1. Grass sickness
A biobank set up this year to collect horse and soil samples, in the hope of identifying risk factors for the disease, has been hailed a success in its first season after more than 1,000 biological samples were collected. Research fellow Dr Kathy Geyer has led the project, funded by the Moredun Foundation and Equine Grass Sickness Fund, with support from the British Horse Society.
The researchers plan to continue adding to the biobank over the next two seasons, and believe the key to understanding the disease lies within the samples. Horse owners and vets can play a crucial role in the research by continuing to send in samples, and details can be found on the biobank website www.grasssickness.org.uk/biobank.
2. The value of mounted police
A police force’s mounted unit has been saved after a question mark was put on its future pending the outcome of a review. Concerns had been raised that Gloucestershire Constabulary’s mounted unit, which was re-established in 2016, was “not optimal” and newly elected police and crime commissioner Chris Nelson stated in July that many held the opinion that the money devoted to the section “could be better spent elsewhere”.
Mr Nelson has now stated he can “see the value of horses” and he believes the unit can play a key part in tackling anti-social behaviour and neighbourhood policing.
In case you hadn’t noticed…. Christmas is almost upon us! Social media is filled with photographs of horses sporting tinsel and everyone is getting ready to enjoy the festivities. If you’re still last-minute shopping or you’re looking to spend some Christmas gift money, why not consider an H&H digital subscription or check out our buyers’ guides from horsey jewellery, to books for pony-mad children. Plus, keep your eyes peeled on www.horseandhound.co.uk for some heart-warming stories during the festive period.
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