Homeopathic Treatment of Horses, Cattle, Dogs, Sheep and Swine

Ruddock gives the HOMOEOPATHIC TREATMENT OF HORSES, CATTLE, DOGS, SHEEP AND SWINE. Diseases are listed in alphabetical order with indicated remedies and general management….


An Abscess is a collection of morbid matter resulting from inordinate inflammatory action. The danger of Abscesses depends upon their magnitude, situation, number, and pressure on important parts. Abscesses are much more common in horned cattle than in horses, because the former frequently strike each other with their horns, causing contusions and wounds, which often swell and suppurate.

CAUSES.- An Abscess may be caused by an injury, such as a blow from horns or hoofs, by thorns, nails, or other bodies in the flesh or skin; and by constitutional impurities.

SYMPTOMS.- A hot, painful swelling, at first hard, but afterwards, as matter accumulates, soft and pointed in the centre, here the skin dies, and the matter escapes. Sometimes an Abscess is so situated as to render a natural opening difficult or impossible, as when sinews, horn, and other opposing bodies prevent the external escape of the matter. In such a case the ulcer penetrates deeply, causes cavities, and corrodes even the bones.

TREATMENT. – Arnica.- Immediately after an injury, the use of this remedy, both internally and externally, will often prevent the formation of an Abscess.

Aconitum.- If inflammation and heat are present, A dose every two hours, for several times.

Hepar Sulph.- When the Abscess is forming, but does not come to a head quickly. A dose three or four times daily.

Silicea. – In come cases, where the matter is slow in forming, or when, after breaking, there is but an inadequate discharge, or the discharge is very offensive, Silicea should be given four times a-day.

Arsenicum. – If proud flesh appear, or the edges of the outlet are hard and turned outwards, and the sore is painful, secreting a thin and acrid watery humour. A dose thrice daily.

ACCESSORY MEANS. – In the early stage of the compliant, and before pus has declared itself, cold wet cloths should be applied to the effected parts; later, when suppuration is apparent, the swelling should be fomented with flannels, wrung out of hot water every two or three hours, and a hot bran or linseed poultice applied in the intervals.

Abscesses slow in bursting, or where unfavourably situated for doing so, should be opened by a lancet. Abscess of the turbinated bone of the horse necessitates trephining, or the removal of a portion of the bone, as described in the Veterinary Vade Mecum. In cases requiring the administration of Silicea or Arsenicum, after the Abscess has broken, a strong lotion of the medicine employed may be applied externally at the same time. An Arsenicum lotion may be made by boiling four grains of Arsenious Acid in a pint of distilled water. ____________


Miscarriage is of frequent occurrence amongst cows and sheep. In the former it generally takes place in certain districts or on particular farms; and after one cow has aborted, others are apt to do the same; a cow that has aborted once, 3often does so about the same period in following years. With the cow, Slinking generally occurs between the fifth and eighth month; and when overfed rather than when moderately fed. Mares are less likely to abort than cows, except during the sixth month. Ewes frequently miscarry, but they seldom die in consequence.

SYMPTOMS. – When Miscarriage threatens, it is generally indicated by premonitory symptoms, such as anxiety and depression of spirits, indifference to food, sudden arrest of milk in the cow, lowing or bleating, discharge of foetid mucus from the pudendum, collapse of the abdomen, and cessation of movement of the calf or foal in the mother’s belly.

CAUSES.- Injuries inflicted on the abdomen; violent exertion; spoiled, fermented frozen feed; intercourse with the male during gestation; and the smell arising from the cleansing of an animal that has recently slinked. In the latter case the cow aborts from “sympathy.” In sheep, Abortion often arises from being hastily driven; fright, occasioned by the sudden appearance of a dog addicted to worrying sheep, and from intercourse with the ram when gestation has considerably advanced. It may also be caused by debility, or when a cold winter succeeds a wet summer and autumn. In the mare, abortion may be consequent on over-work, over-exertion, very stimulating or very poor food, or on some other disorder, such as inflammation of the bowels.

TREATMENT.- Arnica.- If, during gestation, an animal is known to have received an injury, it will be advisable at once to administer this remedy and repeat it as often as the nature of the case seems to require; if promptly given it will often prevent Miscarriage under such circumstances.

Rhus Tox. – If Miscarriage is threatened in consequence of strains, or over-exertion, administer this remedy instead of, and in the same manner as Arnica.

Secale.- If the symptoms of Abortion have actually set in, this remedy will facilitate labour. It is called for by violent straining after Abortion, attended by abundant discharge of blood and feebleness.

Pulsatilla. _ This will sometimes avert Abortion by lessening uterine pains. It is also required if the afterbirth does not come away in twenty-four hours. A dose every two or three hours.

Aconitum.- If chills occur. A dose every hour till the symptoms be removed.

Opium should be given to a mare that has suffered from fright. China promotes recovery from the weakness attending Abortion.

After Miscarriage the animal should be kept quiet, and free from exposure to cold winds.


Amaurosis, derived from the Greek, and meaning Obscure or dark, is a term applied to disease of the optic nerve, which may be of various degrees, from the slightest defect of vision to complete blindness.

CAUSES. – Previous inflammations destroying the optic nerves, injuries, tumours pressing upon the brain or upon the nerve which leads to the eye from the brain, etc. Horses and dogs are chiefly subject to it.

SYMPTOMS. – This disease may be known when the pupil of the eye, which in health is oblong and of a moderate size, becomes immovable, circular, dilated. If the animal is led towards objects, it stumbles against them; and when walking, its raises its legs high. The eye has a staring expression, and sometimes a very bright and glassy appearance; hence the common name, glass eyes.

TREATMENT.- If the nerve is destroyed, no cure is possible. Income favourable cases, when the animal sees a little, and there is some dilation of the pupil, one or more of the following medicines may be useful; Belladonna, Pulsatilla, Euphrasia, Sulphur. Commence with the first, and after eight or ten days, if no benefit results, proceed with the next, and so on, till improvements is manifest. If the compliant has been caused by injury, Arnica will be the best medicine. The selected remedy may be administered twice or thrice daily.


Among horses this disorder is not so common as it used to be, owing to the improvement in the cleanliness and ventilation of stables; when it does occur it is generally in middle-aged animals. Fat pet dogs are more subject to it than those that are moderately fed and well exercised. Among cattle and sheep it is common in districts where the soil is rich, and the spring herbage luxuriant.

CAUSES.- High feeding, want of exercise, excessive exertion in hot weather, especially where the throat is compressed too tightly by harness, or when the girth is too tight; exposure to the sun’s rays, etc. In sheep, apoplexy is often the result of that fulness of blood which is produced by over-feeding; if sheep in this state be driven at a quick rate for a long time, this disease is very likely to occur.

SYMPTOMS.- The animal either suddenly falls down, or else there are precursory symptoms, such as vertigo, dullness, indifference to what is going on around, the eyes look as if they were blind, the animal perspires slightly, etc. Suddenly, after having been fixed as it were to one spot, it falls down, the breathing becomes short, laboured, rattling; the body is covered with sweat; the circulation is violently disturbed; the evacuations are involuntary; sometimes twitchings nd convulsions supervene, and even paralysis; consciousness is gone, and unless speedily relieved, death takes place.

TREATMENT.- In case of the horse or cow, place the head high immediately after the attack; remove everything that prevents free respiration, and rub the animal well with wisps of straw. especially on the limbs and small of the back. Let a dog remain where the fit occurs, and apply cold water to his head with a sponge.

Aconitum.- If the circumstances do not preclude treatment, administer a dose every ten minutes for several times.

Belladonna.- If the animal survive the attack, give this remedy in turns with Aconite at intervals of two or three hours. It is indicated by staring, wide, immovable eyes, twitching and jerking of the limbs, and should be preserved with for some time.

Opium.- Drowsiness, stupor, profound coma; irregular, stertorous breathing; contracted pupils.

Edward Harris Ruddock
Ruddock, E. H. (Edward Harris), 1822-1875. M.D.

Author of "The Stepping Stone to Homeopathy and Health,"
"Manual of Homoeopathic Treatment". Editor of "The Homoeopathic World."