Well, we’ve made it through the darkest, dankest part of Winter and signs of Spring are beginning to peep out from beneath the blankets of frost and snow. It’ll not be long before we see lambs frolicking in the fields as we ride out and we start to think about strip grazing or getting our horses back on track.
For now though, let’s just embrace the extra two minutes of daylight we gain each day with the Winter Solstice is behind us. As mother nature enjoys a well-earned rest and the earth remains sleepy and dormant, it is the right time to consider what is missing from our horse’s diet that nature would usually take care of for us.
Variety is the spice of life…
Due to limited supplies of grass (and extra helpings of mud) forages such as hay and haylage become the mainstay of our horses’ diets. Although this provides the fibre to keep tummies ticking over, it is no substitute for time usually spent foraging the hedgerows.
Out in the field horses will naturally browse the hedgerows to forage for the most nutritious morsels; top of their list of goodies would be rosehips. Not only a tasty treat, but naturally packed with essential vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin C.
Think about it, when we cook up a culinary delight in our kitchens the addition of a little salt and seasoning can transform a boring meal into something quite sensational. Although we know radical
changes to horse’s diets can be dangerous and detrimental, there is no harm in gradually adding essential herbs. They can be the perfect way to add flavour and break the monotony of chaff.
Variety is the spice of life after all. So, why not tap into the health benefits offered by rosehips and give our Herb Power a try?
During the Winter months horses tend to be stabled for longer, and so feeding a supplement containing rosehips comes in handy for replenishing vitamin C stocks.
Although the horse’s body is capable of creating some vitamin C, levels become depleted as daily access to grazing is replaced by hay and haylage which both have lower nutritional value than grass. Being stabled for longer periods of time also has an adverse effect on horse’s health as they have greater exposure to dust spores and other allergens which can affect the airways. Vitamin C-rich rosehips can help relieve discomfort associated with lung allergies.
Rosehips help to make healthy hooves
Horses find rosehips irresistibly delicious and these tiny pods are a bursting with mighty minerals such as copper and zinc. Such minerals also play a key role in warding off weak and cracked hooves. Made of the same stuff as our nails (Keratin), hooves need all the help they can get throughout the wetter Winter months. We all know how flexible, weak and brittle our own nails become after a 20 minute soak in the bathtub; imagine the impact
of waterlogged fields and seemingly endless rain at this time of year!
It does not do our horses’ feet many favours. Hoof and Health is the perfect supplement to add throughout the year to help keep hooves healthy as it contains rosehips which are a plentiful source of natural biotin. Biotin is renowned for its ability to strengthen hooves, as it is an essential building block in the construction of the proteins which make up the hoof wall.
Rosehips also contribute towards maintaining healthy joints, cartilage and connective tissues, assisting in the reduction of pain and inflammation cause by wear and tear, aging and conditions such as arthritis.
Hoof & Health
Rosehips for rejuvenation & recovery
Not only do the naturally cleansing antioxidants found in rosehips assist with the blood purification process, but rosehips are also an excellent source of iron meaning they are helpful in supporting your horse’s immune system. Equimmune Gold combines rosehips with a blend of other beneficial herbs to make the perfect fast absorbing liquid suitable for supplementing meals and providing immune support on a daily basis. A perfect choice for horses who are stabled more over winter and for those who are recovering from injury or illness.
Alongside their anti-inflammatory properties, rosehips are also beneficial in relieving some of the symptoms associated with gastrointestinal disorders, such as stomach ulcers!