The Horse

NOV 2018

The Horse:Your Guide To Equine Health Care provides monthly equine health care information to horse owners, breeders, veterinarians, barn/farm managers, trainer/riding instructors, and others involved in the hands-on care of the horse.

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Keep in touch! @TheHorse @TheHorseMag VIEWPOINT STEPHANIE L. CHURCH, Editor-in-Chief @TH_StephLChurch 8 November 2018 The Horse | It's hard to imagine that this will be our reality here in Kentucky in a few short weeks because as I write this, it's late September and the mer- cury's been hovering at 90 degrees F. I've been waiting until it's nearly dark on weeknights to ride in tolerable temperatures. We had a short reprieve from the high-80s-low-90s temperatures a few weeks ago, though, which coin- cided with my reading this month's story by Heather Smith Thomas on temperature swings (page 30). The autumnal preview was enough to make me start thinking about where I'd stashed my horse, Happy's, sheets and blankets for the coming winter. I love watching the horses react to cooler temps. Where I board it seems as if they all have a bit more spunk. Happy and his pasturemate, Rooster, tore around their field as mares across the driveway did the same. They'd slow, tails high, eyes wild, muscles tense, nostrils flared and snorting, then take four more spins around for good measure. After Happy set to grazing, Rooster—all 16.3 hands of him—kept leaping like a jumping bean as if he were spar- ring with a horse only he could see. Passing Thoroughbred farms on my drives to and from the barn, I saw a lot of the same. Broodmares, weanlings, yearlings were all on the move, enjoying the cool weather. Something else I noticed? None of the Thoroughbreds wore sheets. In fact, I rarely see horses on these farms wearing any blankets dur- ing colder months—the very nature of their jobs (growing, or growing babies) doesn't require blanketing unless it's persistently wet and frigid, or if they're tiny foals. I like this approach for any horse that isn't in active training through winter. On the other hand, owners at some of the performance farms I pass have begun to clad their horses with sheets, even when temperatures at afternoon turnout time were still in the high 70s. It reminds me of what Dr. Kent Allen told Heather in the story: Sometimes owners anthro- pomorphize, believing how they feel in ambient temperatures is how their horses must feel. It's possible they are trying to ward off winter coat growth, which, incidentally, is caused by waning sunlight, not by dipping tempera- tures. Still, as someone who blankets my horse in training during winter, I get it: When to start can be a puzzle. No matter our approach, we're all striving to do what we feel is best for our horses. May we be wise in those choices, keeping their physiology in mind. (Now, to figure out if I picked my blankets up from the cleaners!) h Winter Is Coming A h, November. For those of us who live in places with four distinct seasons (I call that lucky because I love the transitions, but I know others like the consistent, moderate climate of, say, Florida), the temperatures have begun to dip and the bright, vivid colors of fall have started drying to a crispy brown. Horses—and maybe even we—have a little more spring in our steps with the brisk air. We locate our (and perhaps our horses') winter outerwear and enjoy the relatively gentle cooler temperatures before the ice and Publisher: Marla Bickel Editor-in-Chief: Stephanie L. Church Managing Editor: Alexandra Beckstett News Editor: Erica Larson Digital Managing Editor: Michelle Anderson Art Director: Brian Turner Web Producer: Jennifer Whittle Marketing Manager: Victoria Bennett EDITORIAL DEPARTMENT 3101 Beaumont Centre Circle, Suite 100, Lexington, KY 40513 E-MAIL All letters must include the writer's name, address, and daytime phone number for verification. ■ Letters:, or by mail. ■ Farm Call:, or by mail. ■ Across the Fence and Behavior Columns:, or by mail. ■ New Products:, or by mail. EDITORIAL ADVISORY BOARD Scott Anderson, DVM; Jerry Black, DVM; Anthony Blikslager, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVS; Tom Brokken, DVM; Ann Dwyer, DVM; Benjamin Espy, DVM, Dipl. ACT; Jenifer R. Gold, DVM, Dipl. ACVIM, ACVECC; Kyla Ortved, DVM, Dipl. ACVS; Debra Taylor, DVM Educational Partnership Disclaimer: The American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP), one of The Horse's partners in equine health, has no involvement regarding editorial management or advertising content within this publication and thereby does not endorse any editorial or advertising content unless so acknowledged within the individual article or advertisement. EXPERT ADVISORS Sue McDonnell, PhD, Cert. AAB; Milt Toby, JD FEATURED CONTRIBUTORS Jenna Donaldson, DVM; Rachel Elliott, DVM; Christa Leste-Lasserre, MA; Nancy Loving, DVM; Katie Navarra; Stacey Oke, DVM, MSc; Pat Raia; Heather Smith Thomas ADVERTISING SALES AND SERVICES West Coast Advertising Executive: Yvonne Long 859/276-6701 East Coast Advertising Executive: Mark White 859/276-6710 Sales Support: Nicol Hunt, 859/276-6740 PUBLISHED BY OWNED BY TOBA MEDIA PROPERTIES Board of Directors: Everett Dobson, Dan Metzger, Rosendo Parra, Dr. J. David Richardson, Peter Willmott

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