Reg Charity No: 1049266
PRESS RELEASE

THE HORSE WORLD TO UNITE FOR

NATIONAL LAMINITIS AWARENESS MONTH

    If only preventing laminitis was simply a question of keeping fat ponies away from rich grass, but every year horses and ponies of every breed and discipline contract this excessively painful illness.
   
The Laminitis Trust, a charity founded by Robert Eustace, FRCVS, director of The Laminitis Clinic in Wiltshire, is organising Laminitis Awareness Month in May 2001 to educate horse owners and riders on how best to avoid this crippling and often fatal disease and to raise funds for vital research.
   
In its mildest form laminitis presents as a mild lameness, a reluctance to move, or the animal lying down to try and get some relief from its painful feet.  Sometimes the horse will be sweating, groaning and blowing giving rise to the misdiagnosis of colic.   After repeated attacks, however, the attachment between the pedal bone and hoof capsule starts to fail. This is described as foundering.  The most severe form of founder is where the pedal bone becomes loose within the hoof and is described as a “sinker” – the majority of cases of which will die without rapid and expert treatment.     Robert Eustace says:  “We recognise that laminitis can be brought on by a variety of factors, including stress.  Trauma to the feet caused by excessive work on hard surfaces can cause laminitis particularly in show jumpers and endurance horses.  But it is a fact that as many as 80% of laminitis cases could be avoided by sensible feeding and management.   Particularly worrying is the unwelcome practice of feeding high calorie diets to horses and ponies in order to achieve so-called ‘show-ring condition’.  Leading show judge and producer Robert Oliver joins me in saying that horses and ponies should be judged for fitness, not  fatness.”
    Just one aspect of the work of The Laminitis Trust has been to pioneer an approval mark for horse feeds to guide owners towards those feed products which are safer to use both to prevent laminitis and during the treatment period.  To carry the approval mark, feeds have to be submitted for scrutiny by The Laminitis Trust’s Scientific Committee.  Dengie, Spillers and Dodson & Horrell are manufacturing a selection of feeds which carry the Laminitis Trust Approval Mark and, to support National Laminitis Awareness Month, are producing helpful fact sheets and recommended diets.
   
Robert Eustace concludes: “Laminitis is not a condition to be taken lightly.  I have witnessed at first hand the misery it can cause.  We intend that National Laminitis Awareness Month will create a platform whereby many of the old wives’ tales and misinformation are finally put to rest.   Further vital research is essential, but until a cure is found, owners have the solution in their own hands.  Sensible feeding and management are, in the majority of cases, the key to ending the unnecessary pain and suffering caused by laminitis.”
   
Every equestrian association and organization is being asked to support National Laminitis Awareness Month to aid understanding, promote better management and help raise funds for a research project.  Many well known figures in the equestrian world have already pledged their support.  Please signal yours on the attached fax back form

-        ends –

November 2000
Information supplied by Liz Higgins, Blue Inc.,
Tel: 020  8933 8383   Fax: 020 8723 7683
 

The Laminitis Trust, Mead House Farm, Dauntsey, Chippenham, Wilts SN15 4JA

Tel: 0870 444 0676   Fax: 0870 444 0677
www.equilife.co.uk/laminitis-org

National Laminitis Awareness Month – May 2001

How you can help

If you would like to help raise money or support

National Laminitis Awareness Month

please complete this form and fax back to

The Laminitis Trust Press Office on 020 8723 7683

or email: liz@blue-inc.co.uk

q      I will display The Laminitis Trust’s Fact Sheet in my yard.  Please supply laminated A3 size copy @ £3.50 each (inc P & P)

  q      I will display a Laminitis Trust Collection Box. 

  q      I would like to organise a fund raising activity for The Laminitis Trust

 

Details: ………………………………………………………………………………

  ……………………………………………………………………………………….

  ……………………………………………………………………………………….

  q      I would like to arrange a lecture by Robert Eustace FRCVS at my local equestrian college or riding club (fee to be paid directly to The Laminitis Trust)

  q      I will donate a proportion of entry fees for ………………… class at ………………. Show to The Laminitis Trust during May 2001

  q      I enclose a cheque for £…… towards The Laminitis Trust research project

  Name:              ………………………………………………………………….

  Address:          ………………………………………………………………….

    ……………………………………. Tel: ………………………

  The Laminitis Trust, Mead House Farm, Dauntsey, Chippenham, Wilts SN15 4JA

Tel: 0870 444 0676   Fax: 0870 444 0677

www.equilife.co.uk/laminitis-org

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