|James R. Brown|
|January 3 – Turf Paradise|
|Maggie’s Guy||Race 8||Claiming $3,000|
|January 6 – Turf Paradise|
|Tinderette||Race 4||Claiming $12,500|
|January 1 – Turf Paradise|
|January 2 – Turf Paradise|
|Altered Carbon||Race 3||Maiden Claiming $8,000|
|January 3 – Turf Paradise|
|Coal Harbour||Race 4||Maiden Claiming $8,000|
|January 1 – Turf Paradise|
|January 1 – Turf Paradise|
|January 5 – Santa Anita|
|Fool’s Paradise||Wgt-122||Race 2||Maiden Special Weight|
|Purr Cat||Wgt-122||Race 5||Maiden Claiming $100,000|
|Rolling Shadow||Wgt-121||Race 7||Allowance|
|Tizswift||Wgt-122||Race 8||Maiden Claiming $30,000|
|January 1 – Santa Anita|
|Party Hostess finished 3rd beaten 4 1/2 lengths||Race 3|
|Shaymin finished 4th beaten 4 1/2 lengths||Race 4|
|How About Zero finished 2nd beaten by a head||Race 9|
1913 Kentucky Derby winner, Donerail. Winning the race at 91-1, he became the longest long-shot to ever win the Derby.
Standing wraps are applied for support and to reduce inflammation in the limbs.
Photo: Erica Larson, News Editor
There are right and wrong ways to bandage horses' limbs, no matter the wrap's purpose.
At some point nearly every horse, from the fine-boned, flashy Arabian halter horse to the cowboy’s sturdy, no-frills roping mount, will sport a wrap or bandage on one or more legs. Just because we see bandages around the barn frequently doesn’t mean bandaging and wrapping are easy, and that bandages and wraps are interchangeable and always appropriate. Before you reach for the nearest roll of Vetrap or grab that splint boot out of your tack trunk, look at some of the basic principles behind bandaging or wrapping equine limbs.
Owners commonly apply bandages to shield recent wounds or tendon or -ligament injuries, to protect during shipping or performance, and to prevent fluid accumulation in the limb (“stocking up”) during stall rest. Reid Hanson, DVM, Dipl. ACVS, ACVECC, professor of equine surgery and lameness at Auburn University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, in Alabama, adds topical dressing application, immobilization, and support to this list. However, bandaging and wrapping, while useful, are not wholly benign. Improper application and/or use of an inappropriate bandaging material can do more harm than leaving the leg unwrapped.
Architecture of a Bandage
Bandage design varies according to purpose, but most bandages include the same two to three layers:
- Topical dressing, which might be a liniment, medicated pad, ointment, or powder. These are generally used in horses with injuries or skin conditions.
- Thick cotton padding such as practical (roll) cotton, layers of sheet cotton, cast padding, or fabric quilt or pillow wraps.
- Compressive/securing layer such as stable/track bandage, Vetrap, gauze, polo wrap, elastic tape, or stockinette.
Of course, veterinarians might modify or augment this basic structure to suit particular circumstances. They might recommend adding splints or bandage casts to provide immobilization in the case of a wound in a high motion area or with a severe tendon injury. As for protection, owners might use Velcro-style shipping boots, single-layer devices that provide skin protection but little compression. In contrast, some wraps and boots intended for performance might provide focal protection suited to a particular sport.
And some might not look like a traditional or prefabricated bandage at all. For some wounds, such as those in areas that are difficult or detrimental to immobilize or where topical medication application is the main requirement, Hanson describes a minimalist wound covering technique known as the “Jolly method.” This technique uses Velcro tabs to secure a wound dressing and a stockinette tube as covering.
Bandage and Wrap Uses
Wounds Owners and veterinarians commonly bandage limbs to protect wounds and surgical sites. A bandage can prevent contamination, provide compression to minimize swelling, hold topical medications against the wound, reduce motion of the wound edges, and keep the exudates (pus) in contact with the wound.
Although exudate triggers an “ick” response in many people, that yellowish slime serves a critical purpose in the healing process. “The exudate has all of the cytokines (cell-signaling proteins) that -produce healing,” says Hanson. Many horse owners “see exudate and assume (the wound) must be infected, and so they get their iodine scrub and clean it,” but Hanson cautions against this. By scrubbing a healing wound, “they’ve removed all the good juice that allows it to heal.”
Hanson prefers using an acemannan (an aloe vera derivative) wound cleanser that is gentle to the tissues. “You should not clean a wound with anything you are not willing to put in your eye’s conjunctival sac,” he notes as a rule of thumb.
Excessive swelling or motion of the wound edges can delay wound margin contracture, a major step in the healing process. A bandage that applies compression can help prevent fluid from accumulating in the limb in response to injury and reduce this swelling.
To reduce movement, however, the veterinarian might need to amend the basic bandage design. A standard soft wrap-type bandage often does not provide sufficient immobilization regardless of how thickly or firmly it is applied. Where immobilization is required, Hanson recommends using a splint or bandage cast.
For most limb wounds, Hanson suggests applying both a primary and secondary bandage. Once a veterinarian cleans and debrides the wound appropriately, Hanson recommends applying a medicated dressing (such as an acemannan hydrogel or calcium alginate dressing) as the primary bandage to promote autolytic debridement (use of the body’s own enzymes and moisture to liquefy and remove dead tissue). In most cases he will cover this dressing with a thick layer of padding and secure it with a wrap material. If the area requires immobilization he will then apply a secondary bandage, such as a splint or a semisoft bandage cast. Hanson prefers bandage casts over traditional hard casts because he believes they produce fewer complications, such as cast sores, and generally the horse can be sent home rather than having to remain in a hospital for monitoring.
Tendon or ligament injuries Wrapping legs with suspected or diagnosed tendon or ligament injuries has its pros and cons. A wrap can control swelling and provide some support to a leg with what Hanson refers to as a classic mid-tendon bow. “However, if the injury was the result of a bandage bow (caused by a too-tight or inproperly applied wrap), I probably would not use a wrap,” he says.
While these wraps generally do not require a dressing, pay attention to the bandage basics of using padding and applying even tension. Hanson does not believe placing a support wrap on an uninjured leg is necessary.
Julie Dechant, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACVS, ACVECC, chief of the University of California, Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine’s Equine Surgical Emergency and Critical Care Service, comments that wraps alone do not give “enough support to provide true protection for tendon injuries. We certainly use (them), but in any severely damaged tendon a bandage alone is not enough support.” In these cases, says Dechant, a splint will most likely be required.
Shipping Owners can apply wraps and/or shipping boots to trailered horses’ legs both to protect the leg from trauma and provide support. Hanson notes that he sees horses arrive at the Auburn teaching hospital in one of two types of shipping wrap: the quilt and wrap type or a more modern shipping boot with Velcro closures. Overall, Hanson prefers the quilt and wrap style, feeling that it provides “support, compression, and protection.”
However, he notes that prefabricated shipping boots can provide more complete protection of the leg, covering the coronary band. “It seems that if someone was really concerned about protection, a combination of the styles might be best,” he says. “Bell boots that cover the coronary band are a nice addition to the (quilt and wrap) bandage if one is concerned with protecting that area from injury.”
Dechant believes that shipping boots are useful during travel, but owners need to be sure the boots fit well so they don’t trip up the horse. She agrees with Hanson that “if you’re only covering the cannon, (the boot or wrap) is not as useful in the trailer where the horse is more likely to step on itself.”
Dechant recommends getting the horse accustomed to having wraps or boots on his legs prior to shipping to avoid trauma from panicking in the confines of the trailer.
Confinement Owners can use standing wraps to minimize limb swelling in a stall-confined horse. Dechant says that “whenever standing wraps are placed, they need to be monitored daily and ideally reset at least once per day.” This way owners and managers can ensure the wrap is not tightening or loosening inappropriately and that no debris has worked its way inside the wrap, where it might cause a sore.
Performance Wraps, bandages, and boots are used in a wide variety of equine performance disciplines for protection and, in some cases, support. Dechant emphasizes the importance of clean, well-fitting, and situationally appropriate equipment. “It’s important to apply and use it in the intended manner,” she says. “Some wraps intended for performance are not meant for horses standing in the stall, where they may not have the same degree of blood flow.” Also, cautions Dechant, many performance wraps have less padding, so owners need to be aware of precise application with appropriate pressure.
Equine wraps and bandages are sort of like sushi: The menu of supplies is extensive, and everyone has an opinion about the “right way” to combine them. While it is true that inappropriate bandage application can cause as many problems as a well-applied bandage can prevent, following these common sense steps can result in successful bandaging:
1. Keep everyone safe. Preventing human injuries is just as important as treating or preventing equine ones. The person applying the bandage should avoid kneeling or sitting on the ground, says Dechant, and should instead crouch, ready to move out of the way if necessary. She also recommends having a competent handler hold the horse during the process. Bear in mind, too, that some horses initially resent wraps on the hind legs, especially over the hocks, so it’s best to apply these in an open area in case the horse kicks out.
2. Don’t skimp on the padding. “Insufficient padding is going to cause a bandage bow,” says Hanson. Padding should be clean, dry, and in reasonable shape, Dechant adds. Since the idea of the padding is to protect the leg, it’s important to avoid incorporating frayed bits of padding or fill that contains wrinkles or bunches—these can cause pressure points under a bandage.
3. Keep it even under pressure. Remember that “anything directly against the skin should not be applied with any tension at all,” Dechant says. But uneven tension in a bandage’s securing layers also can potentially cause tendon damage. “You want an even distribution of compression along the leg” with this layer, too, says Hanson.
“The key is to apply it firmly but not too tightly,” Dechant adds. If using Vetrap or a similar flexible bandage to secure the padding, she suggests applying enough tension to remove 80% of the wrap’s innate “wrinkles.” She also stresses the importance of overlapping layers of bandage by 50% to avoid having edges of the wrap material dig into the leg.
Using a neatly and tightly rolled bandage will ease application and reduce the need to pull against the horse’s leg and sensitive tendons to tighten the wrap. This will also help ensure the bandage is as smooth against the horse’s leg as possible to avoid uneven pressure.
4. Choose your own direction. Despite barn lore to the contrary, neither sources believe the direction a wrap is applied is critical. “Counterclockwise vs. clockwise is less important than technique,” says Dechant. “I don’t think the tendons care if they’re rolled to the outside or to the inside. However, each layer should be rolled the same (direction).” Hanson agrees with Dechant, noting that he hasn’t come across anything in literature to suggest wrapping in one direction or the other is superior. It is, however, important to be consistent in your technique and not to pull too tightly across the tendons.
5. Keep it clean. Shavings, straw, dirt, and moisture can irrate the skin and increase the risk of a wound becoming infected. Start with clean, dry materials and check the bandage frequently for damage, dirt, or moisture. To seal out debris, Dechant recommends securing the top and bottom of a disposable-type wrap with elastic tape such as Elastikon.
Bandages and wraps have numerous uses in the horse world but like many things, they can cause good or ill. Proper materials, application, and devices for the case at hand are all critical to safe and successful bandaging. Equally important is experienced instruction, as the information in this article can in no way replace a veterinarian’s experience and advice.
About the Author
Christy Corp-Minamiji, DVM, practices large animal medicine in Northern California, with particular interests in equine wound management and geriatric equine care. She and her husband have three children, and she writes fiction and creative nonfiction in her spare time.
No matter your horse’s age, breed, or workload, taking steps to feed a balanced diet is the most important nutritional consideration you can make.
Another year is in the books, and a new one is just beginning. In 2017, we provided you with lots of tips and information on how to improve your horse’s health. And one of our most popular areas of interest was nutrition.
Before we jump into 2018, let’s take a look back at some important nutrition-related points you can use to improve your horse’s health and well-being in the new year.
#1: Balance Your Horse’s Diet.
No matter your horse’s age, breed, or workload, taking steps to feed a balanced diet is the most important nutritional consideration you can make. And while grains and forages might be staples in equine diets, they’re not necessarily balanced to meet every horse’s needs. Have your feed analyzed, or work with a nutritionist to ensure your horse is consuming a balanced diet.
And remember—before adding supplements to or changing your horse’s diet, consider the big picture and make sure other nutrients aren’t being compromised. Too much or too little of certain nutrients can have a substantial impact on your horse’s health.
#2: Take a look at high-strung horses’ diets.
Do you have a hot horse? Take a look at his diet. Yes, certain breeds and types of horses can be naturally more high-strung than others, but diet can exacerbate “fizzy” behavior as well.
Try reducing your high-strung horse’s sugar and starch levels by muzzling when he’s turned out on fresh, lush pasture and providing a good-quality hay to meet his fiber needs. And if he needs extra calories, replacing some of his grain ration with a fat source (such as oil, rice bran, or flaxseed) could also alleviate some diet-related behavior.
#3: Consider adding omegas.
Of the polyunsaturated fatty acids, the omega-3s have gained popularity for their potential health benefit in horses. However, horses cannot synthesize their own omega-3s, so they rely on their diets to meet their daily needs.
Researchers have uncovered several potential benefits to feeding horses omega-3s, including:
- Reduced osteoarthritis severity and pain;
- Lower inflammatory markers;
- Lower heart rates during exercise; and
- Improved lung function for horses with recurrent airway obstruction and inflammatory airway disease.
Other potential benefits of omega-3s include reducing the effects of joint disease, improving healing after an injury, and promoting a healthy metabolism. Work with your veterinarian or nutritionist to determine whether adding omega-3s to your horse’s diet could prove beneficial.
#4: Improve your horse’s gastrointestinal health.
Ulcers, colic, and diarrhea represent just a sampling of the signs of an unhealthy gastrointestinal tract. Any number of things can upset your horse’s digestive tract, including antibiotic or anti-inflammatory use, stress, and diet changes, among others.
We know domesticated horses have a higher risk of ulcers due to the way we tend to manage them, including long periods between meals, diets rich in grain and lacking in forage, reduced turnout, and poor-quality forage. So how can we help improve our horses’ gastrointestinal health?
Pre- and probiotics might have some value to horses in mitigating these problematic changes, as could reducing the time between meals by providing free-choice access to good-quality forage. And if your horse eats hay too fast, try a hay feeder or net designed with smaller openings to slow consumption rate.
Also aim to feed smaller, more frequent grain or concentrate meals. When it comes to grain, the smaller the meal, the less likely the chances of starch and sugar spilling over into the hindgut and causing digestive upset.
#5: Ensure Your Horse’s Feed is Safe.
The dangers of feeding contaminated feed—accidentally or otherwise—is a constant concern as stories about horses fallling ill or dying after consuming monensin-tainted concentrates circulate from time to time. Keep feed safety in mind throughout the new year and beyond, whether you’re purchasing hay, grain, supplements, medications … pretty much anything designed to go in your horse’s mouth and into his digestive tract.
Ask feed manufacturers questions about what other types of products are produced or stored in the mill (horse feed vs. other livestock feed, medicated vs. nonmedicated, etc.) and what steps they take to ensure your horse feed is safe. When purchasing hay, ensure it’s good-quality and free of poisonous weeds, insects or beetles, chemicals, and other contaminants. Taking the extra time to check ahead could save time, expense, and even your horse’s life in the future.
When it comes to feeding your horses, don’t make the same mistakes you’ve made in the past in 2018. Resolve to improve your horse’s health via nutrition to help him live even better in the new year.
About the Author
Kristen M. Janicki, a lifelong horsewoman, was born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Sciences from the attend the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and later attended graduate school at the University of Kentucky, studying under Dr. Laurie Lawrence in the area of Equine Nutrition. Kristen began her current position as a performance horse nutritionist for Mars Horsecare, US, Inc., and Buckeye Nutrition, in 2010. Her job entails evaluating and improving the performance of the sport horse through proper nutrition.
Substantial impact on Thoroughbred industry
- DISTANCE, BLINKERS SIGNIFICANT IN SHAM?
- MAIDEN TO START IN GRADE II SANTA YNEZ
- HEALTHY FREE ROSE SET FOR SAN GABRIEL
LEWIS EXPECTS ‘HAPPY’ IMPROVEMENT IN SHAM STAKES
Here Is Happy is light years away in talent at this stage from 1995 Santa Anita Derby winner Larry The Legend, but trainer Craig Lewis, who conditioned the latter and now the former, hopes Here Is Happy moves forward in Saturday’s Grade III Sham Stakes, Santa Anita’s first steppingstone to the Grade I, $1 million Santa Anita Derby on April 7.
“He’s going to improve from the gate,” Lewis said of the son Tale of Ekati, who has had excuses in each of his four starts, twice victimized by slow getaways and twice by being squeezed at the break.
“He’s just developing,” Lewis added. “He’s been gelded and he’ll have blinkers on him now, so I think he’ll be better in the gate. Nobody knows what the two turns are going to bring, although he acts like a two-turn horse, but sometimes they fool you.”
Owned by a partnership that includes Joe Caso, owner of one of the nation’s most successful auto dealerships, Frontier Toyota in Valencia, Here Is Happy broke his maiden at first asking Aug. 31. Off at 32-1 in an $80,000 maiden claiming race at five furlongs, Here Is Happy rallied from seventh and last after a slow start to win by a half-length.
The one-mile Sham will mark his first race beyond seven furlongs. Joe Talamo, who has ridden the Ohio-bred in all of his races, will once again be aboard.
Other Sham probables include City Plan, Mourinho, My Boy Jack and Shivermetimbers.
SPAWR HAS PROMISING MAIDEN FOR GRADE II SANTA YNEZ
It might be uncharacteristic for Bill Spawr to enter a maiden in a Grade II race, but this maiden is just two noses from being a winner.
She is Midnight Bisou, a daughter of champion sprinter Midnight Lute, set to run in next Sunday’s Grade II, $200,000 Santa Ynez Stakes for three-year-old fillies at seven furlongs.
“The next jump she would have been in front,” Spawr said of her surging loss at Santa Anita going six furlongs last Oct. 27, and another nose setback after being bumped at the start running seven furlongs at Del Mar Nov. 18.
“She showed promise right from the start, and seven-eighths should be right in her wheelhouse,” Spawr said.
Also probable for the Santa Ynez are Allianna, Artistic Diva, Just a Smidge, Steph Being Steph, War Heroine, Win the War and Yesterday’s News.
Just a Smidge worked four furlongs Monday for Bob Baffert in a bullet 47.40, fastest of 33 drills at the distance, the average time of which was 49.30.
FREE ROSE FLOWERING FOR SAN GABRIEL STAKES
Free Rose makes his first start in seven months Saturday in the Grade II San Gabriel Stakes for four year olds and up at 1 1/8 miles on turf.
“He was almost ready to run before the Del Mar meet, but he came down with colic, had to go to the clinic, and we gave him 90 days after that,” trainer Richard Baltas said of the five-year-old Munnings gelding who last raced June 3, finishing fourth, beaten only two lengths, in the Grade I Shoemaker Mile.
Santa Anita newcomer Rajiv Maragh has the San Gabriel mount on Free Rose, who worked four furlongs Monday with Maragh aboard in 48.60. Also working Monday for the San Gabriel was the French-bred Itsinthepost, going four furlongs on the training track for Jeff Mullins in 49.80.
Other probables for what looms a full field in the San Gabriel include Bolo, Flamboyant, He Will, Isotherm, Monster Bea, Seattle Serenade, Tequila Joe and Win the Space.
Isotherm worked five furlongs Sunday for trainer Phil D’Amato in a minute flat under Flavien Prat, who rides in the San Gabriel.
FINISH LINES: Santa Anita will offer fans free parking and admission for “dark day” simulcasting this Wednesday and Thursday, Jan. 3 & 4. Admission gates will open at 10 a.m., with Sirona’s Sports Bar and the Paddock Room open for both wagering and food and beverage service . . .
Mike Machowsky ended 2017 by sending out back-to-back winners Sunday, each favored, Tiffany Diamond in the fourth race and Make It a Triple in the fifth. The 52-year-old trainer saddled his first winner 27 years ago today. “I sent out my first winner on Jan. 1, 1990,” Machowsky recalled Monday morning. “The horse was Bit o Dip. I was still an assistant with Richard Mandella at the time, but he gave me two horses to train on my own and that was one of them.” . . .
Although obviously happy with Tyler Conner‘s 1 ½-length victory aboard 15-1 shot Tribal Dance in Sunday’s seventh race, trainer Mark Glatt says the 24-year-old native of Lancaster, Pa., a former leading rider at Penn National in Grantville, Pa., “is on the quiet side, but communicates well.” Tyler’s agent, Jim Pegram, is delighted with his rider’s two victories through the first four days of the Winter Meet. “We’re making headway and he’s got a super-positive attitude,” Pegram said. “Winning two races opening week is fantastic. People are starting to recognize his ability. I’m very pleased so far.” Conner registered his first Santa Anita win and his first graded stakes victory in the Grade III Eddie D. Stakes on 23-1 shot Mr. Roary for trainer George Papaprodromou last September.
Mike Smith rides Mr. Roary in today’s $75,000 Joe Hernandez Stakes . . .
Santa Anita will resume live racing this Friday, Jan. 5 at 1 p.m. Admission gates open that day at 11 a.m. . . .
Santa Anita offers another Dollar Day on Monday, Jan. 15, when there will be holiday racing on Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Sodas and beers will be a buck apiece . . .
Start the New Year right and sign on with the Los Angeles Times horse racing newsletter. Authored by John Cherwa, it offers entries, charts and much, much more at the following link: http://www.latimes.com/newsletters/la-newsletter-racing-signup-page-htmlstory.html . . .
Garrett Gomez would have been 46 today.