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Horses and Cars. What Could Go Wrong?

by Suzanne Bush - October 2015

Since gas seems to get cheaper by the day, drivers are finding more and more reasons to hit the road. And they take a lot of “baggage” with them, from cell phones, to navigation devices, to laptops, iPads, iPods and MP3 players. Everybody wants to get away; they just don’t want to leave anything behind! More traffic and more congestion add up to more anxious drivers trying to get to their destinations faster. And when drivers are trying to catch up on email or Facebook while driving, their distractions can be lethal. Distracted drivers are as dangerous as drunk drivers.

Everyone on the road is a potential victim of these distractions; anyone on the road without the protection of a car or truck is especially vulnerable. Whether walking a dog, riding a bike or riding a horse, the “what ifs” are daunting. Although cyclists are somewhat road-bound, equestrians generally don’t choose to ride along the roads. But often, they need to cross roads in order to access trail connections. And the close calls can be downright nightmarish.

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Pennsylvania Home-Bred Yearling Leads USHJA Hunter Breeding Standings
by Crystal Piaskowski - October 2015

With her classic head, graceful neck, and sassy white tail, Tainted Love (by Amazing, out of Tuxedo Park) is rocking the A circuit hunter breeding rings. Despite large, competitive fields, the yearling filly has always placed in the top three, earning armfuls of tricolors and hardware, and is now leads the US Hunter Jumper Association Hunter Breeding Yearling standings by a huge margin. However, “Nala” is more than just a pretty face and ribbon-earner for owner and breeder Catherine Marcks, age 23, of Lancaster, PA. The Oldenburg filly represents the continuation of generations for both human and horse.

Tuxedo Park
Many veterans of the East coast hunter circuit remember Tuxedo Park, the acclaimed junior hunter of the early to mid-2000’s that touched many lives with her blazed face and picture-perfect jump. When it came time for her to retire in 2011, Marcks said she was at the right place at the right time.  “Her show record is somewhere around forty-three pages long, and I had grown up watching her compete. I bought her in-foal to Apiro, and she gave me such a wonderful colt, Asti. He’s three years old now, and with his puppy-dog personality will make someone a fantastic amateur’s horse someday.” Asti, or “Abu” as Marcks calls him, is currently in training with Jill Shull at her farm in York Springs, PA.

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Victory Therapeutic Horsemanship Brings Solace
to PA Veterans
by Crystal Piaskowski - October 2015

There is something about a horse—a solid, warm, and silent creature— that can soothe and connect with even the most traumatized souls. Victory Therapeutic Horsemanship, located in Bellwood, PA, specializes in just that: uniting detached, troubled veterans with an equine partner who can help them unearth their humanity.

John Zanella, founder of the no-cost Victory Therapeutic Horsemanship for military veterans, is a strong advocate for the benefits of equine therapy. A twenty-year Army veteran with eleven combat tours under his belt, Zanella faced Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, Traumatic Brain Injuries, and numerous physical injuries that caused a medical retirement from his military life.

Since he grew up with horses and continued to ride in the Army, Zanella was cajoled to participate in an equine therapy program at the Warrior Transition Battalion in Fort Lewis, WA. It was this program, he said, that helped him find the will to keep fighting. “Studies are showing suicide at a horrific rate among veterans at twenty-two each day. It was only through therapeutic riding that I found the will to keep fighting and not become just another statistic,” said Zanella.

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Special Paint’s Eyes Saved by Laser Treatment
by Louisa Shepard / Communications Specialist for New Bolton CenterCommunications Specialist, New Bolton Center - October 2015

In the first collaboration of its kind between Penn Vet and Penn Med, clinicians used a laser treatment for humans to treat cancerous tumors in the delicate area around both eyes of a horse.

Anita is a special type of Paint horse known as Medicine Hat, prized in many Native American cultures. Distinguished by their markings, Medicine Hats are mostly white with a brown “war bonnet” over the ears, a “shield” of brown on the chest, and blue eyes.

Unfortunately, Anita’s light pigmentation increased her risk for developing squamous cell carcinoma, a tumor more likely to develop in white horses due to UV light exposure.

The traditional treatment for large areas of eyelid squamous cell carcinoma is a surgical procedure to remove the masses, often transplanting skin from the face to close the wounds and regain eyelid function, according to Dr. Catherine Nunnery, Large Animal Ophthalmologist at New Bolton Center.

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Kocher Wins Ludwig’s Mini-Prix Riding with a Broken Rein
by Marcella Peyre-Ferry - October 2015

Held over the Labor Day weekend, Sept. 5, 6, and 7, the 72nd annual edition of the Ludwig’s Corner Horse Show and Country Fair featured three days of hunter and jumper competition for all ages. Along with the horse show, shopping, demonstrations, activities, and entertainment as well as a carriage drive and a large antique car show make the event into a holiday tradition with something for everyone, including the family members who don’t ride.

The featured class of the show produced one of the most unusual winning rides. Andy Kocher won the $5,000 Mini Prix on Rico, completing a clean first round in spite of breaking a rein on the seventh fence. After the rein snapped Kocher reached forward and grabbed the short end of the rein. In an amazing show of skill, Koch retained enough control to complete the course and earn a return to the jump off round. 

Now with new reins, Kocher and Rico turned in the fastest round in the jump-off to earn the win the Mini Prix with Rico, but that was only a part of it. He also placed second on Filip and third on Faithful to dominate the class of 37 entrants.

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Look at what’s coming up in the Pennsylvania Equestrian November 2015
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P.O. Box 8412, Lancaster, PA 17604