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Herbal Remedies for Horses

Most people think that herbal remedies are limited to humans alone. But horses also benefit from Naturopathy, or herbal medicine. This article specifically focuses on a range of herbal remedies for equines.

Many horse owners feel the need to resort to herbal remedies that do not hamper a horse from competing in the show ring, or being active and drug-free.


Horses have health concerns that are similar to human health issues, yet they have a different system, which requires a different approach to naturopathy than one would take with a human being.

For instance, a doctor would not prescribe medication for a horse that he would for his human patients. Thus we have herbal horse doctors that specialize in what treatments are required for equines.

It must be stressed that herbs themselves are not necessarily a cure-all. They contain essential vitamins, nutrients, and minerals that work with a horse’s own system to allow the body to heal itself.

Some of the problems that herbs are used to treat are allergies, respiratory disorders, arthritis, chronic pain and stiffness, hyper- excitability, lethargy, digestive problems, and nervousness.

-For allergies, garlic works as an expectorant, it helps with the expulsion of irritants such as dust, spores, and pollen from the lungs.

-Marshmallow is used to help soothe and protect the airways from airborne allergens.

-Licorice has been used as both a demulcent and an expectorant.

-For anemia, nettles have been used, one property of the plant is that it is rich in iron and Vitamin C, which is necessary for absorbing the Iron.

-Helpful herbs for arthritis and rheumatism are celery seed, burdock, and nettles, these all help in cleansing the blood, cleaning uric acid from the joints, and they also help to improve the horse’s circulatory system.

-Herbal treatment for broodmares (female horses used for breeding) may include such herbs as nettles for iron, rosehips for Vitamin C, and fenugreek will help the pregnant mare get essential nutrients in a easily digestible form.

-Treatment for injuries and bruising includes such herbs as arnica for bruising, used internally or externally, or a mixture of arnica, water and witch-Hazel.

-For infertility issues in horses, red clover is used, or red raspberry leafs.

-Kelp and red clover is also useful in improving coat condition.

-For hoof care, rosehips and seaweed are often combined to cause hoofs to grow and strengthen.

-Care for immune system is particularly important, echinacea, garlic, and astralagus all help to strengthen the immune system by stimulating production of white blood cells.

-For hyperactive horses, valerian root is known to calm overexcited equines, as well as chamomile, which also relieves tension and anxiety.

-For wounds, goldenseal and myrrh are most helpful in healing external cuts or scrapes.

-For serious cuts, burns, or other injuries please consult your veterinarian, as the injury may be serious or life threatening.

This is just a small example of how nature’s benefits can also be used to help our equine friends lead healthier, more productive lives.

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