Category Archives: Handy Tips

IS YOUR OLDER HORSE LOSING HIS TOPLINE THIS WINTER?… OLD SCHMOLD! IT IS FIXABLE!


Monday, December 22nd, 2014 | Filed under Handy Tips




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As I write this, I’m Listening to (no affiliation, just sharing):

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This winter I’ve noticed that my elder pony, Dodger (28?), and my 19 year-old Morgan, Gwen, were showing their toplines for the first time.  I hate when that happens.  A sign of their times…

But, I know it isn’t the end all to be all… there is a fix.

You see, I’ve been through this before so I knew what to do.  I thought I’d tell you, too, in case it comes in handy.

THE THINGS TO RULE OUT

Of course, your horse could be sick.  So take his temp, and look for the usual signs of illness.  If you haven’t had the vet out to give him an elder exam, do that.  It will put your mind at ease and give you a game plan, if there are issues.

1)  Check for Cushings  (Very common in older horses who have been fed grains most of their lives… also common is certain breeds.  Not always obvious.  Worth doing the test.)

2)  Check his teeth for sharp points that might be keeping him from eating properly.  Perhaps his teeth are now so ground down, he needs soft foods or wet pellets.

3)  Watch and see if his pasture partner has taken the upperhand and your horse can no longer compete for the food.  This happens, even among the best of friends.

4)  Do  a geriatric blood panel.

5)  Make sure they are parasite free

These are my two Shetlands, Dodger and Slick. Dodger, in the back, is in his late 20s. This winter, I noticed his topline for the first time. So... I had his teeth done and a geriatric panel. He's fine, I just have to adjust his food for his age. More food for him and more soft foods.. more beet pulp and senior low carb feeds. I also gave him a round of psyllium powder, just to be safe.

These are my two Shetlands, Dodger and Slick. Dodger, in the back, is in his late 20s. This winter, I noticed his topline for the first time. So… I had his teeth done and a geriatric panel. He’s fine, I just have to adjust his food for his age. More food for him and more soft foods.. more beet pulp and senior low carb feeds. I also gave him a round of psyllium powder, just to be safe.

IF HE IS OTHERWISE HEALTHY – HERE ARE SOME SIMPLE SOLUTIONS

I learned this last year with Slick, my other Shetland.  His topline was showing and I did all the above… only to find that his main issue was SAND.

So, here are things you can do for your healthy horse to bring back his topline.

1)  SAND IN THE GUT… it happens over time.  You don’t have to live in sand (and can be lethal if not caught in time).  With sand in the gut, the nutrients don’t absorb so they lose weight, hence the visible topline.  I was so surprised to find out that our sandless environment still created dirt in my little pony’s little gut.

The symptoms of sand in the gut are a distended belly, a visible topline and the equine will have loose bowels.  At this point, you are in danger… so best to treat with psyllium proactively – before there is an issue.

The fix it easy if you catch it on time.  From my experience, I prefer the powdered psylllium.  I use Su-per Psylliym Powder.  All you do is top dress their feed (wet, soaked beet pulp is the BEST for helping to remove sand) for a week or two – depending  upon the amount of sand – and then keep it up once a month, if you think that is needed.  For us out here, with no sand and our horses eat on mats, I treat with psyllium every season.  4 times a year.

Many people use Sand Clear and other pelleted versions, but I prefer the powdered psyllium.

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2)  GIVE THEM MORE FOOD… as horses get older, like people, they don’t absorb their food as well.  They might not be able to chew and ingest their hay like before, either.

So, I pump up the volume by giving soaked beet pulp.  Some people like to rinse the pellets and then soak them to remove all vestiges of sugars.  For me, I simply soak them for a few hours or overnight in a cold tack room or in a refrigerator.  It is really easy and such a great food, full of fiber and nutrients that really help plump up the elders – and beet pulp doesn’t upset my Cushings and IR horses.

Also, I have been using a Low Carb, senior feed.  I don’t know if you can get that where  you live, but it is a ground feed (easy to chew) that doesn’t have sugars or unnecessary carb bulk.

I use Standlee because I never find any corn or other 'bad' things in the bag - for my Cushings horses.

I use Standlee because I never find any corn or other ‘bad’ things in the bag – for my Cushings horses.

3)  Add CHIA SEED.  Boy, I’ll tell ya, I’ve never seen such a quick improvement in a healthy horse that needed topline fixing – than the Chia Seed.  It took about 2 weeks and Poof!  Topline ridge – gone!  I love the stuff.  I use it daily for all of mine.

I get it from Chia Seed Direct (no affiliation).  But you can see what might be cheaper in your area.

Chia Seed is pretty amazing... I think I should eat it myself.

Chia Seed is pretty amazing… I think I should eat it myself!

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JEWELRY THAT BENEFITS THE BUCKET FUND HORSES! Every donation counts! Click image to see the new pieces!

JEWELRY THAT BENEFITS THE BUCKET FUND HORSES! Every sale counts! Click image to see the new pieces!

Click here for webpage, click here for Facebook!

Screen Shot 2014-11-05 at 7.34.57 PMWe gift wrap, can add personal message and drop ship! Just email me

Our December Bucket Fund Horses! Cinny the Ancient and Charming Gelding, Lila - the mini donk who survived sarcoid and the H&M Re-Wilding Program. Click here to read all about these horses! Gift donation Certificates available!

Our December Bucket Fund Horses! Cinny the Ancient and Charming Gelding, Lila – the mini donk who survived sarcoid and the H&M Re-Wilding Program. Click here to read all about these horses! Gift donation Certificates available!


Supporting The Bucket Fund through Amazon Smile
Please choose HORSE AND MAN, INC when you shop via Amazon Smile through this link.


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Your purchase with Riding Warehouse through this link helps the Bucket Fund!



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Great Ideas for the Holidays!! (…that benefit the horses or the horse owner!)






Looking for horsey gifts this season?  Well, I was, too… So, I put together a list of items (in no particular order)!  No affiliations.

1)  Remember THE HORSE’S GLASS?  She makes stemware with the likeness of your horse!  Here is her FB page and here is her webpage.  From what I can gather, you can order ready-made glasses from her website…. !

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Click to go to website.

And/Or order a likeness of your horse.  But, you’d probably have to wait to get your specially ordered glass until after the Holidays.

You can place a custom order but you would receive it after the Holiday. Still, a great gift!

You can place a custom order but you would receive it after the Holiday. Still, a great gift!

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2)  TARPAN won BEST SHORT DOCUMENTARY at the Equus Film Festival!    It is about how researchers and scientists in Bulgaria have brought back the extinct Tarpan horse to Bulgaria.  Fascinating!  Also, very beautiful to watch.  This film inspired me…

You can get your copy of TARPAN here!

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Click to learn more!

Also, they have two other beautiful films (ON SALE!)  in their shop.  One for the Arab lover –  a 2-DVD set:  “Path to Glory”

Click to learn more

Click to learn more

And…

“Of Gods and Kings – The Skyros Horse”:  This breathtaking film captures the spirit and beauty of this endangered horse and those who are trying to save them!

Click to learn more!

Click to learn more!

3)  A while ago I wrote about my Cow painting that I love from oil artist Glen Lyle… Well, the gallery sent to me what they have available now in their Mini Collection.   (I love love love mine!)  The singles are $225, doubles $450.   To order one and have it shipped, call/email  Fredericksberg Gallery
314 East Main
Fredericksburg, TX 78624
(830)990-2707
www.fbgartgallery.com

cows

4)  HOME AT LAST by Jim Kyle and Suzanne Warren – a book with many happy Rescue stories.!  I don’t know anything about this rescue personally, but I did love these stories!  Box of tissues for sure!  It is nice to flip the book open and any page will warm your heart…  I know that all sales help the Home at Last Sanctuary.

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Click to go to Amazon for this book.

5)  MAMA TESS Sterling Silver “Stand in the Light” charm on small lobster clasp! 

Mama Tess is my 24 years young mare who suffered horrible founder in 2013.  After ICU and several Specialists, she was deemed unfixable.  15 months later, she is still with us!  She isn’t fixed but she is healing.  And when she has bad days, she stand under her window, in the light…

The front has her initials in a heart “MT”, the back says “Stand in the LIght:.  Now until Xmas… Only $18!  All proceeds benefit The Bucket Fund horses for December!

Click here to purchase (change quantity at checkout if you’d like more than one!):

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6)  THE BEST PRODUCT YOU DIDN’T KNOW YOU NEEDED! – Equi-Spa Sheath and Udder Cleaner!  Great for a gift!  

OK, I use this ALL THE TIME with MT to clean anything sensitive… face, personal areas, hiney… and it is way more gentle than anything else I’ve found – plus it works really well!  And, you can leave it on without any issue so you don’t have to worry about hurting your horse.  I highly recommend this product – especially because it is one of those things that you cannot believe you lived without!  Give it to any horse owner and just tell them to ‘try it’!  $17

Click here to go to website.

click to go to website

click to go to website

7)  HEALING SHINE by Michael Johnson.  A CLASSIC.  A Must-Have.

I’ve written about this audio book (or paperback, whichever you prefer) often.  A classic.  It is for any type of horseman – or any human, for that matter.  Warms the soul and teaches in the most heartfelt an unassuming way.  Truly a gift.  I love listening to it during my commute…  Over and over.  Never gets old.

Click here and scroll down Michael’s page to find HEALING SHINE.  (audio CD or paperback)

Click image to go to website

Click image to go to website

7.5)  THIS JUST IN…   16 YEAR-OLD GIRL PHOTOGRAPHER, Rachel Abraham, who photographed wild horses in North Dakota has created a calendar! 

Wow!  Fun to support this young talent, eh?!  Click here to go to her website.

Click here to purchase her calendar for only $15!.  She’s just 16!  Love that!

Click to go to her website... she sells lots of her images... Fun!  Go, Rachel, go!

Click to go to her website… she sells lots of her images… Fun! Go, Rachel, go!  Only 16 years old!

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8)  AUTISTIC TEEN CREATED AMAZING ILLUSTRATIONS IN THIS INTELLIGENT CHILDREN’S BOOK ABOUT HOW HORSES THINK:  ‘RAJALIKA SPEAK’ BY ELIZABETH KAYE MCCALL

The story is based on a real Arab stallion who likes to vocalize!   The book jacket says, “Inspired by the real life story of a royally bred Arabian stallion gone bad, who found redemption when he learned to talk.”

The aside note that an autistic girl fell in love with Rajalika and wanted to illustrate his story really touches me…   A great book to expand a young reader’s vocabulary, too.

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Click to purchase from Amazon

This is Rajalika as Santa Horse!

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Rajalika playing Santa!

9)  SGT. RECKLESS – AMERICA’S WAR HORSE by Robin Hutton… “She wasn’t a horse, she was a Marine!”  Such a well researched book full of never before seen photos.  A great gift for any horse person!  Amazon, under $20!

Click to go to Amazon!

Click to go to Amazon!

**BUT you can also donate to her Memorial Fund and Grave Marker Fund (Operation Reckless)!  Wouldn’t that be a great gift, too?!  For the Military person or any horse person who relates to this incredible mare, an unusual gift like this would be so special!

Click here to learn more about her Memorial Fund and Grave Marker Fund!

You could also make a donation to her Memorial Fund or Grave Marker Fund.  Click image to learn more!

You could also make a donation to her Memorial Fund or Grave Marker Fund. Click image to learn more!

AND LOOK AT ALL THE SGT RECKLESS MEMORIAL ITEMS!!  Click here to see them all!

So many SGT RECKLESS memorabilia items... click to see them all!

So many SGT RECKLESS memorabilia items… click to see them all!

10)  THE U.S. CAVALRY HORSE by General William H. Carter – I loved perusing this book!  Written by one of the premier Cavalry officers from WW1… a thorough look into the military history of the Cavalry Horse.  So interesting!  Amazon doesn’t have it, only Two Horse Enterprises.  (Two Horse Enterprises is worth a look for sure…  have lots of great, informative and somewhat obscure trail guides and horse books!)  Click here $20!

click to order

click to order

11)  SALT RIVER WILD HORSES 2015 CALENDAR!  Only $10!!!!!!

Such beauty… and a great way to support the Wild horses – and so inexpensive!!  Great Bang for your Buck!  ONLY $10!  Click here to order!

Click to order the calendar!

Click to order the calendar!

Click for more information!

Click for more information!

12)  Greatness and Goodness:  BARBARO and his Legacy by Alex Brown. 

A Beautiful book full of insider detail.  Not often do you find a book with both wonderful photos and cover to cover information.  A complete study of Barbaro.

Amazon says Only 20 left in stock when I wrote this!

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Click to go to Amazon for Barbaro

13)  St. Francy Sterling Silver “Watch Over Me” tag on a lobster clasp!  Only $18

St. Francy was my very good friend, Nancy, who passed last year.  She loved animals, cared for them and fought for them as an attorney.  An amazing gal.  I know she is up in heaven helping the Horsegods.  This pendant was made in her honor and I think she will honor the request to watch over anyone who wears her pendant!  Proceeds benefit The Bucket Fund!

The Sterling pendant is heart shaped with a textured flying heart on the front.  The back says, “Watch Over Me”.  Great for anyone!  Or your dog… or saddle… anything!

Click here to order for ONLY $18!!

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14)  JEWELRY WITH A PURPOSE All proceeds benefit The Bucket Fund!  Facebook page linked here!  Shipped immediately and gift wrapped!  Most items between $20 – $42!!

Click to see what we have today!  Most items between $20 - $42!

Click to see what we have today! Most items between $20 – $42!

15)  THE BUCKET FUND DONOR CERTIFICATES!  ANY DONATION of any amount is eligible for a donation certificate to give as a gift.  “A donation for Cinny was made in Your Honor…”.  Donate to our December Bucket Fund horses – Lila, Cinny or the Re-Wilding Project and receive a donor certificate!  The certificates are created within 24 hours and sent to you as a pdf for you to print at your leisure!

Click here for The Bucket Fund! – Any donation qualifies for a donor certificate!

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Our December Bucket Fund Horses!  Cinny the Ancient and Charming Gelding, Lila - the mini donk who survived sarcoid and the H&M Re-Wilding Program.  Click here to read all about these horses!   Gift donation Certificates available!

Our December Bucket Fund Horses! Cinny the Ancient and Charming Gelding, Lila – the mini donk who survived sarcoid and the H&M Re-Wilding Program. Click here to read all about these horses! Gift donation Certificates available!


Supporting The Bucket Fund through Amazon Smile
Please choose HORSE AND MAN, INC when you shop via Amazon Smile through this link.


Riding Warehouse
Your purchase with Riding Warehouse through this link helps the Bucket Fund!



HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth... if you like this, please pass it around!