Horse Temperament: Feeding the Water Horse

Water horses need safety and a trustworthy rider. They can be brilliant show horses but panic easily. They perform well in events that call for animation and excitement, and are motivated by cheering crowds. The Water horse possesses a strong digestive system, but because of his high-spirited nature he burns through calories quickly. The challenge in feeding a Water horse is keeping him at a healthy weight while keeping him calm so he can properly digest his food.

Water Horse Nutritional Support
The Water horse has higher levels of Qi(energy), tends to be more Yang(higher metabolism), is affected by Cold and benefits from the salty flavor. Foods that are neutral or warm in energetics should be in the diet and excessive cold foods avoided.

Examples of neutral or warm foods that are ideal for the Water horse’s diet include:
•    oats
•    sunflower seeds(up to a cup a day)
•    sesame seeds(up to 2 TBS a day)
•    corn
•    ginger
•    cinnamon bark
•    basil
•    rosemary
•    fennel
•    dill
•    anise
•    parsley
•    sweet potato(1 or 2 a day)
•    citrus peel
•    garlic(several cloves a day)
•    molasses in small amounts (molasses is cooling in large amounts)

All spices should be given in small amounts of 1/4 tsp a day.
Although alfalfa is considered a cooling food, many water horses do well with 1 flake of alfalfa a day in addition to grass hay.

The Kidney and Bladder are the organs associated with the Water element so foods that support these organs are helpful. The healthy Water horse has an abundance of Yang energy(high metabolism) which helps him withstand the detrimental effects of cold pathogenic influences. A weakened Water horse can have a deficiency of Kidney Yin or Yang.

Nutritional Support for Deficient Kidney Yang in Water Horses
Deficient Kidney Yang shows symptoms of aversion to cold weather, cold legs, pale mucous membranes, and weakness in the stifles and low back. Frequent urination, dribbling or urine or inability to urinate are signs that deficient Kidney Qi in addition to deficient Yang. All the above foods and spices will support Kidney Yang, and the addition of herbs such as rose hips raspberry and oyster shell support Kidney Qi.

Nutritional Support for Deficient Kidney Yin in Water Horses
Kidney Yin deficiency shows symptoms of dryness because the kidneys are not supplying enough Yin fluids. The Liver, Heart and Lungs are the organs that are most adversely affected by dryness although all areas of the body suffer. On the other hand, imbalance of these organs can create a Kidney Yin deficiency. Low grade fever, spontaneous sweating, low backache and weak hind legs are all symptoms of Kidney Yin deficiency. Foods that support Kidney Yin are more cooling and include:
•    millet
•    barley
•    watermelon
•    wheat germ(1/4 cup a day)
•    seaweed, spirulina(1 to 2 TBS a day)
•    chlorella(1 to 2 tsp a day)
•    black sesame seeds(1 to 2 TBS a day)

Herbs that support Kidney Yin include:
•    marshmallow root(1 to 2 TBS a day)
•   Aloe vera (1 to 2 oz a day)

For more information about Five Element Horse Temperaments check out Horse Harmony

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