Holistic Horse Health: The Buzz From the Barn

Madalyn with horseMadalyn Ward, DVM shares her answers to specific holistic horse care questions from clients. To see more questions and answers on real holistic horse care situations check out our Holistic Horsekeeping and Horse Harmony Facebook pages.

Q – I have 5 Thoroughbreds that are all kept together. They eat very healthy, are chemical free, and live in impeccable living conditions. Two of them periodically get thrush in 1 foot. Not always the same foot for each horse. For example, currently, one gelding has thrush in the right hind, and the mare has it in the right front. I treat it with Zephyr’s Garden and Bannixx. It goes away fairly quickly. Then it will stay away for months, until out of the blue, one of them will get it again in a foot. Another issue is my one gelding has bumps that appear like hives. They come and go. I’ve had vets, acupuncturist and a massage therapist look at them and no one has an answer. He’s had them for the better part of the 5 years that I’ve owned him. They are isolated anywhere between right in front of the wither to the middle of his hind end. They don’t go much further than about halfway down his side. Most are about the size of a pencil eraser with the occasional one getting as big as a dime. Any suggestions?

A – It is hard to give answers without all the information about diet and management but over the years I have seen so many weird problems clear up with the addition of blue green algae to the diet. You can read up on these products. The powdered algae blend at 1 tsp a day is good to start with if you already give a probiotic. If not then look at the algae packets or the powdered algae with probiotics. I think the TBs just need more concentrated whole food nutrition to stay healthy. Sounds like your management is good so the algae may make the difference.
Q – I have an earth/ metal Morgan mare. I feed her whole oats and Equine Challenge for grass hay; also Himalayan salt block and grass hay. When I tie her up she licks the dirt from the rail. What mineral is she lacking? Equine challenge has flax seed and a probiotic too.

A – Your mare may be trying to buffer her stomach. Earth horses can be prone to stomach ulcers. If you go to www.horsetemperament.com you can look at our Earth horse balancing formula. It could help.

 

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