Your Mane Blows in the Wind

By Leslie Morán

Here in Nevada when driving in certain areas, away from the city where fewer people live, I am often gifted with seeing the wild mustangs foraging. I notice the new colts each spring and recognize the posture of the herd, arranged in subtle defensive positions.

Although I have never had a horse of my own, I have an understanding of the range of relationships possible between such a powerful creature and a fragile human. I sense the importance of a rider having skill and authority tempered with patience and compassion. I have felt the range of emotions horses are capable of shifting through. And I know the levels of commitment and dedication, between horse and rider, which can be reached to achieve the loftiest of their goals. Having a relationship with a horse is unlike any other type of human-animal bond.

As with any individual nutrition plays a key role in the physical and emotional health and well-being of horses. When discussing equine nutrition from a holistic perspective very little research has been done and there is a lack of published materials on this topic. Recognizing that there is a need for information on this subject to be made available is one of the reasons I offer the US Animal Equine products for sale on this Web site. Although the foundation of every natural health care plan revolves around feeding a natural well-balanced diet this can be a challenge for those who care for horses. Feed manufacturers often use the cheapest ingredients available which equates to feeds and grains having poor nutritional content. This puts even more emphasis on the importance of feeding horses high quality well-formulated nutritional supplements.

Being able to feed organic whenever possible offers benefits similar to those received by people and parrots. For a more detailed explanation please see "Why Feed Organic?" on the Articles page of this Web site. Although this article appeared in a parrot magazine the information it contains can be extrapolated to include horses. The information documenting the adverse health effects of pesticides in people comes from the report, "Pesticides and Human Health",1. published by the Physicians for Social Responsibility and Californians for Pesticide Reform. 2 . Certain pesticides are known to disrupt the endocrine system in humans and in animals. Glands of the endocrine system include thyroid, parathyroid, pituitary, pancreas, adrenals, and gonads. Research has shown that chemical pesticides tend to accumulate in fatty tissues, have an accumulative effect on the body and can remain there for years before breaking down.

Although organic feed for horses is slowly becoming more available persistent caretakers can seek out organic bulk sources of whole grains - oats, barley, and corn. Holistic equine veterinarian Joyce Harman, D.V.M., suggests a blend of 20 percent large cracked or rolled corn, 30 percent steamed rolled barley, and 45 percent oats, either large race horse oats or crimped.

Pure water is such an important nutrient for all of us. Whenever possible ensure that the quality of water your horses receive is safe for human consumption. If the water they have access to has been chemically treated by a local water company look into being able to filter it. I realize that in many situations this may be completely impractical. However, being aware of the importance of providing your horses fresh - pesticide and contaminant free - drinking water may help you be able to bring this into fruition.

Traits We All Share

Working as closely as I have with my own animals has led me to recognize certain characteristics, which we all share. Regardless of the species, each individual has a desire to feel safe, to be loved, and to have all their basic needs met. These characteristics exist in the tiniest bird to the largest whale. Family is important to us all, whether we travel in a herd, a pack, a flock, a pod, or a pride. Family helps provide each of us, animal and human, with a sense of safety and belonging. What really matters is that we are together.

We all benefit from the relationships we have with each other and the animals we love. When choosing to use a natural approach when caring for them you can help prevent illness, maintain good health, and help them be as happy as possible. This natural approach also helps us align with methods that are in harmony with the earth and the nature of life itself. Using natural methods help nurture and support the natural healing and regeneration processes already present within the animals and yourself. When the process of life is strengthened using natural methods the results we typically see are good health, balanced emotions, happy personalities, and a high level of well-being. ____________________________________________________________________________
1. see programs, see environmental health, see pesticides
2. www.




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