Thursday, April 17, 2014

Insight: Laminitis in Ancient Horses


Often a word that invokes fear for the average horse owner.  Or at least it does in my area, where there is ample lush grass in the spring and summer.

But is it always improper management that leads to laminitis?  What about self managing horses?  Or better yet, ancient equids.

Lane Wallett, a DVM from Florida state wanted to know if laminitis was an issue in ancient horses.  An earlier study had shown that feral horses certainly suffer from laminitis, so it seems to make sense to see if this is a historical or a relatively recent event.

Amazingly enough 75.25% demonstrated some aspect of laminitis and 6.08% appeared to have chronic laminitis.

I find this incredible.  Obviously as horses evolved from browsers eating mostly leaves and rough material to more nutrient dense material, there would be consequences, as well as the evolution of the multi toed hoof into a single digit, but still pretty amazing I think.
 I look forward to most laminitis related research in both feral, truly wild, and ancient populations.  Hopefully examining this data may help yield more insight into why some horses are more prone than others for developing laminitis.

Interested in Dr Wallet's full article?  Click here to read it.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting! I am so terrified of laminitis (this from the fat Haflinger owner).


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