Equestrian Life – July 2011

Words by:
Bernard Bale
Featured in:
July 2011

What a great month it was in June with the County Show, Brocklesby Show and a really heavy diary of events covering just about every equestrian interest you can think of. What is so totally amazing is that if you thought June was busy, take a look at July! There is so much on that you don’t have time to take the saddle off! Happy horse days!
Moira Richardson is a full time IT Programme Manager. She is based near Retford but competes and judges (she is a British Dressage List 5 Judge) frequently in Lincolnshire. Her horse, Urayadien (stable name Adi), is a Dutch Warmblood mare, by the renowned stallion Gribaldi and was imported from Germany by Moira, some twenty months ago.

Photograph shows Moira and Urayadien at Elms Farm, Caythorpe on 15th May 2011, competing in the British Dressage Affiliated competition at Elementary level. They were placed 2nd in both training sections. This was followed up with an excellent performance at Sheepgate Equestrian Centre the following week, in gale force winds, where they secured their qualifications for the Sheepgate Summer Unaffiliated Dressage Championships (to be held in September 2011).

We are constantly hearing about rising prices in every area of our day to day lives and the equestrian industry is not immune to this (unfortunately), with price increases from feed and bedding right up to vets fees and insurance premiums.
Whilst we cannot control the world’s economy we can take steps to try and prevent unnecessary expenses and additional vet fees by maintaining routine healthcare of our equine friends. I am not saying that this will stop all injuries and illnesses, if only it was that simple, but it will help to avoid some of the fundamental ones and those that can be easily prevented.

• Worming – including a regular schedule & pasture management
• Vaccinations – prevention is better than cure
• Feet – maintain healthy, well trimmed/shod feet to avoid injury/strains
• Teeth – problems here can manifest themselves elsewhere in the body

This may seem the most basic of things, and one that we all already do, but extra care in these areas really can make a difference.

The ability to spot the signs of ill-health at the earliest stage and enable quick and (hopefully) cost-effective treatment is paramount to both horse and bank balance! It is therefore worth getting to know your horse and what is ‘normal’ for him in terms of:
• Appetite/Thirst
• Behaviour
• Respiration rate (at rest/work)
• Temperature (at various times of the day as this can vary, also according to rugs/weather)
• Dung/urine (loose/firm, quantity, smell, colour)
• Lumps, bumps and swellings
• Coat
• Eyes
• Pulse
• Action
• Discharge

All horses are different and what may be in the normal ranges for one is not necessarily the same for another. Knowing your horse can really help you to pick up on what is ‘abnormal’ for your horse and can save you and your equine friend a lot of pain, heartache and also money.

For more information on dates for your diary – www.sheepgate.co.uk / email:sarah@sheepgate.co.uk or 01205 870236 (office hrs)

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