Victoria Ferguson is a pioneer of herbal medicine and natural feeding for horses in Australia.
All her life Victoria has been with animals in some way or another.
She was born on a Queensland sheep station, worked with cattle and ridden horses on the land and in the show ring.
She has competed in equestrian sport at the highest level, headed a successful PR company, authored two books, written for the equine press and has been the subject of feature articles in various magazines. Victoria’s extensive travels throughout Australia have given her a keen appreciation of the country.
An advocate and practitioner of herbal medicine for horses for more than 20 years, Victoria studied with Australian herbal icon, Dorothy Hall, in the late 1990s.
As well as writing two bestsellers: The Practical Horse Herbal and The Complete Horse Herbal, she has established a School of Equine Herbal Medicine through which she delivers a Practitioner Course by distance education recognised by the International Institute for Complementary Therapists.
Victoria continues to research and learn. She absorbs and analyses all new findings which come to light about herbal medicine.
“One of the main areas I’ve found fascinating is Zoopharmacognosy or Animal Aromatics where the animal is allowed to self select.
‘”I am also a huge fan of the works of American Stephen Harrod Buhner, author of Herbal Anti-biotics and Herbal Anti-virals where he has collated an astounding amount of research. Detractors of herbal medicine always trot out the old lie that there’s no research on herbs, as they don’t regard empirical or traditional use to be of any value. Pharmaceutical medicine has only been around for 120 years – as Dorothy Hall used to say: ‘how come we weren’t all dead before we got here?’!
“All of this has resulted in my adding many new herbs to my dispensary and turfing out a few as well. It has also come in very handy for my students. There is also the massive amount of work done by Dr James Duke, PhD, and there is a public database of all his research into the chemical constituents and pharmacological actions of herbs which can be accessed by anyone! Both Buhner and Duke say modern research almost always explains and reinforces traditional uses. Fancy that!”
1947 Born at Blackall, Qld, on parents’ sheep station; educated through Primary Correspondence.
1963 Completed secondary education at New England Girls School, Armidale, NSW, with Leaving Certificate.
Competing show horses.
1964-65 Competing show horses; completing secretarial college
1966-68 Secretary of The Droughtmaster Stud Breeders’ Society, administration and publicity for cattle breed organisation. Assisting with the showing of stud cattle on parents’ property in the Brisbane Valley, Qld.
Competing in camp drafting.
1969-1970 Travelling in UK and Europe
1970-1973 Personal Secretary to Managing Director of Stanbroke Pastoral Company owner of a chain of Queensland cattle stations, (as Mrs Douglas Pinnington)
Personal Assistant to the Public Relations Director of Ford Asia Pacific, Melbourne (as Mrs Douglas Pinnington)
1974-1984 Established and conducted Victoria Ferguson Beef Cattle Promotions, based in Sydney, a consultancy specialising in advertising and publicity for cattle studs and organisations. Travelled throughout Australasia attending shows and sales in professional capacity.
Competing in showjumping and eventing.
1985-1995 Established and conducted Horses for Courses, a dressage training, competition and sales stable, freelance equestrian journalism and publicity. Competing in dressage, selected on long list for Australian team for the World Equestrian Games in 1989 with her well known Grand Prix partner “Gamekeeper”
1996-1997 Studied and obtained Diploma of Herbal Medicine with Dorothy Hall.
1997 Established her equine herbal business providing natural feeding programs and prescribing and dispensing herbal remedies to horse owners Australia-wide. Conducting workshops for horse owners in every state of Australia.
Competing in dressage.
2013 Established The Schoolof Equine Herbal Medicine to provide education for horse owners and therapists. In 2015 the course was recognised by the International Institute of Complementary Therapists, so students graduate as equine herbal medicine practitioners, with a Certificate of Equine Herbal Medicine.