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Horses, Ponies and Foals Health Updates, Advice and Tips from Devoted Vets

New! RIRDC research on Laminitis:

Laminitis is a debilitating condition that affects the sensitive structures between the inner hoof wall and the pedal bone. It's a common form of lameness and causes significant loss for owners and the horse industry. By developing targeted treatment and management strategies the findings from this research will help reduce these losses.

As a result of the findings, veterinarians now know that high blood concentrations of insulin put horses at risk. They can use this knowledge to better manage insulin-resistance and to predict the likelihood of laminitis development.

The monitoring and reduction of insulin concentrations in horses by vets and horse owners should reduce the incidence of homone-related laminitis and horses, owners and the industry. Exercise and dietry management are the cornerstones of reducing insulin resistance.

Controlling  high levels of insulin are particularly important for the horse breeding industry as the equine obesity (equine metabolic syndrome) can affect fertility as well as causing laminitis.

Recommendations resulting from the study for vets and horse owners include:

- Reduce insulin concentrations well below 200IU/ml in horses and ponies with high levels of insulin using controlled diet and exercise regimes.

- Maintain a lean body weight for horses and ensure body condition scores are in the mid to low range.

- Monitor pasture species and seasonal variation of pasture growth to avoid excessive consumption of carbohydrate rich pasture.

Ring Devoted Vets at Warragul Vet Clinic, West Gippsland on 5623 2525 to ask about a preventing laminitis in your horses. Prevention is way better than cure! Posted 22/6/12