“Thumps” in Horses

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Rhythmic movement of the flanks is an indicator of Thumps.


Synchronous Diaphramatic Flutter is a condition in which the horse’s flanks move in rhythm to the heart beat.  This is not a dangerous condition, and resting the horse will help it subside.  Thumps occurs after the horse undergoes stress.  Some situations include after an event where the horse is worked hard–such a showjumping–or colic.  Too much calcium in a horse’s diet can predispose it to Thumps.  Prevent Thumps by keeping the horse hydrated and giving electrolytes as needed.

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Keep you horse hydrated!



Developmental Orthopedic Diseases in Equids

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DOD usually occurs in larger, faster-growing breeds of horses.


 

The term “developmental orthopedic disease,” or DOD, encompasses all general growth disorders which result from abnormal bone growth.  So, what causes DOD?  It’s when the cartridge at the ends of bones fails to turn into bone when the horse stops growing, or under other circumstances.  It then becomes thicker and larger, interfering with the movement of the horse.

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DOD can adversely affect horses’ joints–and also their usefulness.


 

This disorder generally occurs in the fast-growing horse breeds, such as Thoroughbreds.  It may result in wobblers syndrome.  Horses that have wobblers generally have a lack of coordination, or ataxia.  It occurs in the cervical vertebrae, and can be treated–at least temporarily–by fusing the affected vertebrae in the neck.  The effects of DOD also encompass Physitis (enlarged growth plates), angular leg deformities, and joint cartilage damage.

Ponies are generally less at-risk.


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Feeding Horses: What Is a Forage?

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Pasture, or grass, is a forage.

Forages contain a high crude-fiber content.  In general, a forage would be grass or hay.  Horses should be fed to horses because they provide nutrients.  But they don’t do just that.  Forage keeps up the muscle tone in the GI tract and provides horses with something to do.  Without forage, horses can develop bad habits such as stall weaving and wood-chewing.

According to Feeding and Care of the Horse, forages have the following characteristics:

They are bulky.

They high in fiber and low in digestible energy.

Forages are high in calcium and potassium and low in phosphorous. 

Sun-cured hays are higher in vitamins E, A, and K.

Vary in protein content.

Horses should have access to pasture in moderation.  But hay can be fed in larger amounts.  It is recommended that horses be fed many small meals throughout the day or else get their hay in a slow feeder to make it last longer.  This simulates natural grazing activity.

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Hay should be fed in little bits to mimic natural grazing.

2015 Chicks

After forgetting about this blog for 2.5 years, I have decided to start writing on it again.  This year’s chicks are Puffin, Spicy, Della, Fluffy Tail, Griffin, Icy, and Ivy.  The first batch of five chicks we raised in a brooder.  The last two, Puffy and Spicy, are being raised by a hen.


To see more chicken photos, please visit: http://www.bigthingscoop.com/


 

Puffy and Spicy with Black Beak.

Left to right: Della, Griffin, Icy, and Ivy.  Fluffy Tail is not in the picture.