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
Hereditary Equine Regional Dermal Asthenia (HERDA): Causes, Genetic Testing & Prevention
Hereditary Equine Regional Dermal Asthenia (HERDA), or Hyperelastosis Cutis (HC), is a genetic degenerative skin disease...
Hereditary Equine Regional Dermal Asthenia (HERDA), or Hyperelastosis Cutis (HC), is a genetic degenerative skin disease that primarily affects Quarter Horses. It's characterized by a collagen deficiency, a crucial protein responsible for maintaining the strength and elasticity of the skin. Horses a...
Case Study: Weight Gain in a Senior Metabolic Horse
Clinical Presentation History Intervention Outcome Discussion In August 2023, a diet evaluation was requested for a 46 y...
Clinical Presentation History Intervention Outcome Discussion In August 2023, a diet evaluation was requested for a 46 year old Welsh/Quarter Horse gelding weighing 700 lb (320 kg) in Ontario, Canada. […]...
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...
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 ...
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...
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...
What Does Your Horse’s Manure Say About Their Health?
When you have horses, dealing with manure is simply a fact of life. After all, an average-sized horse poops anywhere fr...
When you have horses, dealing with manure is simply a fact of life. After all, an average-sized horse poops anywhere from 4 to 13 times each day. Other than cleaning stalls and paddocks, horse owners may not pay too much attention to their horse’s manure. However, manure can provide quite a bit o...
Clipping Horses for Beginners: Benefits, Types of Clips & How-To Guide
Clipping a horse’s coat is often messy and time-consuming. It can also be stressful for both horses and humans. With t...
Clipping a horse’s coat is often messy and time-consuming. It can also be stressful for both horses and humans. With the right approach, clipping your horse doesn't have to be a dreaded chore. Clipping offers numerous benefits, particularly for horses expected to work or show during the winter....
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....
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...
Vesicular Stomatitis in Horses: Causes, Transmission & Prevention
Vesicular Stomatitis Symptoms Transmission Diagnosis Treatment Prevention Zoonosis Vesicular stomatitis is a viral disea...
Vesicular Stomatitis Symptoms Transmission Diagnosis Treatment Prevention Zoonosis Vesicular stomatitis is a viral disease that more commonly affects horses living in warmer climates. The disease typically results in blister-like lesions […]...
Hendra Virus (Equine Morbillivirus) in Horses: Transmission, Risk Factors & Prevention
Hendra virus (HeV), also known as equine morbillivirus, is a frequently fatal viral infection that can affect both horse...
Hendra virus (HeV), also known as equine morbillivirus, is a frequently fatal viral infection that can affect both horses and people. All reported cases of human Hendra virus infection occurred after exposure to an affected horse, emphasizing the significance of this disease as a zoonosis (disease t...
African Horse Sickness: Causes, Risk Factors & Prevention
African horse sickness (AHS) is a viral infection transmitted by biting midges. Up to 90% of horses infected with the vi...
African horse sickness (AHS) is a viral infection transmitted by biting midges. Up to 90% of horses infected with the virus die after initial infection. [ref n="1"] Due to international trade and climate change, there is a risk of AHS spreading into countries previously considered "AHS free". There ...
Corneal Ulcers in Horses: Symptoms and Treatment Guide
Horse eyes are prominent, making them prone to injury. This is especially true of the cornea, which is the outermost lay...
Horse eyes are prominent, making them prone to injury. This is especially true of the cornea, which is the outermost layer of the eye. An injury to this layer is known as a corneal ulcer or keratitis. Corneal ulcers can cause varying degrees of ocular damage in horses. Severity can range from superf...
Equestrian Eventing: History, Competition & Rules – [Discipline Guide]
Eventing is the triathlon of equestrian sport. Also known as horse trials or three-day eventing, this discipline require...
Eventing is the triathlon of equestrian sport. Also known as horse trials or three-day eventing, this discipline requires horses and riders to master three phases of competition: dressage, cross-country, and show jumping. Initially developed to test cavalry horses, the sport evolved to maintain its...
Karl Slezak’s Journey to the 2024 Olympics in Eventing – [Equestrian Athlete Profile]
Karl Slezak, a member of the Canadian Eventing Team, is one of those people who immediately makes you feel comfortable a...
Karl Slezak, a member of the Canadian Eventing Team, is one of those people who immediately makes you feel comfortable and eager to hear his story. His calm demeanour and friendly approach invite you into his life. And his life will leave you awe-inspired. It's easy to forget you’re chatting with ...
Mike Winter’s Journey to the 2024 Olympics in Eventing – [Equestrian Athlete Profile]
Mike Winter, a member of the Canadian Eventing Team and an world-class equestrian athlete, doesn’t want to talk about ...
Mike Winter, a member of the Canadian Eventing Team and an world-class equestrian athlete, doesn’t want to talk about his successes, his equestrian business in England, or even much about his competition experience. Instead, Mike wants to focus on the bigger picture—a passion rooted in making th...
Jumping at the 2024 Paris Olympic Games – [Equestrian Sport Guide]
Jumping is one of three equestrian sports featured in the Olympic Games. The speed and precision of show jumping make th...
Jumping is one of three equestrian sports featured in the Olympic Games. The speed and precision of show jumping make this sport a spectator favourite. Equestrian jumping events at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games will test the ability of the world's best jumping horses and riders to navigate a challeng...
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....
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 ...
How Does Hindgut Fermentation Work in the Horse?
Horses are single stomach (monogastric) herbivores that evolved to graze on fiber-rich roughage. Their unique digestive ...
Horses are single stomach (monogastric) herbivores that evolved to graze on fiber-rich roughage. Their unique digestive system consists of a foregut and hindgut, each with different functions for breaking down feed and absorbing nutrients. The stomach and small intestines, which make up the foregut,...
Enteroliths in Horses: Causes, Symptoms & Prevention
Enteroliths are calcifications or mineral masses that can form in the horse's intestines, sometimes resulting in impacti...
Enteroliths are calcifications or mineral masses that can form in the horse's intestines, sometimes resulting in impaction colic. These intestinal stones form when the horse consumes an indigestible object, which is not passed by the digestive system. Mineral deposits then accumulate around the fore...
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...