Adaptogens are powerful in their ability to impact the health of the horse, and the term ‘adaptogen’ has become rather familiar for many owners. In today’s horse world, anxiety runs very deep, contributing heavily to ulcers, irritable bowel conditions, performance issues, a lack of focus, and many other problems. For many owners, they are seeking that one solution, that one fix, that will remedy all of their horse’s problems, and while this is possible in a few cases, for most the solution comes with a better understanding. As with all things, if you’d like to properly implement something and gain results, it is best served to take the time to better comprehend the problem and possible solutions. (more…)
Tag Archives: ashwaghanda
Ulcers, specifically gastric or stomach ulcers, are very common in the horse. While ulcers generally impact the horse in training or competition, they do affect horses not in active work, often to the same degree if not worse. Ulcer medications are also heavily used in all horses with suspected or diagnosed gastric ulcers, helping to resolve the immediate crisis in some, but in the long-term, many continue to suffer. Should you use ulcer medications in your horse? (more…)
Anxiety is a common problem in the equine industry, often connected right back to stress on a physical and emotional level. There are many contributors to the anxiety, ranging from diet to training, including natural personality tendencies in some breed of horses. Anxiety and stress contribute to a host of health problems in the horse and even impact performance, leading to many owners struggling to find solutions.
Tying up, myositis, Monday Morning Disease, and azoturia all refer to which is more technically known as Equine Rhabdomyolysis Syndrome in horses. It can be a very common problem in some disciplines and breeds in the horse. The most common breeds impacted by the condition include the Quarter Horse, Thoroughbred, Arabian, and the draft horses. In various research papers, tying up has been noted in approximately 4% of Arabian Endurance horse and up to 10% of racing Thoroughbreds. Given the increase in the incidence and possible clinical repercussions of the condition on the performance of the horse, there has been much research trying to unravel the mystery as to what exactly causes the problem. (more…)
When you hear the word “inflammation”, the most common image is one of redness, swelling and pain. Maybe a sprained ankle, tendon or even a blister. While this is true for one form when view externally, it doesn’t always hold true. Pain is a common association with inflammation, but doesn’t always have to be present for the inflammatory process to impact health on many levels. Sometimes, it is like a smoldering fire, out of normal view, contributing to many health conditions in people, pets and horses.
Being an equine veterinarian, researcher of health and observer for over 18 years, I have come to some personal conclusions as to what seems to work when it comes to improving the health of our equine companions. I feel that optimal health can be achieved, but that doesn’t always mean extravagant living conditions or huge expense. In fact, some of the healthiest horses that I have seen as a veterinarian were those kept in large pastures with minimal man made housing, but plenty of food and attention by the owner.
Anxiety Reduction and Improved Physical Cooperation in Horses Through the Use of Withania somnifera (Ashwaghanda)
An Observational Clinical Study
by Tom Schell, D.V.M, CVCH, DABVP(eq)
Anxiety and stress in horses are a common problem in the equine industry, contributing to behavioral problems, training issues and poor performance. In some cases, increased levels of anxiety are associated with health related issues such as gastric ulcers, which have been shown in some studies to impact a large percentage of horses, necessitating long term administration of anti-ulcer type of medications.
Exact causes of stress in the horse can be hard to determine, but are often linked to herd issues, housing conditions, environmental factors, handling methods, training, transportation and competition. Horses are very similar to humans in the respect that they respond better to consistency and routines on a day to day basis. Any upset in that routine can contribute to stress formation which then manifests as behavioral issues. Learned behaviors or responses to stress in prior environments can transfer forward even though the prior initiating factor has been resolved.
Stress. It impacts every dog and horse, leading to anxiety, behavioral problems, and many negative health implications. It affects them all on different levels and considering the health effects, the best option would be to just eliminate stress, but that is not always possible. The impact of stress on health is obvious and well known, but often we neglect to realize the same impact in the average dog or horse. Those effects are real, but the question comes as to what is the best way to manage them? Let’s take a look at one promising option, which is the powerful adaptogen, Ashwaghanda. (more…)