For over a hundred years, horse liniments have been used to treat equine ailments such as muscle pain, joint pain and even arthritis. The horse seems to suffer from many of the same conditions that humans do.

Since humans descended from mammals eons ago and horses are mammals, their body structure is somewhat similar. A human will obviously not be confused with a horse, but with ligaments, tendons and joints they will suffer from pain associated with strains, sprains, muscle pain and joint pain.

This is especially true with horses used for jumping, racing and even the ranch horse that spends a lot of time on the trails. People who are very athletic are also prone to injuries like the horse! The muscles and tendons work the same in both species and when overworked they react in the same way, resulting in pain.

Most of the pain is caused by inflammation of the particular ligaments and tendons that have suffered the damage is of a minor nature and can be treated with ice, rest and stretching when the inflammation has subsided.

If the injury is of a minor nature, many breeders and racehorse owners will apply liniment to the affected area to speed up the healing process. The key point for humans is to read the label of any equine liniment before using it. Make it a point to read the ingredient label on your horse liniment container.

Always look for equine liniments that contain natural botanical-based herbs and essential oils and. Do not use any horse care products that contain DMSO which is an ingredient found in many horse liniments and is not approved by the FDA for human use. DMSO is absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream, carrying with it all the chemicals and synthetic preservatives found in the horse care product.

Since the horse is obviously a larger animal than humans, it can tolerate higher concentrations of DMSO although it can cause adverse health effects for horses, and I myself would stay away from any use of horse care products containing DMSO.

In fact, my recommendation would be to only use an all-natural equine liniment that does not have synthetic compounds or artificial preservatives that could compromise the horse’s long-term health.

The only effective all natural horse products are those that have herbal compounds and essential oils as their main ingredients. These oils and herbal compounds are effective for minor strains, sprains, muscle pain and joint pain. The differences between the various products on the market will be the exact type of botanical compounds and essential oils and their concentration.

Some companies that make all natural horse products are Equine Natural Horse Liniment, Chapman’s Premium Horse Liniment & Dr. Fleming’s Miracle Horse Liniment.

All of these companies take the all-natural approach when it comes to ingredients that can include arnica, paprika, eucalyptus, menthol, witch hazel, and even sweet birch. Look carefully at the labels to see what is in each horse care product.

The horse care product with the most natural ingredients appears to be Dr. Fleming’s Miracle Horse Liniment although nae conjures up the image of some type of snake oil. It appears to be a very viable horse liniment despite the catchy product name.

If a human wishes to use one of these products, I would suggest diluting the liniment to the user’s individual tolerance. The easiest way to dilute a horse liniment is to add a carrier oil to the mixture such as grape seed oil, safflower oil and even a high quality olive oil. These oils are light enough to mix well with the horse liniment and do not affect the liniment itself. The liniment should be mixed thoroughly before use, and it may be necessary to dilute it several times before it can be used.

The bottom line is that people can use horse liniments, but the recommendation would be to only use all natural horse care products.

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