Hoof imbalance is one of the most common problems associated with lameness. Uneven pressure of
the foot can lead to lameness and could affect your horse’s competition season. Take advantage of our special offer throughout April
£150 inc VAT for 4 foot X-rays
Author Archives: Milbourn Equine Vets
Hoof imbalance is one of the most common problems associated with lameness. Uneven pressure of
We are very excited to announce that our Hawkhurst Clinical Director, Howard Newitt has been invited by the FEI to form part of the veterinary commission at the upcoming World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina (https://tryon2018.com/).
This is a great honour as only a handful of vets are invited from across the globe to be part of the FEI veterinary team who will officiate at the horse inspections (trot-ups) and have overall responsibility for the welfare of the horses at the games. This appointment results from Howard’s 12 years as an FEI vet which includes previous appointments at local eventing & reining competitions, British Young Horse Eventing championships, Junior European Reining championships & London Paralympic dressage.
Howard will be away for two weeks in September for the games which he is trying to convince everyone is all work and no pleasure!
Milbourn Equine recommend worming against tapeworm in March and September. We do strongly advise that we test for tapeworm first to check if worming is required to reduce the development of resistance to the medicines used to treat them.
Testing for tapeworms cannot be done through the standard faecal worm egg count.
Either a blood test or the Equisal Tapeworm saliva test can be used to identify whether your horse has a tapeworm burden.
A blood sample can be taken by your vet to test, a method known as the ELISA or tapeworm antibody test. A horse with a high level of tapeworm infection will produce a large number of antibodies, which can be detected in the blood.
The test indicates a broad level of intensity, rather than tapeworm numbers. The amount of antibodies will indicate whether the burden is low, medium or high.
The Equisal tapeworm saliva test is performed on a swab of saliva taken from the horse’s mouth which is much quicker and less invasive than a blood test. The Equisal test has been shown to have very similar effectiveness as the blood test in detecting the presence of tapeworms.
The procedure is simple and full instructions are provided in the kit which is now available from us. A swab is inserted into the mouth where the bit normally goes, then placed into a collection tube which is then posted to the laboratory by the owner for analysis. The result is returned to the practice and your vet will contact you with the result and advice for treatment if required.
To find out more and how to join our Equine Healthcare Plan to receive discounts on your worming treatments, tapeworm testing and membership to our worming programme please see www.milbournequine.co.uk
Don’t forget now is the time to treat your horse for Encysted Small Redworm (ESRW) if you haven’t done so already this Winter. ESRW are the early stages of the small redworm enveloped within a fibrous capsule in the mucosa of the large intestine.
There isn’t a definitive test for ESRW and a negative or low faecal worm egg count doesn’t rule out the presence of encysted stages if egg laying adults aren’t present. Mass emergence of encysted larvae, often coinciding with warmer weather in early spring, may cause a condition known as larval cyathostominosis. This can cause diarrhoea and colic.
Every horse should receive an annual treatment to combat ESRW, ideally during November/December and definitely before spring arrives.
Moxidectin is the only licensed ingredient for single-dose control of ESRW and is contained in two products – Equest and Equest Pramox. Please contact Milbourn Equine for more information and advice on worming your horse.
We also offer an Equine Healthcare Plan at Milbourn Equine which includes membership to our annual worming programme. This helps create an individually tailored worming programme for your horse, based on worm egg counts as well as offering discounts on worming products.
Take advantage of the quieter winter months to give your horse a full health check, make sure your horses vaccines are up to date, get their teeth checked and rasped, review your worming protocol and get any little niggles / concerns checked out before it’s too late.
Milbourn Equine offer a WINTER HEALTH CHECK for £97.50 which covers a full clinical examination, dental check and blood sample to test your horses internal organs as well as a faecal worm egg count to check for worms and allow us to advise on worming. This a great opportunity to ensure your horse is in peak condition and discuss any concerns with one of our vets.
Other things to check include;
Regularly assess your horse’s weight/condition and feed accordingly
It is important to critically assess your horse’s body condition regularly and this can be neglected in the cold, wet winter months when they are fully rugged the whole time. Despite the lack of good grass at this time of year forage should form the bulk of their ration in the form of hay/haylage. Hard feed should be fed according to workload and body condition not just because someone else is feeding it. Some horses will need nothing other than good hay and a balancer. As work levels increase/decrease keep an eye on condition and again adjust if necessary, then once the spring grass comes through you may need to make further changes.
Regular grooming and hoof care
A thorough daily/weekly groom can help to prevent skin problems and allows you to spot any cuts/scrapes, mud fever or lumps and bumps so you can deal with them straight away. Hairy winter coats can hide things if you aren’t thorough! Pick out your horses feet daily and be on the lookout for thrush which is so common in this wet weather.
Don’t assume that the saddle you used all last year will still fit; your horse will change shape throughout the year and as they grow and mature. Get a qualified saddler out to check it at least yearly (and more regularly if needed) rather than once the horse has a sore back or is bucking you off! It can also be useful to have your horse checked over regularly by a qualified physiotherapist to keep them in top shape & feeling well.
Turnout regardless of weather
Ideally turn your horses out every day regardless of weather or field conditions. It is good for their health helping prevent respiratory problems and colic, as well as keeping them sane and helping to prevent boredom. If field turnout is totally impossible try turning out in the arena for a few hours, or at the very least ride/lunge them daily.
With the inevitable increase in time spent stabled over the winter it is vital to make sure the stable is well ventilated, regularly mucked out and hay and bedding is not dusty. Whilst the thought of a cosy stable with the windows all shut up might appeal to us good ventilation is key to respiratory health and reducing spread of viruses.
Ensure your horse is warm and dry but don’t over rug
Invest in a good waterproof rug and make sure your horse is dry underneath after even the heaviest of rain. Take care that your horse doesn’t become too hot though when the weather is mild, being sweaty under the rug is as bad as being wet and can result in skin problems. Often a waterproof lightweight is enough, especially if your horse isn’t clipped. If your horse is overweight take advantage of the cold weather to allow him to lose some weight!!
It might sound obvious but check your horse has water that is clean, not frozen over and not surrounded by a bottomless sea of mud! Some horses prefer slightly warm water and if they are very fussy it can help to put apples in the buckets to encourage drinking and prevent dehydration and possible impaction colic.
Keep their routine varied
It can be hard with all the wet and icy weather but it is very important to avoid just spending your whole time trotting endless circles in the arena. Incorporate weekly sessions of pole work/jumping and go to the beach or the gallops as much as possible, which not only helps fitness levels but keeps horses fresh and interested.
As you concentrate on your horse’s fitness don’t forget about your own! Pilates is great for core strength in riders, regular running (or even walking) is very beneficial to make sure that when out riding you don’t end up more tired than your horse!
Milbourn Equine are pleased to announce that we have gone into partnership with the Linnaeus group who own veterinary practices nationwide. Three of our Directors (Howard, David & Sharon) are retaining a stake in the business and will remain running the practice as well as continuing to see clients. This partnership will provide long term stability for the practice with opportunities for future investment. The day to day running of the practice will be unchanged and please be assured that it is very much business as usual. We look forward to continuing to provide the excellent service you have come to expect from all of us at Milbourn Equine.
Howard Newitt, David McDonald and Sharon Marsh
Nominations are now open for these awards and can be made online via www.petplan.co.uk/Vetawards . Nominations close 12th January 2018. Categories include Vet, Vet Nurse, Practice Manager and Support Staff, as well as Practice of the Year. If we have exceeded your expectations please don’t hesitate to vote for Milbourn Equine!!
We sincerely hope you do not require our services over the festive period but if you do need us as always we will be available for any emergencies. Our usual opening hours apply apart from:
25th December – Emergencies only
26th December – Emergencies only
1st January – Emergencies only