Vets speak out on overweight show horses and other things the horse world is talking about

Horse & Hound’s daily debrief, brought to you every weekday morning

  • 1. Overweight horses

    The British Equine Veterinary Association (BEVA) contacted H&H with concerns over some of the horses shown at Royal Windsor Horse Show (11 to 15 May), amid hopes the show will prove a catalyst for change. “BEVA was extremely disappointed to see overweight horses taking part in Royal Windsor Horse Show and being highly placed,” a spokesman said. “A huge amount of effort has been put into educating the equestrian world on the risk to health posed by obesity, and there has been great progress made at a number of shows and classes. However, despite this, some horses continue to be willingly and intentionally kept in obese condition and rosettes continue to be awarded for it.”

    Read more on why equine obesity is a concern and what action BEVA recommends

    2. Geoff Billington

    Geoff Billington

    The showjumping community has been sending well wishes to legendary British showjumper Geoff Billington, who is in good spirits in hospital after he “thought I was having a heart attack” on Sunday night. The double Olympian and Hickstead Derby winner was found to be suffering from both pneumonia and pleurisy — an inflammation of the tissue between the lungs and the ribcage. He told H&H this week that he hopes to leave hospital today (9 June).

    Read what Geoff had to say

    3. Double delight

    Suffolk horse foals: Jimmy’s Farm & Wildlife Park

    The Suffolk filly foal, Spearman Bellatrix, with her mother, Spearman Annie, at Jimmy’s Farm & Wildlife Park.

    Breeders are enjoying a double celebration with the arrival of two Suffolk foals in a “crucial boost” for the UK’s most endangered heavy horse breed. Jimmy’s Farm & Wildlife Park, near Ipswich, welcomed a filly and colt in recent weeks. The births are even more special given the bond between the two broodmares, Annie and Annabelle, who were born on the same day and have spent every day together since. The pair are now raising their foals together.

    Find out more about why these foals are particularly special

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