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

Sudden Death: Untimely End

Sometimes horses die suddenly when they aren’t involved in athletic competition. You walk out to stall or paddock one morning and your good trail horse or companion animal is lying dead, even though it had appeared normal and healthy when you fed the

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Crossing Water

After a few uneventful rides, seek more challenging trips, such as crossing mud puddles or shallow streams. Because horses will always go around rather than through water, pick the spot for this lesson with care. Don’t ask the horse to go throug

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Trail Riding: Position in a Group

Does your horse walk along quietly with at least a horse length between him and the horse in front, or does he want to tailgate the lead horse without watching where he places his feet?

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The Perfect Hoof

An interesting dichotomy exists when we turn our attention to the horse’s foot. On the one hand, without a healthy foot, a modern-day horse really has no value. On the other hand, the foot often is the most neglected part of the horse’s anatomy.

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Buckets of Muck

When food is ingested at one end of the horse, waste material will exit at the other end. That process will continue as long as the horse lives and will cause varying problems to the horse owner, depending on where he or she lives.

As urban

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U.S. Outreach Needed

There is a growing awareness in the equine community of unwanted, neglected, and mistreated horses. At the 2004 American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) meeting, an entire session was devoted to a discussion of the “Unwanted Horse.”

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Welfare in Mexico

Mexico is truly a land of enchantment. Pristine beaches in places with names like Acapulco and Cancun entice visitors, many of them very wealthy, from around the world. Scenic mountains tower over part of the land. Blue skies and balmy

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Drug Testing

Controversy over medication and drug testing has been around since organized equine competitions came into being. There has always been more disagreement than agreement among the various factions involved, and more contention than harmony. Drug testing is a legal part of nearly all breed and discipline competitions these days, and much of what is done in regard to drug testing in other

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AAEP Convention 2004 Wrap-Up: Horseman’s Day

Horseman’s Day, as part of the annual American Association of Equine Practitioners Convention, just keeps getting better and better. And attendance is strong no matter where the convention is held. Most recently, the locale was Denver, Colo., on Dec. 8, and nearly 275 horse enthusiasts showed up for the day-long session. In addition to presentations that ranged from dentistry to Cushing’s

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AAEP Convention 2004 Wrap-Up: Milne Lecture (Foals)

The Frank J. Milne Lecture was presented by Peter Rossdale, OBE, MA, PhD, Dr. (h.c.) Berne, Dr. (h.c.) Edinburgh, DESM, FACVSc, FRCVS. The title of his talk was “The Maladjusted Foal: Influences of Intrauterine Growth Retardation and Birth Trauma.”

Rossdale’s primary area of research is equine reproduction, and he has won many awards and honors for his work in this field. He is a past

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Placentitis Treatment

Once a mare is diagnosed with placentitis, he said, it is incumbent upon the veterinarian to inform the owner about potential outcomes. The underlying message was that treatment of a premature foal in an intensive care facility can be expensive, with no guarantee of a positive outcome.

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AAEP Convention 2004: Hormone Therapy in the Mare

This discussion at the 50th annual American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) Convention in Denver, Colo., Dec. 4-8, 2004, was presided over by Patrick McCue, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACT, associate professor of equine ambulatory medicine at

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The Maladjusted Foal

The basic theme of Rossdale’s presentation was that problems suffered by the fetus before birth and during the birthing process can have long-term effects on the animal’s performance capability and overall health as it grows and matures. With that as a premise, he identified and discussed some of the factors that can have a negative effect before the foal is born and during birth.

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Thyroid/Cushing’s Disease

Quite often, she said, horses suffering from laminitis, obesity, and poor fertility are administered thyroid hormone supplementation. But in many of these cases proper documentation or accurate diagnosis of hypothyroidism is non-existent.

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Salmonella Outbreaks and Prevention

What impact can a salmonella outbreak at a veterinary hospital and what can be done to prevent it? As part of a study to determine what could be done to cut down on the harmful bacteria, a footbath for workers was compared to disinfectant misting, she said.

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