Mad About Horses
Join Dr. Chris Mortensen, PhD on an exciting adventure into the story of the horse and learn how we can make the world a better place for all equines.
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Mad Barn - Equine Nutrition Consultants
Salmonella Infection in Horses: Risk Factors, Symptoms & Prevention
Salmonellosis refers to infection with Salmonella, a bacterium that primarily causes intestinal infections and diarrhea....
Salmonellosis refers to infection with Salmonella, a bacterium that primarily causes intestinal infections and diarrhea. Salmonella can affect numerous species, including horses and humans. Horses typically acquire the bacteria through ingesting of contaminated feed or water. Common symptoms of salm...
Bucked Shins (Dorsal Metacarpal Disease) in Horses: Risk Factors, Treatment & Prognosis
Bucked shins is a condition that affects the cannon bones of young race horses in the first 6 to 8 months of their speed...
Bucked shins is a condition that affects the cannon bones of young race horses in the first 6 to 8 months of their speed training. Since the horse's bones are still developing, the strain of the training results in a cycle of stress and repair that results in weak and porous bones. If left untreated...
Bog Spavin (Tarsocrural Joint Effusion) in Horses: Causes, Treatment & Prognosis
Bog spavin is a common term for effusion in the horse's tarsocrural joint. This painful condition describes inflammation...
Bog spavin is a common term for effusion in the horse's tarsocrural joint. This painful condition describes inflammation and fluid accumulation in the joint capsule between the tibia and the tarsal bones in the hock. Bog spavin is characterized by a ring of lumps swollen around the the hock. When ...
6 Common Causes of Bloating in Horses: Signs, Treatment & Prevention
The horse's gastrointestinal system is evolved for processing forage and fiber. Domestic feeding and management strategi...
The horse's gastrointestinal system is evolved for processing forage and fiber. Domestic feeding and management strategies often challenge the horse's natural digestive process. Significant disruptions can lead to bloating - a condition where gas accumulates in the gut, causing abdominal distension ...
Quarantine Protocols and Horse Management: Infectious Disease Control in Equine Facilities
Quarantine refers to the practice of separating infected or potentially infected animals to reduce the risk of disease s...
Quarantine refers to the practice of separating infected or potentially infected animals to reduce the risk of disease spread. Horse farms, boarding facilities, and show facilities commonly use quarantine protocols to protect the health of their equine population. Quarantine is also a critical com...
Ridden Horse Pain Ethogram: 24 Signs of Pain in Horses Under Saddle
The Ridden Horse Pain Ethogram (RHPE) is a list of 24 behaviours associated with musculoskeletal pain in the ridden hors...
The Ridden Horse Pain Ethogram (RHPE) is a list of 24 behaviours associated with musculoskeletal pain in the ridden horse. Dr. Sue Dyson et al. developed this ethogram as a means of identifying low-grade lameness and horses experiencing discomfort during ridden work. Earlier identification of lamene...
Insect Stings and Spider Bites in Horses: A Complete Guide to Equine Pests
Horses are susceptible to a variety of external pests and parasites. Most equine pests are either insects or arachnids, ...
Horses are susceptible to a variety of external pests and parasites. Most equine pests are either insects or arachnids, some of which can cause irritation, discomfort, and even life-threatening reactions. Several species of external parasite can cause severe health problems in horses. Flies are the ...
Shoe Boils (Olecranon Bursitis or Capped Elbow) in Horses: Causes, Treatment & Prevention
When a horse lies down for extended periods, especially with long-heeled horseshoes or on shallow bedding, prolonged pre...
When a horse lies down for extended periods, especially with long-heeled horseshoes or on shallow bedding, prolonged pressure and "squishing" from the hoof on the elbow can occur, leading to a condition known as shoe boil. Shoe boils, otherwise known as olecranon bursitis or capped elbow, is charact...
Top 7 Weight Gain Feeds for Horses to Improve Body Condition
Promoting healthy weight gain can be a challenge for some underweight horses. Whether they are recovering from illness, ...
Promoting healthy weight gain can be a challenge for some underweight horses. Whether they are recovering from illness, not eating enough, or simply a hard keeper, some horses need extra nutritional support to counteract unwanted weight loss. The main goal of a weight gain feeding plan is to increas...
Iron in the Equine Diet – Sources, Requirements, Deficiency & Overload
Iron is a trace mineral that is required in the horse’s diet. Iron is involved in many bodily processes, including tra...
Iron is a trace mineral that is required in the horse’s diet. Iron is involved in many bodily processes, including transporting oxygen in the blood and producing energy in cells. Supplementation with this mineral is usually not recommended because it is naturally abundant in feeds, forages, and ev...
Feeding Fiber in the Equine Diet: Sources & Nutrition Review
Fiber is one of the most important components in the equine diet, providing up to 70% of a horse’s energy needs. Fiber...
Fiber is one of the most important components in the equine diet, providing up to 70% of a horse’s energy needs. Fiber in equines diet predominantly originates from forages such as hay and pasture grass. Fiber can also be obtained from highly fermentable sources such as beet pulp and soy hulls....
Forage Cubes and Pellets for Horses – [How and When to Feed]
Forage should constitute the bulk of your horse's diet, but not all of it needs to be provided as long-stemmed forages l...
Forage should constitute the bulk of your horse's diet, but not all of it needs to be provided as long-stemmed forages like baled hay. Forage cubes and pellets are other options that may be beneficial for horses in different management situations. Typically, hay cubes and pellets will only make up a...
Undescended Testicles (Cryptorchidism) in Horses: Risk Factors, Diagnosis & Treatment
During fetal development, the testicles form near the kidneys and gradually descend into the scrotum through a passage c...
During fetal development, the testicles form near the kidneys and gradually descend into the scrotum through a passage called the inguinal canal. In some cases, this descent is incomplete, resulting in one or both testicles being retained within the abdomen or inguinal canal. This condition, known a...
Staphylococcus and MRSA in Horses: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment
Staphylococcus bacteria are a common member of the equine microflora, found on the skin, in the nasal passages, and in t...
Staphylococcus bacteria are a common member of the equine microflora, found on the skin, in the nasal passages, and in the intestines. These bacteria typically do not cause infection or disease. However, under certain circumstances, the bacteria may take advantage of tissue damage or a weakened immu...
Anthrax Poisoning in Horses: Transmission, Treatment & Prevention
Anthrax is a rapidly fatal disease caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis. This bacterium can infect horses, other l...
Anthrax is a rapidly fatal disease caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis. This bacterium can infect horses, other livestock species, and humans. Anthrax cases occur globally every year, including sporadic outbreaks in North America. B. anthracis primarily exists as spores within soil. Disturban...
Equine Fire Hazards and Smoke Inhalation Injury: Toxicology, Management & Prevention
In recent years, extensive and persistent wildfires have been a growing concern for horse operations everywhere. Evacuat...
In recent years, extensive and persistent wildfires have been a growing concern for horse operations everywhere. Evacuation and preventive protocols are often challenging and put a great deal of strain on livestock and their human caretakers. Equally as concerning is the risk of on-site fires. Wit...
How to Use Lactate Testing to Improve Your Horse’s Training Program
Lactate Lactate and Exercise Lactate Testing Performance Training Optimization Field Study In elite equestrian sports, p...
Lactate Lactate and Exercise Lactate Testing Performance Training Optimization Field Study In elite equestrian sports, performance optimization is critical to success. Whether your horse is racing, eventing, competing in endurance […]...
Equestrian Sport in Paris 2024: Olympics and Paralympics Guide
The 2024 Paris Olympics is the next major sporting event on every equestrian’s calendar. This competition will bri...
The 2024 Paris Olympics is the next major sporting event on every equestrian’s calendar. This competition will bring together 200 horse and rider combinations to compete in the disciplines of […]...
Eventing at the 2024 Paris Olympic Games – [Equestrian Sport Guide]
Eventing is one of three Olympic equestrian sports in the Paris 2024 Games. Eventers are the triathletes of the equestri...
Eventing is one of three Olympic equestrian sports in the Paris 2024 Games. Eventers are the triathletes of the equestrian world. At Paris 2024, the world's best horses and riders will complete three phases of competition on the palace grounds of Versailles that challenge their training, bravery, an...
Para Equestrian at the 2024 Paris Olympic Games – [Equestrian Sport Guide]
Para equestrian is the only equestrian sport held at the Paralympics, including at the upcoming Paris 2024 Paralympics i...
Para equestrian is the only equestrian sport held at the Paralympics, including at the upcoming Paris 2024 Paralympics in September. Para equestrian athletes demonstrate precision and harmony with their equine counterparts as they perform different dressage movements in the Paralympic arena. Judges ...
Breeding Soundness Exams for Stallions: [7-Step Guide]
Breeding Soundness for Stallions Reproductive Anatomy Examination Identification History VD Testing Physical Exam Extern...
Breeding Soundness for Stallions Reproductive Anatomy Examination Identification History VD Testing Physical Exam External Exam Internal Exam Semen Evaluation A Breeding Soundness Exam (BSE) aims to evaluate your stallion’s overall […]...
Overo Lethal White Syndrome (OLWS) in Horses: Causes, Signs & Genetic Testing
The overo pattern is one of three coat patterns in American Paint Horses (APHs) recognized by the American Paint Horse A...
The overo pattern is one of three coat patterns in American Paint Horses (APHs) recognized by the American Paint Horse Association (APHA), along with Tobiano and Tovero. Among Overo variations, the frame overo subtype stands out for its distinctive markings. Unfortunately, breeding two frame overo h...
Mastitis in Mares: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Mastitis in mares is condition characterized by the inflammation of the mammary gland, usually due to a bacterial infect...
Mastitis in mares is condition characterized by the inflammation of the mammary gland, usually due to a bacterial infection. Mastitis typically affects lactating mares, often in the period immediately after giving birth or after weaning....
Foal Rejection: Normal & Abnormal Maternal Behaviour in Mares
Foal rejection is a situation where the normal bonding between the mare and her foal fails to occur after birth. As a re...
Foal rejection is a situation where the normal bonding between the mare and her foal fails to occur after birth. As a result, the mare may show disinterest, fear, or even aggression towards her newborn foal. The precise cause of foal rejection is often unknown, but may stem from various mare-related...
Pedal Osteitis in Horses: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Pedal osteitis in horses is a condition characterized by inflammation and damage to the pedal (coffin) bone within the h...
Pedal osteitis in horses is a condition characterized by inflammation and damage to the pedal (coffin) bone within the hoof. Affected horses can experience pain and lameness, which may be worse after exercise or hoof trimming. dal osteitis typically develops as a result of chronic and repetitive tra...
Sidebone in Horses: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Sidebone in horses is a common condition that affects the collateral cartilages of the hoof. It occurs when the normally...
Sidebone in horses is a common condition that affects the collateral cartilages of the hoof. It occurs when the normally flexible cartilage plates in the horse's hoof gradually become hardened and calcified into bone. According to research, an estimated 80% of all horses have signs of sidebone. Most...
Canker in Horse Hooves: Signs, Causes & Treatment
Canker in horses, also called equine proliferative pododermatitis is a condition that causes rapid proliferation of kera...
Canker in horses, also called equine proliferative pododermatitis is a condition that causes rapid proliferation of keratin, the main component of the hoof wall and sole. The proliferation forms long fronds of keratin, usually around the frog of the hoof....
Keratomas in Horses: Lameness Causing Foot Tumours
Keratomas in horses are abnormal growths or benign tumors that develop within the hoof capsule, potentially resulting in...
Keratomas in horses are abnormal growths or benign tumors that develop within the hoof capsule, potentially resulting in lameness and discomfort. These non-cancerous masses comprise overgrowths of keratin, typically forming near the coronary band....
Proximal or Anterior Enteritis in Horses: Causes, Treatment & Recovery
Proximal Enteritis (also known as Anterior Enteritis) describes inflammation of the first two parts of the horse's small...
Proximal Enteritis (also known as Anterior Enteritis) describes inflammation of the first two parts of the horse's small intestine. Proximal Enteritis (PE) is a serious concern for horse owners, as it can block passage of food and water through the digestive system. In severe cases, adjacent parts o...
Psyllium for Horses: Benefits, Risks & Feeding Guide
Psyllium is a rich source of soluble fiber that can be incorporated into equine diets. Soluble fiber remains undigested ...
Psyllium is a rich source of soluble fiber that can be incorporated into equine diets. Soluble fiber remains undigested by enzymes in the stomach (gastric juices), but passes into the hindgut where it may be partially digested by microbes. Psyllium is included in horse diets to facilitate sand clear...
Colic in Foals: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment
Colic, defined as abdominal pain in horses, is a condition that ranges from mild discomfort to severe, life-threatening ...
Colic, defined as abdominal pain in horses, is a condition that ranges from mild discomfort to severe, life-threatening situations. In foals, colic presents unique challenges and concerns, due to their physiology and development. Colic in foals can be challenging to diagnose, as there are numerous p...
Pinworms (Oxyuris Equi) in Horses:  Symptoms, Treatment & Prevention
Equine pinworms, or Oxyuris equi, are common parasites that inhabit the horse's colon. Female pinworms lay their eggs on...
Equine pinworms, or Oxyuris equi, are common parasites that inhabit the horse's colon. Female pinworms lay their eggs on the perianal skin (around the anus), which can cause intense itching and irritation for the horse. Pinworm infections are most common in younger horses, but horses of any age can ...
Breton Horse Breed Guide: Characteristics, Health & Nutrition
The Breton horse is a French draft breed from Bretagne, or Brittany, a province in northwest France. There are three typ...
The Breton horse is a French draft breed from Bretagne, or Brittany, a province in northwest France. There are three types of Breton horses: the Postier Breton, the Central Mountain Breton, and the Heavy Draft Breton. This breed profile will discuss the characteristics, history, health problems, and...
Appendix Horse Breed Guide: Characteristics, Health & Nutrition
The Appendix horse is a mixed breed produced by crossing an American Quarter Horse with a Thoroughbred. The cross is als...
The Appendix horse is a mixed breed produced by crossing an American Quarter Horse with a Thoroughbred. The cross is also known as an Appendix Quarter Horse. Appendix horses can become eligible for permanent registration with the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) if they meet specific requir...
Grade Horse Guide: Characteristics, Health & Nutrition
A grade horse is any horse with unidentifiable or unknown parentage. These horses also include unregistered equines with...
A grade horse is any horse with unidentifiable or unknown parentage. These horses also include unregistered equines with mixed breeding. Grade horses don’t have a uniform breed type, and characteristics can vary significantly between individuals. Their lack of registered pedigrees shouldn’t disc...
Oldenburg Horse Breed Guide: Characteristics, Health & Nutrition
The Oldenburg, or Oldenburger, is a well-known warmblood breed from Lower Saxony in Germany. Oldenburgs are famous sport...
The Oldenburg, or Oldenburger, is a well-known warmblood breed from Lower Saxony in Germany. Oldenburgs are famous sport horses commonly used for dressage and show jumping. This breed profile will discuss the history, characteristics, health problems, and nutritional needs of the Oldenburg horse bre...