Thieves to the Rescue

George’s hooves are a pain.  Literally for him, and figuratively for me.  The big chestnut goof ball who loves to give hugs, always comes over to say hello when you walk out into the backyard, and really really loves treats, has struggled with his hooves since he arrived at the farm four years ago.  At first, I thought it was classic hoof woes associated with Thoroughbreds, but during his first trim, my rock star farrier pointed out that he actually had a nasty case of thrush that had eaten away at the frog and was compromising the coronet band.  Yikes!

I was on a mission to get this big cuddle bug sound and happy again, so with my farrier and vet on speed dial, I began using the traditional approaches to treating hoof funk.  No dice.  I tried pretty much every treatment I could think of- over the counter products, feed through supplements, home remedies-  just when I thought we were making progress, the funk would come raging back.  Although he was pasture sound, he would show signs of lameness under saddle at the walk.  Of course, because he was uncomfortable, the poor guy was not overly cooperative about having his feet handled and made treatments stressful for both him and me.

One day, I was talking with a new horse friend and the subject of George’s feet came up.  She recommended using Young Living’s Thieves Cleaner on George’s hooves and told me that she had seen it work wonders.  I had never heard of the stuff, and I doubted that it would do any good, but who am I to pass up her kind offer to send me a little bottle to try?   Free- definitely in the right price range and what’s it going to hurt, right? I googled thieves to see what kind of hippie voodoo concoction I was getting ready to subject my poor buddy to.  I was relieved to find that Thieves Cleaner is a plant based concentrated cleaner that uses the “thieves” blend of essential oils (Clove, Lemon, Cinnamon, Eucalyptus Radiata, and Rosemary).  I also found rave reviews from people who use thieves in the house and in the barn.  I started to give George’s frogs a little squirt every time I picked out his hooves. This ended up being about every other day and within a week, I saw significant progress!  I was shocked!  After the first week, the funky smell was gone.  The second week, I could see that the cracks were starting to heal up.  This was the moment that I realized I needed to find out more about using oils for my horses’ wellness.   Since that day, I keep a bottle of thieves in my barn coat and use it at the first sign of hoof funk, and have transitioned all of my cleaning products to thieves in my home.  Not a horse keeping tip, but just a side note- since switching to thieves in the house, my daughter, who turns into a snot monster when you even mention the words pollen and dust within earshot, has been able to stop taking her daily medication and is no longer a mucousy mess!  Also, George is being ridden regularly and has shown no signs of lameness!  I am not sure why thieves is such a well kept secret, but I plan on blabbing about it to everyone who will listen!  Woohoo for Thieves!

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