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Not All Lameness is Osteoarthritis

By: Jennifer Ryan
November, 2016

Veterinarians evaluate each case of lameness for potential signs of osteoarthritis whether in young or old horses 


In horses, it’s estimated that up to 60 percent of lameness cases are associated with osteoarthritis. Yet, not every equine lameness case signals the start of this progressive disease that doesn’t (yet) have a cure.

That’s why veterinarians evaluate each case in detail to determine its cause and outline treatments. Treatment options may be similar to dogs and cats, but the way the disease is expressed especially in
performance horses that are asked to slide, stop or jump may be dramatically different than in the family dog.

 

Categories: Equine, Equine Edition Winter 2016, Osteoarthritis

The Human-Equine Bond

By: David Thill
November, 2016

When people talk about the “human-animal bond,” they’re not always talking about dogs and cats. The relationship between horse owners and their horses is an interesting topic for discussion and study as well.

“Horse owners and caretakers vary considerably in their attitudes toward their horses, from almost family-member-like attitudes and interaction, as some dog and cat owners have,” says Sue McDonnell, MS, PhD, adjunct professor of reproductive behavior, New Bolton Center Hospital for Large Animals, University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, and founding head of the University’s Equine Behavior Program.


“I am not sure of the metric one would use to compare, but the real financial and the apparent emotional investment can be huge, in my opinion, sometimes to a fault, in that the horse’s welfare is compromised for the sake of the owner, or the interaction with the horse is so anthropomorphically off base that the horse’s welfare is compromised, just as so often [is the case] with household pets.”

Categories: Equine, Equine Edition Winter 2016, Human-Equine Bond

Raising the Bar on Equine Dentistry

By: David Thill
November, 2016

When it comes to the horse’s teeth, the best thing you can do is find the problem before it’s a problem.


 

“Dentistry is sometimes thought of as a ‘cookbook’ thing where you just take some tooth material off and you’re done,” says Bruce Whittle, DVM, co-founder of Honey Creek Veterinary Hospital in Trenton, Mo. “But that shouldn’t be true. The most important part of dentistry is doing a good thorough exam. Dental care is just a part of the total healthcare for a horse.”

Stephen Galloway, DVM, founder of Animal Care Hospital in Oakland, Tenn., and the former chair of the American Association of Equine Practitioners’s Dentistry Committee, agrees that routine examinations are the key to early disease prevention. “You don’t have any signs until the disease is severe, and you want to catch it before it gets to that point,” he says.

 

Categories: Equine, Dentistry, Equine Edition Winter 2016

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