A Heart Horse named Snoop.
It was the stuff of nightmares, but for heart horse owner Wade Giles, the phone call that woke him in the small hours of the morning was all too real.
The voice on the line was his trainer, letting him know that his beloved 8-year-old horse Snoop had died. “I don’t know how to tell you this, but Snoop is gone,’” Wade recalls. “Snoop died from a severe colic episode in the middle of the night. Despite having caretakers that lived above the barn, they didn’t hear him thrashing.”
Snoop was Wade’s ‘heart horse,’ and for anyone who’s been lucky enough to have a heart horse of their own, you know what that term means. As horse owners, all of the horses that come into our lives are special in one way or another. But a heart horse, a heart horse is different and special. A heart horse understands you in ways that other horses don’t. He challenges you, and he changes you. A heart horse is once in a lifetime.
“Snoop was more than just another horse,” Wade says. “He was my friend, he was my partner in crime, and I would never see him again.”
A Tale of Triumph from Tragedy
Haunted by the loss of Snoop and memories of that night back in 2013, Wade and his partner Jeffrey Schab began to brainstorm ways they could ensure their horses were protected, even when they couldn’t be there in person. “If humans could intervene quickly enough, [horses] could have a very different outcome,” Wade reflects. Today, the result of that brainstorming session is the NIGHTWATCH smart halter that acts as an early-warning system for equine colic and other forms of distress.
Providing real-time remote monitoring and automated alerts, NIGHTWATCH is a game changer for heart-horse owners everywhere. Designed to sense distress by identifying deviation in your horse’s normal biometrics and behavior, the device can notify owners when there’s a potential problem—your horse is colicking or cast, or your broodmare is about to foal—before the situation becomes dire.
“This is something that has the potential to truly move the needle on equine survival,” Wade says. “It has the potential to save your horse’s life, so that you don’t have to go through what I did.”
5 Ways the NIGHTWATCH Halter Can Help You (and your Heart Horse) Sleep Better at Night
1. It Goes Where Your Horse Goes
Embedded within the crown of this safe, lightweight, and comfortable all-natural leather breakaway halter is ~2 ounces of technology (sensors, batteries, processors, transceivers, and more) that analyzes your horse’s vital signs and behavior. Handcrafted from premium 1” appointment-quality, triple-stitched, Havana brown bridle leather and 18/8 stainless steel hardware, including a double-buckle crown and snap throatlatch with rolled leather, this halter is as stylish as it is revolutionary.
2. You’re Always in the Loop
Because the smart halter connects over WiFi and cellular networks, you’ll always have access to objective insight on your horse via the NIGHTWATCH app, which is available for iPhones and Android devices in the App Store and on Google Play. Unsure how your horse is feeling or acting? The ‘Equine Distress Index (EDI)’ makes it easy via a proprietary 10-point scale; the lower your horse’s EDI score, the happier and healthier they are. What’s more, the smart halter is equipped with GPS, meaning you’ll know where your horse is whenever an alert is issued, even when you or your horse is away at a show.
3. It Uses the Science of Biometrics
Heart rate and respiration has long been valued by veterinarians and horsemen as the most reliable way to sense pain and distress in equines. NIGHTWATCH uses novel radiofrequency sensor technology (UWB-IR) to noninvasively monitor these vital signs, detecting when your horse is outside his/her normal levels due to potentially life-threatening conditions such as colic or being cast. NIGHTWATCH can also notify anxious owners about a change in their sick, inured, or post-operative horse, or a broodmare that may be ready to foal.
4. Artificial Intelligence Gets Smart About Your Horse
Because all horses are unique individuals, and their habits are too, NIGHTWATCH uses artificial intelligence to learn your horse’s normal resting vital signs (heart rate and respiration) and his/her typical activity level and behavior, adapting that information so it can identify potential problems and notify you quickly.
5. The Alert System Works for You
NIGHTWATCH alerts are automated and available as phone, text message, and email notifications so you can get to your horse sooner and share insight with multiple careteam members, including your veterinarian. While the smart alert system will learn your horse and create a personalized distress model for him/ her over time, you can also set your own threshold for any of the three sensor parameters, enabling alerts right out of the box. Customized settings can also be enabled for a sick, injured, or post-operative horse, as well as for senior horses or those with more specific behavioral needs that may take time for the system to learn (cribbing, windsucking, weaving, etc.).
Snoop remains a powerful inspiration and motivation for Jeffrey and Wade. It is in his memory that NIGHTWATCH® exists to provide critical first alerts for early intervention, ultimately to help save horses’ lives.
The life of your heart horse is priceless. If you are interested in purchasing this amazing system for your pony, click here. You can use the code “PONYAPP” for $50 off your NIGHTWATCH Halter!
Read more at The PonyApp