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2017 will be the year when all British foals will be tested at registration for HWSD. This is to enable the owner to plan any future mating’s and will also enable any future owner, to make informed decisions for that pony through its lifetime.

So far over 300 ponies have been tested through the BCPS Office and the numbers supplied by our Secretary are:

N/N    243   (Negative)

N/HWSD    50   (Carriers)

HWSD/HWSD    9   (Positive)

Of these were Stallions 75, Mares 117, Geldings 5, Colt Foals 26 and Filly Foals 79.

9 positive tests give us an idea of the percentage of ponies with this condition which is low and while it is difficult in these early stages to face, we must for the reputation of our ponies, breeders and owners, continue to TEST our ponies and try our best not to breed any more foals with HWSD.

The CPBS tested all foals bred in Ireland in 2016 and less than 1% were positive for HWSD.

Please contact me if you would like any information or help regarding HWSD.






Update from Sue Gillingham, 29.09.16


Excerpt from the notes of the CPBS Council Meeting held on 20 September 2016 regarding HWSD.

‘The breeding and inspection committee selected the inspectors for the upcoming inspections. The committee agreed that all colts which are vetted will be tested for HWSD (Hoof Wall Separation Disease) on the day. The fee of €30 will be payable on the day. The result of the HWSD will be stamped on the passport. A discussion took place about the percentage of foals testing positive for HWSD and it was agreed that a subcommittee would be assigned to keep track of these ponies’.


Next Colt inspections taking place on 30th September 2016 at Ballinasloe, Co Galway.

Hoof Wall Separation Disease

HWSD Update from Sue Gillingham - August 2016

At the BCPS Council Meeting held on 30th August 2016 it was voted by the BCPS Council to HWSD Test all foals in 2017 and going forward. However the Council felt unable to vote for over stamping of the ponies Passport with the test result.

If members feel strongly about any part of the HWSD information given, please feel free to contact

Sue Gillingham   sue.gillingham1(at)


Thanks to our Secretary we can publish the latest figures for Hoof Wall Testing which are:

PONIES TESTED THROUGH THE BCPS OFFICE   -   210 (of which 66 were stallions) to August 2016

167 ponies were tested N/N

35 ponies were tested N/HWSD

8 ponies tested HWSD/HWSD

HWSD Update - June 2016

The CPBS have recently amended their Principles to cater for the testing for HWSD.

We may need to hold an EGM to adopt these Principles into our Rules, but as the UK has elected to leave the EU it may also be the case that we do not need to. At this moment in time we just don’t know what is to happen but we hope to keep you informed of any decisions as we learn of them.

These Principles state that to be eligible for Class 1 or Class 2 ponies born/registered in 2016 must be tested for HWSD, or be the progeny of a mare and stallion that are both tested through their appropriate Society as non-carriers, (N/N). The HWSD status of the pony is to be stamped in the lifetime document. This means that ponies born/registered in 2016 that do not have their passports stamped will not be eligible to move out of Class 3.

We the BCPS will have to follow the CPBS Principles as they as the Parent body determine the Principles for Registration which all daughter Societies such as ourselves must adhere to. But in order to change our Rules for Registration to cover the amendments we have to hold an EGM to approve the alterations to them.

The AGM seems to be the best time to hold this EGM and it will give us time to make sure we have covered all the points that the amended CBPS Principles raise.

Assuming that the EGM adopts the CPBS Principles, it will mean that foals born this year, to be eligible for Class 1 or 2 as Adult ponies, will have to be tested.  The Council would therefore ask you to consider if you are registering a foal this year, which although it isn't mandatory, that you should have it tested for HWSD .

Ideally this should be done at the same time as it is parentage tested where there is incidentally a discounted fee for the two tests being done at the same time. It should be done through the Society and the ID verified by a Vet which if done at the same time as the foal is ID'd and hair sample taken for parentage testing, it will be.


Notice from Sue Gillingham

Hello Members,

Welcome to the New Hoof Wall Separation Disease dedicated Page on your BCPS Society Website.

Since the EGM in 2015 things have progressed quickly and moved on a lot in the world of Hoof Wall Separation Disease. More people are now aware of the condition and more and more Farriers and Vets are coming on board and looking out for signs of the condition. The National Equine Welfare Council is aware and will promote the testing of ponies by informing all their rescue centre members.

The CPBS our mother Society, in particular have accepted that the need to test is very important, not only from a Welfare point of view for the pony, but to protect breeders and owners of connemara ponies who may have inadvertently bred or own a pony with HWSD.

It can be heart breaking for a new pony owner to discover that their pony has this condition and feel they are out in the cold with no help at all. I hope that by having this page it will enable owners and breeders to find the information they need from our dedicated advisory group.

Although we have this condition, it is not all doom and gloom as some ponies that have tested positive, have very good feet and are able to function normally, or can be managed sufficiently to lead a normal life.

The more we test and the more we find out from the test results, the more this condition is proving to be quite complicated and is certainly not a one size fits all!

But it does prove that we need to test each pony, to give us the information we need as owners, to be able to manage our riding and breeding ponies.


We hope to post as much information as we have and as developments occur, on this website page.




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