Les Sellnow

Les Sellnow is a free-lance writer based near Riverton, Wyo. He specializes in articles on equine research, and operates a ranch where he raises horses and livestock. He has authored several fiction and non-fiction books, including Understanding Equine Lameness and Understanding The Young Horse, published by Eclipse Press and available at www.exclusivelyequine.com or by calling 800/582-5604.

Articles by Les Sellnow

Health Concerns of Mules and Donkeys

Mules and donkeys are a lot like horses, to be sure, but in many ways, including some health concerns, they are most definitely different. First, we should have a basic understanding about what constitutes these unique four-footed creatures. Read More

Traveling With Older Horses

Traveling cross-country with a horse can be an ordeal under the best of circumstances. Read More

Older Horses at Work

The aging process takes its toll on all working horses, but the rate of attrition can vary significantly. In this, horses are similar to humans. We all have met the person who is barely past middle age and because of mental, emotional, or physical Read More

Leptospirosis in Horses

Acute leptospirosis in horses is characterized by fever of 103-105° Fahrenheit for two to three days, depressi Read More

Equine Dentistry Update

One of the oldest of adages in the horse world is, "No feet, no horse." We could add another that is just as appropriate, "No teeth, no horse." The teeth are one of the most important parts of a horse's anatomy, yet they often Read More

Communication With Horses: Gaining Unity

Learning to communicate with equines can, and, should be, a lifelong endeavor on the part of the horse enthusiast. There is no quick fix in learning the art of communication because each horse is different. What works for one will not necessarily Read More

Communication: Horse Whispering

Learning to understand what a horse is communicating, whether to other horses or to humans, and how to communicate in return can be a lifelong endeavor for the avid horse owner because horses are not all the same. Read More

Equine Parasites

Controlling parasites that feed on and damage the equine digestive system and various body organs must be an ongoing effort on the part of horse owners if these relentless attackers are to be prevented from compromising the animal's health and Read More

Understanding Hoof Cracks

Hoof cracks can be as simple as something that merely irritates the observer from an aesthetic point of view to something so serious that the horse is dead lame and unable to perform. Hoof cracks come in a variety of types and sizes, and they Read More

Dew Poisoning/Scratches

Some call the affliction dew poisoning. Others use the term scratches. Still others refer to it as grease heel or cracked heel. There are yet others who call it mud fever. Whatever the term, the affliction is the same--a form of dermatitis Read More

Club Feet in Horses

A foal born with club feet or a young, growing horse which develops the condition can be both a mystery and a problem for the owner and the veterinarian in charge of treatment. The condition can be mysterious because many factors might be Read More

Saddle Fit

Fitting a saddle correctly to a horse's back can be confusing and frustrating, Harman says, because so many variables are involved. There also is the matter of cost. Few horse owners can afford to have a specially designed saddle Read More

Avoiding Hauling Emergencies

At first blush, a discussion of trailer safety and emergencies seems quite uncomplicated and straightforward. However, it really isn't all that simple because there are so many facets involved in traveling down the highways and byways Read More

The Sub-Fertile Stallion

When we consider that foaling rates overall range somewhere in the neighborhood of 55-60% it becomes instantly obvious that simply covering a mare and getting a foal are not a sure thing. The problem is not always with the mare. Read More

Small Colon Impactions

Disorders of the small colon make up a small percentage of the etiologies in acute abdominal crises in horses. Obstruction by fecal material, enteroliths, and meconium are the most commonly reported pathogenic conditions of the small colon in th Read More

Sub-Fertile Mares

A broodmare which fails to conceive or carry a foal to term can be an emotional and financial liability. For the backyard breeder, the liability might be primarily emotional, when that special mare you wanted to produce your next trail horse or Read More

Estrous Cycle Primer

For all things there is a time and a season. Nowhere is this more true than in equine reproduction. Nature has established a definite time and season for mares to conceive and bear foals. It is a very sensible approach on the part of Read More

Foal Imprinting

A mare goes into labor. Powerful and swift contractions expel a foal that,  for a short time, lies helpless in the straw or on the grass. A handler quietly approaches the wet creature that is drawing its first breaths. This Read More

Holistic Medicine

Change is taking place in the world of equine veterinary medicine as more and more horse owners and practitioners look to alternative or complementary forms of treatment or prevention for a wide variety of maladies. It wasn't Read More

Skin Diseases in Horses

A horse's skin is vital to the animal's survival. It serves as its anatomical boundary and as the principal organ of communication between the horse and the environment in which it lives. As is the case with other body components, the skin of a Read More

Exercise Induced Pulmonary Hemorrhage

The debate goes on. That brief statement is about the most accurate way to open a discussion on exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH) in horses. The condition has been a concern for 300 years and, during that time, has been addressed, Read More


Homeopathy is the modality most difficult to describe in this series on alternative forms of medical treatment for horses. For one thing, even its most ardent advocates and learned practitioners don't know exactly how it works. For another, ther Read More

Genetics Primer

Progress in the field of genetics has been moving by leaps and bounds during the past few years. It wasn't long ago that researchers discovered ways to unravel and study DNA, that elusive strand of genes that inhabits each and Read More

No Sweat: Anhidrosis

Heat builds up rapidly in the body of an exercising horse and must be quickly dissipated if thermal injury is to be prevented. For the normal horse, this is not all that much of a problem. Like man, the horse cools its body by sweating, and this Read More

Magnetic Therapy

Horses are electrically charged. So are people. Sound a bit bizarre? Because of this electrical presence, the use of magnets has been a part of the therapeutical approach to treatment of injuries and other maladies since the 18th century. Read More