Amy was 32 years old and recently retired when she became incredibly lame with arthritis affecting all four legs. She had been on a maintenance dose of an anti-inflammatory prescribed by her vet for several years and had been comfortable until this sudden worsening of symptoms occurred. Box rest was prescribed along with the maximum dose of anti-inflammatories. I soon had a very stressed and unhappy horse, separated from her friends and in a great deal of discomfort even with the extra medication. This happened the week before I started my equine training at the Ingraham Academy of Zoopharmacognosy, which soon gave me the solutions to Amy’s problem.
Having trained with Caroline Ingraham in observing how a horse will self-select it’s own natural medicines, I returned home with a supply of remedies that Amy might be interested in. I offered a range of essential oils, herbs and macerated oils to Amy, having first sought my vet’s approval to do this alongside the traditional medicine he had prescribed. Amy self-selected Peppermint, Juniper Berry and Wintergreen essential oils by inhaling them and then nibbling at the bottles. These are oils that are frequently selected by animals with arthritis or with similar symptoms of pain and stiffness. When I offered the oils on my hand, Amy enjoyed licking the Peppermint and then turned to the side, offering her most painful leg to me. Carefully watching her reactions, I stroked the oil onto her leg. She immediately began to relax and it was such a relief to see some of the tension leave her body. I offered the Wintergreen and Juniper Berry in the same way and she offered her leg each time. As indicated by Amy, I made up an Aloe Vera gel containing Peppermint, Wintergreen and Juniper Berry essential oils. This gel was self-selected by Amy twice a day, every day over the coming days. She wanted it rubbed in to each of her legs. She showed such a quick improvement, that she was back in the field with her friends within a couple of days and only in her stable overnight. She continued to improve and I was also able to reduce the dose of her veterinary anti-inflammatory.
Amy’s quality of life returned with the introduction of Applied Zoopharmacognosy into her life and she spent many happy hours with her friends in the field. Her wellbeing was further supported by the healing energies of Reiki. I introduced Amy to Reiki in the year following her attack of arthritis. She was extremely sensitive to this energy and would indicate her desire to receive healing by nuzzling me or more often, reversing towards me! Reiki can help to bring balance and relaxation and this was demonstrated by Amy. She found it helpful for me to direct healing along her spine from her tail and down her front and back legs. She would visibly relax and stretch out her neck and adjust her posture, re-balancing the way she was standing as she found relief.
Amy enjoyed her retirement and lived to be 35 1/2 years old. She self-selected her ‘arthritis gel’ every day for 3 1/2 years and enjoyed her regular Reiki sessions.