more


The numerous benefits of slow feeding to the horse

Horse Health: Horses are designed to eat low-energy forages nearly constantly

Horses are trickle or slow feeders by nature. This means that they are biologically wired to thrive when they are continuously collecting and eating small amounts of long-stem high-fibre forage. This most basic realization is instrumental in keeping the horse healthy. Forage is the foundation of every horse’s diet, and the forage needs to flow […] Read more