Stressed Out Horse? What to Do to Calm an Anxious Horse

Stressed Horses

Having a horse that is anxious or under stress is not uncommon.  The source can be just about anything.  From a prior owner, a physical ailment that you haven’t uncovered or just plain nervous genes.  Sometimes it can be as simple as a deficiency in Magnesium.  What’s so important about this is that having an anxious horse can make riding very uncomfortable and even dangerous.

Many horse owners now give their horses equine calming supplements.   These come in many forms and some are much more controversial than others.  Magnesium supplements are one and can help your horse by relaxing muscles, slowing heart rate, and slowing down the absorption of sugars in the digestive system.    Different equine Calming Pastes generally contain Magnesium, among other things and are popular products.

There is also an Herbal Blend for Mares that is a supplement designed to regulate your mares cycle and smooth aggression, irritability and mood swings that can accompany it.   Strictly Equine Ease Up is made of natural ingredients of Magnesium, Taurine, Thiamine, B1 and Inositaol to bring on calming in your horse.    Valerian Root is the main ingredient in Riva’s Calm and Cool, which is designed to cure long term stress.

The use of Trytophan to calm horses is something that is still being studied and questioned.  Trytophan is an amino acid that the body uses to build seratonin, that essentially will make us less fearful and stressed.  Works well in people, dogs, pigs, and even fish.  Horses?  Not so sure about that yet.    What has been shown is that high doses of Tryptophan will negatively affect a horses’ endurance level.

If you do have a nervous or stressed out horse, there are things that you can do to help.  However, it’s important that you first consult your horses’ vet before starting any of these supplements, particularly to be sure that there isn’t a physical element to the stress and anxiety that you need to address.  Once you do that, you can both be on the road to calmer ride.