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Re: “Unhealthy Horses

Well add me as one of the numerous posters! Nothing written by Courtney or others who have supported the UA by pointing out the inaccuracies as written by Vanderpool and/or represented by Glore before the article was written is slanderous or libelous. What Courtney has written in her latest comments is totally on the mark.

So what was the story about? Was it really an article about “Unhealthy horses – critics say the UA may be skimping on care due to cash flow problems” as it was titled? I think not.

Volunteers, students, student employees, vendors, and community members like myself, people who have first hand knowledge of the UA Equine Center and are knowledgeable horse people, have commented in support of the UA Equine Center. That hasn’t been good enough for the naysayers, who have tried to turn it into a referendum on breeding, racing, and euthanasia. Those who oppose the UA and support Glore have used this article to try and convert the realists into pro-lifers.

Not all horses should be saved from euthanasia. Domino’s story is still unfolding. I agree with those who have commented that he looks skinny and unhealthy in the picture. I hope his poster child status for HEART doesn’t interfere in ultimately doing what is right for the horse.

The UA Equine Center is not a pet store or a rescue organization. It is a responsible unit that teaches students how to care for horses in the REAL WORLD.

As a side note to Mr. Vanderpool -- since the article came out at least two very prominent thoroughbred horses have been euthanized due to complications of laminitis – Singspiel, an 18 year old who was an Eclipse winner in 1996, and Black Tie Affair, a 24 year old who was named Horse of the Year in 1991.

Toni Richardson

Posted by Toni on 07/04/2010 at 3:45 PM

Re: “Unhealthy Horses

Mr. Vanderpool,

Again, you show your ignorance by cutting and pasting Dr. Arns quote. What he said is true. Horses who cannot walk (get around) cannot live.

Tons of research has been done about laminitis, there are a multitide of books written about it, and if you had bothered to ask some of the UA professionals you interviewed to expand on the topic, you might have not even written about Ellie. She had a good life and finally the disease got the best of her.

For your education, I have cut and pasted excerpts from the American Association of Equine Practioners website:

"Laminitis results from the disruption (constant, intermittent, or short-term) of blood flow to the sensitive and insensitive laminae. These laminae structures within the foot secure the coffin bone (the wedge-shaped bone within the foot) to the hoof wall. Inflammation often permanently weakens the laminae and interferes with the wall/bone bond. In severe cases, the bone and the hoof wall can separate. In these situations, the coffin bone may rotate within the foot, be displaced downward ("sink") and eventually penetrate the sole. Laminitis can affect one or all feet, but it is most often seen in the front feet concurrently.

The terms "laminitis" and "founder" are used interchangeably. However, founder usually refers to a chronic (long-term) condition associated with rotation of the coffin bone. Whereas, acute lamini¬tis refers to symptoms associated with a sudden initial attack, including pain and inflammation of the laminae.

It's important to note that once a horse has had laminitis, it may be likely to recur. In fact, a number of cases become chronic because the coffin bone has rotated within the foot and the laminae never regain their original strength. There may also be interference with normal blood flow to the feet as well as metabolic changes within the horse.

Many horses that develop laminitis, make uneventful recoveries and go on to lead long, useful lives. Unfortunately, others suffer such severe, irreparable damage that they are, for humane reasons, euthanized."

Once again Mr. Vanderpool, please present the facts and do some research before you go shooting from the hip about topics you obviously are not familiar with.

Thank you.

Toni Richardson

Posted by Toni on 06/29/2010 at 10:20 AM

Re: “Unhealthy Horses

Mr. Vanderpool,

Vitriol occurs when you and Judy Glore do not present all of the facts correctly. Question all you want, but report the TRUE facts. ALL of them. You have been asked repeatedly to do so, and you still have a bias.

You still need to research laminitis, founder, and coffin bones. Then you might see how uneducated your statement "I was told by Dr. Arns himself that laminitis was the cause of her demise."

I also have rescue horses and dogs, so please don't lecture me about doing good things for animals. The University of Arizona Equine Unit does not abuse or neglect horses. And unfortunately, some injured or diseased horses are better off being euthanized than rescued.

All any of us spleen venters are asking is that you report the facts in an unbiased manner.

Posted by Toni on 06/29/2010 at 7:53 AM

Re: “Unhealthy Horses

What was the purpose of the story of Domino and Ellie? To draw attention to the UA Equine Unit needing more funding? Give me a break!

To discriminating readers, it is apparent that someone wanted to give publicity to Glore at the expense of the UA Equine Unit.

I have a question for OutsideTheBoxThinker. Exactly how did the UA Equine Unit mishandle Domino’s situation? Accidents happen to all horses in all settings – in the field, in a paddock, in a stall, loading and unloading and hauling in a trailer. Horses are notorious for getting hurt when they are by themselves in a single stall. If one is unfortunate to suffer an accident, then what is one to do? Not treat the injury? Give me another break!

Knowing more than the average reader about horses and the UA Equine Center, I take the reporter to task for not accurately and impartially representing all the facts, and for not doing his homework about laminitis.

The UA Equine Unit is NOT a rescue center. It is part of a land grant institution whose purpose is to educate students. The UA Equine Unit provides quality education and does smashingly so with a cadre of professionals who collectively have many years of experience running a horse program and staying within a budget.

Hello again to OutsideTheBoxThinker – do you know about the current recession in general and particularly the impact it has had on all UA programs? What does the statement “A true vet would be working along side rescues to learn first hand and not just from a book” mean? It is such a random statement and makes no sense. Just like most of the article.

Posted by Toni on 06/28/2010 at 12:00 PM

Re: “Unhealthy Horses

This article is plain and simple horse manure – pure hyperbole – sensational reporting. And it doesn’t report the facts.

For example:
•You don’t need an xray to tell you the Rx is stall rest.

•I (and others) feed young horses straight alfalfa and they do not have short-term or chronic diarrhea.

•Short-term use of 1gram phenylbutazone (Bute) is not likely to cause ulcers. Anyone who takes care of horses knows there are pros and cons of anti-inflammatory and pain treatment medications. Up to 4 grams/day of Bute can be given to adult horses who have suffered some type of traumatic injury. 1gram for a foal is not excessive.

•Chronic laminitis is VERY painful. Does Mr. Vanderpool or Ms. Gore know the story of Barbaro and more recently, Kip Deville? After hundreds of thousands of dollars were spent trying to save them, the results were the same – euthanasia from laminitis.

To the writer who thinks no fly masks are a negative sign that the University of Arizona Equine Center does not take care of their horses – did you notice the horses standing in pairs - head to rump – using their tails to keep the flies off themselves and the horse next to them?

I have been a thoroughbred breeder, owner and trainer for over 20 years. The University of Arizona Equine Center is top notch, run by professionals who are knowledgeable, compassionate, hardworking, and good stewards of the horses in their care. It is a shame the UA Equine Unit and the people associated with it are being falsely portrayed as anything else.

I have bred mares to the University of Arizona Equine Center stallions. I have sent my mares to foal at the UA Equine Center. I would in a heartbeat send any horse I own to the UA Equine Center because I know they would be as well or better cared for than the care I give them.

Tucson Weekly and Mr. Vanderpool – do the right thing – write a story that impartially represents the truth.

Toni Richardson
Richardson Racing Enterprises
Tucson, AZ

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Toni on 06/25/2010 at 5:05 PM

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