Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Intelligent Worming - part 2!

So, here is an update on our intelligent worming programme.  Three months have passed since our last test so I took samples from all nineteen (we have a couple of newbies) of our horses and delivered them to the vet.  I have to say I don't think the receptionist at the vets was that impressed with my carrier bag full of droppings!  The results are now in.  If you remember, last time we had two who came in with a very high count, (1200 and something) and I am pleased to announce that they came back this time at zero.  I had wormed them at the time with Equest Pramox.  My own mare, Bonnie, (pictured in the Dually halter) had a count this time of 65 and one of the school ponies was 55 so I have wormed them with Eqvalan and that's it.  Next time I may not test the ones that have had zero on both counts as there is a cost of £13.50 to do the test but it feels good to really know whats going on. It's worth noting that our team at Badshot Lea poo pick the fields religiously and I think our results show that this is  a real help. 

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Teri Warner is back!

I'd like to let everyone know that Teri is back from her maternity leave.  She is back as our resident trainer and is working two full days for the riding school and is also available for private lessons and clinics.  You can hire a horse from the school or bring your own.  She is a sympathetic and confidence giving instructor and is happy to help any one, from beginners to competition training or working towards exams.  Her next jumping clinic is on Saturday 17th December at 5pm.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Dually halter

I have recently purchased a Dually halter and have been really pleased with the results.  As a follower of Monty Roberts and his methods for many years I am happy to report that this head collar lives up to all its claims.  My mare (pictured) can be very flighty and difficult to load and sometimes to turn out.  With the extra pressure of the Dually and the quick release action when she submits she has quickly learned that it is in her interest to comply!  I don't have to get cross with her (which never works) and we can remain good friends in the true spirit of a horse whisperer!

Monday, 5 September 2011

BHS Approved!

Having for many years not deemed it necessary to be BHS (British Horse Society) approved I have recently changed my mind.  In this age of certificates and approvals I hope it will reassure people to know that we have gained the approval of this well established organisation.  I am glad to say that we passed the inspection with flying colours.  Reassuring to know that after  twenty years or so experience I have got it right!

Monday, 22 August 2011

Ragwort and the Cinnabar Moth

Hopefully you've all managed to keep on top of your ragwort this year.  It seems to have been a bad year (or good if you are a Cinnibar Moth, pictured) for this poisonous weed.  I think ragwort enjoyed the very dry start to the year and you only need to look around the verges and roundabouts to see that.
Ragwort as we all know (thanks to the kindly passer by who pointed this out to us!) is poisonous to horses and lots of other things, including us. Make sure you wear gloves when touching ragwort. We don't let kids handle it at all.  It can give you flu like symptoms and make you feel quite grotty.
Mostly, horses are quite sensible (in this department anyway) and won't eat ragwort whilst it is alive but when it dies back it is a risk or if it is cut and baled in hay.  If horses are hungry enough they will eat it dead or alive.  Also, once you've pulled it, be careful what you do with it.
When you are pulling ragwort you may well notice a little yellow and black caterpillar.  This is the larvae of the Cinnabar Moth.  It feeds on ragwort, making itself poisonous and therefore unattractive to predators.  Pretty clever hey?  Apparently, in some countries they have introduced the moth to help to control the ragwort.
So, as you rub your sore back and pull the final piece of ragwort from your paddock, spare a thought for this pretty little moth!

Monday, 15 August 2011


Welcome to our 'blog'!  Here we hope we can keep you up to date with news of the horses and ponies and any events we have held. Also, we would like to share any information or tips from the horsey world.

Intelligent Worming

We have just had the whole yard tested for worms.  We sent a small sample of droppings from each horse to our vet.  The results have shown that most of the horses have no worms but two have a high 'count' (0-150 is acceptable, our two are over 1000!).  So now instead of worming the whole yard using expensive chemicals (it is thought that some worms are becoming resistant to the wormers due to over use) we only have to worm two.  We will test the whole yard again in three months.  Seems 'intelligent' to me!