Smart Senior Strategies Webinar by SmartPak Equine


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SmartPak Equine presents a Free, Live webinar on Providing Care and Nutrition for the Aging Horse

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Smart Senior Strategies Webinar by SmartPak Equine

  1. 1. Smart Senior Strategies: Providing Care and Nutrition for the Aging Horse Dr. Lydia Gray, Medical Director/Staff Veterinarian Jessica Normand, Director of Supplement Marketing July 27, 2011
  2. 2. Smart Senior Strategies – Your Presenters
  3. 3. Smart Senior Strategies - Agenda <ul><li>1. When does a horse become “senior?” </li></ul><ul><li>2. How does the body change? </li></ul><ul><li>3. Which conditions are common in seniors? </li></ul><ul><li>4. What can owners do to compensate? </li></ul><ul><li>6. Questions </li></ul>
  4. 4. When does a horse become “senior?” <ul><li>Chronological age – actual number of years of life from birth </li></ul><ul><li>Physiological age – age at which physical functions begin to decline </li></ul><ul><li>Demographic age – survivorship of an age-group relative to the entire population </li></ul>
  5. 5. How does the body change? <ul><li>External changes </li></ul><ul><li>Internal changes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Research: Brosnahan MM, Paradis MR. Assessment of clinical characteristics, management practices, and activities of geriatric horses. JAVMA, Vol 223, No 1, July 1, 2003, pp99-103. </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. How does the body change? <ul><li>External changes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Lower Body Condition Score </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Swayback/Sag </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hollow above eyes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Graying coat </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dental disease </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Decreased capacity for exercise </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. How does the body change? <ul><li>Body Condition Score (BCS): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>– System for estimating fat cover over six different body areas to develop a single score for overall condition; ranges from 0 to 9 </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. How does the body change? <ul><li>Internal changes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Decreased digestion, absorption, metabolism </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Loss of muscle mass </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Loss of bone density </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lax connective tissue </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Weakened immunity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dental disease </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reduced cardiopulmonary function </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Which conditions are common in seniors? <ul><li>Digestive (dental, colic, diarrhea, choke) </li></ul><ul><li>Metabolic (Cushing’s Disease) </li></ul><ul><li>Respiratory (“heaves” or RAO) </li></ul><ul><li>Lameness (arthritis, laminitis, abscesses) </li></ul><ul><li>Immune (increased infections, poor healing) </li></ul>
  10. 10. What can owners do to compensate? <ul><li>Diet (Forage, grain, supplements) </li></ul><ul><li>Preventive Care </li></ul><ul><li>Exercise </li></ul>
  11. 11. What can owners do to compensate? <ul><li>Diet: Forage </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Hay (grass vs. alfalfa) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hay cubes, pellets and other forms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Beet Pulp </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pasture </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Complete Feed </li></ul></ul>Grazing Muzzle Freedom Feeder
  12. 12. What can owners do to compensate? <ul><li>Diet: Grain </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Complete Feed (vitamins, minerals, fat, protein, fiber) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fortified Grain (vitamins, minerals, fat, protein) </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. What can owners do to compensate? <ul><li>If your horse doesn’t get a full serving of complete feed or fortified grain, consider feeding a: </li></ul><ul><li>Ration Balancer (vitamins, minerals, protein) </li></ul><ul><li>or </li></ul><ul><li>Multi-Vitamin supplement (vitamins, minerals) </li></ul>
  14. 14. What can owners do to compensate? Complete Feed Fortified Grain Ration Balancer Vitamin/Mineral Supplement (“Multi-Vitamin”) Mineral Supplement
  15. 15. What can owners do to compensate? <ul><li>Diet: Supplements </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Multi-Vitamins/Ration Balancers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>B Vitamins </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Vitamin C </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Digestive Support (prebiotics, probiotics, digestive enzymes) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Essential Amino Acids (protein) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Antioxidants </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Weight Gain Supplements (combine healthy fats, amino acids and digestive support) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Anti-Inflammatory Supplements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Joint Supplements </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Multi-Vitamins: Product Recommendations
  17. 17. Vitamin B/C Supplements: Product Recommendations
  18. 18. Digestion Supplements: Product Recommendations
  19. 19. Amino Acid Supplements: Product Recommendations Look for the 3 “most limiting” essential amino acids: Lysine, Methionine, Threonine. Research: Graham-Theirs PM, Kronfeld DS, Hatsell C et al. Amino acid supplementation improves muscle mass in aged horses. J Anim Sci. 2005 Dec;83(12): 2783-2788.
  20. 20. Antioxidant Supplements: Product Recommendations
  21. 21. Weight Gain Supplements: Product Recommendations Look for a weight gain supplement that combines healthy fats, essential amino acids and digestive support.
  22. 22. Anti-Inflammatory Supplements: Product Recommendations
  23. 23. Joint Supplements: Product Recommendations
  24. 24. What can owners do to compensate? <ul><li>Preventive Care </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Physical examination </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Vaccinations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Parasite control </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Hoof care </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dental work </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. What can owners do to compensate? <ul><li>Exercise </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Turnout </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Controlled exercise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Warm up and cool down </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Daily vs. randomly </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Time off </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Research: McKeever KH. Exercise physiology </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>of the older horse. Vet Clin North Am Equine </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pract. 2002 Dec;18(3):469-90. </li></ul></ul>
  26. 26. What can owners do to compensate? <ul><li>Observe closely : </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Warm weather </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cold weather </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Herd status </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Bedding </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Dehydration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Saddle Fitting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability to lie down/get up </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. Questions? <ul><li>My horse is 30 years old, and is having trouble coping with the high heat and humidity in south Florida this summer (days are in the 90s, with high humidity). She literally collapses in her paddock, and it's scary to see her like that! I no longer let her out during the day -- she is kept in her stall with two water buckets, and two fans blowing on her, and I give her electrolytes. I let her out later in the afternoon when it is not so hot, and she does fine. I was wondering if there is any supplement that would help her cope with the heat? </li></ul><ul><li>How does senior grain differ from something like Nutrena Safe Choice? Our senior horse has lost weight in the past few weeks. What about mid summer causes weight loss? </li></ul><ul><li>How much vitamin C should a senior horse have daily? Are there signs to watch for regarding too much vitamin C? </li></ul><ul><li>I had another old horse who lived to be almost 31. When I finally stopped riding him altogether, his condition went down drastically. As my current horse ages, should I at least get on bareback and walk him around a little? </li></ul><ul><li>I have a 40 yr old horse. I have trouble keeping weight on her back and hindquarters. She puts all her weight on in her belly. She is on pasture most of the day and gets a quart of grain in the morning and night, plus SmartFlex Senior pellets. </li></ul><ul><li>Are there any types of care, beyond the normal annual exam, that should be added to a true senior's care plan? Baseline blood work? Floating more than once a year? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the best treats for an aging horse? </li></ul>
  28. 28. Questions? <ul><li>8. Is 100% Alfalfa a good diet choice for seniors? My horse is also fed a diet balancer, but worry about something being out of proportion. Is that justified? </li></ul><ul><li>Is there any need to start a horse on Senior feed if he's doing well on 10% feed now? He has good teeth, holding weight. He's 22 years old. </li></ul><ul><li>My 23 year old Tennessee Walker gelding has heaves, or at least that is what I believe it to me. He coughs a lot. Is these something I can add to his diet to counter this problem? </li></ul><ul><li>My 26 year old mare has had diarrhea for several years. I have tried several probiotics but they only work for 6-12 months and then I have to start over. She is on Smart Digest Ultra which is working about 70% of the time. Any suggestions? </li></ul><ul><li>My horse is a 21 year old Quarter Horse and we still do eventing and he gets ridden about 5 times a week. What types of supplements do I need to keep him healthy and give him as many more years as riding as I can? </li></ul><ul><li>My horse will be 23 yrs old this August. She's in pretty good health except she has no teeth except a few in front. She seems to be eating but can't keep weight on. What should I feed her? </li></ul><ul><li>My older horse is keeping moderate weight (a 5 on a scale 1-10) but she has a very dull coat. Is she not getting enough fatty acids? Or is some other nutrient missing/lacking? </li></ul>
  29. 29. Questions? <ul><li>15. Ratios (e.g., protein, fat) in grain. Supplements even if horse is not showing signs of slowing down. More or less important to have horse turned out? How to feed if not much turnout. </li></ul><ul><li>16. What are the absolute necessary supplements for the aging (19 going on 20) horse in light use? </li></ul><ul><li>17. Our senior suffers from anhydrosis. Any suggestions? </li></ul><ul><li>18. What do you do to keep weight on a 32 year old horse in the Florida heat? He eats senior feed with senior supplements, goes out at 4am to green grass, in his stall with 3 fans by 11am with unlimited alfalfa. He refuses any salt licks. HELP! </li></ul><ul><li>19. What is the best supplement for arthritis? </li></ul><ul><li>20. What is the best way to put weight on an aging horse? More hay and or grain? Or an oral supplement? </li></ul><ul><li>21. What vitamin and minerals are harder for senior horses to absorb? How should we supplement them appropriately? </li></ul><ul><li>22. With a hard New England winter and a very hot New England summer, I'm having difficulty gauging how often and how long to ride my 25 yr old mare to keep her as fit as possible. My work schedule doesn't help my situation. Her topline and flanks are showing the effects. </li></ul>
  30. 30. <ul><li>Thank you for attending our Webinar! Please visit or call </li></ul><ul><li>1-800-461-8898 if we can answer any further questions. </li></ul><ul><li>-Your Friends at SmartPak </li></ul>