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Monday, July 31, 2017

2017 British Equine Veterinary Association Congress features “BEVA Farriery Day” and equine lameness programs


The British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) Congress is only six weeks away, and the time has come to make plans to attend this world-class event. Touting itself as "organized by horse vets for horse vets", the BEVA Congress is Europe’s largest equine veterinary conference. This year it will be held at Liverpool Arena Convention Centre from 13-16 September.  The Hoof Blog has dissected the schedule to pull out interesting speakers and topics of interest to veterinarians and farriers.

Speaking of farriers, this year the BEVA Congress is hosting a full day of farriery speakers, moderated by Professor Renate Weller of the Royal Veterinary College, on Saturday, September 16. Farriers may attend the one-day session at a special rate, but the rate ends on August 4.

The schedule for BEVA Farriery Day: 

Anatomy and biomechanics of the foot |  Jean-Marie Denoix 
How do nerve blocks help in the management of foot pain? | Michael Schramme Radiography of the foot – how does it help farriery management? | Renate Weller MRI of the foot – how does it help farriery management? | Tim Mair
How does arena surface modify distal limb biomechanics in sport horses? |  Nathalie Crevier-Denoix 
How to read the hoof capsule | Grant Moon Farriery of the foal | Simon Curtis 
The natural balance approach | David Nicholls 
Kinesitherapic shoes | Jean-Marie Denoix 
Managing the Thoroughbred foot | Declan Cronin 
Keeping the dressage horse sound | Haydn Price 
Guidelines for trimming and shoeing the sport horse | Grant Moon 
Farriery panel and case discussions on The Barefoot Revolution--Fad, Fiction and Facts with panelists Renate Weller, Michael Schramme, David Nicholls, Simon Curtis, Haydn Price, Grant Moon, Declan Cronin and Jonathan Anderson

Here's a message from Professor Weller about the farriery event:



Early registration rates close on August 4, 2017, however direct online registration is not available for those registering for the Farriery Day only. The form can be filled out and emailed to Verity at BEVA.


The BEVA Congress has a wide-ranging program of events; in addition to the packed multi-track lecture schedule, the Congress hosts a large trade show of equine veterinary products and some innovative specialty topics are covered in depth, such as an afternoon session on equine "end of life" decision making.  The pros and cons of incorporating a veterinary practice will be debated.

In addition to the farriery day, there is also a dentistry day and a nursing day. Derek Knottenbelt will present the 2017 John Hickman Memorial Plenary Lecture; his topic: Using the past to make the future better. Tom Divers of Cornell University is one of the US veterinarians who will be speaking at Liverpool.

This video offers some reactions to the BEVA Congress from 2016 attendees:



Some lameness highlights from the main Congress lecture schedule:

Thursday Lameness Topics and Speakers from the Main Congress Schedule

Dealing with excessive granulation tissue | Yvonne Elce
Chronic progressive lymphoedema | Marianne Sloet
CAT: What is the risk that corticosteroid treatment will cause laminitis? |  Edd Knowles
Skin problems of the distal limb |  Marianne Sloet
Foot conformation and placement | Thilo Pfau
Training aids |  Russell Guire
Pelvic movement asymmetry | Thilo Pfau
Tendon properties | M. Verkade
Sole packing and impact vibrations | Amy Barstow
Wounds | Jonathan Anderson
Acute Laminitis | John Keen
Common fractures | Matthew Smith
Lymphangitis/cellulitis | David Rendle
Choice of intra-articular medications for treating joint disease | Andrew Bathe
Use of stem cells in treatment of osteoarthritis | Michael Schramme
Use of bisphosphonates in bone disease | Olivier Lepage
Complications of biologic therapies in the treatment of musculoskeletal disease | Roger Smith
CAT: Is it worth me operating on a DIRT lesion in a juvenile Thoroughbred intended for racing? | Richard Reardon
Imaging the proximal suspensory ligament | Jean-Marie Denoix
Medical treatment of proximal suspensory desmitis | Kent Allen
Surgical management of proximal suspensory desmitis | Andrew Bathe
Acupuncture in the management of equine lameness | Dietrich Von Schweinitz
CAT: What is the best treatment option for a medial femoral condylar subchondral bone cyst? | Etienne O’Brien
Diagnosis of PPID and EMS | Kelsey Hart
CAT: Does pergolide therapy prevent laminitis in horses diagnosed with PPID? | Edd Knowles
Fractures secondary to kick injuries | A. Schreier

Friday Lameness Topics and Speakers
from the Main Congress Schedule

Limb and hoof conformation: When do variations affect intended use? | Sue Dyson
PPE of horses intended for breeding. What can be done? | James Crabtree
PPE across Europe – understanding the clash of cultures | Malcolm Morley
PPE and radiology of sports horses. What is the evidence? | Werner Jahn
PPE disasters – and how to avoid them | Malcolm Morley
Resveratrol in osteoarthritis | D. Ryan 
Synovial fluid metabolomic profiles | J. Anderson
Computed tomographic contrast tenography | R. Agass
Hock conformation and PSD | J. Routh
Suture patterns for DDFT repair | L. Chapman
Catastrophic condylar fractures – MRI | J. Peloso
Nuclear scintigraphy in sports horses | L. Quiney
Facial expressions and pain | S. Dyson
EHV-2 in tendon | R. Wardle
Return to racing after SDFT injury | R. Alzola
Complications of arthroscopic surgery | Bruce Bladon
Where are we and where are we going with objective lameness evaluation? | Filipe Serra Bragança
Objective lameness evaluation in clinical practice | Michael Schramme
Why I prefer subjective evaluation of lameness | Sue Dyson
CAT: Can I give alpha-2 agonists for blocking and accurately assess the horse’s lameness once blocked? | Michael De Cozar
Pragmatic approach to multi-limb lameness | Luis Rubio-Martinez
Changing disease patterns in an aging equine population | John Marshall
Fasted insulin for EMS diagnosis | R. Olley
Effects of Karo dose on oral sugar test | N. Jocelyn
PK and PD of oral pergolide in horses with PPID | D. Rendle
When nerve and joint blocks go wrong | Bruce Bladon
CAT: Is nuclear scintigraphy helpful in the diagnosis of chronic lameness in competition horses? | Jonathon Dixon
Evaluation of flexion tests | John Marshal
Owner perceptions of equine obesity | T. Furtado
Regional anaesthesia of the distal limb | Luis Rubio Martinez
Ultrasound of the distal limb | Roger Smith
Regional anaesthesia of the distal limb | Luis Rubio Martinez 
Distal limb dissection Parts 1, 2, and 3 | Jean-Marie Denoix

Saturday Lameness Topics and Speakers
 from the Main Congress Schedule

Emerging methods using ultrasound for detection of soft tissue musculoskeletal disease | Valeria Busoni
Is MRI of the proximal metacarpal or metatarsal region worth it? | Lucy Meehan
Body condition scoring – how to do it and how to engage horse-owners | Lizzie Drury
Use and abuse of NSAIDs | John Marshall
Live Horse Ultrasound with Jean-Marie Denoix  | Sponsored by The International Society of Equine Locomotor Pathology
Basics of medication of competition horses | Andrew Bathe
Do vets need to understand the rules of competition, showing and racing? | Jonathan Pycock

Photo credit for preserved leg specimen in top graphic: Museum of Veterinary Anatomy FMVZ USP.


© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is the news service for Hoofcare and Lameness Publishing. Please, no re-use of text or images on other sites or social media without permission--please link instead. (Please ask if you need help.) The Hoof Blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a headlines-link email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). Use the little envelope symbol below to email this article to others. The "translator" tool in the right sidebar will convert this article (roughly) to the language of your choice. To share this article on Facebook and other social media, click on the small symbols below the labels. Be sure to "like" the Hoofcare and Lameness Facebook page and click on "get notifications" under the page's "like" button to keep up with the hoof news on Facebook. 


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Disclosure of Material Connection: The Hoof Blog (Hoofcare Publishing) has not received any direct compensation for writing this post. Hoofcare Publishing has no material connection to the brands, products, or services mentioned, other than products and services of Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Why Are They Called the "Horse" Latitudes? Storytelling and horse legends at their best

Horses below decks on board a sailing ship; they were valuable cargo but sometimes only half the horses made it to their destination. What happened to some horses out in the middle of the ocean is the stuff of legends.  Illustration by John Charlton, as seen in The Graphic in November 1878.

Whenever horsepeople get together, the stories begin. And some of us are very good at telling them. Farriers are among the best storytellers on the planet, and I’ve traveled enough to bear witness that their ability to hold people spellbound--and deliver a great punchline--crosses all latitudes and longitudes--even the "horse latitudes".

In the age of sail, the horse latitudes were treacherous seas, and not for the typical reason of storms and waves. In two latitudinal zones, one about 30 degrees North and one about 30 degrees South, wind can be scarce and, even today, a sailing ship can find itself floating in still water, waiting for a breeze that may be weeks away. There's one big difference between now and then: today's boats have engines to keep a boat moving when the wind dies.

Sitting on a calm sea gives plenty of time for storytelling, and there's one tale that has been told for hundreds of years whenever the sea goes calm and glassy. It still gives people a chill, and may bring tears. Invest a few minutes and have a listen to this lost classic tale:


Back in the 1980s, actor Geoffrey Lewis added a new layer to the unforgettable legends surrounding going to sea with horses during the age of sail.


• • • • •

Horses no longer travel by ship, for the most part, but that doesn't mean they've been forgotten out on the water, either. Perhaps some superstitious memory of the horse latitudes legend inspires so many sailboat owners to make sure that a horseshoe is bolted to the mast, and some shipbuilders still include a time-honored horseshoe nailing ritual in the laying of the keel.

The story behind these unpredictable geographic zones is a pretty gruesome one, but back in the 1970s, a famous storytelling “band” turned the legend into performance art with some embellishment of the story from well-known character actor Geoffrey Lewis. He spun the gruesome legend of the horse latitudes into one of the world’s most memorable horse stories.

Just as the name stuck hundreds of years ago, so did the new-age, enhanced story behind the name, thanks to Lewis's convincing delivery. Admittedly, there’s not much to see on this video, and the quality isn’t great; the audio track is the key.

I hope this story--and the storyteller--inspire you to perfect and record your own favorite stories, and that you will share them with me some night, on the deck of a boat or around a campfire or down at the end of the bar.

Did it really happen? You can believe it or not, as you wish.

Legends of the horse latitudes were revived in the 1960s when a band called The Doors recorded a gruesome spoken-word ode to lost horses at sea called "Horse Latitudes", written by their leader, Jim Morrison. It would be 25 years until Geoffrey Lewis and Celestial Navigations broached the tragic subject again.

Now, 25 years later, it might be time to look again at the legends surrounding the horse latitudes.

Spoiler alert, if you haven't watched the video: Geoffrey Lewis's story builds on centuries of speculation and legends about how the horse latitudes earned their name. On the factual side, naval lore tells us that some ships were becalmed for so long that horses being transported from Europe to the New World either died because their fodder ran out, or they were jettisoned by the crew because fresh water was at a premium and a horse requires so much fresh water every day.

Old records of Portuguese ships transporting horses to Brazil do document how many horses were lost during the journey, but suggest that the horses died during the journey rather than being sacrificed for the greater good of the ship's progress. In the annals of maritime voyages, the losses were attributed to poor planning to accommodate horses below decks or "pilot error" in navigating what came to be called the horse latitudes.

Other sources say that shrinking water supplies had nothing to do with it; horses were dispensed with because the sailors sought to lighten the ship so it would float higher in the water where lighter air might push it along on its course.

Whatever the reason, the zone may not have earned its name from the act of dispensing with horses, but rather from the effect on approaching mariners who saw a sea ahead of them dotted with the bodies of disposed horses. In the age of pre-GPS navigation or even reliable charts, it was an ominous sign.

Another interesting aspect of shipping horses to the Americas and other places in colonial times is that there weren't any docks or cranes or even ramps to offload them when they finally arrived. The horses were often pushed overboard and made to swim to shore. Think about a horse having spent weeks in a stall without any exercise suddenly being forced to swim for its life.

Given the high value of horses, and the colonists' intense desire to establish horse breeding in the colonies, it's hard to believe they wouldn't have planned in advance what to do when and if the ship hit a calm zone in the horse latitudes. It remains a mystery, the stuff of legends, and--if nothing else- a really good story, when it's your turn to tell one some night when the power's off, the campfire is burning low, or you still have that last 200 miles to drive.

--Fran Jurga


Note: Geoffrey Lewis refers to the "doldrums" rather than the horse latitudes. Technically, the doldrums are an area about 5 degrees of latitude north or south of the Equator, where a ship may be trapped without wind. That zone's official name is the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone (ITCZ). Many people refer to the horse latitudes when they mean the doldrums, and vice versa. Also, "doldrums" is a generic word used for a calm area or time, typically found in either the horse latitudes or the doldrums themselves.


Learn more:

NOAA explanation of the horse latitudes

For good source material in English about early Spanish and Portuguese shipping of horses:

Johnson, J. (1943). The Introduction of the Horse into the Western Hemisphere. The Hispanic American Historical Review, 23(4), 587-610. doi:10.2307/2507859. Alternate free to read version at this link.

To view the script of the story, for those wishing to retell the story or develop it for performance, here's author RavenStorm's transcript of "The Horses".

And to see more videos of Geoffrey Lewis telling great stories:
Celestial Navigations tribute Facebook page
or search YouTube.


© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is the news service for Hoofcare and Lameness Publishing. Please, no re-use of text or images on other sites or social media without permission--please link instead. (Please ask if you need help.) The Hoof Blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a headlines-link email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). Use the little envelope symbol below to email this article to others. The "translator" tool in the right sidebar will convert this article (roughly) to the language of your choice. To share this article on Facebook and other social media, click on the small symbols below the labels. Be sure to "like" the Hoofcare and Lameness Facebook page and click on "get notifications" under the page's "like" button to keep up with the hoof news on Facebook.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: The Hoof Blog (Hoofcare Publishing) has not received any direct compensation for writing this post. Hoofcare Publishing has no material connection to the brands, products, or services mentioned, other than products and services of Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

FEI hosts new Grooms Working Group; will support their role in sport horse welfare

Grooms are gaining recognition for the role they play in equine welfare within equestrian sport. The FEI's new Grooms Working Group is expanding into a more formal registration program for international sport horse grooms. (Fran Jurga photo/©Hoof Blog)


The Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) hosted the inaugural meeting of its new Grooms Working Group at the Federation's headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland this week.

It was the first meeting of its kind. 

The working group was created following a recent survey among national equestrian federations to determine the best way to improve communications and interaction with grooms and what the FEI can do to help them.

As part of a day of very positive discussion, it was agreed by the working group that there was a need to establish a more formal relationship, with grooms being officially welcomed into the FEI family through being registered with the FEI. Registration would facilitate further development of education systems, and create a more structured framework for cooperation between the FEI and grooms.

In addition, the FEI is taking significant steps towards producing applications and other tools which will best serve the grooms, allowing them to streamline preparation for upcoming events.

“Grooms play an absolutely vital role in our sport, especially in preserving the welfare of our horses, but often they go unnoticed and unrecognized, so this new working group has been set up to change that and establish an official relationship with these very important members of our community,” FEI President Ingmar De Vos said after the meeting.

The new Grooms Working Group had its first meeting at FEI Headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland this week. (L-R): Nanna-Riikka Nieminen (Finland) and Brent Kuylen (Belgium) representing Jumping; Jackie Potts (Great Britain) representing Eventing; FEI President Ingmar De Vos; and Alan Davies (Great Britain) representing Dressage. (FEI photo)


“It is vital for the sport and for the development of our global equestrian community to have a solid support network, and for the FEI to offer assistance and education where necessary. Grooms are truly worth their weight in gold, and we want to provide the finest resources and tools that will help increase knowledge of best practices and standards. Forging better relationships with our grooms is only the beginning. We want to help them share their knowledge with the wider community for the benefit of the sport globally.”

“I felt very honored to be invited by the FEI to talk about the future of the grooms,” said dressage groom Alan Davies, who works with British Olympic stars Carl Hester and Charlotte Dujardin.

“I am super excited about the fact that the FEI want to do things to help the grooms and improve everything, which at the end of the day is for the welfare of the horse as well. It was a great meeting, we talked a lot about amazing new features and things which can be developed. It won’t be easy and it is going to take some time to put in place but it will be a fantastic project.”

Belgium's Brent Kuylen, who has worked with Dutch Jumping world champion Jeroen Dubbeldam, and Finland's Nanna-Riikka Nieminen, who previously groomed for two-time Olympian Henrik von Eckermann of Sweden, both agreed that the day had been a “great experience” and were looking forward to future initiatives.

“I think this is a real step forward,” said British Eventing legend William Fox-Pitt’s groom Jackie Potts. “It’s good to try and keep the standards up, and use the experience and the knowledge that some of us have gained over the years, in keeping welfare a priority and keeping grooms in the industry as well.”

Following this initial meeting, the FEI will now focus on the key components of integration, registration, education and communication. Membership in the Grooms Working Group will be expanded to include grooms from other disciplines, with the next meeting planned for 2018, ahead of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ in Tryon, North Carolina (USA).

Information for this article was provided by the FEI. 


© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is the news service for Hoofcare and Lameness Publishing. Please, no re-use of text or images on other sites or social media without permission--please link instead. (Please ask if you need help.) The Hoof Blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a headlines-link email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). Use the little envelope symbol below to email this article to others. The "translator" tool in the right sidebar will convert this article (roughly) to the language of your choice. To share this article on Facebook and other social media, click on the small symbols below the labels. Be sure to "like" the Hoofcare and Lameness Facebook page and click on "get notifications" under the page's "like" button to keep up with the hoof news on Facebook.
  
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Disclosure of Material Connection: The Hoof Blog (Hoofcare Publishing) has not received any direct compensation for writing this post. Hoofcare Publishing has no material connection to the brands, products, or services mentioned, other than products and services of Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Happy Fourth of July: A look back to when Uncle Sam was at the anvil, sharpening an ominous sword

Uncle Sam blacksmith World War II
In mid-1941, the United States was still politically neutral as war erupted in Europe, North Africa, and Asia. The Atlantic wasn't safe for US ships anymore. So the popular Liberty magazine cover became a billboard for one side of the debate. Artist Arnold Freberg had Uncle Sam take off his long-tailed jacket, and roll up his sleeves. He's forging a sword blade perhaps from a ploughshare, reversing the words of Isaiah in the Old Testament. 

It's the Fourth of July. So, why, back in 1941, did Liberty Magazine have this blacksmith forging a sword on its cover?

Just for background, Liberty was a very popular magazine back in its day. It was published until 1950 and came in second only to the Saturday Evening Post in the hearts of Americans. Its subtitle was "A weekly for everybody." In the upper left of this cover art, you can see a tiny Statue of Liberty and the words "The American Way of Life".

The Fourth of July in 1941 was the last one before thousands of Americans were drafted into the military. For the next four years, the nation technically battled two wars, one in the Pacific and one in Europe and North Africa. Yet this cover doesn't reflect any innocence of pre-war days. It's calling for a fight.

When this issue of the magazine was published, the United States was still pleading neutrality as its Allies fell beneath Axis powers in Europe, Asia and North Africa. Winston Churchill was begging for help as London crumbled beneath the blitzkrieg. Jewish refugees continued to plead for rescue. British and Soviet forces invaded Iran to protect access to oilfields needed to fuel their armies and air forces. Japan occupied Saigon and it looked like Thailand would be next.

This cover makes it obvious that Liberty Magazine's point of view called for the United States to enter the war. Pearl Harbor was still five months away, although no one knew it was coming.

The week before this magazine appeared on newsstands, a German U-boat attacked an American warship in the Atlantic for the first time. President Roosevelt gave the Navy permission in the future to fire back, if fired upon first...if that wasn't too late.

In the age before television and the Internet, magazine covers were powerful billboards, whether they reassured Americans of a peaceful way of life on the cover of the Saturday Evening Post, or called for political or military action--without saying a word--like this striking cover of Liberty.

What's going on here? Uncle Sam has taken off his jacket and rolled up his sleeves. He's pounding on a sword--no peaceful Biblical plowshare conversions for him. He is intent on his job, fully focused on the accuracy of his blow; one eye is even closed to sharpen his aim. The veins in his arms are visible. His suspenders are taut. An invisible wind is blowing his long hair back. He's not smiling.

Behind him, you can see a factory bellowing smoke, symbolizing rearmament of the US military and general preparation for war. And the eagle? He looks pretty angry, too, underneath those super-sized wings.

Uncle Sam the blacksmith

The blond-haired, blue-eyed Uncle Sam--which the editors must have thought personified America's vision of itself better than the usual elderly, gray-haired one--was fine-tuning his sword blade to go out into the world and wage war, as well as to liberate Asians and Europeans and Africans who looked nothing like him.

Likewise, most of the young men drafted to do the job would look nothing at all like this Uncle Sam.

This is one of the most politically charged magazine covers in history, yet it is rarely shown and its artist is uncelebrated. Maybe it's buried in our grandparents' attics for a reason, or maybe it needs to be dusted off, looked at, and discussed, as if we're seeing it for the first time.

To learn more:

If you watch Ebay or haunt flea markets, you can find a copy of this edition of Liberty, or sometimes just the cover, framed. It obviously inspired people.

Hoof Blog
© Fran Jurga and Hoofcare Publishing; Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog is the news service for Hoofcare and Lameness Publishing. Please, no re-use of text or images on other sites or social media without permission--please link instead. (Please ask if you need help.) The Hoof Blog may be read online at the blog page, checked via RSS feed, or received via a headlines-link email (requires signup in box at top right of blog page). Use the little envelope symbol below to email this article to others. The "translator" tool in the right sidebar will convert this article (roughly) to the language of your choice. To share this article on Facebook and other social media, click on the small symbols below the labels. Be sure to "like" the Hoofcare and Lameness Facebook page and click on "get notifications" under the page's "like" button to keep up with the hoof news on Facebook.  
Follow Hoofcare + Lameness on Twitter: @HoofBlog
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Disclosure of Material Connection: The Hoof Blog (Hoofcare Publishing) has not received any direct compensation for writing this post. Hoofcare Publishing has no material connection to the brands, products, or services mentioned, other than products and services of Hoofcare Publishing. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

New HoofSearch documents give busy equine professionals a one-stop lifeline to newly-published global research

horse foot science farriery

The time has come: After almost two years in the incubator (and the library), a new service is finally available to all. HoofSearch is a little on the nerdy side; it is designed for those of you interested in research--and eager to keep up with it. The press release below explains all you need to know about this new project. If you are truly interested in the science side of hoofcare and lameness, I hope you will subscribe. If you decide not to, you'll still have The Hoof Blog, and I'll always be here for you.
--Fran Jurga

Thursday, June 22, 2017