The Miserable Merry-Go-Round of Horse Ulcers

Holistic Horsekeeping Newsletter, Sept 2022, Volume 27, Number 9 Dr. Madalyn Ward – How to have a healthy happy horse

First you have stress, then you have ulcers, then pain causing more stress. Or you have pain, then ulcers and then more pain and stress or you have ulcers, then stress…

See how horse ulcers can become a miserable, never ending merry go round for the horse and owner. 

What to do and where to start? You have to look at the whole picture. 

1. Stress – Just like your life, your horse’s life will never be perfect. Some horses handle stress well and others fold under pressure. The sensitive horses easily get stuck in the sympathetic side of the autonomic nervous system. In the sympathetic, fight or flight, state these horses are unable to relax enough to digest food properly causing a constant indigestion. 

To help support the sensitive horses I use a hemp formula called Focus. This product contains high levels of CBG which helps your horse reset his system once the stress has passed or cope with it if it while it is happening. The CBG also helps the nervous system release patterns of past trauma or fear. As few as 1 to 2 drops a day can help your horse cope with long term stress by balancing his endocannabinoid system.

For show horses that can’t receive hemp during an event I use a mushroom formula also called Focus. The combination of mushrooms, magnesium and probiotics helps relax your horse but not sedate him. Focus can be given to effect if your horse is nervous and not eating well. Another non hemp product that helps with stress is Phyto Adrenal. By addressing the digestive and nervous system you allow the horse to shift into the parasympathetic, rest and relax, state. From this place proper digestion can resume so indigestion and subsequent ulcers are avoided. 

2. Ulcers – Digestive aids such as algae with probiotics, GastroPro, Ulcer Answer and Aloe/marshmallow root all support digestion and healing of horse ulcers. Assure Guard Gold is a product that your horse may need if he is showing obvious symptoms of ulcers or poor digestion. You can read about all of these in the digestive support section of the website. Finding the right one or combination is worth the effort to give your horse relief. 

3. All the above products help heal the digestive system and this will help with pain. Making sure that tack fits, teeth are floated and horses are fit for the tasks requested keeps training pain to a minimum. Joint supplements such as Joint and Recovery, SteadFast and Joint Plus are useful as well. Body work helps with pain and stress.

4. Last, but not least, is you. What kind of stress are you under? How are you handling it? Are you suppressing emotions that your horse is picking up on? Do you have pain that is being transferred to your horse? Are you getting enough sleep? 

It is so beneficial when you have a stressed horses that you also take Focus or Calm hemp oil at the same time you are giving it to your horse. With this, you can be in a supportive emotional state for each other. Only a few drops 1 to 3 times a day are needed to help address emotional balance. 

I have seen success, with many cases of horse ulcers, when all these aspects are taken care of. Miss part of the picture and you will get dizzy chasing symptoms. 

Online Class For Horse Temperament Typing

The self-paced online course is open to anyone interested in learning more about the Horse Temperament Types. It was created to share information about the eleven Horse Temperament Types as explained by Madalyn Ward, DVM.

Dr. Ward has been a pioneering voice in the field of holistic horse care for over two decades and she breaks new ground with the Horse Temperament Typing system. Her cutting edge casework now extends to helping horse lovers find their perfect equine match or better understand their current equine partner. If you want to learn more about determining the temperament type of your horses, this course is the one for you. You can sign up and find more information at

Dr. Ward also has a mentoring program to work one-on-one with you learning homeopathy and nutrition.

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Unless otherwise attributed, all material is written and edited by Madalyn Ward, DVM. Copyright (c) 2021 and Madalyn Ward, DVM. All rights reserved.

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