Bulletin Board: 10/01

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Poison-Control Hotline
The ASPCA’s poison control hotline fields questions for large animals as well as for pets among the 300 calls it gets every day. ??The number is 888/4ANI-HELP (426-4435). ??The hotline connects to the Animal Poison Control Center at the University of Illinois 24 hours a day, which is manned by veterinarians and veterinary toxicologists.

The center has been in operation since 1978 and thus has an extensive reference library and computer database. ??It was acquired by the ASPCA in 1996, although it also remains an agency of the university. ??Due to the high costs of the non-profit operation, a $45 fee by credit card is charged that includes follow-up calls, contact to a local vet and faxing of treatment protocols.

The center often fields plant-related questions regarding horses and also concerns about horse-related products that are consumed by other animals around the barn. ??For example, some paste wormers can be dangerous for dogs that lap up the drops that hit the barn floor or eat manure that has residue of paste wormers.

The ASPCA/APCC has also prepared a guide for horse owners for the identification and understanding of the most common natural poisons affecting horses, including plants and molds, as well as lesser-known poisons. ??

The guide costs $22, including postage, and is available from ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, 1717 South Philo Rd., Suite #38, Urbana IL 61802.??

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Multi-Use Track Planned in Texas
A privately funded track called Saddle Brook Park will be built in the Texas Panhandle near Amarillo by Yellow Rose Entertainment Inc. and Lone Star Park. It will also include an outdoor music venue on its 275 acres.

The venture, which is projected to cost $14 million, is due to start construction this year. Saddle Brook Park hopes to stage 30 days of racing each year for Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses. The track grandstand will seat 4,000, and there will be a music amphitheater for 30,000 inside the track’s seven-furlong oval.

The amphitheater has teamed with local charities to focus fund-raising and provide volunteers for show dates and will donate 20% of concessions and parking profits to the charities. ??The venture will bring $42 million to the region annually.

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Arabians For Amateurs
A new organization has been formed to promote Arabians as a family recreational mount. The American Amateur Arabian Horse Association seeks to support amateur activities and entry-level opportunities through low-cost, low-key shows.

Professional trainers will not be allowed in the show-ring area or in preparation of the horse and rider on the show grounds but will be encouraged to support the amateur circuit by judging, speaking or providing seminars and other events on non-show days. Contact 770/682-9770 or www.arabshow.com.

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Western Horseman Magazine Sold
Western Horseman magazine was sold in late August to Morris Communications, which already owns Quarter Horse News, Barrel Horse News and The Horsetrader.

Morris, based in Augusta, Ga., also owns The Horsemen’s Yankee Pedlar, circulated in New England, and the website HorseCity.com. Western Horseman will still be published from its Colorado Springs, Colo., location with its present staff. It has been in operation since 1936 and reaches 220,000 readers.

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Foals Born From Frozen Eggs In Colorado
Colorado State University this summer reported the first birth of foals from mare’s eggs that were harvested, frozen and then thawed. A sibling colt and filly were carried by different surrogate mothers.

While sperm cells from stallions have commonly been preserved for some time, the process is more complicated for eggs. “The good news is, if the perfect mate can’t be found immediately, there’s still lots of time,” said George Seidel, a CSU professor of physiology.

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USDF Plans Move To Kentucky
The U.S. Dressage Federation is joining the growing number of equine organizations headquartered at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington. The USDF executive board voted unanimously in August to move from Lincoln, Neb., where it has been based since the early 1970s.

The USDF office will move to temporary quarters in May 2002 and is conducting a study on raising funds for construction of a new building. The USDF has 31,000 members, 129 group member organizations and approved 730 competitions last year.