The Horse's Advocate radio show is all about helping horse owners find the missing horse owner's manual of owning and caring for horses. Hosted by Geoff Tucker, DVM (aka "Doc T"), he brings to you wisdom from almost 50 years with horses. But beware - some of this stuff is NOT what you might expect. When the "box to think outside of" was built, he was never included and remained outside! The goal of this show is to Help Horses Thrive In A Human World.
Accepting Fat Horses - #064 The Horse’s Advocate Podcast
Shaming was a way for people in the past to look at those with excess body fat. Excess body fat on people is now considered normal and accepted as a part of normal health and life. The same is happening with our horses. Today, most people want extra fat on their horses and consider this a sign of health. But is excess body fat healthy? Do we see excess body fat on healthy, thriving older people or horses?
The excess body fat represents the body’s efficiency in storing excess calorie consumption for use later when calories are not available. The mechanism for doing this is complex, but the efficiency comes from generations of improvement through genetics. However, what complicates this is the abundance of readily available food sources every day of the year. The consequence of this is the storage of overabundant fuel as body fat. Everything is working perfectly for the future ice age several thousand years from now when the thin horse will die sooner than the fat horse.
As long as there isn’t an ice age, the thin horse will survive and thrive longer than the fat horse because the downside of excess body fat is the propensity for unsoundness and illness. Fat horses don’t thrive while the food remains available. In this podcast, I review why it is important to reduce body fat and increase protein intake to help our horses thrive in a human world.
Horse Microbiome, Dentistry, And More - The Horse's Advocate Podcast #063
In this podcast, I talk about a variety of subjects. Some I have discussed in detail elsewhere, and some are new. These subjects include the microbiome of horses (and what we know in humans), prebiotics and probiotics (and what I will be taking), what happens to sugar in the diet, how body fat forms, and why excess body fat is unhealthy.
I also share my adventures with floating horses and meeting equine dentists this past week. Some were inspiring, and others were frustrating.
I end by briefly discussing ketones, where horses get their dietary fat and my upcoming use of exogenous ketones.
This eclectic assortment of horse subjects should pique your curiosity about what else there is to know about our horses and, more importantly, how true and accurate our beliefs are.
Horsemanship And Confidence Versus Arrogance - #062 The Horse's Advocate Podcast
Arrogance (dictionary.com): the offensive display of superiority or self-importance; overbearing pride.
Confidence (dictionary.com): belief in oneself and one's powers or abilities; self-confidence; self-reliance; assurance.
These two human traits are often confused, especially in horsemanship. In this podcast, I discuss the difference between these two attitudes and their bearing on how we interact with horses. I also describe the four basic personalities of horses and how we can build a relationship with each type even when they are so different.
I also discuss how we can change ourselves in a way that doesn't complicate our life but enhances our ability to connect with those horses who would not otherwise want to. I use these principles daily and describe the horses we saw during the past week to show how Melissa and I used them to teach a new dentistry student how to connect within 30 seconds, not 30 minutes or 30 days.
Weight Loss In Horses - Dental Or Not? - #061 The Horse’s Advocate Podcast
This podcast was updated on July 8th due to an incomplete audio upload on July 6th. Thank you all for noticing and bringing it to my attention. Doc T
Many horse owners associate weight loss in horses with dental issues. The most common sign of a dental problem is “Quidding” or the formation of a “Quid.” When a horse chews food, material moves in an orchestrated relation between the teeth, jaw and tongue to auger from the front of the mouth back to the swallowing mechanism of the throat. However, when this food bolus is unacceptable for swallowing, the horse will spit the soggy, half-crushed material out onto the ground; horse owners call this a “quid.”
Will the horse lose condition (weight) because of this? I discuss the other reasons for weight loss, the most important being that losing body fat may be a sign of health after ruling out starvation. In simple terms, the only way a horse can lose body fat is by taking in less sugar (glucose) than is needed in a day to survive. Going through the mechanics of glucose use in the body, I not only touch upon horse health, but I correlate excess sugar with the health of humans. I propose a possible connection between laminitis and atherosclerosis/cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death in humans.
Dennis Brooks DVM, Horse Eyes and Veterinary Medicine - #060 The Horse's Advocate Podcast
Dennis Brooks is a great guy who owns a small woods in central Florida and, with his wife (a veterinarian), cares for three horses and a clan of small animals. So why is he my special guest today? This explanation may take some time.
To start with, Dennis Brooks is a veterinarian, a Ph.D. researcher, a diplomat in the American College of Veterinary Ophthalmology, a professor emeritus in ophthalmology at the University of Florida's Veterinary College, and has a consulting service for equine eyes.
Dr. Brooks also is the recipient of the Frank J. Milne State of the Art Award of the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) (a 2 1/2 hour presentation on the eyes of horses to all equine practitioners), the recipient of the British Equine Veterinary Association's Sir Frederick Smith Memorial Lecture and Medal Recipient (and the only person to receive both the AAEP and the BEVA awards), written the text on equine eyes for veterinarians, published hundreds of articles and lectured to thousands of horse vets worldwide.
Did I mention that he has done this for over 42 years and is still going strong teaching others? Those he has taught are now teachers themselves in veterinary colleges throughout the world. And above all, he remains humble and grateful, always looking forward to each day for the one small nugget of information that will prevent blindness in horses, his one permanent goal.
Please join us today for a chat about many subjects:
Where are veterinarians and the profession today?
How is today's veterinarian different from 40 years ago?
Why are suicides increasing in veterinarians, more so in females?
What got him started in looking at eyes, and what keeps him going?
What new therapies are coming to fruition in horse eyes?
What new diseases are in horse eyes today?
What do you do when a horse becomes blind?
What can you do for an eye problem when a vet isn't available for a while?
There are a lot of gems throughout this episode. I hope you enjoy my visit with Dennis Brooks, DVM.
Note - Images can be seen at TheHorsesAdvocate.com/dennis-brooks-dvm-horse-eyes-and-veterinary-medicine-podcast-060
What Are We Feeding Our Horses, And Why? - #059 The Horse's Advocate Podcast
Do you know what is in your feed bad? And if you do, do you know why?
Millions of scoops of grain are fed to our horses every day around the world, yet when I ask horse owners what they are feeding their horses, I usually get blank looks. I grab a feed tag from any bag in the feed room and start reading the first ingredient to the 5th, or 8th, or 10th, but usually, within a quick time, my point is made. Feed companies are dumping their waste products into the horse feed expecting great results in the horses fed.
So it is more than just feeding good, whole grain to horses. Much more. Inflammation in the gut lining is probably the root cause of many problems seen today in our horses. Grain by-products have consequences, yet they are being fed daily under the assumption that feed companies are doing the best for our horses. As bad as these inflammatory ingredients are, there are other factors.
In this podcast, I tell a story of a barn worker who tries the no-grain approach with added soybean meal getting fantastic results, only to be ordered by the manager, six months into the improvement program, to return to the way things were. He is to add back a large amount of daily grain and remove all soybean meal. This order is despite the manager's observation that the retired horses in this barn are looking better than the competition horses under her care. Now human jealousy is added to the complexities of feeding horses. At this rate, our horses will fall apart long before they reach their peak of life.
Please listen and put Doc T’s knowledge and experience into practice! It won’t cost you anything extra and may very well save you tremendously on vet bills, supplements, and other products marketed to horse owners. I am so thankful I found this podcast and became a member of The Horse’s Advocate. My horses are healthier, sound, and full of vitality like they’ve never been before.
With so many different views on what is the best way to feed your horse it great to have the opportunity to hear explanation not only to the what but the why. A lot of this information applies not only to the horse but your well being.
Really enjoy this podcast!
I really enjoy this podcast and Dr. Tucker’s perspective on nutrition and health in horses! So grateful for this place that is not geared towards a specific supplement company. Highly recommend! 🙌🏻