Equine Vet Services

Artificial Insemination

At Parkside Vets, our aim is to get as good a conception rate with Artifical Insemination (AI) as you would expect with natural service (when a stallion covers a mare). This is normally quoted as 65% per oestrus cycle and so you would expect 95%+ of mares to be pregnant after three cycles of AI That is if all things go to plan, with the mare fertile and the stallion (or semen) is fertile.

In order to achieve this with frozen semen AI, it is critically important that the semen is inserted at exactly the correct time of the mares’ cycle, this is +/- 6 hours of the time that the mare ovulates. Therefore management of mares for insemination with frozen semen is more intensive and mares require multiple ultrasound examinations to assess the correct time for insemination.

Most mares ovulate 24 hours before their season finishes and so if you can note your mares normal season pattern then it is possible to target the timings of ultrasound scans and so reduce the overall cost. There is a lot of normal variation between mares but generally each mare has a regular pattern, as a guide a mare should have a cycle of 21 days (range 19-24), will be in oestrus (in season) for 6 days of that cycle (range 4-9 days) and so be in dioestrus (not in season) for 15 days (range 12-16 days).

Our experience has been that because only good quality semen is frozen, it is rare for us to have problems with the semen. Mares are more of a concern for us and so we would always want to do a pre-breeding soundness check which is generally done at the beginning of the breeding season It involves a full examination including an ultrasound scan of the reproductive tract and some swabs for CEM, there may also be some blood samples taken (eg for EVA and/or strangles).

The most fertile and therefore the most likely that mares will become pregnant with AI is when they are young (less than 12 years old) and have a good history of successful pregnancies and no problems giving birth. As mares get older they are less likely to conceive and are more likely to absorb the early embryo and these two factors combined result in a big drop off in conception rates as mares go through their teenage years. 

Parkside Equine has the expertise and facilities to allow Artificial Insemination of mares from chilled or frozen semen. We have storage facilities for frozen semen which can be kept indefinitely.

Insemination is best done at our equine facility, where subsequent scanning would be done to ensure pregnancy and to check for abnormalities. 

Need more information?

If you need information and/or prices, contact Alistair Crozier or Richard Mauritzen (partners) by phoning the direct dial Parkside Equine number - 01382 811111 or contact us by clicking the button below.

Equine Dentistry

Good oral health in the horse is paramount for a healthy horse. And many painful conditions develop without obvious symptoms. Left untreated these result in chronic pain, behavioural changes such as riding problems, headshaking and changes in general demeanour as well as the more obvious symptoms of “Quidding” (dropping feed), inappetence and weight loss.

At Parkside we are passionate about providing a comprehensive dental service with up to date modern equipment to allow diagnosis and treatment of the range of dental conditions found in horses. All our vets are trained in advanced equine dentistry techniques and are up to date with new and modern developments in dentistry.

We have facilities at both Dundee surgery and Ladybank with stocks which can be used for both routine dental appointments (you save on visit fee)  and more advanced treatments.

We are also able to offer advanced dental treatments for your horses including Dental Endoscopy (High definition imaging) as well as Dental Extractions and Peridontal treatments (Diastema widening).  We also provide in-house Specialist referral treatments working with “Equine Dental Clinic” to offer advanced tooth restorative treatments.

Insurance
Many people are not aware but their horse's insurance policy will now usually stipulate the requirement for ANNUAL charted dental examination by a QUALIFIED professional. This includes Equine Vets (MRCVS) or BAEDT qualified technician. There are many non-qualified lay persons performing dentistry which may invalidate your insurance policy.

Save 10% on dentistry

Members of the Equine Health Plan receive a 10% discount on Dentistry, as well as many other great benefits to keep their horse happy and healthy throughout the year.

Lameness Investigation

Lameness is our most common visit to horses and most lamenesses are found in the foot! Abscesses of the sole are very common, and are mostly a complication of a puncture wound or sole bruising from rocky ground, which has become septic and painful. These are pared away to allow drainage and subsequent healing, along with antibiotics.

Many lamenesses are diagnosed and cured after the first visit, but it may be necessary to apply nerve blocks or take x-rays to come to a diagnosis. We may ask you to bring your horse to our new Kings Cross Road surgery for further investigation. Navicular disease is an example of a condition which may require additional diagnostic examinations. In Navicular Disease, the navicular bone becomes less dense; which is thought to be due to changes in blood circulation. A poor quality blood supply to the bone may cause it to become poorly calcified in areas, and the bone then becomes weak and painful. This condition can be difficult to diagnose, as the navicular bone lies almost in the centre of the hoof capsule, and it can be tricky to get high quality x-rays of the that area of the foot. In addition, Navicular disease often waxes and wanes; a horse that may be very lame one day may appear to be fine again for another week before having another bad day, which can make diagnosis more difficult.

This condition often causes stumbling, with the horse sometimes tripping and falling to its knees - usually on hard ground, where the concussion effect is greatest. Once diagnosed, long-term treatment can produce good recovery from this chronic condition, but some horses are limited in what work they can do. The earlier a condition is seen, the better the chance of resolution. If your veterinary surgeon suspects Navicular disease, they may request you to bring them to the Kings Cross Road surgery, where they can be trotted up on a hard surface, where extensive nerve blocks can be performed if required, and where we have the most equipment to help get the best x-rays taken of your horse.

Acute lameness may involve ultrasound scanning to assess the severity of, for example, a tendon sprain or tear. Ultrasound scanning is also used for early pregnancy diagnosis and to assess ovarian function. We have access to two ultrasound scanners, one which is a dedicated large animal ultrasound scanner. Your vet surgeon may decide that any soft-tissue injury might benefit from additional diagnostics with an ultrasound scanner, which can help distinguish between different tissues that are lying quite close to each other, but also help determine the severity and extent of any particular soft tissue injury.

Read about Foot Care from Keep Britain's Horses Healthy HERE

Concerned about lameness?

Members of the Equine Health Plan save 10% on all x-rays and ultrasound scans of tendons and ligaments, which can aid in the diganosis and treatment of Lameness.

The Equine Health Plan includes many other great benefits to keep their horse healthy year-round.

Vaccinations

Equine Flu

We strongly recommend that horses are vaccinated against tetanus and equine flu. Two doses are required to protect your horse, with 3-5 weeks between each dose. You can start from twelve weeks of age.

For FLU protection, they must then have a booster between five and seven months after the second dose and subsequent annual boosters which should be within one year of the last booster.

This less than 365 day rule is paramount if your horse is ever going to any premises where Jockey Club rules apply. This could be going to summer pony-club camp at Perth Race Course or many large shows and events. A horse is never too old to vaccinate.

The vaccines we now use have the most up-to-date flu strains with a high purity and low level of vaccine reactions which can result in swellings and pain after other Vaccines and after the first course, the tetanus part only has to be done ever TWO years to fully protect your horse.

Tetanus

If everyone saw a case of tetanus then ALL horses would be vaccinated. Horses are extremely sensitive to the Tetanus bug.
A dog is 200 times less likely to contract tetanus - and we even very occasionally see them affected. It is the small puncture wounds (which you miss), rather than the big bloody wounds, which are most likely to allow entry of the Tetanus bacillus which can lie dormant in the soil for many years so please vaccinate! The bacterium produces a toxin which interferes with nerve function, causing massive fit-like spasms and eventually respiratory distress and death. There is no cure, just prevention by vaccination.

Strangles

This vaccine is now available but only gives 6 month's protection - only 3 months if high risk. It is given by injection into the underside of the upper lip of a horse! Because of the increased risk in liveries, some are insisting on vaccination, which prevents Strangles from ever starting in such yards. 

Read about infectious disease and the importance of vaccination from Keeping Britains Horses Healthy HERE

Keep up to date with vaccinations

Members of the Equine Health Plan get Annual Equine Flu and Tetanus booster vaccinations included as part of their membership. As well as many other great benefits to keep their horse healthy year-round.

Visits

To arrange a visit, please call 01382 811111 during office hours.

Please try to specify a broad time that is suitable to call and give a brief description of the horse's symptoms. Obviously, urgent calls take priority.

Give your home address as well as where the horse is at livery if this is different and try to leave a contact number. Complicated lamenesses may need follow-up visits for nerve-blocks, Xrays etc. We may ask you to bring your horse to Parkside Equine, at Kings Cross Road or Ladybank, Fife for these more detailed examinations.

If your horse is at livery and you need a non-urgent call, then arrange a visit along with some friends who have horses due for vaccination boosters, rasping or similar, as we will pass the savings on to you. If we see horses belonging to 5 different owners at the same livery, we will cancel the visit charge!

Spread the cost of routine treatment

Members of the Equine Health Plan receive two routine visits throughout the year as part of their membership.
Members also receive many other great benefits to keep their horse happy and healthy year-round.