i have recently been blessed with the chance to help a friend help her horse, who was diagnosed with EPM last summer.

estella is a gorgeous, young, vibrant, warmblood mare that my friend, emily, spent many hours/days/years dreaming about.

she put so much time and effort into finding her perfect partner, picked her out, brought her home, put countless hours into her mental and physical development, only to be told that her precious partner is sick.  i think we can all understand, this was heartbreaking for emily.

you can read her story over at From the Horse’s Mouth.

emily and i chat regularly on facebook so i had been following estella’s progress closely.  we would chat about nutrition, as i have been on the search for anything and everything that will boost billy’s immune system and help with the “itchies” as we call them here.  of course Young Living Essential Oils came up often in our chats.  emily was a hard sell as she is a scientist through and through however, she ran across a wonderfully written article that explained some of the benefits of essential oils.

“Essential oils have the same function in the plant as blood has to the human…
Oils serve as the defense system in plants. These oils oxygenate the plant and carry nutrients, vital elements and chemical constituents to every cell in the plant.

They contain each of the plant’s healing nutrients including trace minerals, vitamins, hormones, amino acid precursors and other components. They give the plant the ability to destroy infections, stave off infestations, initiate and maintain growth and repair structural damage. The essential oil of the plant is literally the life force of the plant.”

the article went on to say,

“When essential oils are applied to human skin, they carry the same healing force as they do to the plant.”

really it is such a great article, maybe you should just go read it yourself!  the explanation of essential oils and how they help our bodies fight infection is quite well written.

anyway…

emily decided to try the oils!  yay!  i am so happy and excited for both emily and estella.

emily and i worked together and laid out a short term plan, a “redneck raindrop” that would start estella down her path of mending using the essential oils.

** don’t get me wrong.  emily is doing EVERYTHING to help her horse.  you should see her feed program!!!  plus estella has had one round of Toltrazuil (Baycox) and one round of the EPM medicine, Orogin (Oroquin-10). **

we started slow and easy with:

– 1 drop of Valor on each of estella’s heel bulbs, rubbed in and then vita flex around the coronet band.  often called “chiropractor in a bottle” Valor is known for it’s balancing properties.

– 6 drops of Lemon down estella’s spine, from tail dock to withers, then emily will cat scratch that in.  Lemon is known to be a powerful antioxidant.

– 6 drops of Frankincense down the spine, from tail dock to withers, cat scratched in.  Frankincense is well known as an oil that can help focus the mind and overcome stress.

– 8 drops of Purification down the spine, from tail dock to withers, cat scratched in.  as it’s name suggests Purification is used to help purify.

– 4 drops of Thieves on estella’s poll, rubbed in clockwise.  Thieves was university tested for its cleansing abilities. It is highly effective in supporting the immune system and good health.

that’s it!  easy peasy!

UNTIL,

emily did the Valor on the heel bulbs, lots of licking and chewing.  then she moved to the Lemon and the Frankincense on the spine.  so far so good!  estella was smelling each oil before they were applied and showed no adverse responses to them.  she was licking and chewing and showing positive releases.

next was Purification.  emily dropped it down estella’s spine and began cat scratching it in.  estella swung her butt a little bit and lifted her tail to side.  emily thought, “oh it’s feeling itchy!” and kept up the cat scratching.  then all H-E-L-L broke loose!  it became clear to emily that estella wanted to roll.  she was attempting while still in the bath rack, which clearly would not work.  so emily quickly unclipped her and hurried her to the indoor arena, where she turned her loose and estella dropped to roll and roll, she hopped up and took off bucking and running around the arena!

i’m sure you are thinking what i was thinking,  WHAT!?  followed immediately by HOW SCARY!!!

i felt especially bad because this was both emily’s first time using the oils and estella’s first introduction TO the oils.  eeeek!

i called my aunt and told her what happened as none of the oils emily was using are considered “hot” oils.  therefor a reaction of this type seemed even more interesting, (from my stand point mostly because i know the oils won’t cause any harm to estella and also because it wasn’t happening to my horse!)    my aunt shared something interesting with me… Purification is used to pull out toxins, venom (both spider and RATTLESNAKE) and other foreign entities in the body.

how interesting.  EPM lives in the horse’s spinal cord.  it is a foreign entity in the horse’s system.  therefore the Purification went straight to work and began to pull that out!  of course this was very uncomfortable for estella who can not voice what is happening in her body before she has to tell emily in any way she can.  i’m so grateful that emily is so in tune to estella that she recognized this for what it was: estella telling her to let her roll, itch and scratch that feeling away!

i felt absolutely horrible because i had neglected to tell emily to always have some olive/coconut oil around when applying the oils.  if there is a release of this magnitude, it is imperative that you have some oil, V-6 Carrier oil, coconut oil, olive oil, to cut the effects of the essential oil.  thank goodness emily didn’t try to hose estella down with cold water as this acts as a driver and PUSHES the oils in deeper.  in my opinion emily did exactly what she should have!  she stopped the raindrop and allowed estella some time in the indoor arena to run around, roll and work out what was happening in her body.

together we have worked out another plan.  THIS time emily will cut the Purification with some coconut oil before applying it to estella’s spine.  then she will be very vigilant in watching estella for any signs that the oil is getting uncomfortable so she can add more coconut oil as needed.  we chose coconut oil for this because it is itself antibacterial so will the perfect combination for estella’s sensitive spinal area.

she will also cut the Thieves oil with some coconut oil before applying it to estella’s poll.

i felt this was a perfect story to share because it has a lesson for everyone.  just because an oil works one way for you or your horse does not mean it will behave that way with everyone.  we are all made of up of different electrical impulses, therefor the oils will work differently on each of us.  it’s important to consider exactly what we are wanting the oils to do for our horse and then work toward that goal, watching to see how our horses are responding and adjusting our methods accordingly.

i had no idea that Purification would behave that way for estella, but now that we know we will always take special precautions to ensure that she doesn’t have to react that way.  especially when emily prepares to do the full Raindrop Technique on her.  we will put our heads together and work out a plan that will give estella all the benefits of the Raindrop without her feeling the need to throw herself down in the wash rack!

i think estella will thank us!

estellasmile

Some of us have long, cold, snowy winters. It’s a good idea to prepare our horses for these cold days to come.

I have a long list of things I do to prepare. I’ll share a few of them here!

1) I make sure my water heaters are in working order and scrub clean my water troughs.  Being certain that my horses have fresh, clean water no matter how cold it gets is one of my top priorities.

2) I stack and cover my winter hay stack.  Ideally I would like to have a building to keep my hay clean and dry, but I don’t. So I put together a little pallet corral where my hay will sit, covered by a tarp, tied down tight to withstand the high winds we get here.

3) I will make sure my horse’s will stay happy and healthy all winter by boosting their immune system.  The Raindrop Technique is critical to my winter horse preparation.  as I’ve said before, the Raindrop Technique is a wonderful immune booster.

Raindrop Technique® combines the art of aromatherapy with the techniques of Vita Flex and massage in the application of essential oils to various areas of the body. This collection provides a revolutionary means of bringing balance and harmony to the body – physically, mentally, and emotionally.

~Young Living Website

4) Other oils I use during the winter are:

* Sage: This oil is helpful for supporting the respiratory, reproductive, nervous, and other body systems. Sage may help in coping with despair and mental fatigue. I apply this topically.

* Lemon: This oil consists of 68 percent dlimonene which is a powerful antioxidant. It can also be revitalizing and uplifting. I will add this to their daily supplements and feed internally.

* Cedarwood: This oil is a for balancing the emotions. It’s relaxing and soothing. I use this oil topically, usually in one of my “redneck raindrop treatments”.

* Elemi:   This oil is part of the same botanical family as frankincense and myrrh. It’s wonderful for grounding. I use this oil topically, usually in one of my “redneck raindrop treatments”.

5) I like my horses to be on the plump side going into winter. Where we live it gets extremely cold with high winds and driving snow.  The horses have to go out and do a little digging for the grass in the fields, though I supply them with hay as well. They will use up the extra fat that they put on in the fall, staying warm throughout the long winter here. Of course they have a shelter in which they can get out of the wind, but I’ve found they prefer to stand out in the weather.

6) I check over my winter blankets for rips and tears and make sure the buckles are in good working order. I only blanket when the temperature gets below zero with a wind chill or if they are wet and shivering. Otherwise both my horses grow a thick, warm winter coat and blanketing is unnecessary.

7) My feeding program is very simple. They have a loose salt/mineral blend in the shelter at all times. Then I add in what I feel is necessary.  Billy gets “The Golden Paste” which is a Turmeric blend of coconut oil, water and black pepper. This is to battle his allergies and inflammation of the skin. He also gets Young Living’s Mineral Essence, Lemon and Peppermint oil in his feed. I break his supplements into three separate feedings during the day.  Because I’m able to work from home, I have the luxury of being able to feed my horses all through the day, ensuring they don’t have empty tummies.

Chloe gets a simple health and hoof herbal mix from Smart Pak along with a flax seed blend to help her dry skin. I add oils as I feel it’s necessary, though she has fewer skin problems than Billy does. Thank goodness!

8) All spring, summer and fall I have rigorous manure management. When winter comes in full force there are many days that I can not scoop the poop. I prepare ahead of time by cleaning the dry lot and the playground daily. I have two manure piles, one far away from my dry lot and another closer, for when the snow starts to pile up. On days that I can not wheel the wheel barrow to the manure pile, I will use a rock rake and simply rake the manure into piles to deal with when the weather warms up. I will also have a small stack of straw that I fill the shelter with. It is a nice insulator for those super cold days. Though I have found that it does encourage the horses to use the shelter as a bathroom. It requires a bit more cleaning!

If I take the time to properly prepare for winter my winter work load is lightened considerably! I can rest easy that my horses have all they need to stay happy, healthy and warm throughout those long, cold winter days.

After playing with Billy the other day and noticing that he was having a hard time cantering on a small circle, I decided to give him a spa day today.

It started with a little Masterson Method, The Bladder Meridian Technique, to help him release any tension he may be carrying.

BOY did he release some tension! I had some releases that I’ve never witnessed before. He kept stretching his head and neck down, turning it a little, chewing and chewing, then rubbing and rubbing his cheeks on his front leg. There was lot of yawning and stretching of his neck. At one point as I worked on his tail a little bit, his tail would raise and lower with my hand! Keep in mind that when doing the Bladder Meridian you don’t have to actually touch the horse or manipulate the muscles. It’s done using the energy in your hand. So watching Billy raise and lower his tail as I raised and lowered my hand was amazing. He had some tension in his hips and I did go ahead and do some muscle manipulation there. Just some pressing on different spots that he showed me by stretching, yawning, blinking rapidly, and raising his leg. The look on his face as I pressed into his hip was priceless…

I decided I wanted to follow the Masterson Method with a little “Redneck Raindrop” to help Billy continue to release and align himself. I had gone through my oils and picked out a few that I felt would be beneficial. I did a little muscle testing and came up with:

Redneck Raindrop Treatment
The oils Billy tested for in his Redneck Raindrop Treatment.

I figured the best way to oil him up was to do a “Redneck Raindrop Treatment”. In other words, I would use my choice of essential oils and apply them in the Raindrop method of vita flexing and cat scratching the oil in, along Billy’s spine and around his coronet bands on all four feet.

Before I put each oil on I allowed him some time to smell them. He lingered longest on the Sage, Believe and Eucalyptus Blue.

To start I applied Rosewood to the top of his neck, then scratched that in. They don’t make Rosewood any more, but it’s great as an antibacterial, antiviral, and is great for soothing the skin. Perfect for any residual itchy spots Billy may have!

Next, I dropped 2 drops of Valor on his heel bulbs, rubbed it in and vita flexed it around the coronet band of all four hooves. Valor has been found to help the body self-correct it’s balance and alignment.

Then, I dropped 4 drops of Valor down his spine from his tail dock to his withers, cat scratching that in from tail to withers.

I followed that with 3 drops of Sage, from tail dock to withers and cat scratched that in as well.

Sage has been recognized for its ability to strengthen the senses and vital centers of the body and to support metabolism.  It is helpful for supporting the respiratory, reproductive, nervous, and other body systems. *From the Young Living Website

I went back to his head and dropped 3 drops of Brain Power on his crown and rubbed that in as well. Brain Power may help support and strengthen the immune system as well as help clear the mind.

Next, I dropped 3 drops of Believe in my non dominant hand, activated it by rubbing clockwise with my other hand and then just simply ran my hands down Billy’s forehead and long nose. I also rubbed my hands around the base of his ears and then did a little rubbing IN his ears after most of the oil had been removed from my hands. Believe can be both grounding and invigorating.

I finished this session with 8 drops of Eucalyptus Blue down Billy’s spine from his tail dock to his withers, then cat scratched it in. Eucalyptus Blue can bring about a sense of peace and well being. It is also anti-inflammatory and antiviral, both of which would be great for inflammation of the skin, such as allergies.

I’ve been feeding Billy Turmeric twice a day, with a middle of the day feeding of Lavender, Peppermint and Lemon Young Living Essential Oils and their supplement, Mineral Essence. He is starting to get his winter coat and it’s so thick and shiny. He is healthy ‘as a horse!’