Feeding to boost the Immune System, to help with detox, and the Convalescing horse.
I have grouped all these together as they go hand in hand with each other.
There comes a point when we as horse owners need to give our horses a little extra help whether they are recovering from an illness or lameness.
What can we feed to help boost the Immune system?
The immune system may need a boost if a horse has been neglected, and therefore in poor condition, if they are recovering from surgery or if they are known to pick up certain ailments at certain times of the year i.e. mud fever in the winter.
The most commonly known supplement would be Echinacea renowned for helping to give the system a boost, I have clients that feed a small amount of this going into winter to help prevent mud fever.
Hawthorn leaves help with circulation and therefore can be useful to horses needing a boost.
What can I feed to help with detox?
Your horse may need some detoxifying herbs after being given medication, during the laminitic hot spots, or when diagnosed with kidney or liver issues. Please speak to the vet if feeding for the latter.
Detoxifying herbs include
Burdock - helps to break down stored toxins and should be fed alongside nettles or clivers to help the body get rid of the toxins,
Nettles, Clivers, and Dandelion - help the body to rid of toxins
Hawthorn - improves circulation, therefore, helping with detox.
Milk Thistle - supports kidneys function milk thistle should not be fed long term.
What feed can help the convalescing horse?
The list here is endless and really depends on what the horse is recovering from, my top choices would be
Healthy gut - live yeast to support the hindgut
Everyday balancer - a broad spectrum range of vitamins and minerals suitable for all.
Clivers and Marigold - help with filled legs
Celery - can be given as a pick me up
Hedge mix - can keep horses interested in feed and help hide the taste of medicine.