WALTHAM is a leading scientific authority on the nutrition and health of companion animals. The WALTHAM Equine Studies Group, which is headed by Professor Pat Harris MA PhD,VetMB DipECVCN MRCVS, is dedicated to advancing the science of horse nutrition and provides the scientific support for the SPILLERS brand. By collaborating with key research institutes and universities around the world its work remains at the forefront of equine nutritional science. Visit the WALTHAM website to find out more.
- Meet the head of the Equine Studies Group and Director of Science at SPILLERS
Pat has been interested in horses from an early age and currently has 2 of her own. In the past she represented the Pony Club in various regional activities in the UK and in a number of student riding competitions throughout Europe. She also obtained her Half Blue for riding whilst at University. Since qualifying as a Veterinary Surgeon, Pat has also been involved in the Veterinary care of horses at several three-day events, and currently serves on the BEF’s World Class performance’s Scientific Advisory Board as well as the Veterinary Advisory Committee of World Horse Welfare.
After qualifying from the University of Cambridge Veterinary School in 1983, Dr. Pat Harris completed her PhD at the Animal Health Trust in Newmarket into the Equine Rhabdomyolysis Syndrome. She joined the WALTHAM Centre for Pet Nutrition in 1995 and is responsible for the research carried out by the WALTHAM Equine Studies group in collaboration with experts at institutes and universities around the world. This research provides the science behind the SPILLERS brand. She is also an Adjunct Professor of Equine Studies at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, an Honorary Research Fellow at the University of Liverpool, an Honorary Professor in Equine Nutrition, University of Nottingham, School of Veterinary Medicine and Science, and an Adjunct Professor at University of Queensland Australia.
Dr. Harris is a European Specialist in Veterinary Clinical and Comparative Nutrition, in addition to being a Past President of the British Equine Veterinary Association. She is also a member of the board of American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition and the US based equine Science Society as well as the Vice president of the European Society of Veterinary and Comparative Nutrition. She is also a member of the Scientific advisory group to the British Equestrian Federation’s World Class Performance team. She is the author or co-author of over 500 scientific papers, abstracts and book chapters and recently was the co-editor of, and an author in, the 2013 textbook Equine Applied and Clinical Nutrition: Health, Welfare and Nutrition. She was also a co-author of the two nutrition chapters in the revised 2014 Equine Sports Medicine & Surgery textbook.
- Meet our Research and Development Manager
Clare Barfoot BSc (Hons) RNutr
Clare graduated with a degree in Animal Science from The University of Newcastle upon Tyne having always shown a passion for animals but particularly horses. Horses and ponies have always played a central role in Clare’s life after being born into a horse mad family. Through Pony Club and beyond Clare has tried her hand sometimes successfully, sometimes not at most equestrian disciplines. Nowadays Clare’s riding endeavours are restricted to schooling and hacking on her Welsh Section D mare Missy (aka the pocket rocket!) who she backed and brought on herself.
Clare started her career as a pig and poultry nutritionist where she learnt to formulate and design nutritional products before moving to SPILLERS which enabled her to combine her passion for horses and nutrition. Clare is a registered equine nutritionist with the Association of Nutrition and today has a pivotal role in developing our feeds, looking after all our iconic recipes, overseeing our care-line and working very closely with Dr. Pat Harris to steer our extensive research program where she has co-authored numerous peer-reviewed papers on equine nutrition and management. With a particular interest in laminitis Clare sits on the WALTHAM International Laminitis and Obesity symposium where her role is to translate the science from our research into practical advice for horse owners and into product innovation so our products remain at the forefront of nutritional thinking.
As well as Clare’s role for SPILLERS she sits on the British Equestrian Trade Association’s Feed Committee to ensure the needs of the industry are represented at national level, she is also sits on the British Horse Society’s Nutrition Advisory Group helping to improve nutritional education for horse owners, grooms and instructors.
- SPILLERS Scientific Studies
As part of our commitment to furthering our understanding of equine nutrition, as well as identifying of practical ways of improving the health and welfare of horses though correct feeding we have taken part in the following studies:
Bruynsteen L. Moons C.P.H, Janssens G. P. J., Harris P. A., Vandevelde K., Lefère L., Duchateau L. and Hesta M. (2016) Level of energy restriction alters body condition score and morphometric profile in obese Shetland ponies Vet J 2016 (1) 61- 66
Smith, S., Harris, P. A., & Menzies‐Gow, N. J. (2016) Comparison of the in‐feed glucose test and the oral sugar test. Equine veterinary journal. 48 224-227
Mastellar S. L. , Moffet A. , Harris P. A. , & Urschel K. L. (2016) Effects of threonine supplementation on whole-body protein synthesis and plasma metabolites in growing and mature horses. Veterinary Journal, 207, pp. 147-153.
Harris P (2016) Food for thought. Editorial. Equine Vet Educ 28 (3) 121-122
Longland A, Barfoot C, Harris P (2016) , Effects of grazing muzzles on intakes of dry matter and water-soluble carbohydrates by ponies grazing spring, summer and autumn swards, as well as autumn swards of different heights Journal of Equine Veterinary Science 40 26-33.
Bamford, N. J., Potter, S. J., Harris, P. A. and Bailey, S. R. (2016), Effect of increased adiposity on insulin sensitivity and adipokine concentrations in horses and ponies fed a high fat diet, with or without a once daily high glycaemic meal. Equine Veterinary Journal, 48: 368–373
Bamford, N. J., Potter, S. J., Baskerville, C. L., Harris, P. A., & Bailey, S. R. (2016). Effect of increased adiposity on insulin sensitivity and adipokine concentrations in different equine breeds adapted to cereal-rich or fat-rich meals. The Veterinary Journal, 214, 14-20.
Ellen K, Zehnder C , Pfister K , Gerhards H , Sauter-Louis C , Harris P (2016) Field study on risk factors for free fecal water in pleasure horses Journal of equine Veterinary Science 44 32- 36.
Longland A, Barfoot C, Harris P (2016) Efficacy of wearing grazing muzzles for 10 hours per day on controlling bodyweight in pastured ponies Journal of Equine Veterinary Science 45 22 – 27.
Potter S. J. , Bamford N.J. , Harris P.A. and Bailey S. R. (2016) Incidence of laminitis and survey of dietary plus management practices in pleasure horses and ponies in south eastern Australia. Australian Vet Journal 94 427 – 432.
Harris PA (2016) Nutritional Management for Avoidance of Pasture-Associated Laminitis. In Equine Laminitis Belknap JK (ed) Wiley & Sons p436
Harris P (2016) Nutrition Tips for reducing the risk of gastric ulcers In proceedings of the Jumping Amsterdam Veterinary Sport Horse Congress
Harris P (2016) Feeding and management to reduce the risk of the Equine Rhabdomyolysis syndrome. In proceedings of the Jumping Amsterdam Veterinary Sport Horse Congress
Harris P (2016) Nutrition Tips for reducing the risk of colic In proceedings of the Jumping Amsterdam Veterinary Sport Horse Congress
Dougal K, Harris P, Girdwood SE, Creevey CJ, Curtis GC, Barfoot C, Argo C McG & Newbold CJ (2016) A potential association of the Streptococcaceae family and an obese state in horses and ponies In Proceedings of the 8th European Workshop on Equine Nutrition 16-7th June Dijon France p 21- 23
Moore-colyer M , Crosthwaite SK and Harris PA (2016) The effect of soaking on the bacterial profile of UK meadow and perennial rye grass (lolium Perenne) hay for horses. In Proceedings of the 8th European Workshop on Equine Nutrition 16-7th June Dijon France p 53-55
Williams A , Moore-colyer M & Harris PA (2016) The effect of soaking on the populations of acidic bacteria found on UK meadow hay- possible implication of equine gastric ulceration. In Proceedings of the 8th European Workshop on Equine Nutrition 16-7th June Dijon France 56- 58
Brown, H., D. Marlin, and P. Harris. "An investigation into the daily level of voluntary activity of stabled riding school horses." Comparative Exercise Physiology
Andrews, F. M., Larson, C. and Harris, P. Nutritional management of gastric ulceration. Equine Veterinary Education. doi: 10.1111/eve.12495
Harris, P. A., and J. L. L. Rivero. "Nutritional considerations for equine rhabdomyolysis syndrome." Equine Veterinary Education.
Harris, P., and C. Dunnett. "Nutritional tips for veterinarians." Equine Veterinary Education
Luthersson N, Mannfalk M, Parkin T. D. H. & Harris P. Laminitis: Risk factors and outcome in a group of Danish horses JEVS
Potter S. J. , Bamford N.J. , Harris P.A. and Bailey S. R.(2016) Prevalence of obesity and owners perceptions of body condition in pleasure horses and ponies in south eastern Australia
Menzies-Gow N.J, Harris P.A. , Potter K. and Elliott J. Prospective cohort study evaluating risk factors for the development of pasture-associated laminitis in the UK EVJ
Knowles, E. J., Harris, P. A., Elliott, J., & Menzies‐Gow, N. J. Use of the oral sugar test in ponies when performed with or without prior fasting. Equine Veterinary Journal.
P.A. Harris , A.D. Ellis , M.J. Fradinho , A. Jansson , V. Julliand , N. Luthersson , A.S. Santos and I. Vervuert Review of feeding conserved forage to horses: recent advances and recommendations. Animal.
Morrison PK, Harris PA, Maltin CA, Grove-White D McG. Argo C McG 2017 Perceptions of obesity and management practices in a UK leisure-based population of horse owners and enthusiasts Journal Equine Veterinary Science 53 19–29
Luthersson N, Mannfalk M, Parkin T. D. H. & Harris P. 2017 Laminitis: Risk factors and outcome in a group of Danish horses Journal of Equine Veterinary Science 53 June 68 -73