Karen Briggs

Karen Briggs is the author of six books, including the recently updated Understanding Equine Nutrition as well as Understanding The Pony, both published by Eclipse Press. She's written a few thousand articles on subjects ranging from guttural pouch infections to how to compost your manure. She is also a Canadian certified riding coach, an equine nutritionist, and works in media relations for the harness racing industry. She lives with her band of off-the-track Thoroughbreds on a farm near Guelph, Ontario, and dabbles in eventing.

Articles by Karen Briggs

Toronto Police Horse Killed On Duty

The city of Toronto is mourning the death of 9-year-old "Brigadier," a member of the Metro Police Mounted Unit. The horse had both front legs broken in what is being described as the deliberate impact of a minivan on Friday, Feb. 24.  Read More

The Ever-Present Threat

Editor's Note: This is the fourth in a 12-part series of articles on vaccinations for horses.

West Nile virus (WNV) might be the new kid on the block, the one gaining all the media attention, but unfortunately, it is not the only Read More

Hoof Boots: Protection Without Permanence

We all need protection from the elements. That goes for your horse's hooves as well. Millennia ago, when humans first vaulted aboard equine backs and guided them over terrain they probably would not otherwise have traversed, the value of Read More

West Nile Virus: Threat and Response

Editor's Note: This is the third in a 12-part series of articles on vaccinations for horses.

For a graphic demonstration of the value of vaccination, look no further than West Nile virus (WNV). When it roared onto the Eastern shore Read More

Vaccination Essentials: Rabies, Tetanus, and Botulism

Editor's Note: This is the second in a 12-part series of articles on vaccinations for horses.

Ask veterinarians anywhere in North America and they'll likely agree: If you vaccinate for nothing else, at the very least vaccinate Read More

Defending Against Disease

Editor's Note: This is the first installment in a 12-part series of articles on vaccinations of horses.

Of all the medical advances in the past couple of centuries, the one that might be the most remarkable is also the one Read More

Parasite Control Programs for Mature Horses

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the final installment in a 12-part series on internal parasites of horses.

In last month's article, we discussed certain parasites that are found almost exclusively in horses less than two years of Read More

With Every Fiber of Their Being

With the recent Athens Olympics as our inspiration, we might all be pondering what it takes to go "faster, higher, and stronger." Whether you're a human, a hamster, or a horse, the answer, at least in part, is muscle fibers--each of which holds Read More

New Equine Performance Centre

The University of Guelph's Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) in Guelph, Ontario, Canada, has unveiled plans to build a new multi-million-dollar Equine Performance Centre for diagnosing and treating problems in performance horses. The facility is Read More

Age-Related Parasites: Scourges of Foals and Young Horses

Editor's Note: This is part eleven of a 12-part series on internal parasites of horses.

BY KAREN BRIGGS, WITH CRAIG REINEMEYER, DVM, PHD; DENNIS FRENCH, DVM, MS, DIPL. ABVP; AND RAY KAPLAN, DVM, PHD Read More

EPO Testing Making a Difference at the Track

One of the most potentially damaging drugs to hit the racetrack in recent years is erythropoietin, or EPO. A synthetic version of a naturally-occurring hormone which stimulates the bone marrow to make more red blood cells, EPO was designed to Read More

Parasite Control Without--or Along With--Chemicals

EDITOR'S NOTE

This is part ten of a 12-part series on internal parasites of horses.

Our horses are lucky to live in an age when modern deworming drugs can pretty much rid them of parasites. They're living longer an Read More

New Equine Performance Centre for Guelph

The University of Guelph's Ontario Veterinary College (OVC) in Guelph, Ontario, Canada, has unveiled plans to build a new multi-million-dollar Equine Performance Centre, dedicated to diagnosing and treating problems in performance horses. The Read More

Vaccinating Strategically

Every spring, you ask your veterinarian to vaccinate your horse to protect her from disease while she's showing, racing, carrying a foal, or hanging around your pasture. But is this yearly routine the best way to confer immunity with the vaccine Read More

Resistant Worms: Do Your Horses Have Them?

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is part nine of a 12-part series on internal parasites of horses.

Most people assume that when they administer a tube of dewormer to a horse, the drug is effectively killing worms. The drug must Read More

Drugs for the Deworming War

How do you choose a dewormer when you're presented with a bewildering array of product types? Read More

Ulcer Diagnosis Simplified With Sucrose

Diagnosing equine gastric ulcers might soon be a procedure that's short and sweet. Until recently, ulcer detection depended on using an endoscope to peer at the stomach lining. Now, a team of researchers at Texas A&M University, led by Noah Read More

Parasite Primer Part 7: Parasites in the Environment

EDITOR'S NOTE: This is part seven of a 12-part series on internal parasites of horses.

Back in January, in our first installment of this series, we described what makes a parasite different from other kinds of infectiou Read More

Beasts of Burden

Any horse owner who tours the medieval gallery at a museum must stop at the displays of suits of armor and marvel. Imagine the sheer weight of such an outfit--then imagine trying to maneuver oneself into the saddle wearing it! Visions of Read More

Mud Management

Flanders and Swann, a singing comedy team from the United Kingdom, once penned a song that went like this:

"Mud, mud, glorious mud,
Nothing quite like it for cooling the blood.
So follow me, follow,
Down to the hollow,
And Read More

Parasite Primer: Examining the Evidence

How do you really know if your worm control program is working? If your horses are looking good, are they doin Read More

Lameness Diagnostics

Quite often, the diagnostic tools and techniques at the disposal of your mobile veterinary service are all that are needed to solve the mystery. Some horse owners have been through this routine a time or two: Your vet will ask to see your horse Read More

Bots and Beyond: Little-Known Parasite Enemies

Editor's note: This is part five of a 12-part series on internal parasites of horses.

When it comes to parasites, worms aren't your horse's only worry. Although nematodes and cestodes (or more colloquially, roundworms and Read More

Strongyles: The Worst of the Worms

Ever since the battle against internal parasites began, researchers, veterinarians, and horse owners have recognized a common enemy--strongyles, sometimes called bloodworms (or, in the United Kingdom, redworms). The largest and most significant Read More

Ascarids: A Growing Problem

Editor's Note: This is part 3 in a 12-part series on internal parasites of horses.

In the world of internal parasites, ascarids get no respect. Unlike strongyles, they aren't a high-drama threat to your horse's health, and they Read More