Horse Channel

Monday, December 27, 2010

Emerald Valley Natural Health Products Come to Barn Dogs

      We have had many requests for Emerald Valley products, particularly Speedi-Beet and Formula-4-Feet.  These supplements were developed in Great Britain by the Equi-Life company and are distributed by Emerald Valley Natural Health in New Hampshire.  They are approved by the Laminitis Trust and are especially beneficial for horses with Cushings disease, laminitis prone horses and horses with metabolic imbalances.  To date the major drawback for people in New Mexico who wish to use these products is the astronomical shipping cost (up to $60.00 for a 44 lb. bag of Speedi-Beet which costs $38.95 on its own).  The fact that people here buy it anyway is a testament to its worth.

     Barn Dogs now carries all of the Emerald Valley distributed supplements at their retail cost plus tax (nothing added for shipping).  We have ample supplies of Speedi-Beet, Formula-4-Feet in both 15 lb. and 44 lb. sacks as well as Beet Treats and Beet Mashes.  We're especially excited about Beet Treats.  These are low sugar, low carbohydrate treats that just about any horse can eat.  Our mini is ecstatic.  For the record our Welsh-Thoroughbred cross and 2 minis and the Missouri Fox Trotter across the street have all tried the Speedi-Beet and the Beet Treats and thoroughly enjoyed them.  For more information see  and  Barn Dogs stocks the following Emerald Valley  items:

Excellent Fiber Source

     Speedi-Beet is a unique combination of high digestible fiber and low starch and is 95% sugar free.  It is an ideal source of fiber for horses prone to laminitis and is a Laminitis Trust approved feed.  It can be prepared and ready to feed in 10 minutes as opposed to other beet pulp products which must be soaked for up to 24 hours prior to feeding.  Speedi-Beet comes in two sizes:
15 lbs. @ $15.95 and 40 lbs. @ $38.95.

 SavvyMash has been designed as both a treat and a sound, high fiber meal containing an exceptional range of trace elements, antioxidants, protein, fatty acids and salts, all important to the nutritional quality of the diet and for optimum health.  With less than 5% starch and sugar combined, Emerald Valley has “taken the bran out of the mash” and structured SavvyMash to give a balanced treat for any horse, especially for the “easy keeper”.  As a treat, winter warmer or simply as part of a low sugar, low starch diet, SavvyMash will fit neatly into any dietary regime to complement any feeding program. 
13 Oz. @ $6.95

Healthy Hoof and Horn

Horse Hoof Supplement

Developed by Robert Eustace, FRCVS, Director of The Laminitis Clinic, Formula 4 Feet is recognized as one of the leading hoof supplements on the market today. It has gained this prestigious position by consistently providing a unique balance of nutrients in a form horses love to eat. Calcium, biotion, methionine, MSM, copper, two forms of zinc, phospholipids, lycine, cystine, inositol and Vitamins C all contribute to its effectiveness. The ingredients in Formula 4 Feet provide essential nutritional support for healthy metabolic function. Chromium, vanadium, niacin, five antioxidants, arginine and omega 3 fatty acids are all essential.  By providing over 65 micronutrients, Formula 4 Feet contain the essentials for excellent overall health from non-GM, Vegetarian Society approved ingredients.

15 lb. @ $89.95 and 44 lb. @205.95.

     We are able to ship these Formula-4-Feet, Speedi-Beet, Savvy Mash, and Beet Treats to customers in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico and Texas at greatly reduced shipping costs.  To order Emerald Valley supplements or to see more items for sale please visit our online store at

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Shires Dog Blankets

Skipper Lapayowker considers trail
riding in his Shires dog blanket.

Shires Equestrian, which makes the popular Stormbreaker and Stormcheeta horse blankets also makes a very nice blanket for dogs.  The Typhoon is lightweight with a waterproof shell and a short pile fleece lining.  It has a velcro strap which fastens around the dogs chest and another which fastens around the girth.  It also has  reflective binding for safety.  The Typhoon keeps all of the Barn Dogs we know warm, dry and comfortable.

Skipper models his new Shires dog blanket.

Daisy Hurtig relaxes in her new coat.

Daisy's dog blanket complements her beautiful blue eye.

Horse Cookies

      Barn Dogs carries several  types of cookies for horses but on Saturday, December 11, we had horse cookies of a different kind.  Neighborhood children (and a few adults) decorated horse shaped sugar cookies with icing and sprinkles and created their own edible art just for fun.  The results were spectacular and may have contributed to a bit of sugar overload.  To see more cookies and cookie artists check out the Sugar Cookie Gallery.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

NARHA Horses For Heroes

     On Tuesday, December 7, from 6:00 - 8:00 pm Gus Jolley will be at Barn Dogs to answer questions about the NARHA Horses for Heroes program.  NARHA was founded in 1969 as the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association to promote safe and effective therapeutic horseback riding in the United States and Canada.  In 2007 Mary Jo Beckman, CDR, United States Navy, Retired, a NARHA Master Therapeutic Riding Instructor and Dr. Paul Spiers, then NARHA President worked together to develop the NARHA Horses for Heroes Therapeutic Riding Program for military veterans.   A program with "vets helping vets", NARHA Horses for Heroes instructors receive special training to help them develop lesson plans that provide bonding experiences between veterans and horses combined with challenging horsemanship lessons.

      The NARHA Horses for Heroes program at Listening Horse Therapeutic Riding Center is run by Gus Jolley, an Army Veteran and a certified NARHA instructor.  The program is free to active military personnel and military veterans in Santa Fe.  If you or someone you know would benefit from this program please come and join us to meet Gus and hear more about his experiences helping veterans and horses connect.  You can read more at

Monday, November 15, 2010

Emergency Hay Assistance

Una Rescued by The Horse Shelter, Santa Fe NM
     In the past few years we've all heard stories of horses starving in pastures with no feed and horses turned loose in the Santa Fe Wilderness to "fend for themselves" in a place with little to no food or water and we've also heard of the heroic efforts of the area horse shelters and rescue groups who hear of these horses' plights and do everything in their power to find them in time to save them.  These horses' stories are both heartbreaking and beautiful.  The thought of any creature suffering at the hands of human beings is shocking but the realization that those horses who are successfully (and miraculously) brought back to health are still willing to love and trust human beings is simultaneously incomprehensible and heartwarming.  The people who run these groups and the volunteers who work there are very special people - and they can always use help!  If you'd like to find out more about the work some of these groups  check these links:,,

Moony Rescued by Walkin' N Circles Ranch, Edgewood NM
     There's another way to help.  Animal Protection of New Mexico (APNM) provides the Equine Protection Fund which offers assistance to equine shelters and rescue groups and to individuals.  The Equine Protection Fund will provide up to 2 months of feed for up to 4 horses for any individuals who cannot afford to buy food for their horses due to illness or loss of income.  This is an attempt to keep horses healthy and with their families.  The EPF will also work to find placements for horses that families feel they can no longer care for.  If you or someone you know would benefit from this program you can learn more and also download an application for help at

     We all want to help.  We all give as much as we can.  We all wish we could give more.  Thank goodness for groups like these.

A happy ending:

Noel and Her Family
Rescued by Hearts for Horses, Idaho
     A 23yo Quarter Horse mare, Noel was consigned to a slaughter auction by her owners after her usefulness as a broodmare had ended, and she was discovered to have heaves. Her hip bones stuck out and every rib could be counted. She was bought by Hearts for Horses at 30 cents a pound, with an eye towards her becoming a child's first horse. She has been aquired by a loving family and given to an adoring little girl for Xmas. Now, the black mare that was discarded is treasured, cared for with more concern than the most expensive race or show horse, her supplements measured so carefully by caring little hands. Noel's Black Beauty story has a happy ending, we wish they all did.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Winter Tummy Warmer

     Horse lore states that more horses colic with changes of weather than at any other single time.  There are several theories as to why.  Some think that as the weather changes from cool to warm some horses don't drink enough water to keep up with their bodies' increased need.  Conversely when the weather abruptly changes from warm to cold they may not feel thirsty enough to take in the amount of water they need.  Some people think that in the winter months water in an unheated tank is just too cold for some horses to comfortably drink (those of us with teeth which are sensitive to cold can relate to this).  Whatever the theory, one thing everyone agrees on is that horses require a lot of water to keep their guts running smoothly and, in general, something that causes a horse to want to drink is a good thing.

     Bran mashes tend to have that effect and in the cold winter months they have the added benefit of just plain making our horses feel good.  Few of us have ever met a healthy horse who would turn up his nose at a nice, warm bran mash.  The Original Book of Horse Treats contains recipes for lots of horse treats including 11 different mash recipes for 11 different situations, such as Rejuvenating Bran Mash for Older Horses, Bran Mash Puree Supreme, Gatorade Bran Mash and my horses' personal favorite: Beer Bran Mash.  We carry this book as well as The Ultimate Guide to Pampering Your Horse which contains recipes for making your own horse liniments, shampoos and more treats.

     The following is a Winter Tummy Warmer developed by the  Standardbred Retirement Foundation of Blairstown, NJ.  They add Uva Ursi leaves because they are a diuretic and, with added salt, encourage the horses to drink a lot of water - especially in the winter.  In Eldorado Uva Ursi leaves are available at Rowan's Leaf.  Or you could leave them out if you prefer.

A nice warm bran mash sure would taste good about now.
   Winter Tummy Warmer

4     cups oats
3     cups bran
3     Uva Ursi leaves
1/2  teaspoon salt (add more if you like)
2     carrots sliced
1     cup brown sugar
1     apple quartered
       Hot water

Add enough hot water to all ingredients to make it moist.  Let steep until cool enough to eat.  Especially good for performance horses and horses who need to increase their water intake.

      Some horses, such as laminitis prone horses or horses with metabolic problems, can't tolerate sweet feeds or added sugars.   If you have a horse with either of these problems and have come up with a warm mash that meets their dietary restrictions please let us know.  We would love to print it for other people to use.  If you have any questions about whether or not any recipe would benefit your horse please check with your veterinarian before trying it.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Horse Vacation in Ireland

Gypsy Vanner horse pulling a modern day gypsy wagon.
    Have you ever dreamed of a horse riding vacation In Europe or Asia?  Over the years I've had friends who took riding vacations in England, Ireland, Spain, Mongolia and Africa (one I never would have thought of) all of whom think it was one of the most exciting and wonderful things they have ever done. Some return to the same place repeatedly, even riding the same horse. Others try several different trips.  Recently Sally Quillen returned from a horse trip in Ireland and has graciously allowed me to post some pictures on my website.  If looking at these pictures doesn't make you want to take the same trip, nothing will.
     Does anyone else (Robin, Mary, Caroline) have pictures of a riding trip they've taken that they'd allow me to post?  We'd all love to see them and maybe seeing what you experienced will help those of us who think that sounds like a great idea for someone else realize such a trip is within our reach.  There are many horse vacation facilities in Ireland.  Sally's trip was with An Sibin Riding Center which can be seen at
     To see more pictures from Sally's trip check out the Horse Riding Vacation Gallery.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Consignment Items

                                                                                                                                               Barn Dogs accepts horse related items on consignment.   Consignment items must be clean and in good condition.  We take a 20% commission on saddles and larger items and 10% or 15% on less expensive items.  We have saddles, bridles, breastplates, halters, training equipment, saddle pads and blankets, boots and clothing.  Check the consignment section at the right to see some of the items we have in stock right now and come in to see more or talk about leaving items for sale.

Horse Books

     Beyond Borders book store, which accepts new and used books and sells them at huge discounts to fund several charities, has begun bringing brand new horse books to Barn Dogs where we sell them for $2.00 each and send the money back to Beyond Borders.  These are unused books on every topic from horse care and riding to beautifully illustrated "coffee table" books.  Some of these books retail for $30.00 in book stores.  People are finding instructional books and adult and child fiction as well as beautiful gifts for friends and family at an impossibly low price.  The books are always changing as new books come in and go out at a fast pace.  Stop in to see what titles are available today.  For more information about Beyond Borders and the projects they support visit

Monday, October 11, 2010

Winter Horse Blankets

     Winter horse blankets are in stock.  We're carrying the Shires brand from England which are very well constructed and reasonably priced.  We have two weights:  330 gram which Shires recommends for horses that will not be clipped for the winter and 440 gram which Shires recommends for horses that will be body clipped or need extra warmth for another reason.  These are just suggestions.  You'll have your own opinion about which weight will work best for your horse.  The blankets also have different denier counts.  And what does that mean, exactly?

     Like the thread count for fine linen, denier refers to the tightness of the weave of the outer shell of the blanket.  The higher the denier count, the tighter the weave and the more wind and water resistant the fabric.  All turnout blankets are also coated with a waterproofer, but time, the elements and washing will cause it to wear off.  The second consideration is the weight of the blanket's fill.  The higher the weight, the warmer the blanket.

     We have in stock the Stormbreaker and the Stormcheeta.  The Stormbreaker has a Shiretex 600 denier outer shell and 330 gram fill.  It comes in black windowpane plaid.  The Stormcheeta has a Shiretex 2000 demier outer shell and 400 gram fill.  It comes in navy or poppy red(!).  Both have an optional matching neck rug available.

     If you would like to see a chart and sizing instructions go to

     We have all of the available sizes stocked and can still order from the company if we run out.