PEMF for Horses: What It Is and How It Helps

PEMF therapy has long been used as an intervention for horses and other animals, with a history of use dating as far back as the mid to late 1970s. Although many alternative therapies are regarded with some degree of distrust, veterinarians have relied upon PEMF therapy to help the muscle recovery of horses who run races, to heal difficult to heal fractures and bone breaks, and to treat pain in animals of al sizes and types.


What is PEMF Therapy?

PEMF stands for Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy. While that might sound esoteric or complicated, PEMF is actually a straightforward energy therapy, created by applying electricity to a copper coil, and generating a pure electrical field. This field is then funneled into some type of delivery device. PEMF therapy can be delivered via a mat, which you can lay on in periods of rest, wands to target a specific area, or rings that can be used to target larger areas on animals like horses.

PEMF therapy is an energy therapy. Although the technology began around 100 years ago, and perhaps a bit beyond, PEMF therapy in its current iteration only began in the early 1900s, with the final machine being developed in the 1960s. These machines started out as large, bulky devices that were primarily used in clinics and health offices, but have since evolved to include small, home use devices, including a device that is small enough to wear. PEMF therapy has come a long way since its inception, and takes the basics of magnet therapy and other energy therapies one step further, to create a truly revolutionary and powerful intervention for human and equine health.


How PEMF Therapy Works

PEMF therapy works by imparting energy to the body of the person or animal utilizing the therapy. Energy is delivered directly to cells, which allows those cells to operate more efficiently. Although this may seem like a small change,  it can have a powerful and intense effect on the body of a horse, as it provides the horse’s body with the energy required to conduct immune functions, perform better in racing or other tasks, and recover more easily from muscle fatigue.

Although a single session of PEMF therapy can be useful, PEMF therapy truly shines when it is used consistently. This is because the loss of cellular energy is often tied to chronic conditions or aging, both of which require time to counteract. Over time, consistent energy therapy can help cells carry out their natural and necessary functions and communicate effectively. When cells are functioning at their optimal level, general health, immune responses, and even cognitive function can improve.


PEMF and Horses: How PEMF Can Help Horses

In addition to helping horses recover from illness and muscle fatigue more quickly, PEMF therapy has been identified as an effective therapy for bone fractures and breaks, inflammation, and wound healing. Because animals are susceptible to injury, and are more difficult to treat than illnesses and injuries in humans, who are better equipped to care for themselves, PEMF therapy can be an invaluable tool in the health of animals, whether those animals are house animals, such as a cat, or livestock, such as horses.

Historically, horses that have sustained an injury to the tendons, muscles, or joints have been put down or removed from competitions and other positions involving work. This is largely due to the difficulty of healing such a large injury in an animal, and the expenses associated with keeping livestock and other large animals. With the advent of PEMF therapy, this course of action may no longer be necessary. Because PEMF therapy improves healing pathways in the horse’s body, injuries involving the tendons and bones may be able to heal soon enough and thoroughly enough for horses to maintain their health and their ability to work and compete.

PEMF therapy can also be used to limit the amount of pain a horse feels, which is useful in a host of applications, including surgical pain, muscle pain, and the pain that can come along with general aging. Pain in animals can be difficult to detect, and often presents itself through increased aggression, skittishness, and other behavioral issues. PEMF therapy can help relieve pain without side effects and issues common to pharmaceutical medication. Although pain medication delivery methods often involve tricking or manipulating horse’s food, PEMF therapy often has such a strong and immediate calming effect that horses are frequently found responding to the administration of PEMF therapy with stillness, and an easy willingness to submit to the process.


Potential Drawbacks of PEMF Therapy

Although PEMF therapy is safe for horses—and is one of the therapies with the least number of possible side effects—there are some potential drawbacks of using PEMF therapy, not the least of which is availability. Not all veterinary clinics possess PEMF therapy machines, and if you are in an area that does not have numerous veterinary practices, or have a wide variety of therapies available for animals, PEMF may not be available to treat your horses. Fortunately, there are home machines that can be used to treat horses with PEMF, and because PEMF therapy is considered so safe, there are no real risks involved with administering PEMF therapy at home, with your own machine.



Finding effective and safe equine therapy can be difficult. Between the long healing times of common equine injury, and the potential side effects linked to standard medication, many horse owners feel overwhelmed at the prospect of finding a new type of therapy to heal major and minor injuries, improve joint mobility, and ease pain. PEMF therapy delivers in each of these areas with aplomb, and has a long, proud history of safety and efficacy when used in conjunction with horses and other large animals.

Whether your equine friend receives treatment from the comfort of your yard or attends a monthly PEMF therapy appointment with your local veterinarian, PEMF therapy is a long-used and long-trusted equine intervention that can be used to treat a myriad of conditions without the risk of further injury, harm, or pain.