As we move into the full bloom of summer, my herd is getting attacked by horse flies, deer flies (the worst as they select a spot and concentratedly gnaw through flesh!), mosquitoes, and the West Coast version of no-see-ums. Having our new foal, Juno, born last week and seeing him driven mad by these predators, not even able to sleep, motivated me to find a way to get him to allow me to help him out.
In this video I’m going to show you how to use and apply diluted wild oregano oil to heal the umbilical stump and keep insects (horse flies, deer flies, mosquitoes, etc) away from your foal.
The exact same solution and method works for mare’s udders, colt/stallion sheath areas (where the bugs love to bite through thin, soft skin) and anywhere your horse has cut, abraded, or wounded herself – not including the eyes or eye area (don’t use it there)! And I apply it to my adult horses in the same way you see here:
Wild oregano oil has quite a strong smell, so it’s not something you want to spray over your entire foal/horse! Plus it’s quite expensive. But all my horses want it applied (in its diluted form – never full strength!) to their nether regions during the summer. I only apply it once per day when needed, and sometimes only to open sores or lesions where the flies or deer flies are feasting. But if the insects are driving them mad, then I’ll apply it to the entire udder and sheath areas.
I’m a strong believer in horses living naturally and being allowed to develop immunity/tolerance to the bugs in their environment; that’s why I don’t use it every day and only as necessary.
The recipe to make up a 7:1 wild oregano oil dilution is in the video. But if you’d like written instructions along with more information on this wonderful herb and the many ways you can use it for the humans in your life, then click here to Download my Wild Oregano Oil eBook.
WARNING: And of course, NEVER use undiluted, essential oil of oregano on any tissues; animal or human or it will burn them. The commercial brands of wild oregano oil are already diluted (usually 3:1 with olive oil). And then the formulas I give you for diluted wild oregano involve diluting them even further. Go ahead and download the eBook, it’s all in there!
Oh, one word on the spray bottle I’m using: I purposely searched Amazon and ordered a spray bottle specifically for olive oil that had excellent reviews and cost around $25. All the cheaper spray bottles I’d tried soon clogged up. However, it only worked well for a month or so and then doesn’t spray anymore, the oil just comes out in a thin stream. It works, but it’s much more startling for the horses until they get used to it. I’m not sure if the problem is with the bottle, or the barn environment being so dusty/dirty that it clogs up over time. Then I bought a natural lavender body spray (containing essential oils) and I used that spray bottle for my wild oregano dilutions and it worked perfectly!
Of course, you do not need to spray the solution, you can put some on a sterile gauze pad instead to apply to your horse’s skin. Or you could keep the diluted wild oregano oil in a dropper bottle and just drop it right onto the wound, or your hands, or the gauze. Those methods work great too!
We now have wild oregano in the LTYH Shoppe! So click here if you’re in the USA or International.
And click here to purchase wild oregano oil in Canada.
We offer FREE SHIPPING in both Shoppes, and while you’re there, check out the other 100% natural supplements, healthy anti-inflammatory oils, and dried organic herbs we have!
p.s. Be sure to check out the JINI SAYS tab on each product in the Shoppe for my personal tips and recommendations.
Note from Kesia: “I want to point out that the fact that you are using oil is important, as it lasts way longer than a water-based mixture on their skin, so you can get away with applying only once a day or as needed. It also absorbs into their skin rather than evaporating, which also makes it more effective, I think. I have also used coconut oil as a dilutant/carrier, or if you really want sticking power you can make a salve with one part melted beeswax and eight parts oil, plus the right amount of active substance (oregano oil in this case). If you can’t find or can’t afford Wild Oregano, you could try Tea Tree and/or Lavender, or a mixture of healing and repellent oils of your choice – a quick Google search will give you ideas and you can test them by letting your horse smell the oils and interpreting his reaction. Calendula is amazing for healing skin and you can grow it easily yourself and infuse it into olive oil… But for simplicity and effectiveness, I still haven’t beat Jini’s recommendation!”
Jini Patel Thompson is a natural health writer and Lazer Tapping instructor. She began riding at age 2 in Kenya, and got her first horse at age 8 in Alberta, and so continues a life-long journey and love affair with these amazing creatures.
23 thoughts on “Equine Wild Oregano Insect Repellent & Healing Spray”
So just for context, Jini’s geographical area (where I grew up and lived until last month) is, like, the most profoundly un-buggy place compared to the rest of North America…and while obviously her horses are still getting attacked and are super irritated, my poor herd was not ready for the move from this area to the new one, where bugs abound on a biblical scale.
While the local horses are adapted (and I’m sure mine will be too, eventually), my horses have open fly wounds/sweet itch on their chests, armpits and bellies, under their jaws and around their ears and genitals. Come bugging hour (late evening), the literally run from the swarms, which is great for their fitness but otherwise awful.
I tried various concoctions and Jini’s suggestion was the best (durr, it’s Jini!). My horses RUN from anything with citronella (I learned after my mother lovingly made a citronella salve) and because of the open fly bites anything acidic or otherwise repellant stings badly. They were suspicious of the oregano oil mixture at first but I found if I started by rubbing/scratching their itchy spots, I could apply the oil once they relaxed. They then started to ask for it, as it soothes their open and itchy skin, quickly heals it (they scab over by the next day), and keeps most bugs off too.
I don’t have a spray thingy so I just take a jar out to the barn and apply it from my hand by dipping my fingers in – rubbing it in feels good to them anyway. You could just pour into your hand from a small-mouthed bottle, too.
Lastly, I want to point out that the fact that you are using oil is important, as it lasts way longer than a water-based mixture on their skin, so you can get away with applying only once a day or as needed. It also absorbs into their skin rather than evaporating, which also makes it more effective, I think. I have also used coconut oil as a dilutant/carrier, or if you really want sticking power you can make a salve with one part melted beeswax and eight parts oil, plus the right amount of active substance (oregano oil in this case). If you can’t find or can’t afford Wild Oregano, you could try Tea Tree and/or Lavender, or a mixture of healing and repellant oils of your choice – a quick Google search will give you ideas and you can test them by letting your horse smell the oils and interpreting his reaction. Calendula is amazing for healing skin and you can grow it easily yourself and infuse it into olive oil… But for simplicity and effectiveness, I still haven’t beat Jini’s recommendation!
This is really good info/feedback Kesia – think I’ll add it to the post! And yes, the place where you are probably rivals the Amazon for buggy-hell. It will be interesting to see how long it takes before yours develop an immunity/tolerance. Also, try to get a peek at the local horses and see if they have any open sores… and do they run from the swarms too?
In my bug spray repellent experiments last year I tried a variety of essential oils – I Googled and also looked up the ingredient list of commercial products. However, I have to say that wild oregano is SO repellent to insects (as well as anti-inflammatory and healing) that the amount you have to use to achieve the same effect is so much less than the others (like tea tree, lavender, citronella, cedar, eucalyptus, peppermint) that I think it would work out the same, if not cheaper, to use the diluted wild oregano oil. Its repellent-effect also lasts much longer than the other essential oils because the smell is just so super pungent.
The other concoction I showed you last time you were out (diluted wild oregano + zinc oxide) is working really well and I’m really liking it, so I will add that recipe to this blog post too!
I would like you to clarify if you are recommending the use of Wild Oregano essential oil, Origanum vulgare, or Wild Oregano Oil NOT essential oil. I’m asking because as a Certified Aromatherapist I try to educate people that there are many risk and contraindications using therapeutic quality Wild Oregano essential oil. I’ve received many calls from people who did not consult with a trusted therapist before using this essential oil and have caused harm instead of healing and balance. This essential oil is also a powerful emmenagogue, which must be scrupulously avoided during pregnancy.
I want to thank you for sharing your loving, caring, kind, and compassionate spirit energy with all of us…………..and thank you to Kesia for sharing her spirit energy too. I send you honor, love and peaceful energy.
Hi Paulette, thanks for writing in and for your well wishes. We are both glad you are enjoying the blog. And yes, I agree that Wild Oregano ESSENTIAL oil should NOT be used. I thought I made this clear in the post and the video – but obviously I did not! So I’ve added more clarification and the text “WARNING” in bold. So hopefully that makes it more obvious.
Could you provide a link to data showing that wild oregano is an emmenagogue? It is not listed in places like this:
I find it interesting that Ginger is listed as a mild emmenagogue, yet it is routinely prescribed to pregnant women during 1st trimester (the riskiest time for losing the fetus!) to help with morning sickness.
I understood you were making a distinction but wanted you to clarify for everyone reading your blog. When I am presenting I always have participants, especially if they are selling essential oils from companies that are not saying Wild Oregano essential oil is not to be used on animals, struggling with the difference between Infused Oil of Wild Oregano and Wild Oregano essential oil.
I have several Aromatherapy books that carry a warning about this being an emmenagogue; I was looking at Aromatherapy An A-Z by Patricia Davis. Also the book Holistic Aromatherapy for Animals by Kristen Leigh Bell has Oregano listed as an essential oil to avoid using with animals.
Here is a link for Dr. Mercola, http://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/oregano-oil.aspx He does not say essential oil or infused oil or emmenagogue but cautions against use during pregnancy.
When using essential oils I have seen the gift to offer health and balance but I also to honor & respect their ability to cause harm if used incorrectly.
Here’s another important piece of the picture from a brand I like:
I have been using Neem oil for the last two bug seasons, after doing a lot of research for natural fly repellant, and find it has some great healing affects, also, for fly ravaged areas on the horse. My horses also ran from citronella and all so called over the counter “natural ” fly repellents. The only problem with the Neem oil is length of time it is affective, depending on the horse. On One of my horses (Arabian breed) it seems to have a long lasting affect on the stomach fly strike spot but on the other two (quarter horses) it only seems to last hours. I’m just wondering if you have ever researched or used Neem oil yourself? & if so what were your thoughts and experiences with it?
Also on a side note…. I have used the Neem oil on the dry spots on Bullets leg pits where he also on one side, had sarcoids and I don’t know if it was the Neem oil or helping his immune system become stronger through a more natural life style( then he was living before) or getting a handle on his huge worm burden, or the other natural herbs and spices I now feed him regularly , but the sarcoids are completely gone. So it might be something for anyone having trouble with them to try? It has definitely been a good thing either way for skin irritations. The only down side is I did have a learning curve to it and would suggest applying lightly until absorbed, as I did over apply it(put on to thick and to often) the first season and when the temperature started to cool it had a negative affect, of almost burning ( hair loss) the over treated/applied areas as the consistency changed in the oil in response to the cooler weather.. So anyone wanting to try it should be very aware of this…as I am now very cautious about application and temperature change, in regards to Neem oil. But still highly recommend it and it’s not to expensive either!
Ah neem oil – another nasty-smelling substance! I’ve done some oral experiments with it on humans, but have not used it for horses – maybe someone else has? That’s very interesting about the different efficacy as a bug repellent though, from horse to horse. Thanks so much for sharing about this – very interesting!
It’s Michelle again☺️
I am interested in trying oregano oil internally on my horse to see if it can help him kick the external pigeon fever ( there are 3 types) out of his system. He has had it now for many many months and also had it last year. The vet said (& most research) it just has to run its course when it’s the external type, but I can tell he is having a hard lengthy time getting it all the way out of his system. He is doing fine though, no lethargy or loss of appetite, but, there are now some more small open lesions on his legs and sheath and midline. (Not sure if they are related or not) Also his huge original pectoral sore is still about the size of a fifty cent peice. I have ordered the joy of the mountains wild oregano oil and would just like to know what dosage you would recommend I should start out with (he is about a 900lb quarter horse) and if you have any recommendations for how to give it orally? Obviously if he has any negative changes in the coming days or weeks, I will call the vet back out, but I would just like to try this herbal method to see if it can help him finally get rid of this? I figure it is worth a try? I love natural!
Thanks for any advise you can give me!?
I just don’t think you’ll be able to get a large enough dose in him orally to make a difference. Plus you have the difficulty of application. When I’ve given it to my dogs/cats I purchase the gelcaps and get them to swallow it. But unless you had a vet tube feed it into his stomach, I can’t think of any way to get a sufficient amount in. For a 100 lb human the dosage for acute infection is 5-10 drops, 3-5x/day. So that’s the other problem: frequency.
I would just dilute it 4:1 (4 drops olive oil to 1 drop woo), put it in a sprayer bottle and let your horse ask for it by mouth. That’s what mine did and Aude took 10 sprays by mouth (she had the highest worm burden) for many days. But 2 of them wouldn’t touch it at all.
Personally, what I would do is:
1. Put the woo right on the lesions. For sheath area, dilute 7:1, for everywhere else you could use anywhere from 7:1 to 4:1 – but start with 7:1 and if that’s enough response, don’t get stronger.
2. For internal treatment, I would order 2 bags of the Astragalus Root powder from here:
and first offer it to him straight and see how much he licks up. It actually tastes pretty good straight and mine all like it. If he doesn’t want it, then sprinkle some on his normal feed. I would place your hand on him, connect with your own gut and ask him how much to sprinkle on. Ask again each time, because sometimes you need to start out small and gradually increase. Or the opposite, sometimes you need to hit it hard and then taper off.
3. From the same company, I would also order: Stinging nettle, Raspberry leaf, Coltsfoot (for some reason I’m getting Coltsfoot when I tune into him), Goldenseal and Echinacea. If you can, let him free choice select the amount of each, up to 3x/day. But if that’s not practical, then mix them all together (equal parts of all but only 1/2 of coltsfoot – so for example, 1 cup of all of them except 1/2 cup coltsfoot) and give 1-2 cups twice per day if you can.
See how that sits with your gut and also ask him. Let us know how it goes!
Wow thanks for the very fast and informative response! ???
I really appreciate you taking the time to answer my question and try & help Banner & I out. I have ordered all the herbs suggested and will keep you posted on his exceptance and choice of the herbs & hopefully recovery.
Again thank you for your knowledge & your time as I know we all value ours tremendously !
You’re very welcome Michelle. And I would love to hear as much detail as you can give on what he chooses and what works, doesn’t work, how it all progresses.
I did some more research on his condition, and this article seems to be a good summing up:
And it’s very interesting that this is bacterial, not viral. So two additional things come to mind:
1. If he has a draining wound in his pectoral (similar to the photos in the article) or you suspect there is an abscess in behind the wound, then you want to try to get the wild oregano INTO the abscess cavity. And you may also want to use a stronger formula. So here’s something that humans suffer from that seems very similar to me, and our protocol for that is working well:
So I would try to duplicate the syringing instructions in here as best you can, if applicable to his wound(s).
2. Because it’s a bacterial infection (and my spidey-sense is telling me there may be a fungal component to it as well) then in addition to the wild oregano and immune boosters, I would also give him Natren’s Equiflora probiotics – but make sure they are administered TWO HOURS away from any herb or wild oregano taken internally.
How are you at record-keeping? Because if you can keep a detailed record of supplements, herbs, times administered, symptom tracking etc. I can see if Natren Inc. will give you the probiotics, or at least at cost, in return for sharing the data with them for their files. Let me know what you think…
Hello Jini ,
Just wanted to update you on the herbs for Banner. They arrived a couple days ago and today he tried the 1/2 cup coltsfoot & cup of raspberry leaf and he gobbled both of them up … Tonight l just went ahead & added the powders to his nightly dinner mush (that includes probiotics) and he ate that happily as usual too. I have to admit I’m still having trouble hearing/tuning into my horses with just touch.& feeling the amount I should feed him , so I figured I would just follow your dosing instructions and start on the conservative side.
Since I last corresponded with you, the little slightly oozy lesions/ sores he broke out with
have all mostly healed with the exception of the one on his stomach. It still has a scab. Also the original huge pectoral sore he had is now almost completely healed. The other good news is ….that his sheath swelling has gone down more then I have seen it since his outbreak last year. So that gives me hope that hopefully he is finally kicking this out of his system & hopefully with the help of the new herbs he can get rid of it completely. I was going to continue dosing him with the new herbs for a week…do you think that’s appropriate amount of time?
I will of course keep you posted on his progress… But I am already super happy because he seems to be getting better & better.
Thanks again ?✌?️??
Wow! That’s fantastic progress! What great news 🙂
I have a question though: For the lesions/sores did you apply the wild oregano? Or what do you attribute the healing to?
Regarding one week dosing period… no, I don’t think that’s enough. When we treat humans for bacterial, or bacterial/fungal hybrid infections, we treat until ALL symptoms are resolved (including ALL lesions) and then for 1 more week AFTER the person is 100% healthy. This is because microorganisms can re-group and come back stronger if they are not completely overcome. For this reason too, we keep going with high dose probiotics for 3-6 months after all symptoms have resolved.
Bacteria are crafty little buggers who are capable of communicating with each other. So they lie dormant and then every so often, they rouse themselves, check around and say, “Hey, are there enough of us yet to storm the castle? No? Okay then, let’s just keep reproducing.” And they go dormant again (so the host immune system doesn’t detect them) and quietly increase their numbers. When there are sufficient numbers to launch an assault, they move into action and that’s how an “infection” can happen seemingly overnight. Here’s a vid about it if that intrigues you:
Anyway, thanks so much for the update and please let me know how it goes and what you do, as you go along – this is good info to have for all of us.
I did not have the wid oregano oil yet when the new sores broke. It was a very quick occurrence from what I could tell. One day there were no sores then the next there was. I did apply the neem oil to help with the flies…..don’t know if that helped them heal or not, but in the past I have had great results with it healing various skin issues. I will also keep up the herb treatment until I feel like he is completely over the pigeon fever. One question though……Is there any negative to the herbs with long term use?
Oh yes, neem is also powerful so keep going with that as long as it works. If it stops working so well, then switch to wild oregano. Sometimes I go back and forth between substances; which works better than just one. You’ll know. The only herb you don’t want to use longer than a few weeks is Astragalus. But you can cycle on and off it with a 1 week break in between. The coltsfoot I don’t have much experience with, so I would do some research on that one to determine duration. However, I have seen it used in a number of horse supplement blends – with no cautions against long-term or ongoing use. Awww give Banner a kiss from me!
Hi Jini…I was wondering if you could grant me with your wisdom again , or let me know if you have ever tried or think it could work, regarding a particulate use for the oregano oil. My son has two pit bull mix breed dogs that constantly have ear issues. They have been diagnosed by vets in the past that they are yeast infections. The problem is they keep just keep recurring & going to the vet all the time for a young couple just starting out is not always easy.money wise. My question is ….Do you think oregano oil is something that would be safe to try in the ears? Or is that not ok because it’s the ear canal? Just hoping you can give me your advice/opinion?
Thanks for your time
Hi Michelle, even though herbalists say you should never put wild oregano (or any other essential oil) in the ears, I have actually done this with my youngest son – who suffered repeatedly from blood/pus ear infections! And I have also used the same dilution with my Andalusian, Zorra. So you might want to start with a 10:1 dilution and see if that does the trick and if not, then increase to 7:1 – that is the strength I used in my son’s ear for severe infection. Apply 3 times a day until infection is resolved. Then twice a day for the next week, then once per day for the third week. To prevent recurrence, give probiotics (Caninedophilus is what I use): https://www.natren.com/caninedophilus-20.html and feed raw if they can 🙂
p.s. After treatment, I took my son to an ENT specialist doc, told him what I’d done and asked him to check for any damage. He said everything looked great.
Thanks Jini you are so awesome & generous with your time. I will go to my sons tomorrow and start applying it with the dilution you reccommended. Thanks again I’ll keep you posted on the outcome.✌?️❤️??
Jini…I know it’s only been a short time since the treatment started for the dogs ear infections. BUT WOW WOW WOW….thanks so much. Both of the dogs ears are so much better!!!!! Also the best part is they don’t mind getting the drops put in at all. I know animal treatment can’t always be in complete compliance but it feels so good when they embrace the treatment and even seem to appreciate and understand that it is benefiting them. My son is not home during the days but has been trying to get the drops in morning and night. He is probably not as diligent as I wish he would be but it is working regardless. Just wanted to say a huge Thankyou again. You are so so generous with your time and knowledge. I am so greatful to you for your help and the dogs are so much happier. ✌?️❤️??
Yes, I know, the response is incredibly fast! And judging by their improvement, twice per day is probably just fine. And yes, I get the same response from my horses when they need it (and my dog after his recent vasectomy) and when they no longer need it, they walk away from it. Anyway, you’re very welcome and thank YOU for being so appreciative!
Hi, we have many, many flies at the moment. It is very hot in Holland. So I use the oregano oil on the horses heads and on myself so I can stay in the herd, without the flies on me.
Great idea! As long as you keep it away from the eyes, it works well to repel all insects.