Horse Health

Journey’s End Ranch Animal Sanctuary

First of all, horses need companionship. It is cruel to keep a horse separated from others of his own kind. Horses need and deserve to be loved and respected for who they are. They are living, thinking beings which should not be expected to perform like robots. Horses thrive with 24/7 turnout. Horses are designed by Mother Nature to cover 10-15 miles per day in their daily activities and search for forage. This movement is also needed for healthy hoof development and circulation. A shed or open barn should be available for them to seek shelter away from the sun or inclement weather.  “Paddock Paradise”, by Jaime Jackson, describes ways you can duplicate a natural environment for your horse.

Horses were designed to have the ability to move 24/7. Contrary to “traditional” horse keeping, most experts and researchers now agree that horses do better when not confined in stalls or small pens.

Hoof Care
Horses do not need shoes. In fact, shoes damage their feet, joints and circulation. There is a revolution in hoof care occurring around the world. Studies done by Jaime Jackson (USA) and Hildrud Strasser (German Veterinarian) prove that a barefoot horse is healthier and happier. Natural Trims create a beautiful, functional hoof similar to the hoof of a wild horse. Barefoot horses may wear hoof boots (many brands and varieties available now) while transitioning from shod to barefoot. Booted barefoot horses are competing and winning in barrel racing, endurance, reining, jumping and even dressage. Houston Texas mounted police ride barefooted horses. Our favorite sites for information are and . We highly recommend Gwenyth Santagate’s book, available here: .It covers natural horse care, natural hoof care and hoof trimming. We also subscribe to “The Horse’s Hoof” magazine ( We get our Hoof Boots from Easycare. For soaking and treating hoof infections, we use boots generously donated to us by Davis Manufacturing.

We use Oxine and citric acid for soaking. Great info here:

We also love this colloidal silver product for spraying hooves. It is very effective & safe.



Here is evidence that traditional hoof care (shoeing)is wrong and injurious to horses.

New science explores the effect of shoes.    Researchers seek to understand how horseshoes affect foot skeletal stress


Horses do best on grass hay or pasture, with an NSC (non soluble carbs) content of less than 10%. Feeds can be tested (we have used A&L Western Labs, Inc. 209-529-4080). Sweet feeds and alfalfa are too rich and alfalfa fed alone is too high in protein and has a very unbalanced mineral content which can lead to DOD (developmental orthopedic disease) in growing horses. A 12:12 mineral supplement should be available to balance and supplement hay and pasture. Clean water is essential. I have seen horses being forced to drink out of rusty, algae infested troughs. Don’t expect your horse to thrive on water you would not drink yourself. We do not feed processed feeds, except for pure hay pellets made without binders and some Coolstance, a ground up coconut meal. We do not feed “Senior” feeds. Here is a good article on the dangers of GMO’s in horse feed.

We feed three times a day, at ground level, so the equines eat in a natural feeding position. Because of the sandy soil here, we feed psyllium one week out of the month, as a prevention of sand colic.

We use Horse Guard Fencing here at the ranch. It is economical, attractive, safe and very effective at containing the mustangs and burros. Ours was installed in spring of 2006 and is still beautiful. We have three strands of the 1 1/2 inch white electrified tape. It also comes in green and brown. Ours has withstood 100 mph winds, desert sun, even snow and ice. (

Natural Care
We try to use as many natural, non chemical products as possible, getting many from JeffersKV Vet Supply and GP Direct. If you order through our Jeffers banner on our home page, we get a % donated to us. We use Purina’s Free Balance 12:12 mineral supplement (  We also love to use flower essences from Blackwing Farms for calming horses which have been traumatized in the past.

We get inexpensive herbs from .   We use a lot of turmeric as an anti-inflammatory, combined with a pinch of black pepper which potentiates its effect. We also get glucosamine, ginger, olive leaf, cinnamon, milk thistle and other herbs.

Our equines have trace mineral salt blocks and also have loose, plain salt available free choice.

We have had excellent results using JERNIGAN herbal remedies to treat our animals-equine and canine.

Another amazing detoxifier is Zeolite  It removes heavy metals and also many bacterial, mold and environmental toxins. It is FDA approved and has had a lot of research done on it. Platinum Performance makes a zeolite powder for horse’s bone health, but we use it as a detoxifier, too.

Our two favorite wound treatments are Banixx and Vetericyn. Both are non-toxic. Bannix and Vetericyn are very safe and kill even resistant strains of bacteria, yeasts and viruses.



Other Websites


We do not use dangerous pesticides at JERAS. We have very few flies in the dry desert climate, but we recommend fly masks and fly sheets as a safe alternative to toxic chemicals. Please check out these products. If you buy a fly mask, mention us and we will receive $1.00 for every mask.
Made In the Shade Equine Sun Products

If you find any of this information helpful, please consider making a donation to help us care for our animals.

Please go here to see our happy horses having some fun!


We are a Non-Profit 501(c)3 organization.