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  • 08/01/2019 2:21 PM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (August 1, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council has announced the topic for the August Kentucky Equine Networking Association (KENA) dinner. The August topic will be “Handling Heat.” The dinner will be held on August 20, 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.

    As we reach the middle of a hot summer, the August KENA topic will be “Handling Heat.”  The speakers for this dinner will be Dr. Robert Coleman, Nicole Bianco, and a veterinarian. 

    Dr. Coleman, an extension specialist and professor in the University of Kentucky’s Equine Ag Program, will discuss how to reduce heat stress for horses.  Nicole Bianco, a registered dietician at the University of Kentucky, will discuss best practices for riders and a veterinarian will discuss conditioning and hydration for horses. 

     “We are having a very hot summer,” says Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross.  “This does not slow down the show season or temper our desire to ride or go out on the trails.  This diverse panel will touch on all of the issues affecting equine and human athletes in Kentucky due to this heat and humidity.”

    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 August 20th event. For details and reservations, visit www.kentuckyhorse.org. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door.

  • 07/18/2019 2:04 PM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (July 18, 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, equine industry involvement and community service for the Fall 2019 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 Fall 2019 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 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 August 10, 2019.  The scholarship will be awarded on August 20. 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.

  • 07/17/2019 9:44 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (July 17, 2019) - The Kentucky Horse Council announces Large Animal Emergency Rescue Training to be held at the Kentucky Horse Park from September 20-22, 2019.

    The LAER training will be taught by 4Hooves Large Animal Services, LLC and instructors Justin and Tori McLeod. Both instructors have extensive experience with equine and livestock as well as working as emergency responders. They also operate the North Carolina Specialized Mobile Animal Rescue Team as well as being instructors in technical large animal emergency rescue.

    The course is geared towards veterinarians, first responders and emergency personnel as well as animal control officers and any horse owner or industry professional. The course will cover subject matter from animal behavior, safety considerations, restraints, containment, entrapments, motor vehicle accidents and overturned trailers, barn and wildfires, unstable ground, water rescues, and natural disaster preparation and response.   Specialized instruction will be given to participants based on their background and auditors are welcome.

    "We are excited to be offering this training again this year," said Katy Ross, Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director. "There is a real need for Large Animal Emergency Rescue training in this part of the country. It is an excellent opportunity for veterinarians, volunteers and first responders to receive in-depth, technical training for situations that unfortunately arise too frequently. Last year we had a full training with 35 participants ranging from mounted police officers to firemen to veterinarians. These three groups really learned how to work together to best handle emergency situations. We look forward to providing this training to a great group again this year!"

    Continuing education credits for veterinarians are approved. This course is being sponsored by the Kentucky Veterinary Medical Association, Lexington Equine Medical, Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital and the Kentucky Horse Park. More sponsors are being accepted at this time.

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

    For registrations visit https://kentuckyhorse.org/event-3438034

  • 05/30/2019 1:49 PM | Anonymous

    Mud Management Key To Equine Health And Safety During Wet  Weather

    May 30, 2019 – Lexington, KY – An attentive group of equine owners and caretakers gathered at The Red Mile Clubhouse in Lexington, KY, last week to learn how to better care for their farms and their horses during wet weather. The Kentucky Equine Networking Association (KENA) session, presented by the Kentucky Horse Council, hosted a panel of experts who addressed a pressing equine operations issue: How to manage mud.

    Soggy conditions seem to have become the norm in the Bluegrass: 2018 was one of the wettest years on record and model projections indicate that wetter-than-average weather will persist throughout the remainder of the century. To assist horse and farm owners in their quest to provide the best care they can for their equines, Dr. Robert Coleman and Krista Lea of the University of Kentucky offered insights into wet-weather care for fields and shelters; Dr. Craig Lesser of Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital informed attendees of possible health issues facing equines that spend time outdoors in wet weather.  

    Dr. Bob Coleman, PhD, PAS, Extension Horse Specialist at the University of Kentucky, spoke to KENA attendees about ways in which they can modify their farms to better handle precipitation. He noted that water runoff comes from the roofs of buildings, roads and the way the land naturally drains. The installation of gutters to divert the water away from buildings, as well as the use of swales and culverts, can help eliminate standing water.

    At most farms, the heavily trafficked areas are the most prone to mud buildup, including around gates, shelters, waterers and feeders. Coleman suggested constructing pads in as many of these areas as possible; pad construction entails the removal of soil and the placement of fabric and rock to encourage water to drain down and away from where horses congregate.

    To attendee’s delight, Coleman referenced some ways in which farm owners may receive financial help in installing these pads, though he noted that some programs have specific requirements. The possible financial assistance initiatives included County Agriculture Investment Programs (CAIP) and local extension office programs.

    “When it comes to managing mud on horse farms, there is no silver bullet, no product or practice that solely eliminates mud, but careful management can minimize the size and severity of the issue,” said Krista Lea, research analyst with the Forage Extension Program at the University of Kentucky regarding the impact mud has on pastures and fields. “Whether managing grazing or loafing areas, maintaining grasses in a pasture requires occasional rest, good soil fertility and, when needed, the addition of desirable grasses through proper seeding.”

    Lea went on to detail that field rest periods should be a minimum of one week, but that resting for two to three weeks is ideal. Field soil samples should be taken every 2 to 3 years and only the needed amendments applied, she said. However, nitrogen can be applied twice every fall without a soil test, at 60 to 80 pounds of urea per acre, she explained, but cautioned that no amount of fertilizer can make up for poor management. Though traditionally a mixture of tall fescue, Kentucky bluegrass, orchardgrass, white clover and some ryegrass is planted in September, farm owners can seed just ryegrass during much of the year to quickly fill in high-traffic areas for short-term cover. 

    Dr. Craig Lesser, DVM, CF at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital in Lexington, spoke about hoof conditions that might arise with an abundance of mud. These issues included thrush and abscesses, which many KENA attendees were familiar with, and a complication that may arise from chronic abscesses: Septic Pedal Osteitis. An infection of the coffin bone, the treatment for this condition is much more intense that with a traditional abscess; treatment may include antibiotics (either systemic or used in regional perfusion), specific shoeing or even surgery.

    A more-unusual condition that may occur in muddy conditions is quittor. An infection in and around the collateral cartilage, this painful condition may require antibiotic treatment, as well as possibly surgical debridement and drain placement.

    White line disease can cause lameness, abscesses, rotation of the coffin bone or the sloughing of the hoof capsule—none of which should be taken lightly. Treatment may include supportive shoeing, but more-intense cases may require debridement.

    Lesser also discussed pastern dermatitis and thrush. Though each condition he discussed could be helped by the ability to keep the horse’s legs and feet clean and dry, Lesser noted that this is not always possible, especially for equines that live outside. He noted that diligent, daily care will allow horse owners and caretakers to address a hoof issue when it first appears, hopefully allowing for a less-invasive treatment to solve the problem.

    The three KENA panelists offered attendees targeted strategies to help manage mud on their farm and to encourage happy, healthy horses—no matter what the weather brings.

    The next KENA meeting will take place on August 20 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.


  • 04/24/2019 9:48 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (April 22, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council has announced the topic for the May Kentucky Equine Networking Association (KENA) dinner. The May topic will be “Managing Mud.” The dinner will be held on May 21, 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.

    With the unprecedented amount of rain that has hit Central Kentucky in the last year, the May KENA topic will be “Managing Mud.”  The speakers for this dinner will be Dr. Robert Coleman, Dr. Craig Lesser and Krista Lea. 

    Dr. Coleman, an extension specialist and professor in the University of Kentucky’s Equine Ag Program, will discuss high traffic pads and mud management.   Dr. Craig Lesser, a veterinarian and podiatrist at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital, will discuss mud related conditions for your horse.  Krista Lea, a pasture management specialist in the UK Equine Ag Program, will discuss how to help your pastures recover from this weather and how to keep them going.

     “One of the things we kept hearing over the winter was how sick everyone was of the rain,” Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross.  “The large amount of precipitation we’ve received in Kentucky in the past year has caused issues across the agriculture industry and affects horses, from skin infections, to hoof issues, to pasture problems with large amounts of mud. This diverse panel will touch on all of the issues affecting horse owners in Kentucky due to the rainy weather.”

    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 May 21 event. For details and reservations, visit www.kentuckyhorse.org. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door.

    ABOUT THE KENTUCKY HORSE COUNCIL - The Kentucky Horse Council is a non-profit organization dedicated, through education and leadership, to the protection and development of the Kentucky equine community. The Kentucky Horse Council provides educational programs and information, outreach and communication to Kentucky horse owners and enthusiasts, equine professional networking opportunities through KENA, trail riding advocacy, health and welfare programs, and personal liability insurance and other membership benefits.  The specialty Kentucky Horse Council license plate, featuring a foal lying in the grass, provides the primary source of revenue for KHC programs                        

    - END -

  • 04/02/2019 11:02 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (April 2, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council has announced they will be awarding one $1,500 scholarship to a Kentucky student already attending college who has demonstrated academic success, equine industry involvement and community service for the Summer 2019 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 for the Summer 2019 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 offer a scholarship to a college student in Kentucky for the Summer 2019 semester,” 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 equine industry. Scholarship resources for summer classes are minimal and we hope to be able to aid students who are pursuing their studies year-round.”     

    Applications for the scholarship will be accepted until May 1, 2019.  The scholarship will be awarded on May 15. 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.

    ABOUT THE KENTUCKY HORSE COUNCIL - The Kentucky Horse Council is a non-profit organization dedicated, through education and leadership, to the protection and development of the Kentucky equine community. The Kentucky Horse Council provides educational programs and information, outreach and communication to Kentucky horse owners and enthusiasts, equine professional networking opportunities through KENA, trail riding advocacy, health and welfare programs, and personal liability insurance and other membership benefits.  The specialty Kentucky Horse Council license plate, featuring a foal lying in the grass, provides the primary source of revenue for KHC programs

  • 03/12/2019 11:37 AM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (March 12, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council’s Livestock Investigation Training is back this spring and will be held at two locations across Kentucky, Western Kentucky University and Morehead State University.  Registration for both trainings is now open to all county and state officials, such as Animal Control Officers, Sheriffs, and Police Officers.  

    Developed by the Kentucky Horse Council (KHC) in partnership with the Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association (KCA) with input from experienced enforcement officers, veterinarians, and livestock producers, this three-day course is tailored to the needs of the Commonwealth.  The curriculum was updated in 2017 to keep up with changing animal welfare laws and standards. 

    The Western Kentucky University training is a Level 1 training, where attendees will learn how to handle horses and cattle, assess body condition score in both species, identify situations that need intervention, and apply Kentucky statutes to animal cases. Attendees will gain hands-on experience to best prepare them for cases in the field.  The Western Kentucky training will be held May 8-10, 2019.  The Morehead State training is a Level 2 training, where attendees will take what they learned at the Level I training and further their knowledge of difficult animal behavior, assess body condition scores, identify situations that need intervention, and apply Kentucky statutes to animal cases. Attendees also practice handling and evaluating live horses and livestock as well as examining Kentucky statutes and enforcement procedures.  This training also focuses on small ruminants and swine in addition to horses and larger livestock.  The Level 2 training will be held May 27-29, 2019 at Morehead State University.

    “We are excited to be offering both levels of the Livestock Investigation Training this year,” said Katy Ross, Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director. “These trainings fill a vital need for education of peace officers on animal abuse and neglect cases in the Commonwealth.  We had a lot of positive feedback offering this training in the Western portion of the state and we are thankful for the opportunity to educate officials across the Commonwealth to help these animals.”

    Peace Officers attending the training are eligible for Continuing Education Units through the Department of Criminal Justice Training.

    Cost to attend the three-day training is $150 per officer. Out-of-state officials may attend at $250 per officer. Limited scholarships for tuition are available.

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

    ABOUT THE KENTUCKY HORSE COUNCIL - The Kentucky Horse Council is a 501©3 non-profit organization dedicated, through education and leadership, to the protection and development of the Kentucky equine community. The Kentucky Horse Council provides educational programs and information, outreach and communication to Kentucky horse owners and enthusiasts, equine professional networking opportunities, trail riding advocacy, health and welfare programs, and personal liability insurance and other membership benefits.  The specialty Kentucky Horse Council license plate, featuring a foal lying in the grass, provides the primary source of revenue for KHC programs.

    - END -

  • 03/04/2019 12:11 PM | Anonymous

    Lexington, KY (March 4, 2019) – The Kentucky Horse Council has announced support for their top legislative priority for 2019, HB 98 also known as Klaire’s Law.  The bill strengthens the laws surrounding equine abuse and neglect.

    Introduced by Representative Diane St. Onge, HB 98 creates a new section of KRS 525 clearly defining equine abuse and neglect.  Cruelty to equines would be made a Class D felony and the bill provides for termination of ownership interests for guilty parties as well as restitution for damage to the property of others as well as for the costs associated with caring for any equine that was the subject of the offense resulting in conviction.  Find the amended bill here:  HB 98.

    The bill has received bipartisan sponsorship support from Representatives St. Onge, Mark Hart, and Ruth Ann Palumbo.  To help advance HB 98, please contact your legislator and voice your support.  Individuals can find your legislators here:  Find your legislator.

    “At a time when Kentucky has been consistently recognized for having the worst animal welfare laws in the United States, we are pleased to see our elected officials taking notice and making a stand to protect equine rights,” said Kentucky Horse Council Board President Ryan Watson.  “It is critical that we protect the animals that make up our Commonwealth’s signature industry and take a step forward as a leader in the equine industry in this country.”

    For more information on how to support HB 98, please contact Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross at director@kentuckyhorse.org or (859) 367-0509.


  • 02/26/2019 9:47 AM | Anonymous

    Individual Treatment Of Horses Key To Success In Equine Makeover Competitions

    Lexington, KY (February 26, 2019) -A variety of equine enthusiasts gathered at the Red Mile Clubhouse for the first meeting of the Kentucky Equine Networking Association (KENA) in 2019. Presented by the Equine Law Group of Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, the evening highlighted successful competitors in both the Mustang Makeover and the Retired Racehorse Project's Thoroughbred Makeover; both competitions focus on creating horses that are prepared for new careers.

    Equine professionals, horse owners and recreational riders heard first-hand about the importance of treating a horse as both an individual and as an athlete to get the best performance from them in the show ring. Dr. Fernanda Camargo, an Associate Extension Professor in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences at the University of Kentucky, spoke on feeding the two vastly different breeds.

    "Everything has to do with calories in and calories out," she explained, noting that the breed of horse is not an excuse for a horse to be too thin or too heavy. Thoroughbreds tend to need a significantly higher number of calories per day than Mustangs, which are designed to be thrifty and to hold on to calories they ingest. Additional factors to consider when determining the correct amount of feed to offer a horse include what kind of exercise the horse is expected to do; how often he will be worked; the skill level of the rider; the climate; the condition of the ground on which he will be worked; and the combined weight of the tack and rider.

    With only six weeks to nine months to prepare the horse for competition, it's important to constantly reassess the horse and his energy requirements, she noted.

    Dan James, a renowned equine educator and competitor, has competed in a plethora of training competitions, including the Mustang Millionionaire and the Road to the Horse competitions; he has coached multiple students to top-level placings in the Mustang Makeover and the Thoroughbred Makeover.

    Dan spoke about what he feels is the main point to keep in mind when working with a horse for any format of training competition: the difference between re-education and education. A rider is re-educating a Thoroughbred, who has already had many life experiences by the time he retires from racing. Educating a Mustang is vastly different: The horses used in these competitions are not completely unaccustomed to humans, but they have never been saddled or ridden. Though the management and training of these two breeds may be different, James' advice for success in any makeover competition is the same: Don't go it alone; invest in a quality trainer; and don't underestimate the impact of a mentor.

    The final panelist, Emily Brollier Curtis, owns and operates a dressage training and sales business out of Lexington, KY, where she has developed more than 12 horses to the FEI competition levels. She specializes in both young and difficult horses, and has an innate knack for restarting Thoroughbreds that have retired from the track and for finding them new homes.

    Emily also reiterated the necessity to treat each horse like an individual. She noted that the horse she prefers as a ride for herself, a professional, is much hotter than a Thoroughbred she is seeking to place with an adult amateur rider whose main focus is to be to enjoy a quiet horse with a good brain. "It's not a bad thing that they want to go," she explains, but it's the rider's job to teach the horse that "go" is not all he is expected to do any longer. She focuses on exposing the horse to new experiences both on and off the farm to make him understand his new job.

    Thoroughbreds want to learn and please, then they want to be left alone to do their job, she says. The release of pressure is the best reward for these horses. Though it's important to look at the end game (the competition), it's imperative that the trainer take it one day at a time and treat each horse as an individual to give them the best possible chance for success, she concludes.

    The next KENA meeting will take place on May 21 at the Red Mile Clubhouse in Lexington with the topic, "Managing Mud


  • 01/30/2019 11:40 AM | Anonymous
    Lexington, KY (January 30, 2019) -The Kentucky Horse Council has announced the topic for the February Kentucky Equine Networking Association (KENA) dinner. The February topic will be "Makeover Horses- Thoroughbred, Mustang and More." The dinner will be held on February 19, 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.

    With so many people participating and watching events such as the Retired Racehorse Project Thoroughbred Makeover and the Mustang Makeover, KENA will feature a panel of participants in those events.   Emily Brollier Curtis, Dan James, and Dr. Fernanda Camargo, DVM, Ph.D. will make up the panel.

    Ms. Curtis is a Grand Prix level dressage rider and trainer through her Miramonte Equine and has a talent for restarting off the track thoroughbreds. She has competed at the Retired Racehorse Project Thoroughbred Makeover in the dressage division. Mr. James, of Double Dan Horsemanship, is a world-renowned equine entertainer, educator, and competitor. He started retraining off the track thoroughbreds early in his career as an eventer and has participated and finished as a Top 5 Finalist in the Mustang Millionaire, in addition to being invited to participate in the upcoming Rodeo Bucking Horse Makeover. In addition to his own success with makeover horses, Mr. James has coached numerous makeover horse Top 5 Finalists, including Mustang Makeover Winners and TB Makeover Winners. Dr. Camargo is a professor at the University of Kentucky in the Ag Equine Program as well as an extension specialist and 4H advisor, will discuss the management of makeover horses, starting with assessing their initial needs, including feeding, shoeing and more.

    "We are excited to present such an interesting and timely topic," Kentucky Horse Council Executive Director Katy Ross. "With the increasing popularity of events like the Retired Racehorse Project's Thoroughbred Makeover, Mustang Millionaire and the Mustang Makeover, we see more and more people adopting OTTBs and mustangs. This panel of experts will be able to address some of the challenges and rewards of adopting these animals and participating in these events."

    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 February 19 dinner is presented by Dinsmore & Shohl LLP's Equine Law Group. Dinsmore & Shohl is a full-service law firm with offices in twenty-three cities throughout eleven states and the District of Columbia, including Kentucky offices in Lexington, Frankfort, Louisville and Covington. The Dinsmore Equine Law Group is a generous supporter of the KENA dinner series.

    The Kentucky Equine Networking Association welcomes all Kentucky horse owners, professionals and enthusiasts to attend the February 19 event. For details and reservations, visit www.kentuckyhorse.org. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the door.

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