Natural Wild Oregano Thrush Remedy for Horses Hooves

If you live in a rainy climate, then you already know how horses’ hooves can get infected with thrush. Parts of the frog can appear mushy, very soft, with a dark discharge, and just flake off with very little pressure. Sometimes the thrush is not spread out, over an area, but tunneled down vertically into the frog. You’ll know it’s there by the smell! The Merck Veterinary Manual describes thrush like this:

“Thrush is a degeneration of the frog with secondary anaerobic bacterial infection that begins in the central and collateral sulci. The central sulcus is more commonly involved if the horse has sheared heels; the lateral sulci are primarily involved in most cases of thrush (without sheared heels). The affected sulci are moist and contain a black, thick discharge with a characteristic foul odor; the borders of the frog are commonly necrotic.”

Most veterinary sources assert that thrush infection in horses’ hooves is bacterial, although there are some that claim it is a fungal/yeast infection. This is yet another reason I prefer to use wild oregano oil to treat this condition. Wild oregano oil is a broad-spectrum anti-pathogen agent. It is extracted from Origanum vulgare (not the same thing as the oregano you use in your kitchen) and it has outperformed Vancomycin (an antibiotic reserved for superbugs) in a clinical trial. My health readers use it to eradicate mycobacterium (a bacterial/fungal hybrid) from the gut.

Where is the thrush?

If the thrush is more topical, or in a reachable area, I would use a paste – made of wild oregano oil and zinc oxide – as the wild oregano will kill the pathogens (bacteria, yeast, fungus, virus) and the zinc oxide will dry the area right out. In fact, you cannot believe the drying action of this paste until you try it! If you find it drying the area too much, then switch to using just wild oregano oil. You can always alternate as needed.

However, if the thrush is down a crevice or hole that is hard to reach, then I would use just wild oregano oil. Either use the dropper to drop the liquid straight into the hole and then plug the opening with cotton wool, or, soak the cotton wool in wild oregano oil and then stuff it in the hole/crevice and leave it there. My barefoot trimmer, Kesia Nagata, did this and forgot about it for a couple of days. When she pulled the cotton wool out, the infection was gone.

Important: When I talk about using wild oregano oil, I am not talking about the essential oil. Remember that all essential oils cannot be used directly, but must be diluted in a carrier oil first, or they will burn the tissue. So the wild oregano oil I’m talking about here is a commercial brand (like NAHS or Joy of the Mountains – my favorite brands) which is already in a carrier oil.

I also always let my horses smell any remedy, before I apply it. Sometimes they are quite curious and take a long time smelling it, sometimes they want to taste a bit too – I warn them it’s yucky or spicy, but if they persist, I let them taste it – I either squirt it in their mouth, or put some on my fingers so they can lick it. I want to engage their body wisdom and also their permission.

Wild Oregano / Zinc Oxide Paste

  • Pour one bottle of wild oregano oil (usually 1 oz/30 ml) into a small container that has a lid. Glass is best, but plastic works too.
  • Using a chopstick or small teaspoon, gradually add small amounts of zinc oxide powder, mixing thoroughly, until a paste is formed. Put the lid on and store at room temperature.

*Imagine yourself applying this paste to the hoof; is it thick enough to stay put? If it is too liquid/runny, add more zinc oxide to thicken it up.

Zinc oxide will stain anything white it comes into contact with – so be careful with clothing etc. and be careful not to inhale the fine powder.

Wild Oregano / DMSO Liquid

If your horse has a long-standing, very deep-rooted condition, then you may want to mix the wild oregano with DMSO to create a stronger formula. If it were me, I would make a solution of 30% DMSO (using 99% concentration DMSO in a glass bottle) and 70% wild oregano to help drive it deeper into the tissues. Store your mixture in a glass bottle, with a glass dropper and keep at room temperature.

DMSO (dimethyl sulfoxide) comes from tree bark, and takes anything it comes into contact with deeper into the tissues, so there are a few safety considerations around it’s usage. If you haven’t worked with DMSO before, then please read my safety instructions here.

Once you’ve cleaned the hoof and taken a good look at it, you’ll know which wild oregano remedy you need to use – and if infection is extensive, maybe you’ll need both the paste and the liquid.

*Note: this formula is also really good to heal a hoof abscess – full instructions here.

Application

In advanced stages, the frog can bleed and it is extremely sensitive/painful. So whether in early or later stages, you don’t just poke and hack away at the frog – you do everything slowly and very gently. This will also make your horse more likely to allow you to treat their hooves ongoing.

1. Clean frog of any dirt, debris or discharge, and gently remove any dead tissue, or flaps of tissue (gently cut them off).

2. Apply a good layer of wild oregano/zinc paste to any infected areas, using a finger (wear surgical gloves) or a paintbrush. Important: Do not transfer pathogens from the hoof to your jar of paste! Scoop out some paste onto a square of wax paper, or anything else you can throw away afterwards, and apply from there to the hoof. Keep your jar of paste clean for future use.

3. For any holes or crevices, either drop wild oregano oil into the hole and plug with cotton wool. Or, soak cotton wool in wild oregano oil and stuff/wedge into hole or crevice.

4. Do not cover, wrap, or seal hoof. For the hoof to dry out, it needs to be open to the air.

5. Make sure horse has a dry area to stand on when eating, or whenever he wishes. If you can’t afford to gravel your entire paddock to drain away the water, then at least have a graveled or dry area for your horse to stand on while he’s eating – preferably low sugar hay in a slow feeder.

Ongoing Prevention

Which brings me to my final point – of an ounce of prevention being worth a pound of cure. I rarely even pick out my horses hooves (yes, it’s true) and I have 11 horses along the west coast of Vancouver, BC – one of the wettest, rainiest places on this planet. I have not had a single case of thrush (or rain rot, or mud fever, Scratches, etc) in over 5 years. Here’s what I do that prevents all these conditions from manifesting:

  • My horses are fed low-sugar hay only. They have 24/7 access to this hay in slow feeders and hay nets.
  • The slow feeders and hay nets are located in covered areas, so the horse’s whole body is protected from rain while they eat or stand/rest.
  • Their entire paddock and sheltered area is graveled so the water drains through the gravel and they are standing/walking on a dry surface.
  • They have open access to a 7 acre ‘sacrifice field’ during wet months, plus a 10 acre forest – where they have made trails throughout and often forage. So they have plenty of places to walk and exercise, they are not confined to a small paddock for most of the year. Remember, even if you just have a small area, you can create a wonderful exercise/play area on only an acre or two, like this woman did (scroll down)

The other great thing about having a dry, graveled area for your horses, is that is also enables them to trim their own hooves! Depending on your horse, and the size of graveled area you have, your horse may be able to completely self-trim, or just extend the length of time between farrier visits.

My horses’ paddock & shelter area
Natural Wild Oregano Thrush Remedy for Horses Hooves

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24 thoughts on “Natural Wild Oregano Thrush Remedy for Horses Hooves

  • May 19, 2019 at 6:26 am
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    Hello,
    I have been having problems with my Shire’s severe thrush. My farrier and vet both come at the same time due to vet having to sedate him as he doesn’t like his feet picked up. I want to buy this wild oregano oil, where do they sell it?

    Reply
  • May 20, 2019 at 4:32 am
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    Thank you. I’ll just buy from your health shop. I’ll definitely let you know how it goes. Once again thank you. Love your articles 😊

    Reply
    • May 20, 2019 at 11:43 am
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      Whatever works out best for you – remember if you spend $99 you get free shipping, so might make sense to grab anything else you need at the same time 🙂

      Oh, and if you can get before/after pics for us – please do so!

      Reply
  • May 20, 2019 at 7:38 am
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    As always, this article is filled with solid, high standard product information and concise directions how to use/apply. Thank you so much for all the teachings you share from a place of love and enlightened consciousness.
    I also am using wild oregano oil with a seedy toe that was deeply embedded when Calypso came to our family. My natural hoof trimmer decided it was time to open up the area on the front hoof wall, that had a long channel and was deep. I am now using the wild oregano oil every other day to help support/provide her hoof the ability to heal itself. I am positive this will rid her hoof of the seedy toe fungus/bacteria.
    Peace to all, Paulette

    Reply
    • May 20, 2019 at 11:42 am
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      You’re so welcome Paulette! Thanks for being part of the circle 🙂 If this is a long-standing, very deep condition, you may want to mix the wild oregano with DMSO. If it were me, I would make a solution of 30% DMSO (99% in a glass bottle) and 70% wild oregano to help drive it deeper into the tissues. If you haven’t worked with DMSO before, here’s my post on it:

      https://blog.listentoyourgut.com/dmso-and-safety-cautions/

      p.s. I added this to the post too – thanks!

      Reply
      • May 22, 2019 at 10:18 am
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        Thank you so much Jini. I have never used DMSO and I appreciate you guiding me with your expertise and knowledge. The seedy toe is very long standing, hence the decision to open it up by my trusted natural balance hoof trimmer. I’ve also been using homeopathic remedies to help strengthen the hoof horn. I know the pathway to healing will be presented and then utilized by Calypso.
        Peace to all, Paulette

        Reply
        • May 22, 2019 at 2:04 pm
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          I totally agree, each of us knows what our body needs to heal. Let us know how it goes!

          Reply
          • May 23, 2019 at 6:42 am
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            I have a question about the DMSO. Since I am using it on the hoof, and it will not be totally clean, am I relying on the properties of the Wild Oregano Oil to keep from any adverse bacteria condition going deeper into the hoof?

            Reply
              • June 7, 2019 at 8:02 am
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                My trimmer just came in and trimmed the groove cut out of Calypso’s front hoof wall. So now I don’t have an open area exposing the seedy toe tunnel within the hoof. To get the best inner hoof penetration of Wild Oregano Oil and DMSO, where should I apply, the sole or the frog?

                Reply
                • June 7, 2019 at 3:25 pm
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                  Hi Paulette, either ask Calypso and do what she says (regardless of whether it makes sense or not!). Or post a picture here so we can see what you’re talking about. If you can put an arrow on the photo, pointing to the toe tunnel, that would be great.

                  Reply
                  • November 24, 2019 at 3:01 pm
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                    NOTE: Paulette just posted this comment on another post, so I thought I would share here for those following this thread:

                    “I used Jini’s DMSO/Oil of Oregano formula for my mare, that had been trying to heal seedy toe for 4 years. I had tried many different approaches to connect Calypso with her healing pathway. I am very happy to say that this formula was what she needed to finally heal the deep infection within her hoof. I also used the gravity method when applying the blend; it worked for Calypso.

                    Peace & balanced healing to all, Paulette”

                    YAY Calypso!

                    Reply
                    • December 10, 2019 at 11:39 am
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                      Hi Paulette,
                      How’s Calypso doing? I read the DMSO/Wild Oregano worked after a long standing issue. I have the same problem with my 4 year shire. He has deep sulcus thrush and it has eaten a lot of his frog. My farrier and vet have been working with him doing different treatments but he needs to be sedated because he will not lift his feet at all. I purchased the DMSO and wild oregano 30ml bottle. I know it says 30 % DMSO but how much exactly would that be if my bottle is 16oz and the wild oregano is just 30ml? Also did you use it on the coronet band?

                • June 11, 2019 at 12:28 am
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                  One other thing that keeps coming to mind is when Aude had an abscess – and I wanted to put the wild oregano/dmso mixture on the sole, but she kept telling me to put it on the coronet band and heel. She refused to lift or tip her hoof, and kept telling me to put it there. Of course, it was super effective there. So wondering if Calypso might want it on the coronet band, above the toe tunnel – gravity will also assist the mixture to travel downwards.

                  Reply
                • June 11, 2019 at 9:09 am
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                  Jini, I am responding to the comment where you say Aude kept telling you to put it on the coronet band…. Leilani has been limping slightly on and off for a few days, and I also made a mixture of wild oregano and some other essential oils (I understand the wild oregano is from infused oregano leaves/flowers with olive oil, not essential oil), and it’s helping, but she also does not want to lift her foot. Ha! Anyway, I will add to the coronet band too…. I really want to work on her hooves, but so far she’s not amenable at all. I may end up sedating, but not yet.

                  Reply
                  • June 11, 2019 at 4:41 pm
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                    We also did an in-depth emotional/spiritual healing session with Aude, my husband and I. Imbalance in the body – especially if severe or chronic – is always messaging us about deeper, important things. If we don’t address illness/dis-ease from this angle as well, then the physical issue will likely recur. Or, the body will send a stronger message. Like children, animals are usually advocating on our behalf – the messages in their body are usually for us. WE are the ones who need to understand, shift, receive or become pro-active. Once the message is delivered, the ailment can clear either on its own, or easily with the right physical remedy. BUT try to clear it using the physical remedy alone… and you are missing the whole point. That is my experience anyway 🙂 Here is the video of the session with Aude:
                    https://listentoyourhorse.com/dmso-based-hoof-abscess-remedy/

                    Reply
                    • June 11, 2019 at 6:06 pm
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                      I so agree! But I am just not sure I can tune in enough. I get frustrated! Ha! That’s typical for me anyway. Thanks for your words of wisdom. I know this is for me to go deeper. I am struggling with that.

  • May 20, 2019 at 11:00 pm
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    This is so helpful and I will look into the DMSO. I have been using wild oregano oil for a weird rash I have had for months on my belly, and the only thing that helped was the oregano oil! I just ran out and the rash came back…a little….so I am getting more. My husband has been using it on his feet for either dry skin or a fungus. It works for everything!! 😁

    Reply
    • May 21, 2019 at 1:29 am
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      If your hubby has fungus on his feet, then definitely try the wild oregano/zinc paste (you can get zinc oxide powder on Amazon) as it works incredibly well – have used it on 2 athlete’s foot cases thus far.

      Also, for the rash – remember that whatever is on the skin reflects what is in the gut. So I would also take Natren’s Healthy Trinity probiotic (worth every penny) daily for 3 months, if it were me.

      Reply
      • June 11, 2019 at 11:05 am
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        Hey Jini, for some reason I am just seeing your reply here, thanks! I have been taking probiotics for years. I love the doTerra one, it comes in a capsule that doesn’t get dissolved till it gets further down your gut? something like that. Anyway, I have tried others, and really love doTerra’s. But I will try the Natren Trinity, thanks for the info!

        Reply
        • June 11, 2019 at 6:19 pm
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          Okay, had to start a new comment thread with you, since we reached the end of the previous one! I KNOW what you mean about difficulty connecting and receiving messages. Even if we are experienced meditators, our own anxiety and frustration can block us. Even professional animal communicators can have difficulty connecting with their own animals and may need to hire someone else! Because our own emotions, agenda, ego, fears, stories, etc get in the way.

          So you either hire someone to help you (or a skilled friend), or ask for a dream, or practice ‘automatic writing’ or do EFT Tapping, or hypnotherapy, or use medicine cards:

          https://listentoyourhorse.com/using-medicine-cards-for-clarity-with-your-horse/

          I find the degree of my resistance is usually proportionate to the size of the block/saboteur that does NOT want to brought into the light – because that would threaten our current homeostasis (which is the ego’s job to maintain at all costs). Namaste sister.

          Reply
  • May 22, 2019 at 7:03 am
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    I have been in love with the wild oregano oil since you first posted about it on the blog a few years ago! It really helps with so many things! Like Vittoria I had a weird rash on my back under my arm and I am still not sure what it was 🤔….but I used the oil for about 3 days and it disappeared! It has cleared up dog ear infections and helped clear a bad deep thrush infection Buck had when he came here from the neighbors! I also agree when it comes to thrush in horse hooves diet is very important so make sure that is working for your horse…or you might just spin your wheels chasing thrush! ✌🏼❤️🐴

    Reply
    • May 22, 2019 at 2:06 pm
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      Yep, it’s one of Nature’s greatest gifts. My answer to the, “If you were stranded on a desert island and could only take 1 thing with you?” question is: Wild oregano! And comfrey – between them, those two can heal pretty much everything 🙂

      Reply

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