With the January bushfires so widespread, our horses in and out of the bushfires zones have been affected by smoke haze, even in stables in the heart of our cities respiration is an effect. Country Park has formulated two simple blends to support clients at this time.
For those horses that are safe and have access to feed but are still affected by smoke haze, the Airway Soothe Blend can be added to any feed as a support whilst dealing with the current environment.
The Airway Soothe Blend contains:
Mullein for irritation and inflammation of the airways.
Peppermint to assist breathing andthe immune system with calming, cooling actions, and to settle horses that are agitated and restless.
Rosehips to help with mild infections of the respiratory systems and support as a tonic for affected tissues with the vitamin C to assist with the ongoing stress effect of smoke
1 cupful (40g) of Blend daily
The Respiratory Support Blend contains the herbs in the Airway Soothe Blend but with the additional three herbs listed below for horses that are in fire affected areas or not coping well with the smoke:
Marshmallow root helps soothe as a demulcent herb and helps with respiratory tension.
Fenugreek seeds further supports the demulcent aspect of the blend and with anti-inflammatory and nutritive properties will assist with debility and condition.
Nettle leaf has been added for its anti-inflammatory action and nutritive value; traditionally nettle gives courage.
1 cupful (40g) of Blend daily
The nutritional herbs not only support respiration, they have been included to improve digestion with feed opportunities restricted. These two body systems are closely linked and keeping the gut and lungs working together will help with overall recovery.
The peppermint in both blends will support the nervous system, if a horse needs further stress support, then lemon balm could be added easily with either of these blends. It is particularly useful with anxiety states while supporting the respiratory and digestive actions of the herbs in both blends. Use 1 to 2 tablespoons daily.
Some horses with weepy irritated eyes may need the added support of eyebright which can be either added to feed dry for horses with runny noses or as an eyebath to the eyes. Use 1 to 2 tablespoons of eyebright with a tea diffuser in a bowl of water as if making a large cup of tea, steeping the herb for ten minutes. Then using a face washer that has been immersed in the tea, wash the eye area. The tea can be used warm or cool depending on your stabling arrangements.
Once this fire season has passed, for horses who need added recovery support an individualised approach for specific needs may be looked at. The herbs in both blends have been chosen as they are all gentle herbs that can be given long term without concern of them interacting with medications. Once the smoke has cleared some horses may move on to the Autumn Blend to build up their immune system further, other horses may need herbs that target residual congestion or stress from what they have experienced.
A note for humans: these blends can also be made into a cup of tea for you at this time, a simple infusion daily will give much needed support.
For the horses: these blends can be added dry to any feed, or softened in warm water for ten minutes before liquid and herbs are added to feed, either way will be effective.