Saturday, September 13, 2014

Research: Equine Weight Management Surveys for Farriers, Owners, and Veterinarians

Hoof Blog Melissa Kelson Survey

A survey-based research project is being conducted by Melissa Kelson, a student at the Royal Veterinary College in Great Britain, to compare and contrast the evaluation of body condition by owners, farriers, and vets. Ultimately, the project will explore some of the ways the farrier and veterinary communities can best communicate with owners on the matter of weight management.

Whether you are a horse owner, veterinarian, or farrier please take just a few minutes to complete the relevant survey to help develop the best strategies for regulating weight in horses.

FARRIERS/TRIMMERS, click here for your survey:
HORSEOWNERS, click here for your survey:
VETERINARIANS, click here for your survey:

Weight management in horses is an important factor in maintaining good health. Obesity can lead to a range of debilitating conditions including laminitis and owners, farriers, and veterinarians are all invested in working towards prevention of such diseases.

Equine Weight Management Evaluation

Confronting the issue of weight management in horses is a sensitive subject and is sometimes only taken seriously after the horse is already in crisis.  

Veterinary student Melissa Kelson would like your help in this survey. "I am investigating the differences/similarities between horse owner, veterinarian, and farrier evaluation of body condition and the role vets and farriers can play in communicating with owners regarding horse body weight and the risks associated with obesity," she wrote in an email.

Melissa is an experienced horse professional who decided to go to vet school after a successful career and is now enrolled at the Royal Veterinary College. She has an extensive resume ini the horse industry and it seems like many readers of the Hoof Blog may have met her on one side of the Atlantic or the other.

A few highlights in her career to date:

• 1998 BS in Equine Science at DeMontfort University
• Assistant with Broadstone Stud and Colne Stud (show ponies)
• 2001 MS in Equine Science at University of Wales
• Managed and instructed at Marros Riding Center in Wales
• 2003 moved to USA to groom for Olympic showjumper McClain Ward (and Sapphire)
• 2006 barn manager at Thornbrook Farms in Mt Kisco, New York
• 2010 equine technician for Tillotson Equine Clinic in North Carolina
• 2013 enrolled at Royal Vet College

She is also a certified Equine Sports Massage Therapist and a member of the International Association of Animal Massage Therapists. She spends her free time training for and competing in triathlons, marathons, and ultra marathons across the USA and UK.

Thanks for helping Melissa with her project. Next time, you might be the one needing help.

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