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
Chiropractic Care in Horses: Benefits of Joint Mobilization & Manipulation
Chiropractic care for horses is a form of manual therapy commonly used in veterinary treatment protocols for lameness. C...
Chiropractic care for horses is a form of manual therapy commonly used in veterinary treatment protocols for lameness. Chiropractic treatment focuses on joint mobilization and manipulation to reduce pain, improve symmetry, and increase range of motion. ...
Massage Therapy in Horses: Benefits, Techniques & Trigger Points
Equine massage therapy is a bodywork modality that involves the systematic manual manipulation of a horse’s muscles an...
Equine massage therapy is a bodywork modality that involves the systematic manual manipulation of a horse’s muscles and soft tissues to alleviate muscle tension and promote overall well-being. It’s an increasingly popular component of holistic veterinary care and equine management....
Exertional Rhabdomyolysis in Horses: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment
Exertional Rhabdomyolysis (ER), commonly known as tying-up or azoturia, is an exercise-induced condition in horses chara...
Exertional Rhabdomyolysis (ER), commonly known as tying-up or azoturia, is an exercise-induced condition in horses characterized by the excessive breakdown of muscle tissue. This results in muscle spasms, pain and impaired performance following bouts of exercise. [1] In severe cases, affected horses...
Leptospirosis in Horses: Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatment
Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that is commonly spread to horses through direct contact with contaminated food a...
Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that is commonly spread to horses through direct contact with contaminated food and water sources. While there are many different species of the Leptospira bacteria, symptoms in horses are most commonly caused by Leptospira interrogans....
Guide to Shelter for Horses: Design of Sheds and Stalls
Choosing the best configuration of shelter in your horse’s pasture is one of the most important aspects of horse manag...
Choosing the best configuration of shelter in your horse’s pasture is one of the most important aspects of horse management. Most horses seek shelter at some point during the day, whether from cold and precipitation or from insects and heat....
Manure Management Strategies for Horse Farms
Managing manure is an inevitable aspect of equine stable maintenance and requires careful consideration. A successful ma...
Managing manure is an inevitable aspect of equine stable maintenance and requires careful consideration. A successful manure management program will depend on multiple factors including the number of horses at the location, the amount of available land, and the stable/facility layout. Proper manure ...
9 Ways to Reduce Swelling in Your Horse’s Legs – [How-To Guide]
Looking for ways to reduce swelling in your horse's legs? Several factors can lead to leg swelling in horses, ranging fr...
Looking for ways to reduce swelling in your horse's legs? Several factors can lead to leg swelling in horses, ranging from mild conditions such as "stocking up" to more severe issues such as cellulitis. If your horse is experiencing limb swelling, your first priority should be consulting with your v...
Shockwave Therapy in Horses: Uses, Benefits & Side Effects
Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) is a common treatment modality offered by many veterinarians for treating lamene...
Extracorporeal shockwave therapy (ESWT) is a common treatment modality offered by many veterinarians for treating lameness cases. Most veterinarians use this treatment for arthritis cases and ligament injuries. ESWT produces a shockwave that applies a high amount of pressure to a desired tissue. Thi...
Ionophore Toxicosis in Horses: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Ionophore toxicosis, a severe and often fatal condition in horses, arises from the ingestion of ionophores, antibiotic c...
Ionophore toxicosis, a severe and often fatal condition in horses, arises from the ingestion of ionophores, antibiotic compounds that are common in livestock feeds. Common ionophores in livestock feeds include monensin, lasalocid and salinomycin. These antibiotics increase growth rates in cattle and...
Dysmastication in Horses: Treatment of Chewing Problems and Dental Disorders
The ability to properly chew and grind food is essential for nutrient digestion and absorption. Dysmastication is a cond...
The ability to properly chew and grind food is essential for nutrient digestion and absorption. Dysmastication is a condition involving impaired chewing- also known as mastication. Horses that are unable to chew properly may experience a cascade of problems affecting their nutritional intake, digest...
Vitamin D for Horses: Benefits, Dietary Sources & Signs of Deficiency
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is essential for horses, influencing bone health, muscle function, and the immun...
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is essential for horses, influencing bone health, muscle function, and the immune system. Adequate vitamin D intake is considered important for growing horses to support normal bone development. In horses, vitamin D is believed to play a role in regulating lev...
The Effect of Phytoestrogens on Mare Fertility & Reproductive Health
The reproductive performance of broodmares holds significant importance within the equine industry. Achieving optimal pr...
The reproductive performance of broodmares holds significant importance within the equine industry. Achieving optimal pregnancy rates is critical for both the profitability of breeding operations and the holistic well-being of mares and foals. Many different factors can affect mare fertility, with a...
Sesamoiditis in Horses: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Sesamoiditis in horses refers to pain and injury around the sesamoid bones, pairs of small triangular bones found at the...
Sesamoiditis in horses refers to pain and injury around the sesamoid bones, pairs of small triangular bones found at the back of the fetlock. Inflammation in this area can cause pain and changes to the bony structure of the sesamoid bones, resulting in lameness. Sesamoiditis is most common in hunter...
Sacroiliac Pain in Horses: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment of SI Joint Disease
Sacroiliac pain is a common cause of poor performance and low-grade lameness in performance horses. The sacroiliac joint...
Sacroiliac pain is a common cause of poor performance and low-grade lameness in performance horses. The sacroiliac joint is the point on the horse’s body where the pelvis and the spine connect, playing an important role in their stride. ...
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...
How to Use a Heart-Rate Monitor for Your Horse – [Top 5 Benefits]
Heart rate monitors are an emerging tool in horse sports, helping to optimize training and enhance fitness. Widely used ...
Heart rate monitors are an emerging tool in horse sports, helping to optimize training and enhance fitness. Widely used by human athletes, equine-specific devices are now increasingly accessible to riders, horse owners, trainers, and veterinarians....
Guide to Horse Gaits: Walk, Trot, Canter, Gallop and More
Gaits are the different patterns of locomotion that horses use to move. As quadrupeds, horses can perform more movement ...
Gaits are the different patterns of locomotion that horses use to move. As quadrupeds, horses can perform more movement patterns than humans. However, not all horses move in the same way. Your horse’s natural gaits depend on his breed. Some breeds are known to have unique gaits, while others have ...
Gait Abnormalities and Disorders in Horses: Causes, Diagnosis & Treatment
Gait abnormalities in horses can lead to compromised performance, increased risk of injury, and in some cases, may neces...
Gait abnormalities in horses can lead to compromised performance, increased risk of injury, and in some cases, may necessitate early retirement from work. These disorders often present similarly to lameness, but do not necessarily involve pain. While minor conformational faults are responsible for s...
Branched Chain Amino Acid Supplements for Horses: Do they Work?
BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids) are muscle-building supplements that have become popular among equine athletes for pe...
BCAAs (branched-chain amino acids) are muscle-building supplements that have become popular among equine athletes for performance, recovery and fatigue. BCAA include leucine, isoleucine, and valine, and play a crucial role in protein synthesis, muscle growth, and energy production. ...
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...
Prematurity, Dysmaturity, and Postmaturity: Abnormal Gestational Length in Foals
The typical gestation period for horses ranges from 340 to 342 days. During this time, foals undergo extensive developme...
The typical gestation period for horses ranges from 340 to 342 days. During this time, foals undergo extensive development of their organ and skeletal systems, ensuring their survival outside of the mare after birth. In some cases, foals are born early, before their organs are fully developed. These...
How to Feed and Manage Orphan Foals: Guide to Milk Replacers & More
An orphan foal is a young horse that cannot nurse their birth mother. Foals may be orphaned for a number of reasons, inc...
An orphan foal is a young horse that cannot nurse their birth mother. Foals may be orphaned for a number of reasons, including the mare’s death or severe illness, rejection of the foal, or the mare’s failure to produce adequate amounts of milk. Orphan foals require special care and attention, as...
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....
Hoof & Sole Bruises in Horses: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment
A hoof or sole bruise is a common injury in horses, occurring when there is trauma to the sensitive tissues within the h...
A hoof or sole bruise is a common injury in horses, occurring when there is trauma to the sensitive tissues within the hoof. This trauma leads to localized bleeding and subsequent bruising. Hoof bruises can cause mild to severe discomfort and lameness, and if left untreated, can potentially lead to ...
Why Do Horses Wear Shoes And Do They Need Them? [Barefoot vs. Shod]
Does my horse need shoes? This is a question frequently asked by horse owners, and the answer varies depending on severa...
Does my horse need shoes? This is a question frequently asked by horse owners, and the answer varies depending on several factors. Horses wear shoes for various reasons, including providing protection and traction, supporting hoof structure, and improving performance. Some specialized shoes are used...
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...