I could not figure out how to comment on what Jean had posted. Having a beautiful chocolate Palomino that I sold to a wonderful couple being diagnosed with DSLD was quite a shock and getting an upset call from the owners was no fun either. Long story short , it turned out to be Lyme's disease and the horse is still doing well years later after treatment for Lymes. So do not lose hope too fast.

The problem this illustrates is the willingness of the Veterinary community to quickly diagnose any Peruvian horse lameness as DSLD. This became a big problem with the Association endorsing the false DSLD protocal which was then presented at the national vet. meeting years ago.

Since Mr. Austin has replied to this topic I would appreciate hearing the Association position on this topic. Also why the Association continues to not publish the DSLD Misdiagnosis report.

The" Misdiagnosis of DSLD Report" can be read at this link;


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Mr. Kruger - The NAPHA Board of Directors is currently working on a letter we intend to publish on our website, Peruvian Horse World, and mail out to veterinarians and veterinarian schools regarding a portion of the veterinarian community's instinct to jump to a DSLD diagnosis when they are presented a lame Peruvian Horse. I personally have seen many cases of horses that were diagnosed with DSLD only to find out that they had an injury and needed to time to heal. As we all know, this misdiagnosis of DSLD is hurting the reputation of our breed and the board members feel very strongly that we need to defend our horses. This letter is the first step towards that goal.


I am glad to hear some action may finally be taken to defend the breed. As the letter appears to not be composed yet why does the NAPHA not place the "The Misdiagnosis of DSLD and injury in the Peruvian Horse" report on it's website and on PHW. Also "The Alamo Pintado Suspensory Ligament Desmitis Report"contains good information on this topic and the NAPHA could check on placing this report on it's web site and also on PHW.

Placing the two reports on the mentioned web sites could be the first two steps taken to defend the breed and could be done immediately and give a basis for the proposed letter to follow up.

Is there a reason the NAPHA has not already placed these reports on it's sites? What could be the objections to doing so now?

Thank you for your input. Please know that our compass is set on defending this great horse and we are taking steps in that direction.

The most important message we need to get across to owners and veterinarians right now is that our horses are being misdiagnosed at an alarming rate throughout the country. 

I politely ask that if you, or anyone else, has additional input on how we defend our breed that you share it with me directly at chris.austin23@icloud.com and I will share it with the other board members. 

Why is it requested input be shared in private rather than being available for all to read and possibly contribute their ideas here on PHW?

The questions from the previous reply were not addressed.

Is there a reason the NAPHA has not already placed these reports on it's sites? What could be the objections to doing so now? Why can these reports not be part of "taking steps in that direction."?

In the July BOD minutes "

Request from Researcher/Dr Brounts:
Breed neutral genetic research is being funded and we have been asked to participate. We will ensure that all  communications are very careful about any wording. We approved the proposed letter. Larry Redman will get the authorization letter to Dr. Brounts. "

Could the details of this request and what was approved in the proposed letter be explained here? Is it wise for the NAPHA to be endorsing another research when the past one endorsed brought such a negative cloud over the Peruvian breed?


I requested the conversation be continued in private because experience has shown me that social media is typically not a communication medium that produces constructive or beneficial communication in situations such as these. It typically lends to negative feedback that is based on misunderstandings of the facts and stays in cyberspace for all to read for years to come. On the other hand, I have experienced that direct, private, and respectful communication with someone that you want to communicate with can lead to meaningful change and understanding. I hope that everyone that has a concern knows that they can reach out to me or another board member and expect your issue to be brought up to the entire board for discussion.


The board wants to use the information presented in both of the documents to create a more recent document that can be sent out and published.


NAPHA is not endorsing or financially supporting the research project. In hindsight, the minutes could have been more clear in how we were asked to "participate". NAPHA only provided a letter indicating that  we expect this study to focus on other breeds in addition to the Peruvian Horse and that we thought this study would be beneficial to all affected breeds. Dr. Brounts used this letter to apply for a grant for the project and would have applied for the funding even without our letter.  Many breeders are providing DNA to the study.  I personally communicated with Dr. Brounts and expressed my concern of the misdiagnosis of DSLD and I also shared that I would be curious to see if the DNA showed that horses that were predisposed to metabolic syndrome showed higher cases of diagnosed DSLD. That type of finding could prove to be huge for our breed.


Again, if you would like to chat more, please call me or email me.


Thank you,



I will have to disagree. There is already considerable misrepresentation/misunderstanding of the facts in the social media and around the internet. I fail to see how placing and discussing positive defense of the breed on the most popular means of communications today, social media, could not be a good step to be taking. PHW could be used to communicate with and educate many people quickly. Whereas your desired  direct, private  method will never reach as many and will take much longer.

The publishing of the two reports mentioned which do not need a NAPHA update/change would reach a large number and be a very effective beginning of a defense of the breed.

The NAPHA is endorsing the Brounts research by participating. Since the reply provided no information about this research, the internet did. Here is the description which can be found;  http://www.akhal-teke.org/ataa-news/previous/2 

The proposal can be found down the page under the title:

DSLD research in Akhal-Teke horses

Since the funding would have been applied for without the NAPHA letter why was such a letter given. Why would the NAPHA care to participate in research of Akhal-Teke horses?

To quote from the proposal: "We have heard back again from the Morris Animal Foundation about our grant proposal looking into the genetics of degenerative suspensory ligament desmitis (DSLD). Our review was looked upon very favorable. They thought it was very innovative to compare the DNA of the Peruvian Paso horse with the Akhal Teke horse in this condition. We have been asked to resubmit the grant again in July, 2015. One of the recommendations given to us to succeed next time was to collect the DNA samples of the horses identified with DSLD, as well as the identified control horses in the Peruvian Paso horse. "

So the NAPHA has again endorsed the presence of DSLD in the Peruvian horse and allowed the use of the Peruvian horse as a control sample of horses affected with DSLD.

This is extremely disappointing and the conclusion that the NAPHA is not really serious about defending the breed can be made. Hopefully other Peruvian horse owners will be outraged by these decisions and work to change the direction currently being taken.

It seems like with all the negative publicity generated about Peruvian Horses from past research projects, that even the smallest participation in new research would be avoided. All of the past research projects started out confidential until more funding was needed and then they went public quickly. Since NAPHA now owns the PHW website this seems like the perfect place to just clear up a few basic things and keep the rumors to a minimum. Transparency is always the best policy.

Since Dr Brount was applying for the grant anyway why wouldn't we just let her do it? Why did we have to be involved?

Since the NAPHA BoD represents the members, why don't you post the letter sent to Dr Brount here, so the members can see for themselves what our level of participation is?

What is the title of the study? If its research at a university and they are applying for a grant, the research has a title. 

This discussion started because of the incredible damage the misdiagnosis of injury and dsld has done to our breed from past research... who will be diagnosing Peruvian Horses for this study?

There is nothing negative here. I think by simply being transparent and answering a few basic questions, it will eliminate a lot of confusion. As members we should know.

Rich Ovenburg


From my standpoint, all I have heard from "official channels" is denial and defense of the breed. Yes, there's a ton of misdiagnosis - and I have been fighting that issue for many years. BUT there are also ACTUAL diagnosis and affected Peruvian Horses that the "powers that be" have denied exist. How arrogant to say that a problem affecting ALL breeds of horses, doesn't exist in the Peruvian breed! 

For many years, there was a horse dealer here in Wisconsin that was the dumping grounds for breeders all over the North America. Horses that should have been culled, NOT sold as riding horses to people who were cashing out their retirement funds to buy what was supposed to be the "perfect horse"! In a 2 year period, we had over a dozen genuinely affected horses put down in about 100 mile radius. There were a few others - a very small percentage - that were misdiagnosed and lived/are still living, a happy full, useful lives because of vets like Travis Henry and Bob Magnus giving second opinions. We also had a Club - whose sole purpose was education on the breed - recommending owners get second opinions.

BUT here's the cold truth - too many people felt that just because they COULD breed horses, they SHOULD breed horses. Some breeders saw the dollar signs of indiscriminate breeding and ignored the ramifications of their actions. Had the Registry and the responsible breeders "self-policed" the irresponsible breeders by creating an approved breeding class of horses like in the Friesian breed, we wouldn't be discussing any of this today! This public relations nightmare exists because of decades of denial and decades of arrogance!

You want to stand up for the breed? You want to create a great marketing campaign? You want to fix the reputation of the Peruvian Horse? You need to start by admitting there IS a problem and produce a better product. That's Public Relations/Marketing 101 people! For those of us who are NOT independently wealthy, our horses are NOT disposable. It is NOT okay to own a horse for 2 years and then have to euthanize them. Its NOT okay to spend as much on a horse as we spent on our tow vehicle, our horse trailer, (you fill in the blank) and lose that investment after a few years of use. Its NOT okay to ignore those of us who BUY your horses.

Let's face it, very few breeders are buying horses from other breeders. Who do you sell the majority of your horses to? US! The average person who has a few horses in their back yard or at a boarding facility because we like to ride. The people who think $3000, $5000, $7000, $10000 is a LARGE sum of money! We don't show. We don't breed. We don't make a living out of the horse industry. We just ride our horses and enjoy the comradery of others who do the same. The people who, after the merger/demise of the PPHRNA, have been minimalized.

I was very lucky to have come by my mare. I am not a breeder, trainer, or have any inclination to show.   I can tell you as just an average horse owner, if I were to have gone looking for a particular breed of horse, a Peruvian probably would not have been my choice.  Google Peruvian Paso and what do you get.  Endless articles from every which direction all regarding DSLD.  Not very good publicity.  

Would I ever own another one?  You bet.   Without a doubt.  However that is only for the fact that I have witnessed this disease in other breeds of horses.  

I am just afraid for the horses that are guilty by association.  Just because they are Peruvian or Peruvian crosses that the first time they limp, DSLD and a death sentence.


When searching the Peruvian breed DSLD does come up.  Yet I am at a complete loss as to how many of these posters have had the horse diagnosed as having  DSLD.    I want to read along to find out what blood tests were done, results of x-rays, ultrasounds, MRI's , nuclear  scintigraphy, thermology  was there any other maladies disease etc that played a role.  How was it determined that a horse had DSLD.  As a result, I've started reading very carefully to what people actually say and completely disregard blanket statements with no viable evidence to back that statement up.

My take away after reading many such posts is that people can come to any diagnosis they want to as long as they don't have evidence to prove otherwise and here's the bloodlines.  I am very, very wary of people like this as I have no way of knowing how many other horses these people may have lamed.  How this is acceptable is beyond me. 

This is the internet and it's easy to forget that you never know who is plodding away on that keyboard.  It is also full of groups  that "monitor" exactly what will be posted.  Wouldn't want anyone questioning them now would they.  

It would be helpful to have open discussion with those experienced, knowledgeable in the breed and any breed affected by DSLD as well as members who are researchers, veterinarians, and farriers that are able to unselfishly donate a little time to help bring clarity to what is or isn't DSLD .

I will congratulate Miss Elsey on her very wise post.  I hope the NAPHA will read and be as wise in bringing clarity to this topic.

It is time to have some positive post from positive people about the breed.Thanks to Miss Elsey and my fried Brad Kruger.




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