Free Horse Health Education by Local Equine Veterinarians | SLO Horse News

Free Horse Health Education by Local Equine Veterinarians

Get ready for some one-on-one interaction with some of SLO County’s most experienced equine veterinarians at the 2017 SLO Horse Expo! Horse Health Education is the key focus. This free opportunity plans to come around once per year, and it’s the perfect time to educate yourself on the most up-to-date horse health issues that could both save you money, and could potentially save your horse’s life.

Each veterinarian at this year’s SLO Horse Expo, held on February 21st from 5:30 to 8:30 at the Alex Madonna Expo Center, has unique experiences and perspectives geared toward approaching your individual horse’s health needs.  Whether you’re interested in the most recent information on vaccinations and deworming, or issues regarding feeding, lameness or even sand colic, your knowledge will be vastly improved through your attendance.

But the SLO Horse Expo isn’t all about listening to amazing talks on horse health, it’s also a great place to meet up with horse friends, make new friends, enjoy wine tasting and food sampling, and even to go shopping!  You’ll meet representatives from a variety of local horse clubs and businesses, and you can delight in the entire atmosphere.  Best of all…the SLO Horse Expo is a free event!

Here’s the lineup for this year’s Horse Health Education by Local Veterinarians.

6:00    First Aid and Equine Emergency Care

Presented by:  Dr. Tristen N. Hooks, DVM – The Horse Fixer, Mobile Equine Practice

Dr. Hooks will share her “Top 10 List of Common Emergencies” horse owners might experience. Not only will she discuss the emergency situations themselves, she’ll also walk you through the right steps to take as a first responder to assist the horse until the vet can properly assess the situation.

For example, most horse owners know the symptoms of colic and a first reaction will probably be to get the horse up. Well what if the horse’s pain continues and gets worse? There are some specific do’s and don’ts regarding handling a horse with colic. Dr. Hooks will arm you with information that could literally save your horse’s life.

Who is Dr. Tristen Hooks?

Free Horse Health Education by Local Equine Veterinarians | SLO Horse NewsDr. Tristen Hooks got her start riding in Germany at the age of 6 when her family moved there from California. She returned to California before college and attended the University of Southern California. Although not initially pursuing a pre-vet path, she remained very active in the horse world.

She is on a constant search for the truth – to find the right or best answers to care for and support equine athletes. Being an active 3-Day Eventer and life long horsewoman, Dr. Hooks has seen and heard a plethora of conflicting information about horses. Ultimately, the search for the truth in all the wives tales and old time cowboy remedies, lead her to attending Veterinary School at the University of California Davis.

Becoming a veterinarian is a second career for Dr. Hooks. She established The Horse Fixer practice in 1998. However, horses have always been her number one passion since she was very young. “I find the horse is an amazingly strong, beautiful and sensitive animal, a true mirror into our souls,” Dr. Hooks states.

6:30    Sand Colic

Presented by:  David Eckstein, DVM – Templeton Veterinary Clinic

Sand Colic is a common problem among horses on the Central Coast. Dr. Eckstein will provide information on how a veterinarian diagnoses and treats sand colic, and will help you as the horse owner take preventative measures to decrease the occurrence in your own “herd”.

The good news is that Sand Colic is preventable, and can even be detected BEFORE it causes a colic emergency. Horse owners will learn about how making changes in their horse’s environment and feeding practices will greatly reduce sand accumulation in the horse’s gut. You’ll get information on ways to monitor your horses to detect sand accumulation and deal with it before it causes problems.

Who is Dr. David Eckstein?

Free Horse Health Education by Local Equine Veterinarians | SLO Horse NewsDr. David Eckstein was born in San Lorenzo, California and attended Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo for undergraduate studies earning a Bachelor of Science in Animal Science.  He competed on Cal Poly’s Livestock Judging Team, and roped in collegiate rodeos.  During the breaks in classes, David worked in Santa Ynez at Westerly Stud Farm with the resident veterinarian Dr. Woody Asbury DVM.  This inspired him to pursue his career in veterinary medicine.  Dr. Eckstein graduated from U.C. Davis in 1976.  He then spent three years working at Valley Large Animal Hospital in Morgan Hill, California, a four man, large animal ambulatory practice with in-house surgical and treatment facilities.

Dr. Eckstein and his wife Ellen moved to Templeton in 1979, where they still reside. His practice here began using his breeding farm background, with an emphasis on equine reproduction and stud management.  Though his practice is primarily general equine and Sport Horse oriented, it also includes farm animals.  Ellen’s influence as an F.E.I.-level dressage rider, trainer, clinician and author has helped shape David’s practice, as well as their Warmblood breeding program.  David and Ellen are fully engaged with their horses.  Ellen is currently preparing “Raven,” a 5-year-old homebred Hanoverian, for dressage competition, with three siblings to follow.  Dr. Eckstein enjoys playing golf, raising and riding their horses.

7:00   Deadly Equine Parasites

Presented by: Dr. Jeff A. Hall – Senior Veterinarian, Equine Technical Services, Zoetis

What dangers lurk on that luscious green grass your horse just enjoyed? Parasites are tiny, but deadly. Dr. Hall will discuss the three most harmful parasites commonly found in horses. He’ll also cover the clinical signs a horse displays when infected with a deadly parasite.

Horse owners will learn how to identify the parasites, how to select the proper de-wormer – among the hundreds on the market – and how to develop a regular schedule to control the parasites and decrease the occurrence of drug resistance.

Who is Dr. Jeff Hall?

Free Horse Health Education by Local Equine Veterinarians | SLO Horse NewsDr. Jeff Hall received his doctorate in veterinary medicine and completed an internship in equine medicine and surgery at North Carolina State College of Veterinary Medicine in 2002. Following completion of his internship, Dr. Hall practiced in an exclusively equine surgical and ambulatory practice in Oregon for over 10 years.

Dr. Hall joined the Zoetis Equine Technical Service team in 2012. As a senior veterinarian, he consults with practitioners across the United States, develops and supports equine research projects with several colleges of veterinary medicine and provides continuing education on numerous equine topics. His particular areas of focus include equine pain and sedation, infectious diseases, and preventative health care.

Dr. Hall and his wife Dr. Chea Hall, a small animal practitioner, reside in San Luis Obispo, California with their two sons where they enjoy scuba diving, soccer, baseball and taking their golden retriever, Maverick, to the beach.

7:30   Equine Wellness Programs

Presented by: Dr. Emily Bardo – The Equine Center, San Luis Obispo

Do you have a comprehensive Equine Wellness Program in place for your equine partner?  If you don’t, you’re not alone.  Dr. Bardo will define for horse owners the benefits of developing a comprehensive Equine Wellness Program, and will discuss the importance of scheduling vaccinations, deworming, dental care and regular exams of your horse.

You will see how a comprehensive Equine Wellness Program will take the guess work out of horse ownership, save you time and money in the long run and provide you with that all-important peace of mind. Partnering with a veterinarian benefits both horse and owner, making life easier and more enjoyable for all.

Who is Dr. Emily Bardo?

Free Horse Health Education by Local Equine Veterinarians | SLO Horse NewsDr. Bardo got her start by working on “project horses”.  She did some reining with her now retired quarter horse “Peppy”, and is a native Californian who grew up on the coast in Half Moon Bay. Her path to Veterinary School started at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, where she studied Animal Science. She then moved on to Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio for veterinary school and graduated in 2015.

The next step was an internship at Pioneer Equine Hospital in Oakdale, CA. She recently joined the staff at The Equine Center in San Luis Obispo. Her professional interests include preventative medicine, sports medicine, and dentistry.

In her spare time, you might find Dr. Bardo hiking, watching (or listening to) the SF Giants play, and spending time at the beach.

8:00   Equine Metabolic Syndromes

Presented by: Kristina Grewal – Creston Large Animal Services

“Cushing’s Disease” is an older term for what is now known more broadly as Equine Metabolic Syndrome. Dr. Grewal will help horse owners understand the risks, treatment and management of conditions that are a result of the imbalance of three major endocrine hormones: insulin, thyroid and cortisol.

When these three hormones are not regulated properly in the horse’s body a host of conditions will arise. Some of these include: Laminitis, obesity, cardiac disorders, skin conditions and issues with immunity.

New diagnostic tools have given veterinarians more comprehensive diagnostic tests to aid in the detection of Equine Metabolic Syndrome symptoms at an earlier stage. A whole cascade of complications can arise when the imbalance is not detected and the condition goes untreated. Horse owners will learn how environmental factors can contribute to the imbalance of these hormones, and how they can control these factors to benefit their horses.

Who is Dr. Kristina Grewal?

Dr. Kristina Grewal completed her undergraduate work at Colorado State University. She went on to obtain her Doctorate in 2006, with honors, from Texas A&M University. After attending Texas A&M, Dr. Grewal spent one year in a medicine and surgery internship at Alamo Pintado Equine Medical Center.

She opened her practice here on the Central Coast in 2007. Her interests include equine lameness and sports medicine, as well as food animal practice. She enjoys developing relationships with her clients, as well as mentoring students. On a personal level, Dr. Grewal enjoys horseback riding, basketball and spending time with her dog, Chip.


Don’t Miss Out!

So, mark your calendars for Tuesday February 21st, so that you don’t miss the FREE SLO Horse Expo at the Alex Madonna Expo Center. Note the times of the speakers you want to hear. If you miss a speaker or two you can always catch them at their booth later in the evening. Each veterinarian will have available any handouts or information sheets used during his or her talk, and will be happy to interact with you and answer questions.

This is an event not to be missed!  Take advantage of this incredible SLO County opportunity, and enjoy some fantastic wine and delicious food with old horse friends and new ones while you’re at it…and don’t forget your shopping bags, because there’s no doubt you’ll find something you can’t live without.  We’ll see you there!


The 2017 SLO Horse Expo is sponsored by Platinum Performance, San Luis Obispo Equine Practitioners Alliance, and Zoetis.

Vet photos and bios provided by Zoetis

Talk descriptions and photo collage by Sharon Jantzen

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