Parker County Today July 2016 - Page 34

JULY 2016 PA R K E R C O U N T Y T O D AY bacon.” Campbell said, adding that recreational horses, because of financial considerations and lack of time constraints, are generally treated by stall rest and old-fashioned walking. Injuries or conditions treated by Aquatred include bowed tendons, pulled ligaments, saucer fractures, bucked shins and foot problems. The therapy is also considered beneficial for the animal’s cardiovascular system, providing conditioning that minimizes the possibility of bleeding during performance. “It’s a very good tool,” Campbell said. “I’ve been into horses now for 40 years, mostly quarter horses, and I trained cutting horses (still do) for 35 years, and I’ve seen numerous injuries over the years. Aquatred works; that’s why more people [are using it].” The Aquatred is, in essence, a submerged treadmill incorporating the benefits of a whirlpool and swimming pool with hot and cold water allowing for different treatments. It allows the horse to exercise in a controlled environment, an environment where stress and strain are greatly reduced. 32 “You walk the horse in,” Campbell explained. “It’s kind of a ‘V’ where they start and they’ll walk down into it. Ours is the deepest one around, that I know of. Ours is like 5 and a half feet deep; most are only 4 and a half feet deep. The deepness just means more buoyancy in the salt water.” Campbell said the 1012-foot treadmill is in the middle of the apparatus. Speed settings are adjusted as the sessions progress, as are water depths. At the outset a horse may be quite leery of the foreign contraption and must be eased into the new therapeutic environment. “There are a few that will panic on you big time,” Campbell said. Sessions generally run, at most, 20 minutes. “First time it’s way less,” he said. “If you get five or six minutes and they’re comfortable, you shut it down and take them off.” Finally, the animal is bathed to remove sea and epsom salts and chlorine. Conditioner is applied to prevent dulling of the coat.