A Heavy Matter: Weight And Horse Welfare

With the rise in equestrian waistlines, the debate on how much weight a horse can carry before it affects his welfare, health and performance has ramped up. Drs. Janne Winther Christensen, Suzie Bathellier, Marie Rhodin, Rupert Palme and Mette Uldahl created a study using 20 horse-and-rider combinations, increasing the rider-to-horse weight ratio by 15 to […]

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Spit It Out: Cortisol In Saliva Not Only Indicator Of Stress In Horses

Cortisol levels in saliva have long been used as an indicator of stress in horses, but a new study has identified other markers that may be more accurate to determine the stress a horse experiences. Dr. María Contreras-Aguilar, Séverine Henry, Caroline Coste, Fernando Tecles, Damián Escribano, Jose Cerón and Martine Hausberger found that the level […]

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Grant Awarded To Study Effects Of Equine-Assisted Therapy On Horses & In Vets Diagnosed With PTSD

Horses and Humans Research Foundation has awarded a $50,000 grant to Principal Investigator, Dr. Laurie McDuffee and her team from Atlantic Veterinary College, University of Prince Edward Island. The purpose of this project, psychophysiological effects of equine-assisted therapy on horses and in veterans diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), is to explore the efficacy of […]

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Shake It Off: Vibrating Therapy Relaxes Horses, Study Shows

While many equine riders and owners feel that whole-body vibration therapy (WBV) can improve a horse’s athletic performance, minimal research has been done to determine its benefits, reports The Horse. Seneca Sugg, a graduate student at Middle Tennessee State University, created a study using 12 healthy and sound horses to determine if WBV affected a […]

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Risk Factors For Squamous Vs. Glandular Ulcers In Horses

Despite being grouped together under the umbrella term “equine gastric ulcer syndrome,” one group of veterinary researchers* recently suggested that equine glandular gastric disease (EGGD) should actually be considered a distinct entity from equine squamous gastric disease (ESGD). This recommendation comes in the wake of their findings that different management and risk factors contribute to […]

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Equine Bowel Bacteria Correlates With Body Score

Horses with differing body types have been found to have different species of gut microbiomes. The differing species in obese, normal and lean horses may help researchers find microbial solutions to obesity and metabolic issues. Overweight horses encounter a variety of health issues, including insulin resistance and the exacerbation of inflammatory issues like laminitis. Amy […]

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Difficulty Assessing Equine Emotions Hinders Understanding Of Welfare

The difficulty of assessing a horse’s mental state was discussed at length at the International Society for Equitation Science (ISES) in Wagga Wagga, Australia, in November. Though recent research has delved in to the negative moods of animals, Professor Natalie Waran said that physiological measures  like heart rate can reflect arousal more than emotional state, […]

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Research Shows Cushing’s Causes Risk To Equine Eye Health

Cushing’s disease (formally known as pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction, or PPID) is known to take a toll on a horse’s health if not managed properly. The heightened levels of cortisol in a Cushing’s affected horse can cause uncontrolled coat growth, recurrent laminitis, lethargy, fatty deposits, and increased thirst, among other things. Research shows that Cushing’s […]

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Study Shows A Good Workout Can Actually Reduce Stress In Horses

Korean research suggests that exercise in horses can reduce stress, similarly to how it does in people. Scientists at the Jeju National University divided 61 horses into three groups: those that were lesson horses, those that gave tourists ride and those that were not ridden at all, reports EQUUS magazine. Saliva samples were collected four […]

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