Tag Archives: horse feed

Why am I posting so much about our horse’s feeds?

I’ve had a lot of emails but since I’ve started posting about GM feeds, I have had thousands! Within 3 days of posting the GM Alfalfa issue, I had more emails and responses and downloads of the brochure than all the other posts on this blog! (I have been answering the questions as fast as I can: sorry for the “blanket” response to most but I’m getting overwhelmed with emails). I’m proud of all of you! We care for our horse from the inside out! You are paying attention!

“We care for our horse from the inside out.” April

Since everyone is listening, I will add another important post on feed. This one deals with chemicals. While our horses rarely see pesticides on our hays, it’s important to know where your hay comes from. Growing next to fields that use sprays (especially aerial spraying) means your hay crop will be contaminated.

A few years ago, I watched a farmer spraying a crop of peas. The cloud of insecticide drifted over to a horse facility and landed on 2 ponies and a quarter horse belonging to a friend of mine. In less than 6 months, the quarter horse lost weight and died. The 2 ponies lived, but one is still suffering.

The vets concluded that it could have been from vaccines. While I agree (as I don’t like vaccines), I did watch the insecticide cloud drift for 3 days in a row over to their small field. The other horses were not directly in the drift. The vets dismissed my findings.

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Please Print and Hand Out GMO Flyers To Feed Stores

Hi everyone! Seems as if the Genetically Modified Feed articles I have posted recently far exceed any of the hits to the training posts! I am glad, because it means you care about taking “beautiful care” of your horses on the inside as well as the outside!

I’d like to ask you to download the PDF files of a brochure on GE alfalfa, corn, sugar and soy, as it applies to your horse’s health, and distribute it to every place you can think of:

Feed Stores: bring them a handful and let them know you are not going to buy GM (GE, GMO) alfalfa when it’s harvested and baled at the end of this year.

Distribute it to: Tack stores – Horse organizations – Stables – Breeders – Local clubs – Horse shows and events – Friends – Put it out across the big wide web!

The most pressing issue for me are the 2011 sterility reports on humans. Within a single generation of eating GM foods, we are now seeing a proliferation of men with sterility problems ( http://scholar.google.ca/scholar?q=2011+sterility+and+gmo&hl=en&as_sdt=0&as_vis=1&oi=scholart http://www.google.ca/search?q=2011+sterility+and+gmo&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a). This is the beginning: don’t let it happen to your horses or animals.

A big thank you to everyone that’s taking this seriously. Yes, it will be an inconvenience getting non-GM alfalfa at the end of 2011, but we have time to turn it around with your help! So get these brochures downloaded and printed, and get them to your feed stores first – educate them if you can, but make sure they know you will not be buying this garbage, whose advantages are only for the profit of large corporations.

GE Alfalfa Brochure inside: Horse Industry Brochure Inside

GE Alfalfa Brochure outside:Horse Industry GE-GMO Alfalfa Brochure outside

Caution: the files are large, so if you have trouble printing kilobytes right now, this may be a long process. To start, print the outside PDF first. Then reinsert them into your printer again and print the inside. You may have to fiddle to get it right side up! If your paper jams on the second pass, let the paper sit flat for a day and it will feed better. On the outside sheet you will notice a tiny dot near the photo of the little girl feeding the horse, and another by the two horses discussing the cons of eating GE Alfalfa. Those dots are for you to find the “fold” when you are folding these brochures. This makes it real easy for you to get your brochures looking real nice. You will notice the inside fold is shorter: I planned it that way! I have to say this or else I will get hundreds of emails wondering why this doesn’t work. I have also added photos of the brochure below.

Happy printing and folding, and I’m interested to hear your stories and comments about your GE alfalfa blitz!! And as always, you can email me at: aprilreeves at shaw dot ca


Young filly busts through fences to get to lead mare

Question from New Zealand: I have been working through your site for answers to a lot of questions  :-)  and have found it invaluable as I work with my wild caught mare who is now 7 yrs old.  She was only broken in at 5 and then we just got her home and a couple of months later she broke her foot.  So after a year out with that I’m starting her all over again. She was trained by Trisha Wren who’s methods are similar to your own.

BUT the issue is with her little paddock mate.  A warmblood 3yr old, almost 4yr filly (Pipsqueak) who each time I take Charity away from her gallops and bucks around her paddock.  The last time she wasn’t even out of site but took off around her paddock and chest crashed a gate twice.  The 3rd time she knocked it off it’s hinges.  Very luck for us she didn’t cut herself but it must have bruised. Many times I thought she was going to jump the gate. Now she hasn’t always been like this.
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Horses and Genetically Modified foods – A recipe for survival or extinction?

I have received a lot of emails about GM feeds, so I compiled a post that describes the basic information you need to know about GM in horse feeds, and the potential issues and dangers around them. I also post any new issues at the bottom of this page.

GMO – Genetically modified organisms are mankind’s way of producing desired effects within a plant/animal that nature either has not done yet, or cannot do. GM plants are created in a lab by scientists, that alter the DNA of the plant by adding a foreign gene into the plant’s DNA (one example was the flounder fish gene in tomatoes). It’s not an exact science, in the aspect that it works first time, every time. It can take years to perfect, adding millions to the cost of the experiment. The most common alteration to the plants horses eat (corn, sugar) is the addition of Bt bacteria, which alters the plant to resist the intense continual spraying of pesticides on the plants without killing them. It also allows any insects that come into contact with that plant to die from trying to eat it.

Think about this for a second, and then continue reading.

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Horses and Genetically Modified forages: Are we Moving Our Horses Toward Extinction?

Hello everyone. I rarely speak about “issues” in the horse world, but this is too big and too important to walk away from.

Our horse’s forages: alfalfa and hay – are in potential peril, and within a few years may be gone forever. Here’s the story:

All Alfalfa and Wheat may be Genetically Modified in North America in the next few years

GE corporations (Monsanto & others) are working hard to push their untested GMO alfalfa and wheat crops in the US and Canada. The US already has 5332 acres of RoundUp Ready alfalfa (since 2004). There is no wheat yet anywhere. Because the alfalfa was grown before it was approved, it was halted and is undergoing additional testing and environmental studies. No human or horse studies have been done to prove this is safe. No long term studies are ever done on any GMO foods. Many independent tests show serious health issues (Genetic Roulette).

Horses have evolved over thousands of years, naturally

Horses are sensitive to their environments and their feeds: any horse owner who has any level of awareness of their animal understands this. Their bodies have evolved slowly over time to adjust to changing plant types and feeds. However, along came man, and believed that he/she could do better than Mother Nature. As we asked more of our horse, we began to alter the feeds we give them.

The horse, though, has evolved for years, slowly, methodically, and if you look at the timeline to how many years we have been changing his natural diet, it’s really not that long (20-30 years). It has been a dramatic ride for the horse: from field to stalls: from hay to concentrates and feeds he would never find in the wild (soy, corn, heavy oils).

It’s not working. Horses are getting fatty liver diseases, insulin resistance, heart attacks, cancers and the same type of health issues humans have (that eat high fat and carb diets). And now there’s another issue to add to the mix: genetic modification. Thirty years ago this was unheard of. Last year 6 horses under the age of 10 died from cancer in my area.

What is Genetically Modified foods and why should you be concerned for your horse?

Genetic modification has many levels of concern attached to it, from health to environment and corporate control. We’ll take a look at each one so you have a good general knowledge of the problems horse owners may face.

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Calling all horse owners: stop GM Alfalfa!!

Please send this to every horse owner you know!

I’m involved in politics when it comes to horses. I am a food activist and have spent years studying and understanding food and how it impacts us and our horses. I lecture and speak all over the country on this, and I’m asking for your help.

I want our horses to be able to eat healthy, non-toxic foods and I want to be able to buy horse feeds without fear of this. However, those of you who feed sweet feed – you are feeding GMO, Genetically Modified Organisms. The corn 20 years ago is no longer the same. It has been genetically altered (DNA has been changed) and contains deadly bacteria (Bt), viruses, and pesticides/herbicides. While this may not matter to you, the rise in cancer and other serious health problems in young horses leave one suspect, especially when you didn’t even hear of a horse getting cancer 40 years ago. In 2009 in my area 6 died from cancer before the age of 10.

Please read through this and decide for yourself. I hope that you act and send your letters in today. Your horse will thank you for it by living a long, healthy life. We don’t want GM foods, not for us or our animals!

Appeal to farmers and consumers – Act now to stop GM alfalfa.

Send your comments to the US Department of Agriculture by February 16,
2010.

Its not yet legal for Monsanto to sell its GM alfalfa seeds in Canada
but a US injunction on planting in that country could soon be
overturned. If GM alfalfa is planted in the US, it will quickly
contaminate our food system as well as Canadian alfalfa crops. It will
also lead to the legalization of GM alfalfa in Canada (Canada approved
Monsanto’s GM Roundup Ready alfalfa in 2005 but it still needs variety
registration as a last step before commercialization here).
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How can a small barn helper make horse chores easier?

Question: Hello April, I’m a horse girl and I always love being at the barn. I am working at my barn doing everything from helping the kids, dealing with the horses and doing all those fun barn chores :) I am hoping you could give me a few tips on the areas I would like to improve on.

I am 14 and I have been riding for about 5 yrs now. I have been told I have a riders body, which does make me proud, but I don’t have what you might call farmers muscles. I am very slim and about 5’3, so when I have to bring in the stronger more difficult horses or do hard barn chores, it can get a little difficult for my little arms.

I usually hay the horses, so I have to pull off the flakes and get them into the wheelbarrows. My huge problem is trying to rip the hay if the horses on need a half flake. I try folding the hay this way and that and putting all my weight on it but I still end up getting more hay on the floor and myself than in the stall. Do you know any techniques of tearing the hay or anything that might help ?

Also do you have any tips on keeping control over the larger more spirited horses? I am usually pretty confident while bringing in, but if I have the big ones and they are being difficult or they don’t want to stop, I’m pretty sure they will drag me with them.

Thank you for your time! I hope I can have less days of hay problems! :)

Answer from April Reeves: While you may not feel like this right now, the toughest girls are your size. It’s just a matter of time and more hay lifting and you’ll be the fittest, strongest girl in your area! The other really great thing about being strong when you’re young – muscle has memory, and when you get older you can get it back fairly quickly. Once you have it you don’t lose it.

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