Your equine friend does a lot of you, so it only fits to return the favor and provide the little extra pampering they deserve. Whether it’s showering them with kisses, giving them their favorite treats, or scratching their itches, it’s okay to spoil your horse from time to time. But to level up the experience and show them that you really love and care, why not give them a massage instead?
Equine massage therapy not only helps them relax but aids in relieving pain, improving their blood circulation, and boosting locomotor function. Plus, you get to strengthen your bond with them and gain more of their trust and confidence in every massage session.
When you’re at it, be sure to use oils that can multiply the benefits tenfold. Lots of varieties are available but all bound to make your equine friend feel better. If you don’t know which oils to use, here’s a list to get you started pampering your horse!
Basil oil boasts antispasmodic properties, which help relieve spasms and relax the muscles when applied topically. Its muscle-relaxing effect can quickly appease tension, especially when applied to specific points, like in the scapula or the deep pectoral muscles. During training, you can also use it for aromatherapy, which can help your horse awaken his senses and gain focus. Just be mindful that basil is a hot oil. Make sure to dilute one part of it with four parts of carrier oil before applying topically.
Chamomile is one of the most popular essential oils, thanks to its calming effect, which can help paucity irritability, anxiousness, or nervousness of your horse. What’s great is that it also works as an excellent topical oil, helping soothe cramps or deep-rooted spasms that developed over time.
Another refreshing oil you can use to massage your horse is lavender oil, which helps relieve pain, stress, and inflammation. It is handy if the horse engaged in strenuous activity or has been recently injured. Remember that you should never massage the muscle and joint if it’s still swollen. Only gently apply the solution, and you can massage the area at a later time. Lavender also works aromatically, helping intensity focus and concentration.
Frankincense oil is derived from steam distillation of the tree resins. Applying this oil to horses helps relax their muscles, calm their nerves, improve their attitude, and enhance their breathing. Keep in mind that Frankincense is harmful to horses internally, so make sure that your equine friend does not accidentally ingest it.
Geranium oil has anti-inflammatory and mild analgesic qualities, significantly helping in easing tension, pain, and muscle soreness. Loaded with geraniol, an active ingredient, it also doubles as a natural tick repellent. You can apply a diluted solution on areas where ticks love to bite, such as the horse’s ears, chest, throatlatch, legs, and mane, and tail.
With its ability to promote recovery of weak connective tissues, strengthen blood vessels, and ease tight muscles, lemongrass oil is widely used for massaging tendon injuries, pulled ligaments, and tensed shoulders and fascia. It also cools down swollen, heated joints and muscles and promotes the drainage of edema. Thus, helping attain faster healing and recovery.
A well-loved essential oil, Peppermint can offer tons of benefits to horses. When used in massage, it helps cool, soothe aches, and reduce inflammation of sore muscles. Plus, its scent is invigorating and stimulating, great when you need to give dull, tired, or grumpy horses some boost.
Performance horses, geldings, and stallions are hard-working horses that often experience muscle soreness, tightening, and joint discomfort. Marjoram oil can aid in loosening up the muscles and relieving pain. You can apply it to troubled areas and massage it once the swelling subsides.
While these oils can significantly help in pampering your horse and beneficial in treating or alleviating some conditions, remember that they cannot replace veterinary care. If you see any reaction or your horse appears to be in severe pain or serious problem, seek medical assistance right away. Massaging using these oils is only a supplement to keep horses healthy and at their best.