Would arthritis be a deal breaker for buying an older horse? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 11:46 AM Thread Starter
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Would arthritis be a deal breaker for buying an older horse?

We may be finally closing on a place with land enough to get a few horses . It's been many years since I've ridden, and my kids have never ridden, so I want to get a bin there done that older horse.

I was looking on CL, and have seen an add for a 15 year old mare who sounds wonderful, but the seller admits to her having arthritis in her elbow. The text of the add about the arthritis is:

"She has a little arthritis in her right elbow. She gets a shot of hydroclonic acid, conjointen, gluco mixture ($55) once in a while when she has a flare up, she has not had a shot in 6 months. She can be ridden regularly and she swims-which is great for her. She can do any kind of ridding just NOT full body Climbing."

My question is, is arthritis a ticking time bomb? Is it one of those things that if she has arthritis in her elbow now it is just a matter of time before it manifests itself in other joints, or even her spine? Is it manageable, or just too much for a new horse owner to deal with?

Thanks for any input/opinions.

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post #2 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 12:04 PM
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it really depends on how severe it is and how much you would be willing to do to stay on top of it.
My mare josie has arthritis in both front knees. It is pretty easy to deal with it by stretching her and warming her up thoroughly before doing any serious work. But its kind of a case to case basis. Not all horses would do as well as others with differant kinds of work.

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post #3 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 12:27 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Roperchick View Post
it really depends on how severe it is and how much you would be willing to do to stay on top of it.
My mare josie has arthritis in both front knees. It is pretty easy to deal with it by stretching her and warming her up thoroughly before doing any serious work. But its kind of a case to case basis. Not all horses would do as well as others with differant kinds of work.
I forgot to mention that I don't plan on doing anything very strenuous with her. Light riding in the arena, and short trail rides on flat dirt roads. And she'll have a quarter to a third acre to wander in when she's not being ridden or loved on.

Does your mare need medication, or is just keeping her active, and giving her time to warm up enough? Thanks for the quick response .

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post #4 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 12:31 PM
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we have been giving her glucosamine every day and that seems to help her. And when we were going for long rides or competitions we would give her some bute if she was particularly sore or stiff.

If you do give the horse bute make sure its not on a daily basis. Its really hard on their stomach.

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post #5 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 12:56 PM Thread Starter
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Have you ever heard of a shot like the seller mentioned in her add?

"hydroclonic acid, conjointen, gluco mixture".

I think I'll start a thread on favorite ways to treat arthritis.

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post #6 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 01:13 PM
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Depending on what I was looking for and the severity of the arthritis. With the type of horse you are looking for, I don't think that some mild arthritis should be a deal breaker. It is actually better for a horse with arthritis to be kept active, not strenuous things like barrels or jumping but mild excersize is good for them. It keeps the joints lubricated as best they can be. I would have a vet check it out just to be sure of how severe it is before going any further.

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post #7 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 01:50 PM
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"More horses rust out than wear out"

It would be unusual for a 15 year old that had an active career not to have some arthritis. As previous posters mentioned, the questions you need answered are how severe this arthritis is, and how it will impact want you want to do. Frankly, I've never heard of signifigant arthritis in an *elbow* - fetlocks, hocks and stifles are a lot more common. You will need a vet to examine her, do flexions and possibly xrays and give you an opinion. You will also need to add the cost of the supplement and shots to her cost to to give you and accurate comparison to other animals you're looking at.

FYI, arthritic horses do much better with turnout and a run in shed; standing in a stall for long periods does them no favors. They also do best with light, consistent work; they don't do well as "weekend warriors." I have also had very good results with joint supplements; thought you have to experiment a little - different ones work better on different horses.
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post #8 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 02:13 PM
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If I wanted to compete- definate deal breaker

If I wanted a companion, to ride on occasion- not a deal breaker

If you can afford a horse who might not be ridable one day then its not as big of a deal. If you are only willing to keep a sound horse, don't go any further.
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post #9 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 02:35 PM
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yes I have we wer going to give my mare one but she started having more difficult (unrelated) problems and retired her. But many people did recommend it to us. It seems to have good results.

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post #10 of 18 Old 02-04-2010, 02:57 PM
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I think you mean an adequan type of shot. There area also generics for less.

Before you go to far contact the owner's vet. They can tell you the extent of the issue and what exactly they're giving the horse.
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