Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get proper hydration in my endurance horse?

This is  a familiar problem for endurance horses. Hydration is tested for by “tenting” the skin, but the skin is an indication of hydration throughout the body. The muscles, in particular, need full hydration for the exertion involved in endurance events. If the vet estimates hydration at only level 2 or 3, the horse may be close to being eliminated from the event.

Paradoxically, a fully hydrated horse will readily drink water when it is offered, whereas a horse which has deficient body hydration often has to be persuaded to drink even a little water, or will refuse altogether.

A course of Equiwinner will restore full hydration and the horse will be eager to drink water. The beneficial effect of Equiwinner in properly balancing body fluids usually lasts a whole year.

Is horse lung bleeding (EIPH) caused by the force of galloping?

There have been articles in veterinary journals including a theory that lung bleeding occurs due to the force of the impact transmitted through the forelimbs of the horse as they strike the ground. It is most unlikely or impossible that horses with such a type of constitutional weakness could have survived evolution. There have never been any reports of bleeding in wild horses.

EIPH or lung bleeding is common in dressage horses and known in dray horses, where there is little impact of the hoofs on the ground. We have seen horses with high blood pressure who bleed if they are just walked.

The cause of the bleeding is now known with certainty to be extra high blood pressure when the horse is under exertion. A healthy horse at rest has a pulse of 40 to 50 beats per minute, but rising to over 250 beats at maximum effort, accounting for the horse’s superb speed and acceleration. It is normal for blood pressure to rise during exertion in a healthy horse. This pressure is supported by veins inside the hoof which are compressed by the pressure on the digital cushion. Blood is thereby ‘pumped’ up the leg.

Does Equiwinner work on every horse?

Yes, Equiwinner does work on all horses as described.  Many trainers use Equiwinner on one horse after another and get results every time.  One trainer’s testimonial states “I’ve never had a horse that hasn’t looked better after using the patches.”

However, overfeeding may interfere with the healing process or results may not last as long as expected.  Basic good nutrition combined with exercise is the foundation for good health.  Overfeeding relative to the amount of exercise is the most common mistake that horse owners make.  Even a small excess of food intake relative to the work being done results in an increase in the blood sugar level.  It is not generally realized that excess blood sugar (glucose) can completely unbalance the electrolytes, making any treatment more difficult.  Overfeeding over a longer period could also eventually result in insulin resistance and laminitis.  Overfeeding contributes to deterioration in the horse’s overall health and restoring complete active health becomes difficult unless the feed is carefully checked.  Why not use a height/weight tape?  Keep a note of the measurement when you know the horse is in really good condition, and then regularly check whether the weight is rising or falling so that measured out feed amounts can be adjusted accordingly.

For more information on nutrition please click here.

Can Equiwinner be used on a horse with a long thick coat?

Equiwinner can be used on all types of horses. The Equiwinner patch does not have to be stuck onto the skin, since it works by signaling and nothing passes into the body of the horse. Equiwinner is designed to cling onto the coat hairs. In the case of a long coat simply part the hairs to allow the two nodes on the Equiwinner patch to come close to the skin.

Equiwinner is best placed on top of the hindquarter, the croup. If the coat is molting then surplus hairs should be first brushed off. If methylated spirits or a ‘sheen’ product has been used to improve the appearance of the coat, or there is field dirt, the area is best cleaned with surgical spirits or pure isolpropyl alcohol, available from any drugstore.

Do I continue to give my horse oral electrolytes while using Equiwinner?

Although Equiwinner patches contain a carefully designed group of electrolytes, no substance whatsoever is transferred through the skin to the horse, only the cell signal to restore optimum electrolyte balance.  In other words, Equiwinner makes electrolytes work properly.  If necessary, electrolytes can be supplemented while using Equiwinner without any problem.

However, there is no point in feeding electrolytes to horses unless a deficiency is suspected, in which case the horse would likely be in an obvious poor state of health.  The majority of horses have healthy lives without ever having been fed oral electrolytes since they usually get enough electrolytes from a normal diet.  If you do supplement with electrolytes (not to excess) any surplus will be eliminated in the urine and be sure to use a high quality brand that contains as little sugar as possible, if any at all.

How do I know if a horse I am buying is a headshaker?

During the warmer days of the spring or summer, during the fly season, lightly brush your hand along the flank of the horse. The panniculus muscles of the skin should flick with a distinct ripple. If the ripple is present, then the horse should be thoroughly exercised until the coat is damp with sweat from head to tail. If the sweat is present and there is no headshaking then that is a good indication that the horse is not a headshaker.

At other cooler times of the year it is not possible to say whether a horse is a headshaker or not. If the seller is assuring you that the horse is sound then this should be put in writing as a strict condition of sale.

If the horse really is sound but later develops headshaking, this can now easily be dealt with by a course of Equiwinner.

How do I stop headshaking during dressage?

After a course of Equiwinner has cleared up the headshaking generally, the horse will sometimes headshake just during dressage exercises. The cause of headshaking has been removed but the horse has learned to headshake along with the dressage routine. The horse has to be taken away from the dressage routine and given different work, such as a few long hacks. This should break the learned headshake response when the horse is returned to dressage.

How do you measure a horse’s blood pressure?

ActiveSignal Ltd, the developer of Equiwinner, measures a horse’s blood pressure using a clinically validated electronic blood pressure meter. This is the same model as is used for humans. A specially sized inflatable cuff is wrapped around the base of the tail, the dock.

There are very few records of horse blood pressure readings, but they have found that normal resting systolic and diastolic blood pressure is similar to humans, 120 over 80 or less. Some ponies have much lower values.

It is rare to find a horse with raised resting blood pressure. Those that are found are usually unable or unwilling to do anything more than walk, and require immediate treatment with Equiwinner.

Blood pressure rises during exercise or exertion. At the end of a period of vigorous exercise, in a healthy horse the blood pressure should return to normal within about a minute. If the pressure takes much longer to return to normal, this is a sign that circulation is not optimum and may need treating with Equiwinner.

Other signs of extra high blood pressure are the lining of the nostrils being bright red after exercise, and red patches or red lines at the sides of whites of the eyes.