December 2014 – Mid Month Update

December 2014 – Mid Month Update

Holistic Horsekeeping
How to have a healthy happy horse


In This Issue:

Horse Temperament: 3 Top Supplements for the Metal Horse Temperament


Horse Temperament: 3 Top Supplements for the Metal Horse Temperament
Madalyn on horseThe Metal horse temperament is generally an easy keeper who assimilates nutrients well. The organs associated with the Metal Element are the lung and large intestine so the 3 top supplements for the Metal horse temperament will give these organ systems support. Metal horses need additional quality fat in the diet, as well as extra electrolytes and pungent herbs.

Quality Fat
The beneficial bacteria in the large intestine thrive on a high fat diet. The challenge with feeding fat to a Metal horse is weight gain. Rice bran is a good fat and carbohydrate source for a hard working Metal horse but a pleasure horse won’t need the extra calories. Chia seeds are perfect for the Metal horse in that they give the quality fat needed by the good bacteria and they provide extra protein and minerals but no carbohydrates. You only need 1/4 to 1/2 cup of nutrient dense chia seeds a day so this small amount does not increase weight gain. Expect to see your Metal horse’s hooves and coat improve, as well, with the nice ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 fatty acids in the chia seeds. Chia seeds also provide a lubricating action in the large intestine so they help prevent impaction colic.

Dryness is the climate condition that most affects the Metal horse temperament. A Metal horse will greatly benefit from extra electrolytes during hot, dry weather. Not only do electrolytes replace salts lost during sweating but they encourage more water consumption which prevents impaction colic. You can use commercial electrolyte products but I prefer kelp. Kelp can be added to the feed ration at the rate of 1 to 2 tbsp a day or slightly more can be put out free choice during dry conditions. Kelp should not be fed in large amounts on a continual basis as it is high in iodine and excess iodine can be harmful. Kelp also increases dampness in the body and too much during humid weather can contribute to stocking up or increased tendency to infections.

Pungent Herbs
The flavor associated with the Metal element is pungent. Herbs such as garlic, fennel, turmeric and ginger are all beneficial in small amounts. I like a digestive enzyme product that has pungent herbs included to stimulate digestion in the Metal horse. Garlic, in addition to being a very pungent herb, has the added benefit of providing the trace mineral, sulphur. Sulphur helps the hooves and connective tissue to be strong. Garlic is also a good immune support product and it helps repel insects. I like to feed a Metal horse Garlic plus C as needed during hard work, for lung and immune support or when insects are very active.

The Metal horse will do best on grass hay as the majority of his diet with some alfalfa and/or rice bran added based on his work load and as needed to maintain his weight. Chia seeds, electrolytes and pungent herbs are 3 important supplements to also consider to keep your Metal horse healthy and balanced.

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