This July, the Land Rover Great Meadow International will be hosting the very first FEI Nations Cup™ Eventing competition ever held in the United States. Great Meadow has teamed up with one of its sponsors, Equi Cool Down, to provide another first for this exciting event – Emergency Cooling Stations for horses, riders and even spectators.
Weather can be fairly unpredictable at times; however we do know from statistics that Virginia in July can bring temperatures between 85°F and 99°F with heat indexes in the triple digits. Heat stress, heat exhaustion and even heatstroke can happen to anyone regardless of age or fitness, human or equine – and it is life threatening. Holding an equestrian competition this time of the year always runs the risk of heat dangers. In order to mitigate this risk, Equi Cool Down® is providing Emergency Cooling Stations throughout multiple locations on the grounds for both horses and humans, riders and spectators alike, so that everyone can enjoy the first Nations Cup on American soil regardless of the weather.
Equi Cool Down® developed its patented Instant Cooling Wraps with both humans and equines in mind. Using only water from any source and any temperature, these wraps need no refrigeration to get from 16° to 22° colder and they will stay cold using only reapplication of water and air.
“There have been many shows in the past that have had severe issues with Hyperthermia in both horses and riders in the past. Most have been forced to simply move the show date to before or after the summer months – but that was not a possibility for this show. We are very excited to be able to help – and to show the equestrian community that cooling can be done safely, easily and effectively,” says Jennifer Campbell, President of Equi Cool Down®, Inc.
During exercise, heat generation in a horse can be increased as much as 50% and numerous cases of heat-related deaths occur in horses each year. Heat stress can lead to serious problems such as seizures and damage to horses’ heart, muscles and kidneys and in many cases, death. According to the article “Heat Stress in Horses,” “A rectal temperature above 105°F is abnormal in any horse and poses a dangerous situation; rapid cooling measures should be initiated at once. The higher the internal temperature, the more metabolic demands are placed on their system; this metabolism needs to be fueled by oxygen. If body temperature exceeds 106°F, the body’s demand for oxygen might surpass the amount that can be supplied by the respiratory system. An oxygen deficit then occurs in the tissues (hypoxia), potentially leading to kidney, heart, liver and brain damage. At temperatures greater than 107°F, a horse in severe heat stress can go into convulsions or a coma, then die. The objective is to avoid these scenarios.”
The Emergency Cooling Stations will be set up in both the stabling and marketplace areas. To learn more about Equi Cool Down®Instant Cooling Wraps, visit their website at http://www.equicooldown.com/ and follow them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/equicooldown/ for updates about the show and event. Great Meadow International is hosting the first ever FEI Nations Cup™ CICO*** and is the site of the 2016 U.S. Eventing Team Olympic Prep leading up to Rio.