Spillers is urging owners and riders of horses aged 15 and over who suffer with Cushing’s to participate in a survey to help develop better understanding of the condition.

It is also hoped that the study will help to improve how the condition is managed.

People who own and/or manage horses with Cushing’s, including those who have done in the past, are invited to complete the survey.

Cushing’s — full medical name pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID) — is a common condition in older horses and ponies and can be linked to a range of problems including laminitis, weight loss, delayed coat shedding and a long curly coat.

The survey is being conducted by the University of Melbourne, Australia, with support from the WALTHAM™ Equine Studies Group, which underpins the science behind the Spillers brand, and in collaboration with Queensland University of Technology, The Royal Veterinary College, Boehringer Ingelheim Vetmedica and The Liphook Equine Hospital (UK).

It forms part of a major international project to improve the understanding and knowledge of the fundamental causes of Cushing’s, in order to improve early diagnosis, treatment, husbandry and nutritional management.

Researchers hope that the short, anonymous online survey will enable them to better understand how owners make treatment decisions and which decisions have the best outcomes.

It will provide an insight into how owners comply with administering medication and their capacity to feed horses with Cushing’s separately, as well as the costs and the side-effects of medications.

“The survey will provide valuable information to help improve the healthcare and management of PPID horses,” said Clare Barfoot RNutr, marketing and research and development director at Spillers.

“It will also give us a clearer insight into current levels of knowledge amongst horse owners and how best to provide practical, targeted information on PPID.”

This survey is one of a number of Spillers’ research collaborations aimed at helping to benefit the lives of senior horses in the UK and around the world.

“We are proud to be involved with collaborations that bring together world-leading equine veterinary, nutrition and research experts interested in working on healthcare in the older horse,” said Clare.

“And we are committed to continuing to undertake work that helps support the wellbeing, performance and longevity of senior horses.”

Complete the survey here

Find out what’s inside the latest issue of Your Horse

Get the latest issue

Check out our latest subscription offer