Les Sellnow

Les Sellnow was a prolific freelance writer based near Riverton, Wyoming. He specialized in articles on equine research, and operated a ranch where he raised horses and livestock. He authored several fiction and nonfiction books, including Understanding Equine Lameness and Understanding The Young Horse. He died in 2023.

Articles by: Les Sellnow

A Look Back at the Feeding of Performance Horses

Body Builders–Muscles

In this article, we’ll take a look at how equine muscles function and are nourished, as well as examine some of the problems that have surfaced, such as hyperkalemic periodic paralysis (HYPP) and tying-up.

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Freedom Contained

Romantic images swirl through the mind when one considers America’s wild horses. For some the image might be that of a beautiful wild stallion racing across the prairie, mane and tail flying in the wind as he celebrates his freedom. For others, the

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The Preparation Checklist for Pack Trips

Once you have your destination in mind and have set about procuring all the necessary information, think about your equipment, such as packsaddles, tents, sleeping bags, cooking and eating utensils, and, it seems, a million other things.

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Anatomy and Physiology Part 6: The Head and Neck

The equine head can be compared to a computer. Housed within the skull are the major components–the brain and the sense organs. In addition to functioning like a computer, the equine head contains teeth for cropping grass and chewing food, and all

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Feeding Weanlings

Feeding young horses is a serious business. If we underfeed, we risk problems stemming from malnutrition. If we overfeed, there is the risk of developmental orthopedic disease that can affect bones and joints. Somewhere in between the two

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Anatomy and Physiology Part 5: The Equine Foot

The equine lexicon is filled with clich?s about the equine foot. Most horse owners have heard them all. “No foot, no horse…The foot is the horse’s foundation…For want of a shoe…” The list goes on. Without sound feet, a horse can’t move

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The Perfect Engine

Much has already been stated in this series about the special concerns involving front limb soundness in the horse since 60-65% of the animal’s weight is carried in the front end. This does not mean that there are no concerns involving the

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More Than Skin Deep?

It was two years ago–in April of 2004–that this magazine published the announcement that the Poco Bueno Quarter Horse sire line had been identified as carrying the recessive gene that causes hyperelastosis cutis (HC, also known as hereditary

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Tying and Hobbling Horses (Book Excerpt)

Whether on a pack trip into the mountains or on a weekend trail ride during which you return to your trailer at night, it is important that your trail horse has been taught to stand quietly when tied, hobbled, or tethered by one foot to a picket pin.

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On the Forehand

The foreleg of the horse is, for the most part, a model of good engineering. It is structured in such a fashion that the horse can move slowly or at speed with the concussion of each footfall minimized by a sophisticated shock absorbing system.

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Acclimating Competition Horses

It becomes obvious that acclimating to a new environment is a challenge for the competing horse, involving everything from wellness and altitude to circadian rhythms involving time zones. It also becomes obvious, based on research, that there is no

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Hollywood Horses

Horses have been an integral part of movies since The Great Train Robbery debuted in 1903 as a silent film. That pioneer production opened the floodgates for the western movie, and horses began galloping across the screen in waves until the late

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Feel the Beat

It’s a thrilling moment for spectator and exhibitor alike on a steamy August night in Freedom Hall, Louisville, Ky. The place is filled wall-to-wall with spectators. Some are in elevated private suites surrounding the arena floor. Many are

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Horses and Wild Animals

Throughout their existence, horses have been prey animals. Predators have been pursuing and feasting on them for eons, and they continue doing so today, despite the fact that domestication of the horse and the spread of civilization in general

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