Rosehip berries (Rosa canina), the Dog or Wild Rose, are still one of the top selected products for horses and dogs alike. Our approach to what herbs to offer or give your animals is simple:
- Would they have access to them in the wild? If yes then always offer – nature has all the answers, and if they are in the animals environment there is a reason for that!
- Are they in an un-adulterated form that makes them bio-available to the animal? Generally speaking if it doesn’t look and smell like it has come from a plant then it has probably come from a lab! Our opinion is that nature provides our animals with what they need far better than lab-made supplements, we humans really do not know as much as mother nature, who generally provides what we need in a form to do no harm. With very few exceptions, our animals are designed to ingest food and herbs in as natural a state as possible. NB this is when they are allowed to choose, not having things hidden in thier feed.
Rosehips are plentiful in the Autumn in our wonderful hedgerows, so why not take your horse for a hack or walk and allow them to forage as they naturally would at this time of year if they were still roaming free. In the wild horses would gorge on rosehips during Autumn as a way of nutritionally maintaining their immune system to cope with the harsh winter months ahead.
So what are some of the reported benefits of rosehips and why might your animals be selecting them?
Rosehips are a very useful anti-oxidant, and are often known as a ‘blood tonic’. Research has shown that ani-oxidants can protect the body from certain diseases and modern stressors. In particular a regular intake of anti-oxidants is important to protect from diseases such as cancer, arthritis, cardiovascular and immune diseases. Alas many of us and our animals have access to poor nutrition, in the case of our horses from over-grazed land etc., and for all species from processed and polluted food supplies. Any such stresses inhibit the repair response, so the anti-oxidants in rosehips can protect your animals from free radicals and help maintain or restore health.
Vitamin C & Immune Support: unlike humans, horses and dogs can create thier own vitamin C, however, this ability is decreased due to stress, poor quality grazing / food etc. Many herbs in an animals natural environment are naturally high in Vitamin C and rosehips are a great example. Animals will naturally select herbs high in Vitamin C, which helps to maintain a healthy immune system. It is no accident that rosehips are abundant in the Autumn, when animals need to boost their immunity going into the winter.
Structural Support: Research by the Osteoarthritis Research Society and the Scandinavian Journal of Rheumatology has shown that certain compounds present in rosehips can alleviate symptoms of arthritis when taken daily, and can also block the activation of proteins in cartilage cells that can lead to an inappropriate degradation of joint tissue. Regular ingestion of rosehips has also been shown in these studies to lead to a ‘significant reduction’ in pain compared to a placebo group (of humans). Certainly in my years of experience I have seen that rosehips are regularly selected for support in arthritic animals.
Reducing Obesity & Metabolic Imbalances: many people are concerned about giving rosehips to animals that are overweight or at risk of metabolic imbalances. However, a study in humans has shown that regular intake of rosehips in fact resulted in a reduction of abdominal fat, total fat, and body mass index over a period of 12 weeks. Again, when working with animals self-medicating I have never seen a problem with animals with metabolic issues selecting large quantities of rosehips, indeed the opposite in that when the animals are allowed to self-select their dose their symptoms improve. In humans, studies have shown that rosehips can help regulate blood sugar levels in the body. This is equally applicable in our animals.
Anti-aging: we all age, and so do our animals, but aging can be accelerated by stresses such as nutritional deficiencies. Most of our animals (and humans) now show nutritional deficiencies, a sad reflection of the habitat and poor quality chemically laden food chains. A double-blind study published in 2015 in the Journal Clinical Interventions in Aging showed significant improvements in agining indicators such as crow’s feet, wrinkles, skin moisture and elasticity. As much of the body is made from collagen (including a large % of a horses hoof) this helps explain why so many animals show improved structural health when supplemented with rosehips.
Cancer: It is an unfortunate reality that pet and horse cancer is on the rise. Some studies have shown that rosehip exract decreased cell prolifferation of cancer cells. As research is now showing cancer to be a disease of the immune system, then rosehips can only help support healthy cell function in this area. In practice many animals with cancer self-select rosehips alongside other herbs and essential oils. The high anti-oxidant properties of rosehips are also relevant to helping protect the body.
As well as being a very rich source of vitamin C, rosehips are also high in vitamin A, B1, B2, E, P, thiamine, riboflavins, niacin and vitamin K, natural iron, calcium, natural biotin for the optimisation of hoof health, just to name a few.
Rosehips Nutritionally support:
- Healthy detox system
- Healthy hooves and bones
- Healthy immune system
- Healthy Liver
- Healthy Urinary System
- Healthy Circulation
- Healthy Heart & Metabolic Systems
If you dont have time to gather them from the hedgerow, our rosehips come as whole, powder or Organic shells (chopped), and organic rosehip oil and make a great alternative and natural treat for any horse, dog or animal. They are also included in many of our amazing mixes including:
, and dont forget you can enjoy all our products too!