Events & Newsletters

Concerned about the risk of Gastric Ulcers to your horse?

Diagnosis & treatment of Gastric Ulcers will be discussed by Richard Hepburn BVSc MS(Hons) CertEM(IntMed) DipACVIM MRCVS and Penbode Equine vets, with a specific focus on prevention & treatment strategies.


Sources have indicated that up to 50% of leisure horses & foals have shown to have gastric ulcers with a range of severity, with this rising to over 60% in competition horses & around 80-90% of racehorses.


Wednesday 29th Jun 2016, 7:00pm for 7:15pm

Holsworthy Memorial Hall, Holsworthy



Tickets in advance only £7, including discussion & a subsidised 2 course meal.


To purchase your tickets call 01822613838 / 01837506070 / 01409255549


To save you time, you can now make your main meal choice when securing your place:


Lasagne OR Vegetarian Lasagne, salad & garlic bread


Are you concerned about sweet itch, sarcoids, melanomas, mud fever or rain scald?

Diagnosis & prevention of skin problems such as sweet itch, sarcoids, melanomas, mud fever & rain scald will be discussed by Penbode Equine vets, with a specific focus on prevention & treatment strategies.


Tuesday 1st Mar 2016, 7:00pm for 7:15pm

The Grange Equestrian Centre, Okehampton


Wednesday 2nd Mar 2016, 7:00pm for 7:15pm

Tall Trees Arena, Camelford


Thursday 3rd Mar 2016, 7:00pm for 7:15pm

Holsworthy Memorial Hall, Holsworthy


Tickets in advance only £7, including discussion & a subsidised 2 course meal.

To purchase your tickets:

For Okehampton call: 01837 506 070

For Holsworthy call: 01409 255 549

For Camelford call: 01409 255 549


To save you time, you can now make your main meal choice when securing your place:


Okehampton: Chilli, cottage pie or veg pie

Camelford: Veg pasty & chips or meat pasty & chips


Holsworthy: Veg lasagne & garlic bread or meat lasagne & garlic bread

Strangles outbreak notification - Guidelines for horse owners from Penbode Equine vets

We have received phone calls from concerned horse owners wanting to discuss the facts about €˜Strangles€™.  Although I am sure you will respect that we are unable to breach client confidentiality with regards to specific incidences, we want to do our best to give good advice. We hope that the following notes may be of assistance.  If you have any further questions please call Penbode Equine vets or EqWest Equine vets on 01409 255549 / 01822 613838 / 01837 506070.

What is the causing agent of €˜Strangles€™?
A bacteria called Streptococcus equi equi.

What is the incubation period?
This is variable. Typically this is 2-21 days.

How is it transmitted?
Typically this is by contact with nasal discharges or with material from burst abscesses. This can be by direct nose to nose contact of horses, or via water troughs or mangers. It is also easily spread by contaminated clothing and utensils.

Up to 10% of previously infected horses can be €˜silent carriers€™: they shed contagious bacteria into the environment without actually showing any clinical signs of disease.

What are the clinical signs?
The classical signs are an increased rectal temperature (greater than 38.5 degrees C), loss of appetite, depression and cough. As the infection progresses, a thick creamy nasal discharge can develop, as well as pain, swelling and abscess formation of the lymph nodes in the jaw (sub-mandibular) or throat (parotid) areas. Young animals are most susceptible.

Milder signs such as short term fever, dullness, loss of appetite and mild nasal discharge are increasingly common and may also be evidence of a previous or ongoing infection.

On rare occasions Strangles can lead to life-threatening conditions such as a spread of bacteria in the blood stream (€˜Bastard€™ strangles), or inflammation of the blood vessels with swelling (oedema) and/ or small areas of bleeding in the limbs, sheath, gums and eyes.


How is it diagnosed?

There are several methods for detecting the bacteria:

  • nasopharyngeal (deep throat) swabs,

  • Swabs of material from abscesses,

  • Collection of a sample from the guttural pouches with an endoscope (guttural pouch lavage).


Blood tests can also be used to detect raised or rising antibodies.


It is important to note some of these tests are better than others and that none are 100% accurate, some giving false negative results. Depending on the stage of the disease and on the type of clinical sign shown, several different tests may occasionally need to be run over a few days in order to get an accurate diagnosis.

What is the treatment?

This is based around nursing care and anti-inflammatory medication.

Hot packs can encourage abscess bursting and drainage. Cleaning and flushing of ruptured abscesses will speed the resolution.
Antibiotic treatment may be appropriate in some but not all cases.


Following recovery, a guttural pouch lavage should be performed to confirm complete recovery, as up to 10% of apparently recovered horses can continue carrying and shedding this bacteria silently for months or years.

What is the prevention?
Strict biosecurity policies:

  • Quarantine new horses for three weeks prior to entry to the main yard.
  • Discuss with your vet the value of ensuring that new horses have a blood test in the week preceding entry into the main yard.
  • Discuss with your vet the value of routine screening blood tests of horses already on the yard to identify carriers.

What do you do if an outbreak is confirmed or strongly suspected?

·         Prevent horses leaving or entering the yard until you have spoken to your vet.  

  • alert all visitors to the yard.

·         Speak to your vet to help institute a barrier nursing and isolation protocol for your yard.

·          If unclear, investigate the source of infection.


·       Refer to HBLB Strangles guidelines in the Codes of Practice ( ) and Strategy To Eradicate and Prevent Strangles (STEPS at .

Although there is a vaccine available in the UK, it should not be used in the face of an outbreak. It can however be used as part of strangles prevention strategy. If you are interested, we recommend a yard risk assessment be performed at your yard.


If you have any further questions do not hesitate to contact Penbode Equine vets or EqWest Equine vets, Holsworthy 01409 255549 / Okehampton 01837 506070 / Tavistock 01822 613838,

New venture – same friendly, high quality, good value, equine only care

We pleased to announce our news of a new exciting development which will enable us to enhance the care that we provide you and your horse.

Penbode Equine vets and EqWest Equine Veterinary Clinic have both provided an equine only service in your area for many years. Penbode is one of the most established practices in the UK with over 175 years of history. EqWest was the first equine only practice in Devon and Cornwall. We are all horse people, having owned and ridden horses, and have a shared passion for high quality veterinary care for horses. With this in mind, Jeremy Hyde has chosen Penbode Equine vets to be the practice to take the legacy of EqWest forward. David Rowlands, Penbode Equine vets director, welcomes EqWest to become a branch of Penbode. Jeremy, Kieran, Hermione and the team would like to thank their loyal clients for their ongoing support and friendship and look forward to continuing to work with you.

We are all committed to maintaining the same personal service that you are used to.  You will be able to see the same vets, and speak to the same receptionists and nurses. We will look to pass on the benefits of economies of scale as we strive to provide friendly, high quality, value for money equine only care.

  • FREE VISITS for equine dentistry - other veterinary work can be performed at the same time*

  •  20% OFF FLU +/- TETANUS VACCINATIONS when performed at the same time as dentistry*

  • HALF PRICE AREA DAYS* (* Terms and conditions apply)

The Penbode Equine branches at Holsworthy and Okehampton, and the EqWest branch at Lamerton will operate as always. Penbode also has branches in Camelford, Bude/Stratton and Bradworthy where medicines can be collected. We offer 10% discount if medicines are paid for at the time of collection at ALL branches.

Our equine only veterinary team is the same as before:

 David Rowlands, Gemma Stokes, Nathalie van Heesewijk, Sophie Fulton

Jeremy Hyde, Kieran O€™Brien, Hermione Finch

Both Penbode Equine and EqWest clients will be familiar with Hermione who has lived and worked in the area for many years. There will be EqWest and Penbode Equine vets on call at night and weekends, ensuring you receive great emergency cover, 365 days a year 24 hours a day.

Between us we have over 100 years of equine veterinary experience and provide a complete service in equine care. All our vets are equine only and each has their own areas of particular interest and expertise. Working together will enable us to increase the level of care available to you and your horse.

If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to call us via your usual branch.

David Rowlands    Tel: 01409 255 549 or 01837 506 070                           Jeremy Hyde Tel: 01822 613 838   

FREE visit with Penbode Equine Dentistry

Penbode Equine Dentistry is pleased to offer FREE visits for dental work*. Our FREE visit offer includes other vet work if done at the same time.

Regular dental checks are extremely important to dental health. This applies as much to your horse as it does to you. Penbode Equine Dentistry provides fully mobile complete dental care, and now you can save money with FREE visit fees.

Being qualified equine vets, Penbode Equine Dentistry provides the additional bonus of being able to sedate horses when required and to legally perform all procedures such as wolf teeth and cheek teeth extractions and treating infection of the teeth roots, in a safe and stress free manner with the aid of pain relief and antibiotics.

Only £55/mouth inc VAT, alongside FREE visit fees.

If needed, using our high quality portable digital X-ray machine, X- rays can be taken €˜stable side€™ to aid in diagnosing conditions such as infection of the teeth roots of horse fractures or sinusitis.

You can save even more with our discount offers.


Only £50/mouth inc VAT for 2 horses at the same time

Only £45/mouth inc VAT for 3 or more horses at the same time

phone:  01409255549 or 01837506070 to book an appointment


Click on for more details

* Terms and conditions apply.

Horse vets serving Holsworthy, Okehampton, Tavistock, Launceston, Bude / Stratton, Camelford / Bodmin and Bradworthy
British Equestrian Federation ABVA The Pony Club FEI Duchy College Holsworthy Riding Club Safer Horse Rescues RCVS Equine