New Online Tools Help Calculate Risk, Control Infection in Horses

November 23, 2008 on 10:35 pm | In A Bit of Information | No Comments

Horse owners will be able to determine the risk of their animals catching an infectious disease and gather information about infection control thanks to two new online initiatives from the University of Guelph.  The first is an online calculator that allows horse owners to punch in their management practices and learn their animals’ risk levels. The second initiative is a blog by Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) researchers that provides information about various equine infectious diseases, along with practical tips on disease prevention and control.  The Biosecurity Risk Calculator will be launched this week at the Ontario Equestrian Federation Conference. Developed by Equine Guelph in partnership with Vétoquinol Canada, the online tool measures both risk and prevention.

 

“The calculator gives horse owners a good starting point by showing the potential risks currently present on their farm and the most practical ways to decrease that risk,” said Gayle Ecker, senior manager of Equine Guelph. Having a biosecurity protocol is important to reducing the risk of spreading infectious disease on any horse farm, added Caroline Desforges, biosecurity and equine product manager with Vétoquinol Canada.

 

The calculator will be available through the Equine Guelph website. Founded in 2003, Equine Guelph is the horse owner’s centre at U of G. Supported and overseen by equine industry groups, it’s dedicated to improving the health and well-being of horses and helps connect members of the equine industry with expertise at OVC.

 

Meanwhile, “EQUIDBLOG” aims to provide information and insight about equine infectious diseases to horse owners and veterinarians. The site is coordinated by Prof. Scott Weese and Maureen Anderson of OVC’s Department of Pathobiology. They are specialists in large-animal internal medicine with expertise in infectious diseases and infection control.

 

“Infectious diseases are prevalent in equine medicine,” Weese said. “The average horse owner commonly encounters infectious disease questions and problems, ranging from decisions about vaccination and deworming to serious illnesses in their horses. We wanted to design a web site where we could provide balanced and unbiased information in various forms, ranging from short updates about current issues to detailed information sheets about diseases or descriptions of infection control protocols.”

 

Weese and Anderson create blog posts every few days about timely topics related to infectious disease topics, including items in the news, outbreaks that are occurring internationally and general commentary about infectious diseases and infection control. Recent posts have included diverse topics ranging from vaccination and deworming to equine herpes virus in the United States to the use of honey for treating infections. All the information is written and reviewed by experts in the field.

 

Last spring, Weese and Anderson started a similar blog, “Worms and Germs,” to educate people about zoonotic diseases—those that can be transmitted between animals and humans—as well as to provide general information about topics related to animal health and pet care.

Input Needed for Nationwide Survey on Unwanted Horses

November 22, 2008 on 2:31 am | In Event Calendars | No Comments

The problem of unwanted horses is being studied through a nationwide initiative of the Unwanted Horse Coalition (UHC) with help from equine associations, veterinarians, breeders, state and local law enforcement, horse owners, rescue/retirement facilities, and other facilities using horses. The first step is an online survey, and everyone with an interest in the welfare of horses is encouraged to respond at http://survey.ictgroup.com/uhcsurvey/.
With tens of thousands of unwanted, neglected and abandoned horses in the United States, some say the problem is a fast-growing epidemic. However, much remains unknown. Currently, there are few documented facts about the accurate number of unwanted horses, their age, sex, breed, recent use, value or what happens to them in the long run.

“Although there are numerous media reports and much anecdotal evidence of a growing problem with unwanted horses, there have been no studies or surveys done to attempt to document it,” said Jay Hickey, president of the American Horse Council (AHC), the national association that represents all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C. The UHC operates with the AHC. “The downturn in the economy, rising costs of hay, the drought that has affected many parts of the United States, the costs of euthanasia and carcass disposal, and the closing of the nation’s slaughter facilities have all made the problem worse. But no one knows its magnitude. That’s why the first step toward a solution is to gather and examine the facts. The goal of this survey is to get the input, observations, opinions and suggestions from anyone and everyone involved with horses.”

The Study on Contributing Factors Surrounding the Unwanted Horse Issue will be instrumental in filling factual gaps with actual data on:

        Awareness of the unwanted horse problem and perceived trends in recent years

        Level of concern

        Factors contributing to the problem

        Direct and indirect experience with the issue

        Actions taken by owners

        Expectations about responsibility and assistance

        Solutions

 

Phase I of the study is an online survey of people most affected by and involved with the issue of the unwanted horse. An independent research firm developed the questionnaire and is hosting the online survey site at http://survey.ictgroup.com/uhcsurvey/. The firm will also tabulate and analyze responses, and provide a full report. A comprehensive view of the problem depends on representation from all corners of the horse industry, according to Dr. Tom Lenz, chairman of the UHC.

 

“To ensure the broadest possible participation, we’re working to involve a variety of individuals, associations, state and local agencies, and equine-related companies to actively encourage their constituencies to take the survey and voice their opinions.”

 

The American Association of Equine Practitioners defines the term “unwanted horse” as, “Horses which are no longer wanted by their current owner because they are old, injured, sick, unmanageable, fail to meet their owner’s expectations, or the owner can no longer afford or is incapable of caring for them.” This definition, according to Lenz, is a starting point to discover what’s causing the problem and what can be done to correct it.

 

“Regardless of how horses reached this state, every owner—and the equine industry at large—has a responsibility to ensure that everything possible is done to guarantee the humane care and treatment of unwanted horses,” Lenz said. “Our message now is to please go to http://survey.ictgroup.com/uhcsurvey/, and provide us with feedback. Answers will be confidential. More important, this feedback will be invaluable in developing a strategy to solve the problem.”

 

The American Horse Council (AHC)

 

Founded in 1969, the American Horse Council was organized to represent the horse industry before Congress and the federal regulatory agencies. The AHC promotes and protects all horse breeds, disciplines and interests by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the equine industry. The AHC is member supported by approximately 160 organizations and 1,200 individuals representing every facet of the horse world, from owners, breeders, trainers, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and associations to horse shows, racetracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

 

The Unwanted Horse Coalition (UHC)

 

The mission of the Unwanted Horse Coalition is to reduce the number of unwanted horses and improve their welfare through education and the efforts of organizations committed to the health, safety and responsible care and disposition of these horses. The UHC grew out of the Unwanted Horse Summit, which was organized by the American Association of Equine Practitioners and held in conjunction with the American Horse Council’s annual meeting in Washington, D.C., in April 2005. The summit was held to bring key stakeholders together to start a dialogue on the unwanted horse in America. Its purpose was to develop consensus on the most effective way to work together to address the issue. In June 2006, the UHC was folded into the AHC and now operates under its auspices

Molly Powell Bits and Pads

November 19, 2008 on 12:04 am | In Horse Tack Reviews | No Comments

All of us at M.C. Diamond Ranch are excited with this new line of  Molly Powell Performance Plus Pads coming out in 2009. We are stocking two of these pads before the release of this line. They come with a  “wool felt bottom” and a ”tacky too bottom”. Some of the features on this pad are the tough outer covering and heavy duty wear leather insure years of hard work with this pad. For pressure free shoulder and freedom of movement this pad has a unique cut away shoulder and shaped back. Less Muscle Fatigue and un-restricted movement. This pad will enhance your horse’s performance. Check out both “tacky too” and “wool felt bottoms” at M.C. Diamond Pads. If you like this pad but would like it in a larger size check out the X series Performance Plus Pads. Make sure you go to Molly Powell Bit Series these bits will help you get a good run.

Mark Allen

Molly Powell Money Maker Bit Series by Reinsman

November 14, 2008 on 1:00 am | In Event Calendars | No Comments

 

All new for 2009, the Molly Powell Money Maker Series Bits  by Reinsman at M.C. Diamond Ranch. The “Money maker” 3 piece bit is a very versatile bit that works great on about any horse. This is the bit I go to on a horse that wants to shake his head when I ask him for a little more. This bit is one of my favorites because it will allow me to help a sensitive horse in the turn and bring out a money making run. “Lifetime Guarantee” Check them out at M.C. Diamond Bits. We carry the full line of Molly Powell bits at one of the best prices on the internet. These bits are from her own experiences and Championships. For a variety of horses and riding styles, you can find a match for you.

Mark Allen

Tyler Magnus Ring Slide Series Bits - Reinsman

November 14, 2008 on 12:04 am | In Horse Tack Reviews | No Comments

 

All new for 2009, the Tyler Magnus Ring Slide Series Bits  by Reinsman at M.C. Diamond Ranch. This ring slide has the balance to give both the horse and rider the confidence needed for the horse to break at the poll and also has enough leverage for step and shoulder control. A a great starting bridle for a mature horse to gain willingness and confidence. We are stocking two diferent mouth peices of this great new bit. Check them out at M.C. Diamond Bits. Tyler Magnus has teamed up with Reinsman in creating quality products like Tylers full line of bits and Tyler Magnus Ropng Saddles

Mark Allen 

Big Horn Closes its Doors

November 6, 2008 on 10:54 pm | In Event Calendars | No Comments
Chattanooga saddle maker, Big Horn Inc. has closed its doors. After decades of manufacturing saddles, horse riding equipment and personal leather goods, about 80 people were put out of work due to the closure. The company had operations at 1222 E. 38th St. A company spokeswoman who declined to give her name issued a statement to the Chattanooga Times Free Press, Oct. 28. She indicated that recent slowdowns in the economy had hurt the business.
We try to sell USA made horse riding equipment at M.C. Diamond Ranch for the high quality that comes from the states and keep the jobs here.
Mark Allen

Connie Combs Barrel Racing Spurs

November 4, 2008 on 7:34 pm | In Event Calendars | No Comments

M.C. Diamond Ranch is offering this spur at a great price. Designed for World Champion Barrel Racer, Connie Combs these unique spurs are hand forged from high quality cold steel and feature a unique barrel racer motif in 8 popular colors. Black, Blue, Brown, Lime, Pink, Purple, Red and Stainless steel. Check all the colors and price out at M.C. Diamond Ranch.

If You are a Reiner, Roper, Barrel Racer, Cutter or show Western Pleasure and are looking for  quality leather spur straps at an affordable price, check out M.C. Diamond Ranch. 

Over 500 combinations are on our shopping cart. Nickle to Sterling Silver conchos and buckle sets, Bling-Bling crystals, Hair on Hide, Buckaroos and many more options. One of the largest selections you will find on the web.

Mark Allen

AQHA NSBA 2008 Holiday Bash Indiana

November 4, 2008 on 6:05 am | In Event Calendars | No Comments

To check out the AQHA Holiday Bash event flyer, arena photos and info. From weather, address, arena size, seating and a lot more go “here“  Also check out the M.C. Diamond Ranch Event Calendar for many more events. A fantastic Event Calendar if you want to add your event or arena email us at mcdimondranch@msn.com or mark@mcdiamond.com. Looking for a bit one of the largest section of reinsman bits on the web at M.C. Diamond Ranch

Mark Allen

Crossroad Arena

November 4, 2008 on 12:17 am | In Event Calendars | No Comments

Crossroad Arena destined to be the #1 Arena in Indiana. Wow! What a weekend… they just put on the second largest barrel race in Indiana this year. A fantastic complex and a great crew to work with. To check out their events, arena photos and info. From weather, address, arena size, seating and a lot more go “here“  Also check out the M.C. Diamond Ranch Event Calendar for many more events.  

Mark Allen

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