View Full Version : Supplements
12-31-2009, 08:35 PM
My mare is 15 years old and in great health, never foundered or been sick in any way and built like a tank. I just want to keep it that way. I was wondering what kind of suppliments could keep it that way or should I not worry about it until there is a problem. I just want to keep working her and dont want to ever see her stiff or sore. Im thinking of HA and glucosimine. What do you guys belive in?
01-01-2010, 08:37 PM
I have always been very happy using HA for my horses and had great results. I am also a fan of Steadfast. Using it on my older dog (the dog version) and it is doing wonders.
01-02-2010, 10:47 AM
I asked my vet this very question for my two horses last Spring. My Morgan is now 21 (as of yesterday) and my ASB is 14. His response was basically "If it ain't broke, don't fix it." Which is kind of my theory for ME (I think we tend to overmedicate everything in this country- be it prescriptions or supplements, but that's just MHO...) but my beloved horses are a different story. I do respect my vet's opinion but I am still on the fence on this as well and would love to hear what others have to say about it. If I can prevent a problem from starting vs trying to treat one once it's already symptomatic, then well....
I do give them both a basic vitamin supplement plus a hoof supplement but have yet to try any joint related supplements.
01-02-2010, 10:11 PM
My vets have never known a lot about joint supplements, so I've done a lot of my own trial and error.
I went through a lot of them with my old gaited horse. Eventually, I discovered he responded best to very high levels of glucosamine, and the chondroitin didn't matter. When he developed ringbone, we started him on Adequan. Not only did it prevent the progression, it actually improved him. I tried eliminating the glucosamine when we started Adequan, but then he became off in the right front. It was funny -- if he was off behind, he needed another shot of Adequan. If he was off in front, I needed to increase the glucosamine. He was still rideable up until the day he died at 33. I saw amazing improvements in this horse with the joint supplements, and he made me a believer.
I was using SmartPak's own Senior supplement for my old horse before he died. It wasn't terribly expensive, and worked well. Plus it was cherry flavored, and the horses loved it.
When I got Rooty from SBR, I automatically put him on a joint supplement as prevention (one with a mix of glucosamine, chondroitin, yucca and MSM). After about a year, I decided I was wasting money and took him off of it. Shortly thereafter he developed an odd, very slight lameness that was only evident under saddle. It was so slight, my vet couldn't even tell whether it was front or behind, left or right. We spent lots of money trying to figure out where it was, and then I remembered the joint supplement. I put him back on it, and 6 weeks later he was back to normal. I figure I spent more on vet bills than I saved in my 1 year hiatus!
I want to say I read about a study in dogs where they proved that joint supplements can help prevent arthritic changes when used early. Can't remember where I read that though. Good luck!
01-06-2010, 08:50 AM
If your horse is 15 and healthy, do you need supplements? Does the mare really get enough work to justify it? I'm not against supplements, I have used them before; but think about if you need them or if you're just succombing to advertising? I've got a 20 yr old mare, with a nice slick coat, even now, who has never gotten anything for her joints; they're fine. But she also only gets driven about 3X a year. I don't think there's a reason to spend the money on joint supplements for a healthy horse with minimal work. But that's just me.
On a side note, my mother, who takes care of the horse (her retirement present), decided the poor old horse, who everyone thinks is 10, should be getting vitamins. It took her two weeks to figure out why the mare was climbing the walls and being completely obnoxious. No more vitamins, much better personality!
01-06-2010, 09:06 AM
I guess she really doesnt need anything, she acts and feels like a 5 year old. I was just looking to prevent any joint problems in the future. She isnt your normal little narrow horse , she is like a mack truck, but she has the legs to match! She is not retired and will be working her everyday!
01-09-2010, 11:01 AM
If the horse is healthy, no supplements is the best possible scenario. Unneeded supps are just excreted out of the body, so not only waistfull, but it makes the animals liver and kidneys work harder. If you are worried about some sort of deficiency, and as animals age thier metabolism becomes less efficient, get a hair analysis done through uckele animal sciences and they will mix you up something specifically designed for your horse. It costs @$125 for the initial analysis and is substantially less for follow ups. It's really a very cool thing and it's just nice to know.
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