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  • 03/03/2020 2:00 PM | Anonymous

    Kentucky Equine Networking Meeting Offers Insight on how to Transport Horses Safely

    Lexington, KY (March 3, 2020)- An array of equine owners and enthusiasts gathered at The Red Mile Clubhouse in Lexington, KY, last week for the winter meeting of the Kentucky Equine Networking Association (KENA) hosted by the Kentucky Horse Council. The audience, which included equine business owners, students and personnel of colleges with equestrian programs, and individual horse owners, was interested in learning how to keep horses safe during transport as well as what rules and regulations they needed to follow when transporting horses. 

    Dr. Laura Werner, DVM, MS, DAVCS, a surgeon at Hagyard Equine Medical Institute in Lexington and a FEI Veterinary Delegate at many of the top three-day eventing competitions in the United States, is well-versed in keeping elite competition horses on top of their game, whether they’re shipping just down the road or across the country. Dr. Werner spoke of how difficult travel can be on a horse’s physical health. Because of this, if a horse is prone to stomach upset while being transported longer distances, she recommends he receive gastric ulcer preventative medications a day before and a day or two after his travel plans.

    Additionally, Dr. Werner noted that horses can become dehydrated while on a long trailer ride, either because they don’t have the opportunity to drink or they choose not to while on the road. To overcome this condition, she recommends oral fluids be delivered to a horse that is shipping for longer periods of time. Dr. Werner typically delivers these fluids through a nasogastric tube before the horse travels.

    Lance Hayden, a lifelong horseman, has a varied equestrian career; now a driver for Creech Horse Transportation and manager of their Lexington office, Hayden offered insight into how commercial shipping works. He highlighted all of the safety checks Creech vehicles and trailers go through to ensure they are road safe: All vehicle and trailer lights and tires are inspected daily; wires, bearings and brakes on each trailer are checked twice a year, and the brakes on each vehicle are inspected every 30,000 miles. Each of these checks is significantly more detailed than the once-over most personal trailers receive, he noted.

    Dr. Werner and Hayden both recommended that horses being shipped more than six hours be transported in a box stall; if that isn’t feasible, it’s imperative that the horse is shipped in such a manner that he’s able to put down his head to clear his lungs. “Shipping fever” is a condition that horses can develop if they’re forced to hold their heads at such an angle that they cannot clear dust, debris and bacterial particles from their trachea. These items enter a horse’s lungs and cause pneumonia.

    In addition to allowing a horse to clear his airway while in the trailer, Dr. Werner suggests taking the horse’s temperature every 12 hours once he has arrived at his destination; this should be done for the next 48 to 72 hours to ensure he hasn’t contracting shipping fever while in transit.

    Sgt. Jason Morris, Public Affairs Officer for the Kentucky State Police Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division, spoke to the diverse crowd about agricultural exceptions and exemptions. Many people in the audience were unclear about what requirements they needed to follow when shipping horses, both commercially and for personal use. He noted that those who haul their own horses as recreational riders are exempt from the regulations. Those who are hauling horses as a business, which includes trainers, farriers and for-profit transport companies, are subject to the regulations when the vehicles being operated exceeded 10,001 pounds physical weight or gross vehicle weight rating. Those same persons would be required a CDL when the vehicles exceed 26,001lbs physical weight or gross vehicle weight rating.

    Additionally, he explained the difference between a “private” and a “for-hire” carrier is. A “private” carrier hauls only his own goods and commodities, meaning his own horse, tack, hay, etc. A “for-hire” carrier hauls someone else’s horses, hay, etc. Under this definition, there can be absolutely no money exchanged for movement of horses on a “private” trailer; Sgt. Morris reiterated that this means money in any manner: in the form of fuel, meals, check or cash. Additionally, like other legal issues, a state law can be more stringent than a federal law, so Sgt. Morris encouraged all those who haul horses across state lines be familiar with the laws in the states in which they are traveling. To find these laws, simply search “FMCSA Horse Hauling” in any search engine.

    The three KENA panelists offered attendees advice on how to stay compliant with Kentucky state laws regarding hauling horses, as well as how to ensure that their mounts travel safely and arrive at their destination in good health.

    The next KENA meeting will take place on April 21 at the Red Mile Clubhouse. Hosted by the Kentucky Horse Council, sponsors of the educational series include Dinsmore Equine Law Group, Neogen Corporation, University of Louisville College of Business Equine Industry Program, Kentucky Equine Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation Center (KESMARC) and WesBanco.

  • 01/23/2020 12:49 PM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (January 23, 2020) – The Kentucky Horse Council has announced the topic for the February Kentucky Equine Networking Association (KENA) dinner. The February topic will be “Equine Transportation- What You Need to Know Before You Go!” The dinner will be held on February 18, 2020, at The Red Mile Clubhouse in Lexington, Ky. KENA is a dinner and educational series open to equine professionals, horse owners, and riders and will feature a networking reception from 5:30-6:00 PM, followed by dinner with the main speakers from 6:00-8:00 PM.

    The panel will be made up of Dr. Laura Werner of Hagyard Equine Medical, Sergeant Jason Morris from the Kentucky State Police, and Lance Hayden from Creech Transportation.  Dr. Werner, a surgeon and sport horse medicine specialist at Hagyard, is also the team vet for the Area 8 North American Junior and Young Rider Championships.  She will discuss best practices for shipping your horse and monitoring their health.  Sgt. Morris will discuss current paperwork and licensing requirements when shipping horses across state lines.   Mr. Hayden will discuss best practices from the transportation company’s standpoint.

     “We are excited to present this topic that affects every horse owner,” Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross.  “As people prepare for the spring and summer and get ready to take their horses trail riding, ship them to shows, wherever their interest lies, we look forward to providing in depth information on best practices as well as the current status of the Commercial Drivers License requirements.”

    KENA is charged with the mission of providing an educational and social venue for equine professionals and horse enthusiasts from all disciplines. Organized by the Kentucky Horse Council KENA provides the opportunity for attendees to share ideas, business strategies and knowledge, and to obtain up-to-date information on horse and farm management and on issues affecting the equine industry.

    The Kentucky Equine Networking Association welcomes all Kentucky horse owners, professionals and enthusiasts to attend the February 18 event. For details and reservations, visit www.kentuckyhorse.org Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door.

  • 12/19/2019 1:12 PM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (December 19, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council has announced the recipients of two  $1,500 scholarships to Kentucky students already attending college, or accepted into a college who have demonstrated academic success, equine industry involvement and community service for the Spring 2020 Semester.  

    The Equine Scholarship are available to students currently enrolled with a university or college in Kentucky in an equine-related major or a horse-related program, or a student accepted into an equine related major or program to start in the Spring 2020 semester.  The Spring 2020 Scholarships have been awarded to Carley Pyles and Clara Quade. 

    Carley Pyles, of Elizabethtown, Kentucky, is a senior at Asbury University with a double major in equine studies and social work.  Carley is a lifelong equestrian and has been an active trail rider and is involved with miniature horses, the Asbury Quarter Horse Training Club and the Asbury Service Mounts Club.  Her academic excellence, many awards, and club involvement combined with her impact on the Kentucky equine community has made her a worthy recipient of the scholarship.

    Clara Quade, from Denmark Township, Minnesotta, is a senior at Asbury University majoring in equine studies. Clara is the head student trainer of the Asbury University Service Mounts and is planning a career in the equine industry.  Her dedication to the horse industry, academic excellence, and strong work and volunteer experience also make her a very worthy scholarship recipient.    

    “The Kentucky Horse Council is honored to present these scholarships to two young women who are already making such an impact on the equine community in Kentucky,” says Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross.  “These students are an example to their peers and we are pleased to help invest in the future of the Kentucky equine industry by supporting these students!”     

    Since resurrecting the scholarship program in 2017, the Kentucky Horse Council has awarded scholarships to students attending the University of Kentucky, Asbury University, Midway University, Morehead State University, Murray State University and Eastern Kentucky University. Scholarships are open to all student members of the Kentucky Horse Council. Student memberships are free and interested students may sign up at www.kentuckyhorse.org

  • 11/26/2019 12:26 PM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (November 26, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council hosted its 2019 Annual Member Meeting at the Manor House at Darby Dan Farm in Lexington, KY on November 10, 2019.  Horse Council members from all over the Commonwealth attended and new board members and officers were elected for 2020.  

    The new director elections include Stephanie Church, Caroline Conner Greathouse, Alexandra Harper, Kyle Johnson, Dr. Stephanie Keeley, Amy Parker, Elizabeth Smith, Natalie Voss and Ashley Watts.  Stephanie Church is Editor-in-Chief at The Horse Media Group (The Horse: Your Guide to Equine Health Care and TheHorse.com). Caroline Conner Greathouse is the accountant for Greathouse Farms as well as a fundraiser for the Kentucky Horse Park and Providence Montessori School.  Alexandra Harper is the Special Programs Manager at the American Saddlebred Horse Association and the owner of Intrepid Marketing & Event Planning.  Kyle Johnson is a stallion groom at Claiborne Farm.  Dr. Stephanie Keeley is an equine professor at Midway University and co-owner of Double S Horsemanship.  Amy Parker is an Equine Nutritionist and the Manager of Technical Services for McCauley Bros., Inc. Elizabeth Smith is a private farm owner and an amateur equine owner, trainer and enthusiast. Natalie Voss is the Features Editor at the Paulick Report.  Ashley Watts is the owner of Liftoff Equestrian, Inc., hunter/jumper trainer and the trainer for CANTER Kentucky.

    “We are excited to add such a large group of people from so many different equine backgrounds to our Board of Directors and to have such strong leadership as the result of our elections,” said Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross. “The skills and experiences of the new directors, combined with that of our returning board members, will benefit the Kentucky Horse Council immeasurably as we continue to expand our programming and focus on the health and welfare of horses in Kentucky.”

    Additionally, the Kentucky Horse Council Board of Directors elected new officers.  Aubri Hostetter was reelected vice-president.  Shawna White and Nicole Rivera were elected as secretary and treasurer, respectively.   

    For the complete list of the Kentucky Horse Council Board of Directors and more information about membership, visit www.kentuckyhorse.org.

  • 10/30/2019 11:28 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (October 30, 2019) - The Kentucky Horse Council (KHC), dedicated to the protection of the equine industry in Kentucky, hosted its annual Large Animal Emergency Rescue Training, September 20-22, 2019 at the Kentucky Horse Park. The 2019 LAER Training was presented by the US Equestrian Disaster Relief Fund.

    Offered to all Kentucky-based first responders, veterinary professionals, animal control officers and the public at large, the training prepares attendees for a large-animal emergency rescue situation, focusing on keeping humans and animals as safe as possible during the event. Offered yearly, the course focuses on the facilitation of open conversation between veterinarians, firemen, and police, showing each how to better assist the other when responding to emergency situations where large animals are involved. The three-day training has hands-on and classroom learning opportunities. Scenarios that are discussed include entrapments, barn fires, trailer accidents on the roadway, water rescues, natural disaster preparation and response, and riding accidents, among others.

    In 2019, in the largest training to date, 65 people attended the training taught by Tori and Justin McLeod of 4Hooves Large Animal Service LLC. With 40 hands-on participants, including 30 firemen, and 25 auditors, it was a large and very engaged group of students.

    Allison Haspel, D.V.M., with Lexington Equine Medical Group, was one of the veterinarians participating in the training. "I was thrilled to have participated in the Large Animal Emergency Rescue Training taught by 4Hooves Large Animal Services and hosted by the Kentucky Horse Council. This course was a combination of classroom discussion followed by hands-on group scenarios that required people from a variety of backgrounds (veterinarians, firemen/first responders, and horse owners) to work together towards one cause - rescuing the horse while keeping each other safe. This high-quality course was extremely beneficial in expanding not only our skills in emergency rescue, but I believe harvested a true appreciation among the participating parties. I look forward to using these skills and working with my new colleagues in future large animal rescues cases. The Kentucky Horse Council has been extremely instrumental in bringing educational opportunities to the veterinarians of Kentucky and we, the Lexington Equine Medical Group, are excited to continue our partnership in support of such advantageous occasions."

    "We continue to hear of an increase in large animal rescue calls across the Commonwealth and a need for this training from first responders," says Katy Ross, Executive Director of the Kentucky Horse Council. "It's critical that we have first responders and veterinarians who are properly trained in how to deal with these situations, not only to protect and save the animals' lives, but to protect the humans dealing with them as well. We were thrilled to have such a large group of participants this year, including a great representation of the Fayette, Clark and Madison County Fire Departments."

    Dates for the 2020 Large Animal Emergency Rescue Training will be announced soon.

    Want to learn more about the Large Animal Emergency Rescue Training? Click here.  https://kentuckyhorse.org/Large-Animal-Emergency-Rescue.   Thank you to our 2019 sponsors: US Equestrian Disaster Relief FundLexington Equine Medical GroupKentucky Veterinary Medical AssociationRood and Riddle Equine HospitalZoetis and the Kentucky Horse Park.

  • 10/24/2019 10:05 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (October 24, 2019) The Kentucky Horse Council has announced the topic for the November Kentucky Equine Networking Association (KENA) dinner. The November topic will be “Carving Your Professional Path.” The dinner will be held on November 12, 2019, at The Red Mile Clubhouse in Lexington, Ky. KENA is a dinner and educational series open to equine professionals, horse owners, and riders and will feature a networking reception from 5:30-6:00 PM, followed by dinner with the main speakers from 6:00-8:00 PM.

    Speakers for the November KENA meeting will be Stephanie Arnold, Marketing and Member Services Director for Horse Country, Inc., and Ashley Murphy-Gei, Career Advisor with the University of Kentucky Career Center.  These speakers will focus on using social media and online resources such as Linked In to market yourself and your business.  This topic in particular will be focused on networking, self-promotion and career development.  

    “KENA is the Kentucky Equine Networking Association,” says Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross.  “It is important to us that we help professionals and students learn to network, market themselves, and further their career paths in the equine industry, whatever that path may be.  These speakers will provide valuable tools for marketing yourself and pursuing your career.”

    KENA is charged with the mission of providing an educational and social venue for equine professionals and horse enthusiasts from all disciplines. Organized by the Kentucky Horse Council and supported by the University of Kentucky Ag Equine Program, KENA provides the opportunity for attendees to share ideas, business strategies and knowledge, and to obtain up-to-date information on horse and farm management and on issues affecting the equine industry.

    The Kentucky Equine Networking Association welcomes all Kentucky horse owners, professionals and enthusiasts to attend the November 12th event. For details and reservations, visit www.kentuckyhorse.org. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door. Get your tickets at https://kentuckyhorse.org/event-3597462


  • 10/01/2019 10:24 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (October 1, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council has announced they will be awarding two  $1,500 scholarships to Kentucky students already attending college, or accepted into a college who have demonstrated academic success, Kentucky equine industry involvement and community service for the Spring 2020 Semester.  

    The Equine Scholarship will be awarded to students currently enrolled with a university or college in Kentucky in an equine-related major or a horse-related program, or a student accepted into an equine related major or program to start in the Spring 2020 semester.  Some examples of courses of studies for which the scholarships are intended are Equine Science/Studies, Equine Business Management, Equine Therapy, Pre-Veterinarian, Farrier Training, Professional Jockey Certificate, Professional Horsemen’s Certificate, etc.  Applicants must be student members of the Kentucky Horse Council.

    “The Kentucky Horse Council is thrilled to once again be offering scholarships to college students in Kentucky,” says Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross.  “Education is an important part of our mission and we look forward to supporting the efforts of a deserving student as they explore a future in the Kentucky equine industry.  Our application has changed slightly, but we encourage all applicants, new and past, to apply!”     

    Applications for the scholarship will be accepted until November 1, 2019.  The scholarship will be awarded on December 2. The student is required to be a member of the Kentucky Horse Council. Student memberships are free and interested students may sign up at www.kentuckyhorse.org.

    To download the scholarship application, visit www.kentuckyhorse.org.

  • 09/23/2019 11:21 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (September 23, 2019) -A diverse group of equine enthusiasts escaped the high temperatures in Lexington, KY, for an air-conditioned evening attending the summer session of the Kentucky Equine Networking Meeting (KENA). Presented by the Kentucky Horse Council and held at The Red Mile Clubhouse, a panel of horse-care experts gathered to discuss a topic that has been at the forefront of many horse owner's minds this summer: How to help their horses cope with the oppressive heat and humidity in Central Kentucky.

    Though the spring of 2019 began with an extensive amount of rain, moisture in the Bluegrass this summer been minimal, and the heat has come on with an intensity that's been difficult to tolerate for even the most-acclimated horses and humans. Exacerbating the issue is the intense humidity that has enveloped most of the state.

    Dr. Bob Coleman, an equine extension specialist with the University of Kentucky, spoke to attendees about temperature and its effect on horses, both while they are in the field and when they're asked for physical exertion. He explained that temperature alone is not the only variable that can affect a horse's ability to sweat to keep itself cool: humidity, wind speed and the amount of sunshine also affects heat dissipation in horses.

    The temperature and the relative humidity as a percentage can be combined to calculate the comfort index for horses, Coleman explained. This number will assist in determining if it's too hot to exercise a horse. If the sum is below 130, thermoregulation should not be a concern. When the comfort index is between 130 and 150, horses will sweat, but they can exercise without major problems. When the comfort index exceeds 150 and the humidity is greater than 75 percent, heat dissipation may be an issue and riders should monitor their horses carefully. If the comfort index exceeds 180, a horse should not exercised, as it will be unable to dissipate enough heat to stay safe.

    Nicole Bianco, a registered dietitian and graduate assistant with UK athletics, addressed potential human-specific issues when working or riding in the heat. Dehydration is a serious concern for anyone exerting themselves in heat and humidity, she said. Dehydration can present as dizziness, fatigue or nausea, and can lead to decreased stamina and make people more-prone to injury. She suggested that people who will be working or exercising in the heat hydrate first with water, but they can also drink milk, juice, sports drinks or tea. Eating fruits and veggies that contain a lot of water will also help replace fluid lost to sweat. Paying attention to how one feels and acting accordingly is imperative for human safety when temperatures soar, Nicole said; this could include stopping work, getting out of the sun or entering an area with air conditioning.

    Dr. Bruce Howard is the Interim Equine Medical Director for the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. Howard addressed potential problems racehorses can encounter when racing during summer months. Howard noted that his main role is to keep both horses and humans safe; the decision to cancel racing is not one that is taken lightly, and he confers with stewards and track management when heat indices rise.

    Ellis Park racetrack in Henderson, KY, sits in in a literally bowl of land, where the heat just sits on the track, Howard say. When it's 92 or 93 degrees outside and most other tracks are still running, Howard considers the weather conditions carefully: "If it's 92 or 93 out and there's no wind or clouds, it will be too hot to race at Ellis," he says.

    The "magical" heat index number for mandatory racing cancellation is 108 Howard says; at 105 track management gets worried. Horses do fine racing on hot tracks when they're given the opportunity to adapt, he notes. It's the horses that are not from the area that ship in to race that cause him concern. Howard keeps a close eye out for horses that are in heat distress; these horses will hold their ears to the side, have a dull eye, violently swish their tail and kick with their hind legs. A horse in heat distress won't drink, but the condition is rarely fatal when addressed as soon as possible, he explains.

    The three KENA panelists provided attendees with useful information on how to keep themselves and their horses safe as temperatures continue to climb throughout the late-summer months.

    The next KENA meeting will take place on November 12 at the Red Mile Clubhouse. Sponsors of the educational series include Dinsmore Equine Law Group, Neogen Corporation, Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital, University of Louisville Equine Industry Program, McBrayer Law Firm and Red Mile.

  • 09/04/2019 10:47 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (September 4, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council announces Prosecco for Ponies, a brunch fundraiser to be held at New Vocations at Mereworth Farm on October 12, 2019 at 10:30 am.

    Prosecco for Ponies is a brunch event to benefit the Kentucky Horse Council.  Brunch will be catered by Local Feed out of Georgetown, KY and there will also be a mimosa and bloody mary bar.  There will also be a silent auction.  Funds from the event will benefit the Save Our Horses Fund, the welfare fund of the Kentucky Horse Council, which enables the KHC to provide hay and feed assistance, gelding and euthanasia vouchers, transportation assistance and more to owners and horses in Kentucky.     

    “We are excited to announce the first Prosecco for Ponies event,” said Katy Ross, Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director. “This brunch event is a fun way to kick off your Saturday! Come out to the beautiful facility at New Vocations at Mereworth Farm, enjoy a delicious brunch and head off to the races.”

    Prosecco for Ponies is made possible due to the support of generous sponsors.  Sponsors include Dinsmore Equine Law Group, Excel Equine Feeds, Darby Dan Stallions,  Kentucky Eagle, Kentucky Health Solutions, Kentucky Performance Products, Pyrois Media, Standlee, Thoroughbred Daily News, Horse Racing Nation, Neogen and the Law Office of Franklin Paisley.

    For more information, to purchase tickets, or for partnership and sponsorship opportunities, visit www.kentuckyhorse.org, or contact the Kentucky Horse Council at 859-367-0509 or director@kentuckyhorse.org.


  • 08/28/2019 1:12 PM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (August 28, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council has announced the recipients of two  $1,500 scholarships to Kentucky students already attending college, or accepted into a college who have demonstrated academic success, equine industry involvement and community service for the Fall 2019 Semester.  

    The Equine Scholarship are available to students currently enrolled with a university or college in Kentucky in an equine-related major or a horse-related program, or a student accepted into an equine related major or program to start in the Fall 2019 semester.  The Fall 2019 Scholarships have been awarded to Madeline Sparks and Brittany Rust. 

    Madeline Sparks, of Cynthiana, Kentucky, is a freshman at Midway University studying Equine Rehabilitation and Equine Management.  Madeline has a long record of participation in Future Farmers of America, as well as the American Quarter Horse Youth Association, Harrison County Saddle and Spurs Club, 4H and the Pinto Organization of Kentucky, among others.  Her academic excellence, many awards, and club involvement combined with her impact on the Kentucky equine community has made her a worthy recipient of the scholarship.

    Brittany Rust, from Cold Springs, Kentucky, is a junior at Morehead State University studying Pre-Veterinary Medicine.  Brittany has been riding and showing horses her entire life and is heavily involved with the Northern Kentucky Horse Network as well as Future Farmers of America.  She is currently involved with the Appalachian Horse Revival as well as the promotion of the Smokey Valley Horse. Brittany is a two-time recipient of the KHC Equine Scholarship. 


    “The Kentucky Horse Council is honored to present these scholarships to two young women who are already making such an impact on the equine community in Kentucky,” says Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross.  “These students have managed to balance their studies with their continued participation in the horse industry.  Their futures are extremely bright and we are excited to see what they do next!”     

    Since resurrecting the scholarship program in 2017, the Kentucky Horse Council has awarded scholarships to students attending the University of Kentucky, Midway University, Morehead State University, Murray State University and Eastern Kentucky University. Scholarships are open to all student members of the Kentucky Horse Council. Student memberships are free and interested students may sign up at www.kentuckyhorse.org.


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