**COLIC** Our team of vets have noticed an increase in call outs to horses’ with colic over the last couple of weeks. Here are a few things we recommend to help reduce the chances of colic: 1. With the recent frosty mornings, ice has been forming on water sources. Make sure to smash the ice on your horse’s water trough/buckets so they can still drink! 2. Monitor your horse’s water intake – some don’t like drinking water when it is really cold! In this case, consider soaking their hay and wetting their feed. 3. If your horse is on box rest or has had any management changes, make sure to adjust feed intake accordingly. (ie. less work = less feed!). As always, if you have any concerns about your horse or you see any of the colic signs (pawing, rolling, flank watching, behavioural changes) please give us a call on 01342 823 011 and we’ll get one of our vets out to you as soon as possible.
**TOXIN TUESDAY – RAGWORT TOXICITY** There are several species of ragwort in the UK and they are toxic in all stages of growth and also when dried. In spring time, ragwort appears as small ‘rosettes’ of leaves and this is the stage where it is commonly eaten. In the summer time, ragwort grows up to 1.5m tall and has a very recognisable appearance with yellow flowers and ragged leaves. This characteristic stage of ragwort is rarely eaten (as it doesn’t taste very nice!) unless it is accidentally baled into hay when it is made. Once eaten, the toxins in ragwort cause damage to the liver resulting in liver failure. If your horse has eaten ragwort you may notice signs such as yellowing of the gums (“jaundice”), weight loss, dullness or soreness/scabbing of white haired skin (“photosensitisation”). In order to avoid ragwort poisoning, we recommend regular ragwort picking of your horse’s field and of fields which hay is going to be made from. Make sure you also check as you make your horse’s haynet for any strange looking plants in it (although this is rare if you buy your hay from good suppliers!). As always if you have any questions or concerns, please call us on 01342 823011 to speak to a member of the team!
**NEW Small Redworm (Cyathostomin) Blood Test** A new diagnostic test has been launched which enables us to diagnose small redworm (cyathostomin) infections in horses. Unlike performing faecal egg counts, which only detect adult worms laying eggs in the faeces, this new test enables detection of ALL stages of the small redworm life cycle, including the encysted larval phase. This has never been possible prior to now! Why is this important? When horses have large worm infections, many larvae burrow (encyst) into the intestinal walls and remain there over the winter months as it is too cold in the environment for them to survive. When the weather gets warmer (springtime), all these larvae burrow out of the intestinal wall on mass and damage it in the process. This can cause clinical symptoms such as diarrhoea and colic. In severe scenarios, the huge quantity of larvae cause so much damage to the intestinal wall when they burrow out, that they cause mass bleeding which can kill your horse. This is called ‘larval cyathostominosis’. Luckily we can target this stage of the small redworm life cycle with winter worming treatment to prevent these clinical symptoms. How does the test work? Very easily and at your convenience at some point over the winter months, our Priors Farm vets can come and take a quick blood sample from your horse. We can then use this new test to establish whether encysted larvae are present in your horse’s gut. A positive test result means that we definitely know the encysted larvae are present and we can then deliver direct worming treatment specifically for your horse to avoid any nasty clinical signs in the springtime. It is really important to only treat horses with an active worm infection (positive test results) so as not to create resistance against the wormer which we know will kill these encysted larval stages. Please call the office on 01342 823011 if you would like further information on this test or would like to arrange for our vets to come and take a blood sample from your horse.
**2020 Veterinary Awards** The 2020 Veterinary Awards are now open! Now in its 21st year, the veterinary awards are often referred to as the ‘Oscars’ of the veterinary profession. These awards celebrate the hard work and dedication of veterinary staff, recognising those who inspire their clients and colleagues with their commitment and passion. The 5 nominations are Practice of the year, Vet of the year, Vet Nurse of the year, Practice Manager of the year and Practice Support Staff of the year. To Vote head on over to https://www.petplanvet.co.uk/veterinary-practice-insurance/veterinary-awards/
**Youtube Channel Launch** We are very excited to announce that our Priors Farm Equine Veterinary Surgery YouTube channel is now live! It contains videos demonstrating and explaining many different aspects of veterinary work that we offer at Priors Farm. Here’s a little flavour of what is on the channel - this video demonstrates how to perform a clinical exam on your horse: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Acmm9PAuCOU. Please have a look and make sure to subscribe in order to be kept up to date on future videos being uploaded! The complete set of videos is also on our website https://priorsfarm.co.uk/equine-video-advice/ so take a look at that if you’d prefer!
**EHV Awareness** Our vets have noticed an increase in questions over the last month about EHV (equine herpes virus) because of a recent article published in Horse & Hound. We’ve produced a little EHV summary below which hopefully answers a lot of your questions. There are 5 different types of equine herpes virus which infect the domestic horse - there are 2 types in particular which commonly cause clinical symptoms. These are EHV1 and EHV4. These two types of EHV are responsible for flu-like respiratory disease, neurological disease and abortion in pregnant mares. Your horse is at greater risk of contracting EHV if they are at a breeding stud or live at a yard with pregnant mares; are at a livery yard where horses are frequently being moved; and at competition venues. We can reduce clinical disease from EHV by vaccinating horses that are at risk: - To help protect your pregnant mare against abortion caused by EHV, your horse requires a course of three vaccinations which are given at the 5th, 7th and 9th months of pregnancy. This gives your horse immunity to the virus. Effective vaccination reduces the abortion risk for individual horses and prevents ‘abortion storms’ (outbreaks) in areas where large amounts of stud work occurs. However there is a very small risk that vaccination will induce an abortion so the risks need to be weighed-up carefully before vaccinating your mare. - To help protect your horse against respiratory and neurological disease caused by EHV, an initial course of 2 vaccinations is required 4-6 weeks apart. This course can be given to any horse over 5 months old. The primary course is then followed by a booster vaccination every 6 months. At Priors Farm we stock the vaccinations required to protect your horse against EHV and our vets are able to vaccinate your horse at your convenience. If you would like to book your horse in for an EHV vaccination, please call the office on 01342 823011.
TOXIN TUESDAY – YEW TOXICITY Yew trees with the latin name ‘Taxus baccata’ are evergreen and are often found in gardens and hedges particularly around church yards and abbeys. All parts of the tree are poisonous and remain toxic even when in the form of decomposing clippings. This is why it is really important that yew tree clippings are never put into the same field that your horse grazes in. If your horse were to eat yew, even just the tiniest bit, sadly you would probably find them dead (often with the yew still in their mouth!) due to toxins within the yew trees affecting the heart causing a sudden heart attack. If they had only just eaten the yew, you may see them trembling, struggling to breathe and being very weak/stumbling. Fortunately yew tastes very bitter so horses won’t usually eat it but it’s not worth taking any risks by grazing horses anywhere near yew trees especially as there is no treatment that we can give! If you have any concerns or questions about poisonous plants, please do give us a call on 01342 823011.
New Supplement available at Priors Farm We are now stocking BozMerix, a unique nutraceutical supplement formulated to support your horse’s natural anti-oxidant system and help relieve orthopaedic pain Can be fed to horses of all ages, for those suffering stiffness or joint pain, in low level or competition work, or for horses undergoing surgery or post surgery rehabilitation. . The supplement is formulated from 4 natural ingredients: - Curcuma Longa (derived from Turmeric) – natural anti-inflammatory properties. - ASU (Avocado/Soyabean unsaponifiable) – maintains healthy joint cartilage. - Omega 3 – gives structural support to joint cells. Studies have shown that horses develop longer trot stride length when their diet is supplemented with Omega 3. - Boswellia Serrata (from tree sap) – natural anti-inflammatory properties. Works in combination with the Curcuma Longa. BozMetrix supplement is sugar free and is kind on the gut so can be given to horses and ponies with sensitive stomachs or low sugar diets. The supplement is ‘free from prohibited substances’ (FFPS) so can be used in competition horses. Available from Priors Farm at £75.18 per tub (2 month supply for horses at rest or low work, 1 month supply if on hard exercise or following surgery) Please call the office on 01342 823011 if you would like more information.
**ACORN TOXICITY** Acorns and other parts of the oak tree including leaves, stems and blossom contain tannins, which, when ingested, can be poisonous to horses. The toxin causes damage to the gut resulting in colic and/or severe diarrhoea. In severe cases tannin poisoning can also cause damage to the liver and kidneys. Horses and ponies will generally avoid eating acorns because they are not particularly palatable … although some do develop a taste for them! As a general rule ingesting small quantities of acorns is not a risk to most horses; however, prevention is always better than cure, so we recommend our clients try to prevent their horses from grazing on pasture where acorns are readily available, or pick up as many of the dropped acorns as possible. As always if you have any questions please do not hesitate to get in touch!
TOXIN TUESDAY – SYCAMORE POISONING Sycamore seeds contain variable quantities of the toxin hypoglycin-A and ingestion of enough of this toxin will cause muscle damage in horses. If enough toxin is ingested then horses develop a disease called “atypical myopathy” and this disease is usually fatal. . It often results in death because the main muscles affected by sycamore poisoning are those which help your horse stand up and breathe. Sycamore poisoning is most commonly seen in the autumn and during bad weather/storms when large numbers of seeds fall from the sycamore trees and horses seek shelter underneath these trees; Horses may then eat the helicopter-shaped seeds which fall onto grazing areas. Some signs that you may notice if your horse has developed sycamore poisoning are things such as weakness, muscle tremors, dark red/brown coloured urine and an inability for your horse to get up if lying down. It is important to remember that the amount of toxin varies between seeds (and may vary between individual trees and years) and therefore the vast majority of horses who eat sycamore seeds do not develop atypical myopathy. Sycamore trees are after all a very common tree found near or in fields where horses graze. However If you think your horse may have developed atypical myopathy then please contact us immediately on 01342 823011 as fast treatment may save your horse’s life! To prevent sycamore poisoning we recommend you try and minimise the number of sycamore seeds landing on your pasture. This is more easily said than done so being aware of the clinical signs noted above is very important. Please be particularly vigilant especially when the weather is bad in the autumn!
**Toxin Tuesday!** Look out for our posts over the next few weeks which will cover toxins which horses may encounter during the Autumn months.
**Bank Holiday Opening Times** For emergencies please phone our usual office number 01342823011. We hope everyone has a lovely bank holiday weekend, please see below our opening times. Saturday 24th August - Closed (Emergency Service Only) Sunday 25th August - Closed (Emergency Service Only) Monday 26th August - Closed (Emergency Service Only) Tuesday 27th August – 8:30am to 5:30pm
** Advance Notice Road Closure UPDATE** The planned Bridge Works on Priory Road starting on Monday 29th July 5 weeks. For the duration of the works the practice will be accesable. Please see directions below. To access the practice from Forest Row follow the A22 heading towards the Wych Cross crossroads, take the turning on the right onto Hindleap lane. Follow the road for approximately 1 mile . At the cross roads turn right onto Priory road. The road is open for access only, go round the road closed sign and follow the road for approximately 1 mile. The entrance to the practice will be on your left. Please remember to leave extra time when travelling to the practice. We are sorry for any inconvenience. For further information please call the office on 01342823011.
** Advance Notice Road Closure** There are planned Bridge Works on Priory Road starting today for 5 weeks. For the duration of the work Priory Road will be closed between Forest Row and the practice, there will be diversions in place throughout the planned works. To access the practice from Forest Row follow the A22 heading towards the Wych Cross crossroads, take the turning on the right onto Hindleap lane. Follow the road for approximately 1 mile . At the cross roads turn right onto Priory road and follow the road for approximately 1 mile, the entrance to the practice will be on your left. Please remember to leave extra time when travelling to the practice. We are sorry for any inconvenience. For further information please call the office on 01342823011.
We hope you have been enjoying the sunshine and impressive displays of lightening! During the warmer weather it is important to feed your horse electrolytes to replenish what they lose during sweating. Also access to fresh water throughout the day and a shady area for an afternoon nap!
**Cuteness alert** Late Monday night we welcomed a super cute, fluffy Shetland filly into the world. Despite initially needing some support and tubing with colostrum little one is doing brilliantly and both Mum and filly were out enjoying the summer sun yesterday! At Priors Farm we have a dedicated team of vets and nurses with extensive experience in breeding mares. As a BEVA accredited AI practice we aim to provide a tailored and individual service. We are now approaching the end of the breeding season, please do get in touch if you are thinking about breeding from your mare and would like to find out more information. Who would be interested in a Winter series of lectures and practical sessions on equine reproduction? Comment below...
** Advance Notice Road Closure** There are planned Bridge Works on Priory Road starting on the 29th July for 5 weeks. For the duration of the work Priory Road will be closed between Forest Row and the practice, there will be diversions in place throughout the planned works. To access the practice from Forest Row follow the A22 heading towards the Wych Cross crossroads, take the turning on the right onto Hindleap lane. Follow the road for approximately 1 mile . At the cross roads turn right onto Priory road and follow the road for approximately 1 mile, the entrance to the practice will be on your left. Please remember to leave extra time when travelling to the practice. We are sorry for any inconvenience. For further information please call the office on 01342823011.
**Special Offer** A big thank you to all those that showed interest in our free 400g Joint Supplement Trial. Stocks of the free 400g supplement have now finished; however, we are able to offer a 20% discount on our 850g Joint Supplement Elite until the 31st July 2019. Available at the discounted price of £83.26 instead of the normal price of £104.08 and will last 56 days for a 500kg horse (maintenance dose) . We believe that this is one of the best joint supplements available on the market today and has guaranteed concentrations of: Chondroitin Sulphate, Glucosamine HCL, MSM, Hyaluronic Acid and Boswellia Serrata. The supplement also has a palatability guarantee: If your horse does not eat it then you get your money back! For further information on all our supplements please go to www.priorsfarm.co.uk
**Allergies** We are currently seeing a large number of cases where horses are suffering with allergies, predominantly caused by the high levels of tree pollen. Typical symptoms include coughing, nasal discharge and swollen eyes. Here are a few simple changes you can make to reduce the irritation of allergies. 1) Moving to a dust free bedding such as paper and cardboard 2) Soaking hay to remove dust 3) Feed from the ground to allow mucus to drain 4) Ensure your horses stable is well ventulated
**FREE TRIAL** For a limited time we are offering a free trial of our Elite Joint Supplement. Specially formulated for competition horses, young horses and older horses on maintenance joint support it is one of the best joint supplements available. If you would like a free 400g trial tub which would last 53 days for a 500kg horse then please contact the office on 01342823011.
Laminitis can raise all sorts of questions. We have created a fact sheet with one of our more recent case studies. For more information call the office and speak to one of our vets.
We hope you all had a great bank holiday weekend in the sunshine. Now the weather is getting warmer don’t forget your horse needs access to fresh water and shady areas for an afternoon nap! They might appreciate some protection from the flies such as a fly mask, fly rug and fly repellent.
Priors Farm Equine Veterinary Surgery updated their status.
Easter Opening Times for the office. For emergencys please phone our usual office number 01343 823011. We hope everyone has a lovely easter please see below our easter opening times below. 🐣 Thursday 18th April - 8:30am to 5:30pm Friday 19th April - Closed (Emergency Service Only) Saturday 20th April - Closed (Emergency Service Only) Sunday 21st April - Closed (Emergency Service Only) Monday 22nd April - Closed (Emergency Service Only) Tuesday 23rd April - 8:30am to 5:30pm
Spring is in the air. Delighted to see this little one to arrive last night a little wobbly on his legs.