Horse Temperament: Earth Horse Digestive Support

The Earth horse temperament seems to have the most trouble with assimilation of nutrients. Many Earth horses tend to get overweight, so owners compensate by underfeeding these horses. It is important to feed the Earth horse nutrient-dense foods, but not feed more than 1.5% of their body weight daily. Feeding a horse larger amounts of poor quality food still result in a horse that is too fat, but not getting the vitamins and minerals he needs.

To support the Earth horse temperament digestive system, owners need to focus on three factors:
1.    offer a healthy low-carbohydrate diet that is still tasty
2.    stimulate digestion
3.    prevent or heal ulcers

1. Offer a Healthy Low-Carbohydrate Tasty Diet
Many sweet foods are also high in starch, so only small amounts are needed to stimulate digestion. Lightly cooked starchy vegetables such as carrot, sweet potato or pumpkin fed alone or with soaked beet pulp can be substituted for grain. This makes the mostly grass hay diet, which is healthy for Earth horses, more appealing. Cabbage is also a lower calorie vegetable option. Mixing these veggies with a warm beet pulp or bran mash will win you great appreciation from your Earth horse.

2. Stimulate Digestion
Warming, pungent spices such as cinnamon, fennel, ginger and garlic can be beneficial in very small amounts to stimulate digestion. Supplements that are useful for stimulating digestion in the Earth horse include:
•    Enhanced Enzymes: an enzyme product that also contains pungent digestive aids (4 to 8 a day)
•    PreProbiotics from Equilite
•    Digestive product KLPP from KAM

3. Prevent or Heal Ulcers
The Earth horse temperament under stress can develop stomach ulcers. To soothe the stomach and speed healing, focus on feeding astringent herbs and soothing herbs, or supplements that coat the stomach lining and buffer acid. Herbs and supplements that can prevent or heal ulcers in Earth horses include:
•    Aloe vera: an astringent herb (1 ounce twice a day)
•    Slippery elm: a soothing herb ( 2 to 3 tsp twice a day)
•    Stomach Soother by Natural Plan: contains enzyme-rich papaya, coats the stomach and buffers acid
•    Green clay: used short term to coat the stomach lining and buffer acid (1 TBS twice a day for 10 days)

More stubborn cases of ulceration are probably related to hind gut ulceration caused by poor digestion. Digestive support products useful for Earth horses experiencing chronic digestive upsets include:

•    Stomach Soother by Natural Plan
•    SUCCEED from Freedom Health: this product is high in fat so is best used short term for the Earth horse

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