Garlic and Horses

This herb has amazing healing qualities and a wonderful additive to most diets. However, as with everything, a little goes a long way and there are times you must be cautious with the ingestion of garlic. Garlic is universal in all streams of herbalism Traditional indications for garlic in Western herbalism as an expectorant and for worm infestation. In addition to these garlic has been used in Chinese medicine for indigestion and in Ayurvedic for fevers and debilitated conditions. It is commonly used to repel flies and insects as it promotes sweating and in doing so is excreted through skin … Continue reading Garlic and Horses

Essential oils to assist with hoof problems

Essential oils offer natural help for horses with hoof problems. As a component of rehabilitation, the use of these essential oils can be helpful in two ways: There is the direct physical action – such as with external application – to assist with the healing of tissue, and there is the olfactory response – aromatherapy – that assists with identifying and addressing some of the underlying issues that could be contributing to the hoof problems. Initially I narrow down through knowledge my choice of essential oils to offer the horse. When I am deciding on which application of the oils … Continue reading Essential oils to assist with hoof problems

Herbs for the Seasons

A few years ago now Country Park Animal Herbs asked me to design some blends of herbs for them to assist their clients. Initially we looked at common issues and worked on that idea. But using herbs for good health can be quite limited if one becomes fixated on ‘disease’ so the concept was expanded upon and the idea to help you as horse owners get more in touch with the seasonal needs of your horse and in harmony with nature fitted more with the philosophy of going with the flow and taking the path of least resistance so you … Continue reading Herbs for the Seasons

Natural support for allergies and skin conditions

Zelda, and eight-year-old Arabian, had a beautiful coat when Barbara acquired the mare late in the fall. However, as summer arrived and temperatures began to rise, Zelda broke out in hives. The poor horse itched so badly she rubbed herself raw. Barbara suspected Zelda’s skin problems were due to allergies but when she phoned her local practitioner about getting help, she could almost hear him cringing on the other end of the line. “I knew then that I had my work cut out for me,” she said. While more horses than ever before suffer from allergies, there is no one … Continue reading Natural support for allergies and skin conditions

Essential oils for respiratory conditions

Essential oils are antagonistic to pathogenic organisms on contact, which is why they are so effective when able to enter the respiratory tract directly, through inhalation. The therapeutic potential of essential oils is yet to be fully realised. An essential oil can cover a wide field of activity and in this article we will focus on the role aromatherapy can play when your horse suffers a respiratory complaint. Any condition or infection that involves the nose, throat, and lung would respond very well to essential oils. Inhalation is one very effective way of utilising essential oils, as when inhaled directly … Continue reading Essential oils for respiratory conditions

Each horse needs a unique approach

How you approach the management of your horse’s health depends very much on individual filters. Every situation requires individual assessment. For example, I may get two requests for a supportive program for a horse with laminitis. Horse 1 is in extreme pain and under the care of veterinarian as well as a hoofcare specialist. The herbs I suggest to support the healing process need to complement and not be in opposition to the prescribed veterinary care. To philosophically insist that all veterinary prescriptions be ceased and the horse wholly rely on herbs and essential oils could challenge the owner’s mental … Continue reading Each horse needs a unique approach

Immune system enhancing essential oils

Your horse’s body often gets compromised by microorganisms. Aromatherapy can be used to help your horse with any infection, however it is adjunctive to your horse’s veterinarian care, so the suggestions in this article are for your information and not to replace his advice. Microorganisms that cause disease are called pathogens and can include bacteria, fungi and viruses. They can cause infection and they actively reproduce causing damage to healthy cells, often being responsible for producing toxins in the body. Infection can be systemic where it spreads throughout the body, or localised, and when your horse’s body responds to an … Continue reading Immune system enhancing essential oils

Herbs to support Seedy Toe

A naturopathic approach to seedy toe will layer the approach with herbs; your first layer is to cleanse, and the next layer is to restore tone and repair the affected tissue, leaving the body stronger and less vulnerable to reoccurrence. This can be done very simply. You can build your individual approach using some key herbs, and then adapt your approach as your horse responds. The core herbs suggested here are herbs that will help with both the cleansing as well as the restorative phases. The lymphatic herbs such as clivers and calendula are key to the cleansing phase and … Continue reading Herbs to support Seedy Toe

Essential oils for colic

Yesterday when visiting one of my favourite properties  the morning was disturbed with the thought that another horse on a property down the road was in need of assistance. Fortunately the vet was called and knowledgeable horse people were on hand to help the owner get her horse upright and eventually releasing some good sized poops. It reminded me of this article I wrote a decade ago, the advice is still valid and hopefully you won’t ever need the information.   Colic The word ‘colic’ is one most horse owners fear hearing. There are many clinical signs that can be … Continue reading Essential oils for colic

Herbs for waterlogged horses

Dealing with flood waters When a flood hits an area, there is not always enough warning to get horses out of the way of rising floodwaters. Firstly don’t panic, a horse can go without feed for a long period of time, and most floodwaters will recede in a couple of days. Floodwaters often contain sewerage and other pathogens, so it is important once waters do recede you need to be stringent about cleanliness. Disinfect water containers and feed bins, stables need to be hosed out thoroughly. Some horses may have injuries or wounds from debris that has been in the … Continue reading Herbs for waterlogged horses

Making the Perfect Brew

With the convenience of teabags the art of making an infusion or decoction of herbs has been lost in some households. A herbal tea can be an infusion or a decoction. An infusion is made by pouring boiling water over dried or fresh herbs whilst a decoction is made by boiling in water harder plant substances such as bark and roots. The traditional proportion for an infusion is 30 gm of dried herb to 500 ml of water. You infuse this amount of herb for 15 minutes before drinking. There is no benefit in stewing your herbs, you will have … Continue reading Making the Perfect Brew

Hitting the right Note with your Horse

Socrates and Plato regarded music indispensable to the health of the Soul. I think most of us have heard of using music to soothe the savage beast and similar metaphors. This is only one use of music and in this article I would like to explore how we can use music to assist our competition animal with certain tasks and life situations as well as on deeper level where we can assist the utilisation of biochemistry. Music can be played to soothe our animals, help us connect with them on a different level when training for a dressage test with … Continue reading Hitting the right Note with your Horse

Does your horse like your scent?

When you first start offering essential oils to your horse, it may not be clear what the preferences are. With younger horses they may look like they are interested in every bottle you waft under their nose, you may find the only indicator is the strength of breath they take to get more of the scent they like. The horse in this pic got me very excited when he dropped his tongue out at the bottle. However his handler stated he did this all the time, be it when being groomed, riding or just ‘because’. He was clear though with … Continue reading Does your horse like your scent?