Interlude: A Racehorse and His Treatment with Homeopathy

By Anahí S. Zlotnik, MV

Interlude is a beautiful gray horse, son of Equalise and Inaccesible, whom I treated for the first time on May sixth of 1996 until the beginning of 1997. He was four years old.

The owner decided to try homeopathic medicine because he had been treated with non-conventional therapies, which had improved his health. As his horse did not respond to the traditional medicine, he wanted to give this type of medicine a chance.

The horse went with a new trainer for a couple of months. With this trainer, he won the first race and was 3rd in the second race, but in the third race, the trainer observed that the horse was not full in his action and could not maintain his condition. When he did the preliminaries before the race, Interlude did it without vigour.

Interlude was suffering from chronic arthritis in the hocks because they train horses while they still are foals, before the ossification is complete, and because of all the medication he had received.

The trainer also told me that the horse took his time to form a relationship with him, and that the adaptation to the new place was a little difficult. At the track, his behaviour had changed because he had so much demanded of him, and being well-conditioned, he acted out strongly. So this trainer made him walk and walk. During the first race, he ran willingly but with pent-up energy and anger, and with much force. But, in the second, a stormy day, the jockey hardly could see and could not guide well.

After that race he usually ate well and was calm, but hurriedly ate his hay. He drank normally, and was calm in his stall, whereas he used to lie down and roll. But he was ill-tempered when worked with a partner.

Also, the trainer said that this horse was an animal with heart and quality, and that at the track was gentle and willing: "lacks to talk" (In Spanish: Le falta hablar).

When he had won races and went to the urine analysis, he entered, urinated and behaved perfectly but on the last race, he performed badly. After this race, the testicles were retracted and he had great pain between the legs. He was very agitated.

I found: a purulent secretion on the left eye, cardiac rate 30, normal stool but with strong odour, little warts on the left flank, pain at the external side of the left hoof and tension on the left triceps brachii, and the entire forelimb was rigid without flexibility. He had been sexually excited and they had put a 'ring' on his penis. The horse was "all tension". I confirmed the arthritis, and a stress condition like the majority of horses who spent more than 20 hours in the stable have. I cannot understand why they do not offer these horses something better.

The horse had been excessively medicated with corticoids and neurolitics, and did not respond anymore to these drugs.

Usually I listen carefully to people in relation with the horse. There are always stories or some details that are not exactly the symptom, but could be the key to finding or comprehending the song, or the picture, of the horse. So I studied everything: the words of the owner, the words of the trainer, and everything that the pedestrians and other people told me. And of course, my own observation. Interlude was given Lachesis 200, a remedy of left side ailments, for one who in the mental sphere is very intelligent and who needs lots of affection. And of course a remedy for the arthritic pains and the tension of the body.

He had the following changes on the next week: the stool was normal without odour, the trainer had taken off the ring of the penis and the sexual excitation decreased (contrary to what they thought). Was more vivacious, connected with his surroundings and his eyes were brilliant and not gloomy as before. Had a nasal secretion, transparent and serous.

But the surprise came after this (with racehorses, owners and trainers, there always are surprises!)

I went to the stud ten days after the second consult, and they told me that they raced the horse, without asking me! I could not believe this, but on the other hand, God helped us, because the horse ran 1600 metres in the Hippodrome of San Isidro, and was 4th at two lengths from the first. He ran without being stressed and did it very well. The jockey said that he changed hands a couple of times because he could not fit him in, but in the last metres when he asked for more, he did it very well. He was not agitated, did the preparation walk well and was happy. And they did not give him anything but the homeopathic remedy. So, twenty days later the horse had recovered 50% from my point of view. I would not have let him run if they had asked me!

It is true that he ran well although he felt some pain and could not accommodate. But what I think is that he ran the best that he could because they did not stress him and did not suppress him with drugs. So "he felt better, he ran well", is true... horses are not foolish. Just like with us, "the better we feel, the better we do our job".

From the point of view of homeopathy it is interesting to remark that fear reappeared before the race; he was trembling and had perspired in the trailer. But he entered the starting gate well and got out better than the other races. Before the treatment he had not perspired (maybe it had been suppressed, I deduced), but this is a good mechanism of purifying. If the body cannot remove its toxins it will become toxic and will not develop its potential.

We continued with the treatment for some months, and the results were variable; sometimes he was better and sometimes he was worse because they medicated him again. But he ran better in each race and always was in good places, third, second, fourth.             

When I begin to know a racehorse, I try to be with him as much as possible. I need to know him, to massage him, to observe what he does in the stall, how he reacts. I ask everything about his life, like the sensations that the jockey has when running. I research until I understand his feelings, his way of being, his song. This kind of research allows me to find the best remedy for that patient.

When a horse that has been treated like a machine and who has tolerated too many drugs begins with a homeopathic treatment, he will pass through different periods. His body will show "highs and lows", because of the purifying syndrome. He will show what he was not permitted to, for example: pain, perspiration, trembling, etc.

Horses are such generous and willing animals that they hide their anger until they break down. It is not in their nature to attack, they are prey animals and need to please the people who are in contact with them. So, for a lot of horses it is very difficult to show their anger, their frustration, and their disgust, and finally they become ill.

We went through different periods during the treatment, and it was not always smooth, but throughout that time, the horse was getting better day by day, in a soft, permanent and calm way. He finally won, after six months of treatment. And the best remedy for him was Colocynthis, one of the remedies of 'the Dignity'. If I could sum up his personality in one word, I would use the word NOBLE. That was my first impression when I saw him for the first time.

The best remedy is like a mirror of the animal, or like a reflection of it. Because of the Law of Similitude - similia similibus curentur - that remedy must be capable of producing the same disease in a health body. And because of its capacity when it is used in infinitesimal doses, it produces the contrary effect, which is to put out the disease. And because of the Law of Hering, the process will be from within to the surface, in the inverse order of the appearance of the symptoms and from top (head) to bottom (foot). The cure must be soft, permanent and rapid.

It is not easy to find the best remedy at the first consultation. Each horse is an individual, a unique one. Each one has its story, its way of reacting to the difficulties of life and its way of living. And each one has its own way of responding to the remedy. Like with human beings, there are people who are easier to comprehend than others.

About the author:

Anahí S. Zlotnik, MV, is a veterinarian in Argentina whose holistic practice includes homeopathic medicine, massage, natural horsemanship, and rehabilitation.

Anahi Zlotnik

Bulnes 1638 - PB

1425 - Capital Federal


Phone: 00541-4825-3709

Email: anahi@interar.com.ar