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Natural Horse Care Through Nutrition and Immune Support

Horses just like any other animal or human benefit from more natural care. The food your animal eats should provide all of the nutritional components which are necessary for all organs and systems of a healthy body to perform in harmonious unison. A properly functioning body does an amazing job at preventing disease and healing itself, and to do this it requires the energies and nutrients of a well-balanced diet and a strong functioning immune system. Natural and alternative animal health is one of the fastest growing areas for passionate horse owners.

Holistic Horse Care and Prevention

Natural Horse HealingIf your horse has health issues, it is possible that their nutrition is lacking quality nutrients and/or they may not be able to absorb and utilize the nutrients properly. Just like people, your horse's body may have become overloaded with toxins - even a build up of medications can compromise their immune system.

Evolution over the eons have perfected natural health in wild animals to amazing lengths by concentrating on these two spheres. Evolution has closely linked the strength of the immune system to that animal's surrounding environment. Separate the wild animal from his wilds and often that animal will become psychologically depressed, physically sick and, perhaps, even die in captivity.

This may be a combination of mental stress plus a lack of free choice in eating/roaming habits. The animal's natural environment and his immune system are tightly intertwined. Separate a race yearling or two year old Standardbred or Thoroughbred from his pastures and his buddies, put him in a barn under unnatural stress, and you will have that animal catching about every known sickness on the race track.

The consumption of clays, ash, and charcoal are other means used by animals to detoxify. Many of you that have been in the horse business long, know that old timers often advise putting a spade-cut square of sod into a horse's stall. Horses seem to like to eat dirt. Graze one out in the open and it won't be long until your horse is pawing up the grass and taking mouthful bites of dirt.

Dr. Charles E Loops DVM: "After 10 years of traditional veterinary practice I became tired of having no treatment for chronic disease, incurable conditions, and a plethora of allergic maladies which seem to plague all veterinary practices. I was frustrated with giving animals cortisone because I had no other solutions, or using antibiotics for infections which I knew were of viral origin.

Are You Meeting Your Horse's Nutritional Needs?

Horse Supplements Our soil, plants, and especially commercial foods are woefully deficient in key nutrients. Scientists theorize that mineral deficiency subjects us, and our animals, to more diseases, aging, sickness and destruction of our physical well-being than any other factor in personal health.

Natural health boils down to three factors in animals: proper nutrition, the ability to detoxify and their ability to keep a strong functioning immune system. A groundswell of nutrition conscious veterinarians are beginning to recommend to their clients that they supplement their animals diet with seaweed, flaxseed oil and other equine nutrients for optimum health and vitality.

In her book "Wild Health", Cindy Engels talks of nutritional wisdom which is defined as an animals innate instinctual need to eat nutrients required by its body to maintain health. There seems to be an innate directional finder in many mammals that point that animal toward foods that satisfy its body's needs. In the evolutionary scheme of things, this is good engineering.

Question Mark Do you have a question about Natural Health or need assistance? Contact Shirley
Call 323-522-4521 or 323-989-3372

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T-factors (Transfer factors) in Veterinary Care

Important note
Important Note from Shirley: Transfer Factor

Around the world people and veterinarians are using T-factors for their large and small animals with all types of conditions. T-factors come in various forms and formulas.

Contact Shirley to learn which formula and what amount is best suited for your type and size of animal and how to administer it. We will also tell you how you can save 25% on your order and answer any question you may have.

Visit Shirley's most popular animal product page.

Responsible horse owners know that there are two things they must do to give a horse every chance and maximal health: prevent illness or injury through proper care and nutrition and address illness or injury promptly when it does occur. Some of the finest horse trainers have recognized that a product that provides overall immune system building can help horses in breeding, racing, eventing and recovering from injury or stress. They use T-factors known for its immune boosting properties. T-factors also acts as a preventive measure. Healing is facilitated as well, and some trainers comment on how quickly their horses recover from races when they're on a regime including T-factors.

 "T-factors have turned out to be the most effective and versatile products I have ever used in my 32-year veterinary practice. I have used these products as stand-alone and in conjunction with allopathic therapies in the following cases with excellent results: (Note all cancer cases were given enhanced transfer factors only) CANCER: Canine lipomas, Canine/feline hepatic tumors, Equine squamous cell carcinoma, Equine melanomas; Feline leukemia, oral tumors. VIRAL/BACTERIAL: Upper and lower respiratory infections, Canine/feline dermatoses, Equine/bovine scours, Equine septic arthritis, Feline abscesses. PARASITIC/FUNGAL/AUTOIMMUNE: E.P.M., Feline and equine fungal dermatitis, and Feline autoimmune gingivitis. Here are a few examples:

  • A foal with joint ill, had been lame for 3 days with an extremely swollen hock and a 104.5 temperature. I recommended that this foal be hospitalized due to the severity of infection, but the client could not afford such care. I then recommended penicillin injections daily and transfer factors, 3 caps 3 times daily. The foal received only 2 injections of penicillin, but a full course of transfer factors. 48 hours later, my client reported a remarkably quick recovery with normal temperature and appetite with no apparent lameness.
  • Victor, a 10-year-old gelding, with EPM was treated with conventional drug therapy for 5 weeks and yet continued to deteriorate. At week 6, I started him on transfer factors (6 caps/day). Within one week, he showed noticeable improvement, and within 30 days, he was able to show. Since his full recovery 4 months ago, Victor has continued to show at his original performance level. Steven Slagle, DVM -

Stallion's bodyNOTE: A number of veterinarians use the human formula, Transfer Factor or Transfer Factor Plus in their practices. Diana Mc Cormick owns a magnificent black purebred Andalusian stallion, Amistad. The horse fully recovered from his cancer and other health problems with 6 capsules of T-factors twice a day. A year later, Diane wrote me: "The Tumor did not reappear or Amistad did not have any set backs since I nursed him through that winter after the surgery and the following Spring. Amistad looks magnificent and he is winning everywhere, producing foals and making many more. At this time Amistad is actually in the process of being sold for $80.000 to a wonderful lady in MI. So miracles do happen, had we gone with the radiation, chances are he would have broken a leg with the weak bones and he would be sterile."

Michelle Lauber, owner of Legacy Hill Farms in Colorado, routinely imports champion horses from Germany. She writes: "Recently, in February 2007, when my last group of horses were imported from Europe through NY, they all became very sick at the U.S.D.A. quarantine facility in Newburg. I was faced with a very scary situation and one which I'll never forget. One by one, all my horses became sick and a normal two day quarantine stay turned into what could have been a month or more. Each day the vets could not tell me when my horses could be released to come home to Colorado because they were becoming sicker by the day. At a cost of $500 a day, I knew I had to do something to help them.

 I spent at least two full days scouring over the internet for research material on immune function and a possible product that could help them. I realized their stress levels had been high and that this directly contributed to their illness by lowering their immune systems. When I learned about Transfer Factor, I ordered 4 Animal Stress Packs and had it shipped overnight to the U.S.D.A. quarantine facility. After my horses were given two doses (in two days) all four of my horses were completely well and released from quarantine. I thought it was unbelievable. The USDA vets thought so too. Not one, not two, but all four were well. And they stayed well through the 38 hour van ride to Colorado."

Joe Raemakers, DVM - "We recently had an experience with a 30-year-old horse who had a leg swollen from infection. I applied Transfer Factor directly to the leg and within 6 days the swelling was totally gone. I checked his lymphocyte level and he had a 27% increase since the use of transfer factors. THAT’S JUST PHENOMENAL!"

Kenneth L. Marcella, D.V.M., - "Horses suffering from such chronic diseases as Cushing’s syndrome, laminitis, colitis, and cancers ranging from sarcoids to melanomas also may benefit. Chronic reproductive infections may benefit from this type of immune boost. Because the immune system seeks to heal the body from within and to make it more resistant from attack from without, any immune improvement means better health in general. This is the long-awaited promise from the field of immunotherapy and perhaps transfer factor will finally deliver."

CharlesW. Brown, DVM - "My colleagues and I have found this product (transfer factor) to be very effective in modulating the immune system. Transfer factor is a "soup" of immune-modulating factors, which contains a leukocyte-type molecule that can passively transfer immunity from one mammal to another by stimulating cell-mediated immunity and is antigen specific." Richard Bennett, Ph.D., an Infectious Disease Microbiologist and Immunologist from the University of California, Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, believes this could be the most significant development in animal health care in decades. We have a great number of veterinarians and clients who are experiencing very positive results in a broad area of disorders, including periodontal."

EPM horse
From: Jennifer Sivolella

"I have had my horse for 21 years. He is 24 and had recently been inflicted with EPM (equine protozoa myalitis) for the second time in his life. It is bacterial and affects the nervous system. He had stopped eating and was 150 to 200 lb. underweight. I hired a cranial sacral therapist in hopes to make him feel better and she highly recommended your product. Two days after the first dose of transfer factors he started eating and has been eating ever since. It is a slow recovery but I do believe without TF he would be dead now. The owner of the stable had asked me where I wanted him buried if that is any indication of his condition."

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Stressed Arabian gelding with arthritis and swollen legs

"Old Arabian gelding "Sam, a 27 year old Arabian gelding. I have had him for 22 years and about 8 years ago at the age of 19 he had started showing signs of old age. He was showing signs of low energy and stiffness, it was getting more difficult for him to get up with ease. His back legs would get really swollen. There came a point where we had to move facilities and to keep him as healthy as possible I searched for something to prevent and help with the stress of the move, and that is when I ran across transfer factor on Shirley's Wellness Cafe.

I started him on transfer factors(1 box) and continued with the protocol. Much to my surprise he took the move with great ease and I contribute that to Transfer Factor. A little time had passed and I felt like he needed additional nutrition, so I started him on marine phytoplankton FrequenSea. I gave him 2 bottle at the following doses: I started with 4 ounces the first day and second day. I found that I was going through it so fast and that it wouldn’t last me very long so I decreased it to 2 ounces for the next 3 days and then 1 ounce until it was gone, which was the last 18 days. Totaling 23 days. I noticed that his energy level improved greatly and his eyes were bright and he defiantly felt even better. His eyes and his mood tell me a lot about him. While giving the FrequenSea he was much more playful with the other horses…he was so much more engaged with them. Normally he would stand alone and not do anything, you could tell he just wasn’t in to doing anything. For example when I let him out in the arena he would go at a much faster pace and throw his head like playful horses do. Prior to giving him the transfer factors and marine phytoplankton (FrequenSea) he was on the normal feed store grain that you get and everyone follows.

I quickly realized that none of it was benefiting him at all, especially the senior feeds and grain mixes that most western vets recommend and horse owners use today. He has had shoes on his feet for most of his life, which have caused a great deal of damage. He has been bare foot now for about 9 months. It will take some time to repair the damage the steel shoes caused to his feet but the Transfer Factor has certainly played a huge role in getting him through the tough beginning stages of his feet starting to heal and continue to help long term. His feet are still very tender but improve greatly with time."

Dr. Christina Chambreau, DVM - "A veterinarian in Texas stopped vaccinating her horses and the incidence of colic decreased by 95%, a chronic foundering horse became asymptomatic and all 17 horses were healthier in many ways. When she vaccinated the herd 5 years later because of a panic over one disease, the colics, flus, and even founder symptoms recurred. A veterinarian in Saskatchewan stopped vaccinating his large beef herd 14 years ago and within 2 years there was a 75% decrease in his herd mortality.

Death of a horse from vaccines: a testimonial

"I haven't vaccinated any of my animals in about 8 years. It all started 9 years ago when my horse had her yearly boosters and 3 days later "contracted " pigeon fever. 45 days later she died. We were very sad, as our animals are like our children. I was convinced it was vaccinosis related. The animals were all vaccinated prior to this event , so I felt they had plenty of immunity.Since then I have used nosodes."

Recovery from severe reaction to routine vaccination

"I have used Transfer factors for equine in several emergency cases including a horse that had a severe reaction to routine immunizations. This horse could not walk, his hind end was doubled under him and his entire body was a big spasm. He was unable to urinate and did not have a bowel movement in two days. His central nervous system was in shock. I began energy therapy and TF animal stress pack was given every 4 hours. In two days the horse was able to walk. One month later the horse shows very little permanent damage. He could have been crippled. The stress pack worked miracles. I would highly recommend T-factors for both human and animals." Pamela Au Wingedwolf is the author of "Zen and the Horse

Question Mark Do you have a question about Natural Health or need assistance? Contact Shirley
Call 323-522-4521 or 323-989-3372

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Danger of Vaccination

Mark of the Beast: Hidden in Plain Sight - This book is essential reading for pet owners, animal lovers and everyone seeking to know the truth about vaccine issues. The book title, Mark of the Beast, sums up the author's views on the medical practise of vaccination. Dr Patricia Jordan is a highly qualified veterinary surgeon with more than 24 years experience. Her observations and conclusions are based upon scientific evidence as opposed to the propaganda and junk science disseminated by pharmaceutical companies in their ever increasing need to maximize profits. Dr Jordan cites research studies showing that annual vaccinations are totally unnecessary and especially in respect of rabies where over vaccination is causing genetic changes and violent behaviour in animals including horses. This annual regime financially benefits veterinary business practices and pharmaceutical companies at the expense of pet owners and their suffering, short lived companions. Two other excellent books highlighting the dangers of the vaccination program.

Richard J. Holliday, DVM - "My work animals were most carefully selected and everything was done to provide them with suitable housing and with fresh green fodder, silage, and grain, all produced from fertile land. I was naturally intensely interested in watching the reaction of these well-chosen and well-fed oxen to diseases like rinderpest, septicaemia, and foot-and-mouth disease which frequently devastated the countryside. None of my animals were segregated; none were inoculated; they frequently came in contact with diseased stock. As my small farm-yard as Pusa was only separated by a low hedge from one of the large cattle-sheds on the Pusa estate, in which outbreaks of foot-and-mouth disease often occurred, I have several time seen my oxen rubbing noses with foot-and-mouth cases. Nothing happened. The healthy well-fed animals reacted to this disease exactly as suitable varieties of crops, when properly grown, did to insect and fungus pest -- no infection took place." Good nutrition can prevent disease. Good nutrition can cure disease.

Treatment of Disease

homeopathic nosodes are typically used in a therapeutic manner, to treat patients with the same illness (isopathic), or a similar disease (homeopathic). For example, Psorinum, the mange remedy, is made from human scabies, and is useful in treating other skin conditions as well.

Pony playing with dogDr. Michael Dym, D.V.M. "Over the past 40 years and 17 generations of dogs and, cats we are seeing tremendous increases in chronic ill health in our pets that was rare back in the early 1960's. Most of these illnesses revolve around breakdown in our pets' immune systems, and include chronic skin/ear allergies, digestive upset, thyroid/adrenal/pancreatic disorders, seizures, gum/ teeth problems, degenerative arthritis, kidney/liver failure, and cancer across all ages and breeds. We are also seeing a record number of behavioral and emotional disorders including alarming and unexplained fears/aggression., as well as difficulty focusing/training and paying attention. The analogy of these compared with escalating immune/behavioral diseases in children is quite disturbing. The two biggest factors in our pets' population health decline over these generations has been the severe overuse of multiple vaccines and nutrient poor and toxin filled commercial pet foods. We have also failed to address the underlying cause of disease by only sup pressing symptoms with antibiotics, cortisone and related drugs, so the disease progresses and goes deeper. Homeopathy offers a viable alternative in truly curing pets and making their bodies healthier."

Just like his Labrador friends, Rory wags his tail, Fetches sticks, and rolls on his back to have his tummy tickled. But the hooves and mane give way his real identity - he's a SHETLAND PONY!

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Race Horses Killed by Fluoride in Water

Albert Schatz, Ph.D - "Fluoridation ... it is the greatest fraud that has ever been perpetrated and it has been perpetrated on more people than any other fraud has."Professor Albert Schatz, Ph.D. (Microbiology), Discoverer of streptomycin and Nobel Prize Winner

Dr. Charles Gordon Heyd MD -"I am appalled at the prospect of using water as a vehicle for drugs. Fluoride is a corrosive poisonthat will produce serious effects on a long range basis. Any attempt to use water this way is deplorable." Dr. Charles Gordon Heyd MD is the Past President of the American Medical Association

Fluoride in water: Broken bone racehorse deaths

CA ranchers that moved quarter horses to Pagosa Springs, Colorado did not realize that such drugged city water, that was there, was unsuitable for horses which were killed by fluoride in 9 years. X-rays on autopsy revealed that the earliest effects of fluoride were incorporation into bone, causing them to be thickened and weakened. Later on, hooves and teeth became crumbly, skin reactions spread and their eventual deaths were due to associated cancers. Fluoride incorporates into bones at thousands of times that in water after drinking 1 ppm fluoride for only fractions of a lifespan (2 years in humans). The natural bone converts to a fluoroapatite derivative, altering the structure that interferes with whole body calcium metabolism, where the effect is fastest in soft waters. The indestructible, nonfilterable fluoride ion (smaller than the water molecule and oxidized by no chemical substance on earth) is now leeching into various ground water sources throughout the country as well. Page Divider

West Nile Virus - Dr. Falconer DVM

This has a lot of people running scared and vaccinating their horses repeatedly. Yet, the percentage of those exposed to the virus who actually get sick is very small, on the order of 10%. Why? The likely reason is that the majority of the horses, (or dogs or people) exposed to the virus had adequate NK cell function at the time of exposure. To make sure your horse is in the protected group with transfer factors on a daily basis. in it, along with a host of immune synergists and excellent quality nutrients for healthy coats and hooves. If your area has any reported cases of West Nile (or colds, flu, Strangles, EPM, etc.), just boost the immune system additionally with at the label dose for one to two weeks.

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Spasmodic Colic

SpasmodicSpasmodic Colic caused by eating green foods (rich alfalfa) with severe abdominal pain, distention, loud intestinal noises. Pains come in waves. Horse turns head toward flank, hunches back upward, strikes at belly. Tends to stand but better when moving. Intermittent shivering then hot. Cramping, slimy stools, sometimes with blood. The homeopathic remedy Colocynthis is the first choice for episodes of colic pain, particularly when the cause is unknown. The horse is restless with the pain and wants to lie down. Pain can be sudden, violent, and cramping making the horse want to bend over double (seen by a hunched over appearance). The pain of Colocynthis is twisting, contracting and distorting with neuralgic paroxysmal pains that can be likened to what the horse will be feeling from acute digestive affections. The pain may improve after passing stools or flatus. This remedy can also be helpful in pains of the small joints and hips, 'as if dislocated', e.g. slipping stifles. The symptoms may be worse in damp or cold weather. The Colocynthis horse may be irritable and indignant.

 Always a possible life-threatening condition, colic can come on suddenly, Dr. Shulze - "90% of horses that die, do so because of what is called colic, which is just intestinal blockage or intestinal spasms." paralyzing a horse in both panic and pain, and his human with undeniable fear. In every colic event, time is of the essence. Homeopathic remedies offer you a viable, non-toxic, fast-acting, holistic approach to treating colic. No barn or tack box should be without it!Page Divider

Equine Optimum Nutrition

Wild Health Cindy Engel, Ph.D., brings up some very intriguing points on animal health in her book 'Wild Health: How Animals Keep Themselves Well and What We Can Learn From Them', which have significant implications to a racing stable. She writes, "...wild animals are often infected with disease-causing organisms (pathogens) without showing any symptoms.

Repeatedly, animals appear to be in good condition when blood and fecal tests show infection with pathogens or parasites." She mentions Cynthia Moss's study on wild savannah elephants in an African preserve. A deadly outbreak of anthrax went through that herd with only a few animals succumbing. These were ones already stressed in poor health. Try having this occur to domesticated cattle and see what would happen.

Cindy Engels talks of nutritional wisdom which is defined as an animals innate instinctual need to eat nutrients required by its body to maintain health. If animals are say, low in sodium, copper, calcium, potassium, phosphorus, etc., they tend to seek out foods containing that nutrient. This is a very StemEquineinteresting observation. She is not only saying that animals lead healthier lives in natural settings, but that their immune system is so much more powerful in the wild that many pathogens are quickly overcome and subdued never to cause serious trouble. I mean, how often can we catch or find an individual horse turned out in a herd that appears to be sick? Horses that are turned out in even the unnatural confines of large pastures, seem to lead far healthier lives than their brethren inside barns.

There was a time when nutrient rich grasses were a staple throughout the earth and horses thrived because of it. Today, nothing could be farther from the truth. Depleted soil conditions are the norm, and commercially produced hays are deficient in basic important nutrients. Nutrient deficiencies have become your horse’ s worst enemy.

There is nothing more unnatural for a horse than to spend close to 24 hours a day in a dark, often damp, 12'x12' square of a stall, isolated psychologically as well as physically. Often times these are enclosed barns with very poor air quality and circulation. No wonder the average race horse on the average race track seems hard put to achieve long lasting health.

Lack of fresh air, lack of sunshine, lack of access to a variety of plants and soils, lack of a herd structure, lack of movement–all combine to place the modern horse in precarious health straits. Combine this with modern confinement systems that intensify the stabled horse's proximity to toxins and pathogens of all types while at the same time depressing his immune system; and we have a major problem. It's a wonder that race horses perform as well as they do.

Laminitis exposedHorses just like any other animal or human benefit from more natural care. The best place to start is the diet, as this is the main foundation of any natural health care system. Firstly, it is essential to avoid any artificial additives in the feed. The main ones to look out for are ethoxyquin, BHA and BHT, as well as artificial colorings and flavorings. Try and put the horse on a pasture which is organically grown and not treated with any chemicals such as artificial fertilizers and pesticides.

All these chemicals act as toxins to the body and contribute to the formation of chronic disease and poor health. The best hay to feed is organic alfalfa as this provides more energy and nutrients than grass and timothy hay. Obviously make sure it is made naturally and is not dusty and full of weeds and molds. It should smell sweet and not musty or damp. A lot more farmers are turning to Organic farming and it is a lot safer and more productive.

As far as grains go it is far better to feed organic wholegrain feed, rather than synthetic pelleted diets, which are unnatural and highly processed. Synthetic vitamins added to commercial feeds are not well utilized by the body and natural enzymes are destroyed in the manufacturing process. Whole grains are healthier, natural and more easily digested than pelleted food. The main grains to consider feeding are barley, oats and corn. The exact ratio's depend on the type of horse, the work that they are expected to do and individual preferences. Some horses just do better on one particular type of grain.

Alicia McWatters, Ph.D., C.N.C. - "Horses should be fed whole oats (crimped/rolled for young or old), corn, grass, hay, alfalfa, bran mash, cracked barley. No molasses food, no milo, no pelleted. Vegetables are fine. Best water available. Separate salt and mineral blocks should be used. "When it comes to manufactured diets, not only are these products primarily made-up of fragmented substances and isolated, synthetic vitamins and inorganic minerals, most do not contain important elements like enzymes, chlorophyll, and other natural beneficial substances which are found in natural foods."

Horses and Immunocal As with all dietary changes for horses it is best to do it gradually. Horses are so susceptible to colic if the food is suddenly changed so just startadding a little of the new food daily, and slowly increase the amounts, and decrease the old food over several days. Corn is a highly energizing food and therefore concentrated nutrition, as well as being good for the digestion. Oats are digested rapidly in the stomach, are less energy forming and are warming in nature. Barley is more cooling and is in between corn and oats as far as the energy value."

Dr. William Albrecht DVM - "...This is the situation, in general, when we are the chemists concocting the feeds which we compel the animal to take while we attempt to feed them most efficiently. For that efficiency our criterion is the maximum increase in body weight for the minimum of feed consumed. The use of that criterion of only weight increase has crowded the life stream of our growing, young animals so badly that the stream is about to be dried up through an increasing crop of "dwarfs". These births of the young, too deficient in the capacity to grow and to keep the life stream flowing, have become more common in both beef and dairy cattle, not to emphasize horses. There is a higher percentage of them where the stream of life has been more carefully guided by us according to particular pedigrees. Apparently, as chemists given to feeding these animals with so much economics in our criterion, we are not very able to keep the life streams flowing. We are not as efficient in multiplying theanimals in numbers of healthy ones as we are in fattening the males after surgically eliminating each one's chances to contribute more than itself to a larger life flood."

Do you have a question about Animal Wellness or need assistance? Contact Shirley
Call 323-522-4521 or 323-989-3372

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Amazing Healing Clay for Horses

According to an article published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, "Detoxification and Mineral Supplementation As Functions of Geophagy" (Johns and Duguette 1991), the most prevalent explanation of clay eating is that it is a response to nutritional deficiency. In several clinical studies, eating clay has been implicated as a response to particular deficiencies. In a handful of experiments run by scientists, mineral deficiencies, such as those for iron or potassium, were introduced to animals. As a result of those experiments, those animals changed in their dietary behavior. For instance, iron deficiency has been established as a reason for the ingestion of certain clays, although there is still debate nutramin clay for animals on this issue. In the Runjut Valley, in the Sikkim Himalayas, the natives chew a red clay as a cure for goiter because of its particular mineral content. It is not uncommon for mineral supplements in health food stores to contain portions of various types of clay. Certain clays, though not all clays, contribute major amounts of important minerals, such as calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, and zinc.

Elephants are known to walk up to 200 miles to get salt and mineral rich clay. "Many animals also eat clay, which is not only an effective way of binding and excreting various toxins but, by lining the gut, it can treat gastrointestinal problems."

"Wild horses might go 20 miles to eat a certain rock dust or clay deposit." Heather Smith Thomas is the author of thirteen books including Storey's Guide to Raising Horses, and her latest, Storey's Guide to Training Horses. She has written more than 6,000 articles for hundreds of publications

"In the wild, the okapi has been known to feed on buds, leaves and shoots, many are known to be poisonous to humans. Also, it has been observed to eat clay, which is common among poison-eating animals to counteract the poison they eat. Additionally, the okapi will also feed on grasses, fruits, ferns and fungi."

In her marvelous book, WildHealth: How Animals Keep Themselves Well and What We Can Learn From Them, CindyEngles, Ph.D. devotes an entire chapter to geophagy (clay or earth-eating). She documents the benefit of clay to human and animal health all over the world. Mammals, birds, reptiles, and invertebrates have been observed to eat dirt on every continent except Antarctica. There is evidence that humans have been eating earth for at least forty thousand years.

"The consumption of clays, ash, and charcoal are other means used by animals to detoxify. Many of you that have been in the horse business long, know that old timers often advise putting a spade-cut square of sod into a horse's stall. Horses seem to like to eat dirt. Graze one out in the open and it won't be long until your horse is pawing up the grass and taking mouthful bites of dirt. Most of us won't let them continue which may or may not be a big mistake. Top soil is seldom the preferred soil of wild animals. Top soil tend to be high in parasites, bacteria, and a host of other not too healthful substances. Wild animals and many native peoples will seek out the subsoils high in clay and much too deep to be contaminated by parasites and harmful organisms for their consumption needs. To be more precise, many of the volcanic ash clays are preferred, like montmorillonite clays. These are considered the desirable medicinal soils. Such earths absorb many toxins, sooth gastro-intestinal irritations, relieve gas, and have anti-parasitic properties. Some are high in needed minerals which may be an added benefit. I have for years packed my race horses' hooves with bentonite. I should have been feeding it in their daily feed ration as well–live and learn. The feeding of clays could prevent horses from suffering bouts of colic, increase feed absorption efficiency, protect the lining of the intestines, prevent gas formation.

While Calcium Montmorillonite Clay is a powerful nutrient and detoxifier it is important to recognize that it is a part of a total health care system. Healing benefits may result from internal and/or external clay applications. The clay may be ingested, applied as a poultice, and/or used in a bath. An appropriate lifestyle and the proper guidance of a health care practitioner are essential to one’s well being. Determining the most beneficial and appropriate application of Calcium Montmorillonite Clay is best discussed with someone familiar with its properties.

Date: Thursday, 26 Jan 2006 < /> Name: Lynn Lawrence
Location: Surrey, British Colombia

I Thank-you for all of the great information you provide on your site, especially the information on clay. I had always wondered why my mare was digging holes and eating moouthfuls of dirt. I new there was a mineral deficiency in her diet, but what she was also telling me was she was trying to detox. The clay has supplied the answer to both. My mare gets the best quality hay, whole foods as well as flax, kelp etc. But her diet, as with mine falls short because of our top soil.(To bad the price doesn't fall short as well).I have also noticed a sence of well being, that is starting to return. The day I received my clay one of the mares in the barn had her leg blow up for no apparent reason the Vet. could offer nothing. This mares back leg was four times the normal size, I have never seen this before, and I had a bad feeling in my stomach. I got some clay in a bucket, mixed with water and poulticed her leg from top to bottom, the instant the clay touched her leg she dropped her head and started licking her lips, by morning the inflamation had been reduced to half. I started the clay in her food, and she started to "pick up". I know in my heart that the clay saved her life. I am so gratefull that the day I was faced with this I had something to offer!!! Warmest regards

Where to buy Nutramin Calcium Montmorillonite Clay for Horses

Dr. Christine King - "Dirt eating can be normal behavior in horses. In most cases it is probably a form of self-supplementation or self-medication. (Based on observation of wild animals, most biologists and naturalists agree that animals do appear to self-medicate at various times and in various ways. Wild Health: lessons in natural health from the animal kingdom is a wonderful book on this subject by biologist Cindy Engel, PhD, if you?re interested in reading more.) Horses may eat dirt for any one of several reasons:

  • Needing salt (specifically, the sodium in salt)
  • Needing other minerals
  • Needing beneficial micro-organisms from the soil to aid digestion
  • Needing the absorbent activity of clay to settle a digestive upset
  • Boredom, habit
  • Presence of a disease which alters mental function
Dirt as Medicine

"Many species of mammals, birds, reptiles, and even insects, in all parts of the world, eat dirt. Known as geophagy (earth-eating) this habit has long been assumed to be an attempt to rectify mineral deficiencies in their diet. However new evidence suggests that this cannot always be the case. It has become apparent that the clay content is often the most important ingredient of selected soils. Clay is an effective binding agent as its chemical structure allows other chemicals to bond with it and so lose their reactivity. Clay is therefore an effective deactivator of toxins from diet or pathogens. Clay is the primary ingredient of kaolin and kaopectate that we use when suffering from gastrointestinal malaise.

  • Biologists in Canada and Alaska have seen brown bears lick clay from banks alongside footpaths. At the same time, their scats are full of clay.
  • In Venezuela free-ranging cattle dig and lick at clay subsoils. In Africa, the African buffalo licks clay from any newly exposed subsoil.
  • Chimpanzees, giraffes, and rhinoceroses eat regular mouthfuls of clay-rich termite mound soil and gorillas mine clay-rich volcanic rock from under the exposed roots of ancient trees.
  • Deep in the rain forests of New Guinea, Jared Diamond was surprised to see parrots, pigeons and crows fly down to a new landslide of earth and eat the bare dirt. The birds flocked to this rare opportunity to access bare earth in an area densely covered with vegetation. Not all of the observed 140 bird species came down to eat earth. Only the eight herbivorous species that regularly ate fruit, seeds and flowers. Plants naturally contain numerous toxins that protect them from predators and pathogens. When the landslide soils were analysed they were found to contain less minerals than the surrounding top soil but again the clay content was high and, what is more, found to be more effective at binding alkaloids and tannins than pure pharmaceutical kaolinite. These birds were taking advantage of newly disturbed earth and selecting soil of just the right properties to bind and deactivate plant toxins [Diamond,J 1998 Eat Dirt: in the competition between parrots and fruit trees, it's the winners who bite the dust. Discover. 19(2) pp70-76.].
  • Rats eat soil when sick - so reliably that geophagy is used as an indicator of gastrointestinal malaise in rats."

Why do Horses Eat Manure?

Dr. Christine King- "Manure eating (coprophagia) can be normal behavior in horses. In young foals, eating the mother's manure is a normal developmental stage. Through this behavior the foal learns to explore his environment and use his senses to make choices about what is palatable and what is not. He is also getting some dietary fiber and the beneficial intestinal microbes needed to support his own digestive processes once he begins eating solid food. In addition, the healthy intestinal microbes are an effective barrier to pathogenic bacteria which could adversely affect the foal's health.

In older foals and adult horses, manure eating may be a way of supplementing intestinal microbes, dietary fiber, and perhaps other nutrients that are lacking in the horse's own diet. Coprophagia is normal and nutritionally necessary behavior in rabbits, a species whose intestinal tract is very similar to that of the horse. Many nutrients released or produced by microbial breakdown of dietary fiber, as well as the microbes themselves (which are a rich source of proteins, lipids, vitamins, and numerous co-factors), are lost in the manure. Rabbits make effective use of these valuable nutrients by ingesting manure for a second pass.

Perhaps some horses who eat manure are doing a similar thing, particularly if they are on a very restricted diet (e.g. dry lotted with just poor quality grass hay because they need to lose weight). Manure eating in horses can also be caused by boredom or social disorder (e.g. isolation, incompatible company, frequent changes in the horse's turnout routine or companions). As with dirt and wood eating, taking a closer look at the horse's diet and management should identify where improvements may be needed."

Cindy Engles, Ph.D - "Eating feces (coprophagy) is one way animals such as gorillas, elephants, rabbits, and hares add to their supply of essential bacteria through adult life. It is therefore an important aspect of their health care." Cindy Engles, Ph.D., is the author of Wild Health: How Animals Keep Themselves Well and What We Can Learn From Them

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The Right Kind of Salt is Vital for Your Animals

Horse's salt lick Herds of elephants risk injury and death in a perilous journey to hidden salt caves where they supplement their sodium deficient diets. Our pets also suffer from sodium deficiency. Farmers place salt-blocks on their pasture so that their livestock and all other animals can lick the salt to their heart's content.

An abundance of the ingredients in unrefined real salt are as synonymous with life today as they were a billion years ago before single cells appeared here. Lack of them is synonymous with birth defects, organ failure, decay, diseases, premature aging and death at a young age. Long before the earth knew pollutants of any kind, a huge, ancient sea covered what is now North America. Pure, natural salt was the main ingredient of this sea, and over millions of years, the water in the sea evaporated, leaving the salt in undisturbed deposits.

Alert: don't supplement your animal's diet with sodium chloride (common table salt); all of the other beneficial elements have been removed. Animals need unrefined, unprocessed real salt. Major producing companies dry their salt in huge kilns with temperatures reaching 1200 degrees F, changing he salt's chemical structure, which in turn adversely affects the human body. Avoid the common refined table salt. Domesticated animals need the right kind of salt

Where to buy Himalayan Crystal SaltLick with 84 ionic trace minerals. Organic Solar Dried, 100% Natural salt

Bowl of plain water bowl of water with saltOne way to provide salt to your horse is to provide two separate water bowls. One bowl with real-unrefined-unheated-natural-sea-salt and one bowl without salt, so that the animals can consume as much salt as they require. They will drink from the bowl that contains salted water, however once they have had enough salt, they will drink from the bowl that has plain water

Dr. Christine King - "Horses and other herbivores are meant to get the minerals they need for health, growth, and reproduction from their food? Plant material. The more varied the selection of plant materials and grazing areas, the more able horses are to meet their needs. Sometimes, though, the available forage does not meet all of their mineral needs, so they must go in search of other sources of sodium and whatever other minerals they may be lacking at the time. This salt- or mineral-seeking behavior leads them to lick rocks, earth, and even each other. Gross and long-standing dietary deficiencies in phosphorus or protein may even lead herbivores to chew on the carcasses of other animals.

Offering the horse salt and feeding a well-formulated mineral supplement that is appropriate for the individual horse?s needs should stop the dirt eating if this behavior is being driven by nutritional deficiency. My preference for feeding salt to horses is to offer it free-choice, as loose or block salt in a pan separate from the horse?s food. Not a mineral block; just plain salt. It can be no-frills coarse rock salt or a white salt block, Redmond salt (a good-tasting natural-source salt whose impurities give it a pink tinge), or a fancy Celtic sea salt. It doesn?t matter all that much, as long as the product is close to 100% salt (sodium chloride).

I prefer not to add salt to the horse?s food or put a salt block in the bottom of the horse?s feeder, unless I?m trying to increase the horse?s sodium or water intake for a specific medical reason. The body regulates its sodium content very closely, as the sodium concentration in the blood and other body fluids is one of the prime determinants of the body?s total water content. An adequate but not excessive amount of water is essential for virtually every function in the body, so the body regulates its water content very closely. In addition to the mechanisms of thirst/drinking and urination for controlling its water content, the body has a specific and very refined appetite for sodium. This mechanism is so well regulated that I prefer to let the horse?s body take in as little or as much salt as it needs at the time, rather than thinking I know better."

Salt Deficiency: the cause of many Serious Diseases

Both sea salt and rock salt were well known to the ancient Greeks who noted that eating salty food affected basic body functions such as digestion and excretion (urine and stools). This led to salt being used medically. The healing methods of Hippocrates (460 BC) especially made frequent use of salt. Salt-based remedies were thought to have expectorant powers. A mixture of water, salt, and vinegar was employed as an emetic. Drinking a mixture of two-thirds cow's milk and one-third salt-water, in the mornings, on an empty stomach was recommended as a cure for diseases of the spleen. A mixture of salt and honey was applied topically to clean bad ulcers and salt-water was used externally against skin diseases and freckles. Hippocrates also mentions inhalation of steam from salt-water. We know today that the anti-inflammatory effects of inhaled salt provide relief from respiratory symptoms (c). Thus, 2000 years ago, Greek medicine had already discovered topical use of salt for skin lesions, drinking salty or mineralized waters for digestive troubles and inhaling salt for respiratory diseases!

F. Batmanghelidj, M.D. - "Every function inside the body is regulated by and depends on water. Water must be available to carry vital elements, oxygen, hormones, and chemical messengers to all parts of the body. Without sufficient water to wet all parts equally, some more remote parts of the body will not receive the vital elements that water supplies. Water is also needed to carry toxic waste away from the cells. In fact, there are at least 50 reasons why the body needs sufficient water on a regular, everyday basis. Without sufficient water to constantly wet all parts, your body's drought-management system kicks into action. The histamine-directed chemical messenger systems are activated to arrange a new, lower quota of water for the drought-stricken areas. When histamine and its subordinate "drought managers" come across pain-sensing nerves, they cause pain. This is what I discovered in my research that I mentioned earlier."

Question Mark Do you have a question about Natural Health or need assistance? Contact Shirley
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Seaweed for Equine Nutritional Support

Kelp is a type of Seaweed that is a source of iodine, vitamins and minerals. Kelp powder improves skin, coat, and hoof conditions. It is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals and
it is also high in B-complex and trace minerals.

A Table Spoon of Seaweed a Day Keeps the Vet away! In the US, many horses spend the winter on grass or alfalfa hay, which becomes less nutritious through the season. In pastures with degraded soils, micro-nutrient deficiencies (especially that of selenium) are not uncommon. Horse managers have increasingly started using dry, powdered seaweed as a source of micro-nutrients for the animals. Horses fed with powdered seaweed acquire a bloom (glossy coat and aura of health), resistance to diseases and strength. People with excitable horses find that this treatment also calms down the animals. Method of preparation: take seaweed (any type), dry it and grind to a fine powder. Dosage: Add one tablespoon seaweed per day to the animal’s feed. It may be sprinkled either on cut grass or over grain ration

In the Orkney Islands, through simple observation, it was discovered that animals grazing on seaweed are generally in better overall condition, grow faster and have more resistance to illness, especially coughs and respiratory ailments. As a result of eating seaweed, the now famous North Ronaldsay sheep are sought after all over the world by top chefs and restaurants. When you discover the constituents of seaweed it is easy to see why it is valued so much.

Richard J. Holliday, D.V.M. - "Always feed a source of kelp ... free choice if possible. Trace mineral deficient animals will eat a lot until their needs are met. After that, they consume very little. If they continue to eat kelp at high levels, it may indicate a more severe deficiency of one or more individual trace minerals such as Zinc, Copper, Manganese, Cobalt or others."

Horses with hoof problems, active and inactive horses may all benefit from eating AFA. Maintaining your horse on a daily amount of AFA may provide the following benefits:

  • Better general health, strengthened immune system, quicker recovery from stress and high performance demands.
  • Stronger, more elastic hooves, clears up laminitis, white line, abcess, and dry-cracked hoof walls. Makes good hooves even better!
  • Better coat, much clearer eyes.
  • Improved disposition and attitude towards breeding and training
Christina Chambreau, DVM
  • MIND: cribbing and/or weaving; pen/stall walking; flank sucking; over-reactive; fearful, excessively territorial or aggressive; Fear of loud noises, slightest noises, narrow spaces.
  • SKIN, RESPIRATORY: puffy around eyes; chronic conjunctivitis; dull eyes; "foal snots"; asthma sweat on upper body but not lower, sticky sweat, unpleasant odor, dry and/or dull hair coat, dry skin, poor-healing wounds, greasy skin on face.
  • STOMACH: foul breath, fissures at corners of mouth, salivation from clover, hollow seeming teeth, hard to float, loose teeth at under 20 years old, coprophagia/pica, craves salt, fussy eating, intolerant to fat, repeated colics, sensitivity to weather changes with GIT signs, excessively susceptible to parasites, potbellied foals, distended abdomen (hay belly) in adults, rectum tears easily when palpated, hard dry fecal balls.
  • EXTREMITIES: warm up very slowly; stiff muscles; tie up if not warmed up; swollen legs: hot or cold may or may not go down with exercise; unable to lift back feet; unable to balance on three legs, bad odor without pathology, excessive moisture in feet, sensitive to hammering in nails
  • GENERALITIES: poor exercise tolerance; fat deposits- cresty necks, around tail head, top of croup, etc; disturbed by temperature changes; offensive odors; not wanting touching, grooming.

Homeopathic Remedies for the Horse

Bruising, swelling and inflammation can be treated successfully, and most people now know the value of arnica in treating bruising and also before and after operations. Rhus Tox and Symphitum work well with tissue, connective tissue and old scar tissue and joints, and bone (symphitum being the homeopathic form of comfrey which is well known to help heal bones.) Calendula is a wonderful antiseptic, and can take its place in one's first aid box.

One of my clients horses exhibited a very strange lameness behind. I suggested she call the vet, and the horse was diagnosed with a blood clot. There is not much that can be done for a blood clot, but we put the horse on a homeopathic remedy, and allthough the vet did not hold out much hope for the horse, she recovered and is back in work, the blood clot is gone but we keep a very close eye on her.

With scar tissue from old injuries which so many horses have, and which is often not discovered until the horse is put under pressure in its work, I find homeopathic remedies work really well. With chronic conditions like arthritis, remedies can make the horse more comfortable for quite a long time, and I believe that even navicular disease has responded to homeopathy.

In the case of minor injuries you can always administer Rescue Remedy first about ten drops just on to the horses tongue or if you can under the tongue. At this stage have some yourself, to keep you calm and thinking straight.

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Bach's Rescue Remedy - A Natural Remedy to Alleviate Stress, Fear and Shock

by Nanna Holt Kjær Note: This is a testimonial about a dog, but the Rescue remedy works the same way on horses

Bach Flower Remedies I have used Bach's Rescue Remedy for about a year. I have also corresponded with other users in Scandinavia and in the U.S. I find the remedy a big help and would therefore like to share my experiences with others. My initial interest was sparked by one of my dog's fear of fireworks. The problem was, and is, that the use of fireworks is now no longer limited to New Year's Eve. Nowadays shooting off fireworks seems a natural event at parties and get-togethers all the year round, and practically every night throughout December. Most sedatives and other calming agents need a couple of hours to take effect, which makes them practically useless when the noise can occur unpredictably at any time. I mean who wants to keep their dog sedated all through December. It is a bad enough decision to have to make for just one night a year.

Then I heard about Bach's Rescue Remedy, a mixture of flower essences. This remedy is administered just after a shock or fright and takes effect very quickly. Where I used to have a shivering dog hiding under my bed, I now have a dog that lies quietly listening to the thunder, gunshots, fireworks or whatever. She still isn't completely indifferent like the rest of my gang who just lie on their backs on my sofa and couldn't care less. But it is a vast improvement. She no longer goes to pieces, and this is achieved without filling her body up with drugs.

Following are examples of of emotional symptoms for which various Bach Flowers remedies are used if an animals is: Very fearful, and are very sensitive to anxiety and apprehension. Separation anxiety. Fear of riding in the car. They may even tremble. - Possessive and selfish. Animals who guard their food bowl or toys and are over possessive. Sometimes it can help those animals who will not stop licking their owners or using the wrong scratching post - Animals who are sad after a change in their life – weaning, going to a new home or handler, owner going back to work, being kenneled or taken to a different house for a while, loss of a love one. - Dominant animals want to be the boss of animals and the people in their life. They can even be bullies to smaller animals and use their power to resist discipline.They can be cruel.

The Premarin Industry: Holocaust for Horses

Premarin - a prescription drug currently being used by over 8 million women with menopausal symptoms--is responsible for agonizing conditions and ultimate death of thousands of horses annually.

"Of the women in menopause today, about half start synthetic hormone replacement, but only half of those stick with it because of the side effects or fear of cancer risk. The threat of breast and uterine cancer is dramatically increased with HRT. Premarin, an estrogen replacement drug for menopausal women made from pregnant mare's urine, is the top selling drug of any kind in the U.S. But justifiable controversy about synthetic hormone replacementmay mean that the threat of breast and uterine cancer is dramatically increased with HRT. In 51 studies covering 21 countries involving more than 52,000 women with breast cancer and 108,000 women without breast cancer, women who used Premarin for 5 years or longer had a 35% higher risk of developing cancer than women who had never been on HRT. (Good news!

The higher risk for breast cancer diminished and largely disappeared after about 5 years off HRT treatment.) Most women don't know that Premarin, is made from pregnant mare's urine, and that the mares are kept in horrendous conditions - their foals are sold for slaughter. Premarin is the most prescribed of all drugs in America today. The mares are artificially inseminated and forced to spend their 11-month pregnancies in stalls so small they cannot turn. If they try to lie down, their heads are jolted upright by their halter chains. Long lines of pregnant horses stand, chained and strapped into cramped concrete and steel pens like rows of four-legged galley slaves. They shuffle uncomfortably from hoof to hoof. A forlorn look fills their eyes as they stare. Their coats are dull, their ears droopy - tell-tale signs of a horse's misery. Many get sore, swollen legs or become crippled from standing, months on end, in their tiny concrete stalls. The mares are kept constantly thirsty. They are denied water so that their urine becomes thick." Linda Page, N.D. Ph.D

Do you have a question about Natural Animal Health or need assistance? Contact Shirley
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Barbara, Meadowsweet and dog Sadie question mark Do you have a question about holistic animal health or need assistance? Barbara is an animal lover and wellness coach who donates her time to help visitors of Shirley's Wellness Cafe website. She'll be happy to answer your question and offers guidance. 970-731-0883 (CO). You may also contact Shirley or call 323-522-4521 or 323-989-3372

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Chronic Kidney disease in Cats and Dogs

How  euthanised Dogs and Cats Get Recycled into Pet Food Dangerous Toxic Contaminated Dog and Cat Food The number of cases of kidney failure among dogs and cats that ate poisoned pet food could total in the tens of thousands says Dr. Paul Pion, president of the Veterinary Information Network.

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