Sundance Film Festival Audience Awards BUCK Documentary; Horseman Buck Brannaman Subject of Film Headed to Theaters

Please wait for the commercial to end before the clip about Buck begins

Great news from Park City, Utah this morning! Buck, the documentary about horseman Buck Brannaman, has received the Audience Award at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Distribution deals for North America and Australia/New Zealand have also been struck.

The film premiered at the Sundance festival this week, so I haven’t seen it yet but it just went to the top of my must-see list. I would have seen it anyway. I think I need to see it, and so do you.

Take some people who know nothing about horses. I bet they will thank you.


Call it irony, but Buck was the inspiration for the 1990s novel The Horse Whisperer by Nicholas Evans, which was made into a film starring and directed by Sundance founder Robert Redford.

Let’s spread the word, although it may be wise to wait until some theater dates are announced. In the meantime, bookmark the Buck web site, “like” the Buck fan page, and stay tuned for more news about Buck the film!

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FDA Announces Voluntary Recall of Some Bags of Manna Pro’s "Family Farm Complete" Horse Feed in Western States


The following press release has been posted on the website of the US Government’s Food and Drug Administration and is important information for horse owners in California, Nevada, and Oregon; it is printed verbatim so that you will have all the information, as provided by the manufacturer:

Manna Pro Products, LLC is voluntarily recalling a single lot (1006) of Family Farm Complete Horse 10 horse feed, UPC 0 95668 90151 6, packaged in 40 lb. bags because it may contain monensin sodium (Rumensin). Monensin sodium is a medication approved for use in some livestock and poultry species, but can be fatal to horses if fed at sufficiently high levels.

The lot number (1006) can be found on the tag, below the bar code. Additionally, the code “MADE 010611W” will be printed on the white strip sewn across the bottom of the bag.

This feed was distributed January 11, 2011 through January 21, 2011 to retailers in California, Nevada, and Oregon. Retailers receiving product from the lot in question have removed it from their stores.

Initial testing has indicated the presence of a potentially harmful level of monensin sodium (Rumensin) in this single lot. Further follow up testing is underway.

While no illnesses or deaths have been reported, out of an abundance of caution, customers who purchased Family Farm Complete Horse 10 from lot 1006 should stop feeding the product immediately.

At this time, the limited voluntary recall only applies to Family Farm Complete Horse 10, lot 1006. No other Manna Pro or Family Farm products and no other lots of Complete Horse 10 are involved.

(end of press release)

Manna Pro may be contacted at (866) 700-7882. No information was available on their website as of Saturday morning.

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Fashion Friday Videos: Kevin Staut Survives Gucci’s Horse Farm Fashion Shoot to Compete in Sunday’s World Cup Jumping Qualifier; Watch on FEI TV


What is it about this guy? “This guy” is France’s Kevin Staut, of course, current leader in the highly-competitive Western European league of the 2010/2011 Rolex FEI World Cup™ Jumping series. He’s also #1 in the worldwide show jumping standings.

As the European action switches to Zurich, Switzerland this weekend, Kevin takes on the best of Germany, Ireland, Great Britain, Belgium, Sweden, The Netherlands and everywhere else, yet again, as they compete toward the World Cup Finals in Leipzig, Germany at the end of April.

In the photo Kevin is riding the impeccable Silvana de Hus as they were on their way to a World Cup win on their last foray into Switzerland, at Geneva in December. This weekend Kevin will ride Le Prestige St Lois de Hus and Banda de Hus, on whom he won the Telegraaf Prize and placed 7th in the Grand Prix, respectively, in Amsterdam last week.

Dominance in the jumping arena has its perks. Kevin is currently leading a double life as a model in ads for fashion house Gucci; here’s a video shot during the fashion shoot at the Grand Veneur stables of Edward Couperie, with horses owned by Edward and Virginie Couperie.

What’s up with Gucci, you ask? There were no badly-shod people at the Gucci Masters during the Paris Horse Show last month, that’s for sure. Virginie Couperie is official Gucci ambassadoress for the show, and Gucci sponsors international rider and royal family member Charlotte Casiraghi of Monaco. In case you always wondered just how a glamorous a horse show can be, watch this:

So it’s on to Zurich this weekend! You’ll notice that Kevin Staut will be wearing the green and gold arm band on his left arm designating his points leadership. I wonder if Gucci had a hand in designing that too…Judge for yourself when you watch on FEI TV! But you’ll have to watch over breakfast; the jumping starts at 13:45 CET, which means it will begin at 7:45 a.m. on the East Coast of the USA, and earlier in other time zones.

Top photo: Kevin Staut at the Geneva FEI World Cup Qualifier. FEI photo by Kit Houghton.

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Equine Infectious Anemia (EIA) in Missouri: Why Coggins Tests Are Important!


Here’s a press release from the State of Missouri of importance to horse owners all over the United States:

The Missouri Department of Agriculture’s Division of Animal Health confirmed positive test results for Equine Infectious Anemia (EIA) in two horses earlier this month in northeastern Missouri. Department officials have tested 696 other horses, including those located nearby and any that may have been in contact with the infected animals. No further positive cases have been identified.

On January 5, 2011, a Belgian horse in rural Pike County tested positive for EIA. The animal was immediately quarantined, and humanely euthanized following additional testing in mid-January. A second horse on the farm also tested positive for EIA on January 7, 2011. That horse was humanely euthanized, as well.

“Although this disease does not affect humans, it is a disease that can have a devastating impact on our equine industry,” said Director of Agriculture Dr. Jon Hagler. “We will continue to closely monitor the situation and remind horse owners to schedule regular Coggins tests with their veterinarian to screen for this disease.”

EIA is a contagious, viral disease most commonly transmitted through horse flies, deer flies, mosquitoes and gnats. The disease is found in Equine species, including horses, ponies, donkeys and mules, but does not affect humans. There are no known vaccines available to prevent or protect from this disease.

Individuals with questions or concerns about the safety of their livestock following these actions are encouraged to contact the Department with their questions at (573) 751-3377.

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Snow Woes: Standardbred Champion Moni Maker Rescued from Debris of Collapsed Barn; Riding Arena Also Gives Way Under Weight of Winter

I just heard about this on the news and thought I’d share it. This is just rough video; it is provided courtesy of WTNH, Channel 8 in Connecticut. A barn at the famed Lindy Farms collapsed under the weight of snow this morning in Somers, Connecticut. Three horses were trapped inside. One horses was quickly euthanized, and in the video you will see rescuers working on a second who was pulled from the debris of the 200-foot-long barn.

Here’s the report from my local news source, New England Cable News.

Later reports, including more comments from responding veterinarian Peter Conserva, are that the second horse was euthanized as well. A third horse survived and is being cared for.

That third horse is reported to be the great Moni Maker, the record-setting multi-millionaire Hall of Fame Standardbred mare. I believe she is still the all-time high money earner in harness racing. The two dead mares are identified as 1992 Merrie Annabelle winner Lady Starlet and one of her daughters, the 1997 Breeders Crown 2-Year-Old Filly Trot winner My Dolly, according to a report on the disaster on website

Also in Connecticut today, the riding arena collapsed at Silvermine Farm, a hunter/jumper stable in Norwalk. In this photo from the Stamford Advocate, you see farm owner Ken Markosky and what used to be his indoor.

There are some lessons to be learned here: The Advocate reports that Markosky was plowing outside when he heard a noise, which turned out to be the main beam in the arena cracking. Luckily, he was there! He was able to shut off the electricity to the arena and stop the riders from going in. It collapsed a few hours later.

There’s just no end to the ways that snow can affect horses, from preventing deliveries of hay and grain to knocking out electricity that keeps the lights on to making turnout not just risky, but downright impossible.

Please read the article in the Stamford Advocate about the Silvermine arena collapse. The information may help you sometime. The articles suggests that the farm has no place to exercise its horses now, so 38 horses may have to be moved. Think about the effect on their business, and the lessons that are normally given at the farm throughout the winter.

This barn at Lindy Farm in Connecticut collapsed this morning, trapping three horses inside, including champion Moni Maker.

I’m sure you know to shovel and shovel and shovel to make sure there is safe access in and out of your barn, but today’s tragedy brings to mind the necessity of keeping an eye on the roofs of barns and stables too. Shovel out fire hydrants and vents for clothes dryers (and anything else that has a vent–like a kerosene heater), too. There is a lot of snow here in New England.

While you’re at it, shovel out the horse trailer, if you have one, and make sure that you can back up to it and get a horse loaded if you need to get to a vet clinic. This is colic season, after all.

I’m sure that the news I have reported here are only two of more tragedies that occurred around the northeastern USA today. And there’s more snow coming.

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