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Saturday, December 31, 2016

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Australian Equine Laminitis Research Veterinarian Andrew van Eps Joins Penn Vet New Bolton Center

Australian laminitis researcher
Andrew van Eps, BVSc, 
PhD, MACVSc, 
DACVIM is moving to America. Dr. van
Eps is noted for his contributions related
to cryotherapy, or icing, of horses' lower
limbs to prevent laminitis, and recent
research on support limb laminitis. (Hoof
Blog/Laminitis Conference file photo)
Renowned for his research on equine laminitis, Dr. Andrew van Eps joined the faculty of Penn Vet’s New Bolton Center in December as Associate Professor of Equine Musculoskeletal Research.

Van Eps has spent the majority of his career at The University of Queensland in Australia, most recently as Director of the Equine Hospital and Associate Professor of Equine Medicine. The University is also his alma mater; he graduated with his veterinary degree (BVSc) in 1999 and his PhD in 2008.

The move marks a return to New Bolton Center, where he completed his residency in large animal internal medicine in 2008 and spent another year as a lecturer and clinician.

“We are fortunate to have attracted Dr. van Eps to Penn Vet,” said Dr. Gary Althouse, Chairman of the Department of Clinical Studies at New Bolton Center. “He comes to us both as a seasoned clinician and an equine researcher of international caliber.”

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Hoofmarks in Aleppo: Will the citadel's ancient inverted horseshoe curse save it again?

horseshoe gates at aleppo citadel in syria
Heels up or heels down in Aleppo, Syria tonight? These might have been the oldest and most historic horseshoes on earth. All but one of these horseshoes is a message of defiance to any who would attempt to conquer the city. But one--and only one--horseshoe is an ancient coded message to invaders should they get past these massive gates. It's a message that is 800 years old, will it be heard again tonight?


Just when you think it can't get any worse, it looks like time may have run out for the ancient Syrian city of Aleppo. There is no cavalry coming to the rescue. There are no white knights on the horizon. For most, there is no more hoping-against-hope that the world will hear their pleas.

It's time for one last footnote from history, one last snapshot from the past. And, one last chance for a horseshoe legend to save its city, as it was designed to do 800 years ago.

Thursday, December 08, 2016

Research: Hoof Conformation and Flat Feet in New Zealand Thoroughbred Racehorses



In a previous article, the Hoof Blog described a study conducted in New Zealand to survey the way sport horses in that country are shod, and what management aspects may affect the condition of feet. (Please see the article "Research: farriery and hoof care trends for dressage, showjumping sport horses in New Zealand".) Now the New Zealand hoof researchers move on to the racetrack.

Research: Farriery and Hoof Care Data Collected for Dressage, Showjumping Sport Horses in New Zealand

Not too long ago, a sport horse at an international show could trot by and you could tell what nation he was from by the way he was shod. Those days are gone, but there are still distinct differences in some parts of the world. We'd do well to document them, while we still can. And in at least one country, they have.


There was once a time when you could look at a foot and practically see the national flag. Those big, broad Dutch toe clips. The heel-to-heel fullered shoes of the British. The daring of an American rider to compete in a heart bar shoe. The way farriers of all nations displayed subtle national preferences in how and where they drew their clips or executed a nailing pattern or finished their heels or chose where to position their stud holes, or even how many stud holes they drilled.