Joint supplements - is it THAT important? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 02-18-2010, 10:33 AM Thread Starter
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Joint supplements - is it THAT important?

I read an article in SpartPack yesterday that you suppose to feed joint supplements even to the young horses without problems. Is it indeed true?

When I'm healthy I do not load bunch of vitamins, acids, or drugs into my body to make it even more "healthy" (of course you better eat "healthy" food, don't smoke, etc. etc. etc.). So what's the point of adding those chemical stuff for joints? I wonder if there are any studies on side effects if any.
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post #2 of 10 Old 02-18-2010, 11:17 AM
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I read that "article" too. And by article I mean advertisement. I think it depends on your horse; her breeding, past injuries, level of work, etc. I don't think a healthy horse with good conformation who isn't being worked into the ground needs a joint supplement. Besides there is NO evidence (meaning scientific, peer reviewed journal articles) showing that oral joint supplements do much at all. Best of luck.
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post #3 of 10 Old 02-18-2010, 02:10 PM
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I guess it depends on what you plan on doing with the youngster--if you're prepping to be a grand prix jumper, I'd say the earlier you start giving extra lubrication the better. It's more prevantative medicine than anything concrete--you never know what may pop up, so better safe than sorry! The main chemicals in the joint supplements (Hyaluronic Acid, Glucosamine, and Chondrotin Sulfate all naturally occur in the body and mainly are produced in the joints. There are usually other herbal remedies in the supplements like yucca root, but who knows if those are indeed effective or not.

I however swear on my TB's joint supplement. He was a race horse for eight years and doesn't track up correctly without it because he has hock/stifle issues, which in turn lead to him not moving correctly.
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post #4 of 10 Old 02-18-2010, 02:14 PM
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I'm starting Danny on a joint supplement. He'll be 12 this year and he jumps so I thought it certainly can't hurt, and might help to avoid problems as he enters his "teenage" years. I chose a 3 in 1 joint/hoof/coat supplment since I want to have him on something for his feet anyway...

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post #5 of 10 Old 02-19-2010, 01:09 AM
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justsambam- what supplement do you use??

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post #6 of 10 Old 02-19-2010, 01:48 AM
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Well of course someone who sells supplements is going to tell you they are extremely beneficial to your horses well being, they will be making money from it.

If a horse isn't in hard work or is a pasture puff, I don't see the point of putting them on a joint supplement. Unless you have a horse that is running around the pasture nonstop....LOL.

I plan on putting my mare on a joint supplement this summer because I will be doing jumping and gaming with her, obviously hard on the joints so I would like to have her on a supplement. I was going to do it this past summer but I wasn't working her alot, we were doing some gaming but nothing too intense and very little jumping so I decided to wait until this summer.

It's certainly not necessary, though.

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post #7 of 10 Old 02-19-2010, 02:16 AM
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Of course people who sell oral joint supplements are going to tell you to feed them. You may as well just feed your horse some powdered sugar in his feed, because clinical studies have proven that oral supplements simply do not work. They are marginally effective on some horses, but full results of HA, glucosamine and PSGAGs will only be seen with IV/IM injections.

Of course keep in mind that I am training my horse for high level dressage, and that is the same as the community around me, when reading the following. I am a firm believer that horses in work should be on joint support. It is far less expensive and time consuming to keep the joints healthy in the first place than to try to treat diseased joints. I can tell you from experience! When I bought my horse I had learned from previous horses that you don't want to be mopping up after yourself joint health wise so I put him on Legend and Adequan. He was 5 then, is 7 now and has not taken a lame step in the almost two years I have owned him, unlike the 5 year old I bought before him.

For a pleasure horse? No they certainly don't need joint supplements, but as they get older it is a good idea to administer something to keep them well lubricated.
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post #8 of 10 Old 02-19-2010, 10:03 AM
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I agree with Anabel where Joint Supplimets are applicable.

Oral Joint Suppliments are not 100% proven to be effective. The reason being is that oral suppliments fall under the "Nutrition" category, where the products do not have to be as strict on their ingredients and the lable doesn't have to be truthful about what is inside the container.

Where Intramuscular Injections fall under the category of "Health" so that the laws and rules are faaaaarrr more stricter, where the ingredients have to be what they state and the results have to be what they claim. With the Injection ingredients, are studdied and are what they claim to be - so they are the sure thing.

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post #9 of 10 Old 02-19-2010, 10:20 AM
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Originally Posted by tealamutt View Post
I read that "article" too. And by article I mean advertisement. I think it depends on your horse; her breeding, past injuries, level of work, etc. I don't think a healthy horse with good conformation who isn't being worked into the ground needs a joint supplement.

T O T A L L Y agree!
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post #10 of 10 Old 02-19-2010, 05:05 PM
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If the oral supplements don't work then why have two of our horses improved when on them? A few years ago we got an older QH gelding that was used hard, and had knobby arthritic knees. After a few weeks on Glucosamine his knees went down and the gimping stopped. But stop feeding the supplement and he would get puffy and gimpy again. My mare has also improved with her supplement, she engages her hocks much better and just generally moves better.

Just a thought. :)
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