Over the past five years, vet Stephen Ashdown has written many articles, spoken on equine matters and contributed widely to horse magazines.

Here he reproduces in the form of questions and answers about 100 topics, all of them common problems which afflict horses.

To access Topics click on Vet Advice Menu.

Jaw Ache
Q: My Arab has a tumour in his lower jaw. This was discovered after an operation for an infection in his tooth.

Scans revealed that the affected area was larger than expected so radiotherapy was not a viable option. He is happy well and free from pain. However I'm worried that the area may be prone to infection. Can complementary therapies help keep a way infection and relieve discomfort?

A: You ask whether there are any complementary therapies; that may help your horse to fight infection and help prevent anaemia. There are a great deal of different supplements in the shops that aim to help with just these problems. Most immune boosters are based on Echinacea, a plant which helps animals to cope with, and prevent infection.

However in your horse's case I don't think that Echinacea alone is the best herb to use as it only provides hep in the short term. You are really looking for a formula that will give more long-term support to your horse and help strengthen the whole body. With this in mind, we usually use an antioxidant formula.

A liver and digestive detoxifying tonic can also be helpful to improve the overall way that the body works, and will also help with the anaemia issues. For more direct support of the blood system there are all sorts of red blood cell formulae available. This type of formula works very quickly and does not need long-term supplementation.


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