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Alva International - A Natural Phenomenon!
When Welsh Cob enthusiast, Phil Bowen, started using natural preparations to enhance his stallions' appearance in the showring, it generated such interest that it led to the establishment of Alva International.

The company now specialise in the supply of equine aromatherapy products that are based on a combination of pure essential oils and aloe vera.

To demonstrate the type of products Phil has developed he takes us through the pre-show preparation of his multiple championship-winning stallion Rhystyd Dazzler.

The Day before the Show

The day before the Show I lead Dazzler into a clean, bed-free stable and with lukewarm water, start cleaning his hoofs and work my way up his legs. I then wet his tail and remove all the dirt, then move onto his mane, forelock and finally his back.

When all the dirt has gone, I repeat the process using Alvateatree shampoo. I have found it better to pour the shampoo slowly along the brush when in the upside down position (that's the brush - not me!) and then scrub the horse. When I have scrubbed the horse all over I repeat the process again until the rinsing water from under his belly is clear.

The next job is to remove the excess water with a rubber scraper. I then pour about 250ml of Alvasparkle into a clean dry bucket with a a clean sponge. After squeezing the excess from the sponge, I wipe the Alvasparkle solution along one side of Dazzlers body starting at the neck, down to his withers and along his back. (Caution - when applying to ridden horses, avoid the saddle area since Alvasparkle provides a high gloss finish which may cause the saddle to slip). I then repeat the process on the other side. This will protect his coat and reduce stable staining.

Finally I spray Alvadazzle on his mane and tail and comb through taking care not to damage healthy hair. By now he's looking good and I put him back into his stable with a fresh bed of straw.

Show Day!

As the day of the show dawns, my nerves are now bubbling but I try not to show the horse how I am feeling. Having checked my list to make sure that I've remembered everything, I load Dazzler into the box and were off!

On arrival I check that Dazzler is alright and offer him water before going to collect my number, then its back to the lorry to give a light brush. This I find relaxes him and gives him more time to unwind after the journey.

One hour before his class, I remove his haynet and reach for the Alvagleam. Having shaken the bottle well I pour one quarter of the bottle into a clean dry bucket. Using a clean dry sponge, I repeat the procedure I used for the Alvasparkle the day before.

On completion, using a clean, dry, velvet cloth I give him a polish - the harder the polish the better the gleam! I then put Alvadazzle on his mane and tail and comb through.

With the ramp now down I stand and admire this work of art - then its off to do the business! Most people compete for pleasure, but I compete to win and with the help of these products I believe that I am giving my horse the best chance possible.

It is extremely pleasing to see so many of today's prize-winning horses using the Alva products with huge success.

Phil Bowen
MD Alva International
For more information on the range of products from Alva International visit their web site at or
email your questions to Phil at
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