Equine Benefits – A Good Read Never Hurt Anybody!
Sep01

Equine Benefits – A Good Read Never Hurt Anybody!

Equine Benefits – A little fall reading can’t hurt anyone either. Currently available at the world famous Calabasas Saddlery  The Cowgirl Jumped Over the Moon, by Linda Ballou, is a finalist in the Indie Excellence Awards. The protagonist Gemcie takes you from the Grand Prix jumping world to the ethereal heights of the John Muir Wilderness and back to the stage of competition. Romance. Adventure. Horses – what more could anyone want in a book? Review: by Jacqui Broderick of Lavender & White Publishing-Ireland Gemcie McCauley seems to have everything. She is a rider at the top of her game, making an unbeatable team with Marshal, a handsome Irish bred stallion, until a horrific accident changes everything. Fighting back from a dreadful injury she finds she has lost not only her nerve, but also her horse and husband to her archrival, Dominique La Fevre.   Reeling from the cruel blows Gemcie returns to her mother’s home where she tries to pick up the threads of some kind of life and recover from her mental and physical injuries. Unable to settle to any kind of life Gemcie heads back to her roots and the mountains where she was conceived. Struck by the beauty of the wilderness and longing, for once in her life to be totally alone she feels drawn to life on the trail and persuades her hosts to let her ride the John Muir trail. When a black bear attacks and injures her horse she is rescued by Brady, a loner who lives in the mountains, working for the Bureau of Land Management. On a journey of discovery about herself Gemcie finds herself falling in love with this tough, yet gentle man. Brady though is not without his own problems and after he is forced to kill the bear that attacked Gemcie he abruptly ends their relationship, sending Gemcie back to civilization. I was as devastated as Gemcie – their relationship seems to be so perfect. During her time in the mountains Gemcie has learned a lot about herself and is determined to get her beloved horse back. Dominique has never got on with Marshal and after badly injuring him in a competition it looks as if his career is over. Gemcie, with a team of supporters nurse the horse back to health then begin the impossible and fight to get her riding confidence back in order to be able to pay huge vet and livery bills. She has to ride – and win – in order to be able to keep him. This is a well-written book; Ballou brings her characters and backgrounds to life in often tear-jerking detail. Gemcie...

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Equine Benefits – THE REC RIDE IS COMING!!!
Jul27

Equine Benefits – THE REC RIDE IS COMING!!!

  This little Appaloosa was ready to roll for REC 2015 and hopefully, he’ll be ready again! This year’s ride is scheduled  around the weekend of October 22/23rd, 2016. The REC folks haven’t made the date solid yet, but it will be held either on the 22nd or 23rd of October. If you have never attended a REC ride, now is the time to do so. Don’t own a horse? Don’t worry about it. The organizers have access to great rental outfits so you can rent a horse. There are three different rides that occur simultaneously and each last about two and half to three hours. The Beginner ride usually explores King Gillette Ranch in Calabasas, the Intermediate journeys over to Malibu Creek State Park and sometimes the Reagan Ranch. The Advance riders do the Phantom Trail; it all depends on what you are in the mood for. The Beginner ride is casual walking mainly with some light trotting, the Intermediate is mostly trotting and the Advanced is fast paced and largely composed of gaited horses. Afterwards everyone joins up for a great barbeque at Malibu Valley Equestrian Center catered by Calamigos Ranch. So come out and celebrate the “horsey life” in these beautiful Santa Monica Mountains and support the Recreational Equestrian Coalition (REC). Help is keep horses in the Santa Monica Mountains. Happy Trails!  Alice  ...

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Why Holistic Equine Dentistry Matters….
Jul05

Why Holistic Equine Dentistry Matters….

Dr. Rhiannon Fenton’s article about Equine dentistry was first published in Holistic Horse June/July issue. We wanted to publish a link to the story as a reminder to all of us how important teeth, jaws and yes, even horses can get TMJ are to the function of the rest of the body.  Here is the link: http://www.mirabelsmagazinecentral.com/DigitalEdition/index.html?id=8333b64e-4522-4ef8-8e18-d1039897d30f&pn=17&pv=d Happy Trails! Dr. Rhiannon Fenton of Vital Equine Holistic Veterinary Medicine 310/800-1495...

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Why Probiotics matter for horses prone to laminitis
Jun01

Why Probiotics matter for horses prone to laminitis

As an owner of a mare that suffers from Laminitis, I am always learning new ways to prevent and treat. With laminitus “disease, the laminae weaken, which attach the pedal bone to the inside of the hoof. The horses pedal bone detaches from the inside of the hoof. Therefore, the pedal bone can turn, and sometimes, it even pushes through the sole. When it pushes through the sole, it’s called “founder.” This bond is composed of a non-living layer and a sensitive living layer, much like nails and the nail beds. The detachment happens when this layer disconnects.”  This kind of founder is either mechanical or caused by diet.  Learn how to “Recognize and Treat Laminitis (Founder) in Horses and keep from over-working horses on hard ground.  “working horses too strenuously on hard ground. In addition, horses who are overweight can suffer from laminitis, as the extra weight adds pressure to the hooves.”I used to dread hot weather, I learned not to trot my mare on hard ground, ever. I tried different shoers. I made sure she got exercised everyday to keep her weight down and was strict on her sugar intake. I made sure she got plenty of magnesium which helps circulation, blood flow and tends to calm her. But when she recently had a bout of laminitus 6 weeks ago, I was truly puzzled. I thought it can’t be, until I saw the all familiar laminitic stance. So, I went exploring again but this time I learned about bacteria in the hind gut that causes acidosis.  “When an excessive amount of  starchy hay or grain components are ingested into the foregut, it causes an overload in the digestive system with undigested sugar and starch pushed through to the hindgut. The bacteria breaks down the undigested material causing acidity in the hindgut, which then kills the good bacteria that digests fibre. As the bacteria die they release toxins into the gut, which are then passed into the bloodstream through the gut wall. These toxins provoke a response within the horse that is thought to disrupt blood flow, which, in the feet, can cause laminitis.” So I took her off the timothy hay altogether and just kept her on the orchard. Kept her on the timothy pellets without molasses and started to give her a little shredded beet pulp along with the timothy pellets, after soaking it for 30 minutes. I again started her on a different supplement along with her magnesium supplement Quiessence which I have had the most success with as far avoiding laminitic episodes.  I started her on Exceed 6 way, which has glucosamine as well as probiotics and she’s doing better. Alice Sources: THE HORSE.com...

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Why Horses Matter- They Keep Us Young
Apr16

Why Horses Matter- They Keep Us Young

Why Horses Matter – They Keep Us Young I met Ms. Georgia King at a horse show in Pebble Beach, California; she was the judge and I was a 12-year-old anxious rider. My good, but unpredictable mare, Misty, refused every jump. For every embarrassing refusal, I circled Misty then she would take the  jump; it took some time, but we finished the course. To my surprise, the  judge  awarded my efforts with a second place ribbon; acknowledging my perseverance over my performance. I would learn later from a friend that this gesture was typical of Georgia; appreciating and encouraging the might of the under dog. Some 42 years later, I meet up with Ms. King in Malibu, California, where she resides and works. Georgia is not judging horse shows so much these days, but still teaches riding and works with horses. She has, however, slowed down a bit – Georgia only rides three horses a day now.  Mentally,  Georgia is as smart  as ever and doesn’t miss a beat; no synapse-lapse here and I have to make sure I keep up! She owes a lot of this mental clarity to a life spent mostly with horses and an ability to take risks. She has afterall, the fearless nature of a true jumper. Georgia  began her young life in Harlem, New York  until a relative paid for boarding school upstate where she entered as a first grader.  Some years later,  as a Sophomore, Georgia would learn to ride and  would get her first, off-campus job. The job was exercising horses and from that time forward, she was hooked. After high school, there was a brief stint in Manhattan for Dunn & Bradstreet, but the horses kept calling her. Soon Georgia found herself leaving the financial world for a life in the country and most definitely with horses. She worked as an assistant trainer in Iowa but it wasn’t long before she was offered a job in Georgia, first as a working student and then as an assistant.  Georgia would make her mark in the Southern State of which she shares the same name,  establishing herself not only as an instructor/trainer, but a serious competitor. The trophies and the ribbons are too endless to count. Restless though, like a wild horse foraging for nourishment, Georgia couldn’t stay put for long. A better gig would come up, a better opportunity, and Georgia, like  a  true  jumper,  would go for it. Finally, while visiting family on the West Coast, Georgia heard of an opportunity in Monterey, specifically at The Pebble Beach Equestrian Center. Richard Collins ran the facility at the time and hired Georgia on the spot. She would remain there for several years as head trainer, only to take a year off to live...

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Why Barn Hands Matter…
Apr04

Why Barn Hands Matter…

  Why Barn Hands Matter… By Alice Champlin You are called out of town unexpectedly and need help with your horses. Your options are hiring the equine professional who may be too expensive for the short-term and is already booked. The glorified pet sitter is nice, but unpredictable and not super knowledgeable when it comes to horses. Then you realize you already have someone: your friendly, knowledgeable barn hand. The benefits add up fast when you look to them for help. For starters, your horses know them! Your horses probably really like them! After all, they help feed and cleanup after your horses. But what you may not realize is that most barn hands have a lot of experience when it comes to horses and a lot of them know how to ride too!   Make sure you are very specific as far as what riding regimen you expect and when and where it takes place. Communicate what you want done whether its riding in the ring or out on the trail. Make it known, riding one horse and ponying the other in or out of the ring is just fine.   Remind your helper to clean out hooves daily and groom. Hand walking for the 30-40 minutes coupled with turnout time might be just fine for a short term absence. As with anyone who cares for or rides your horse, have them sign releases holding you harmless and the barn. Always check with your barn manager and make sure it’s okay that the barn hand take care of your horse for a couple days. Caring for your horse is a good way for barn help to make some extra money but be mindful that it doesn’t interfere with their regular job. You don’t want to jeopardize their steady employment. Chances are the barn helper may enjoy the break in routine...

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