Check it Out!
Re: "Taking Care of Our Own" and research
On a related note, now is probably a good time to announce that the WSTF
board of governors just approved our proposal to collect research data at
Tevis this summer. Our on-going focus, as always, will be to try to
determine the factors that constitute the metabolically at-risk endurance
horse---why is it that some horses seem to be vetting through just fine,
only to crash later, sometimes to the point of requiring heroic veterinary
intervention. Whether we can make early predictions before the horses are
in serious trouble, what parameters do we need to pay attention to and what
will prevent such crashes. We'll also be building on previously collected
data that indicated thin horses seem to be at higher risk of problems than
well covered competitors, as well as how rider and horse weight affect
performance and incidence of lameness.
We'll be looking for 40-50 horses to weigh and collect serial blood samples
on throughout the ride, which we'll then analyze for CBC, chem panel, an
endocrine panel, on-the-spot electrolytes, glucose and lactates. As with
Swanton, we'll return copies of all the lab results to the riders for their
own information, and we're again hoping for corporate backing to provide
some nice endurance gear to reward our research group.
This will be a major project with about an $18,000 budget, and as at
Swanton, we're hoping to get good participation from the rider group. Our
project vets will be Barney Fleming DVM and Steve Wickler, PhD, DVM. Sarah
Ralston and I are plotting to see if we can't bring her out to collaborate
Also worthwhile pointing out that this project is entirely privately funded.
Lisa's idea to initiate formal research and education funding within AERC is
a great one, and certainly warranted. If riders want to see ongoing
research that directly benefits and educates the endurance community, then
it's about time we started organizing it ourselves.
Check it Out!
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