I'm looking at doing a full lease on a WONDERFUL 14-year-old gelding who would teach me all kinds of things and be very competitive in the show ring. Right now, he is not on any joint supplements, but does get his hocks done once a year before show season (per the owner) and has for the past 2 years. My trainer has suggested that we start him on some joint supplements should the lease work out (we're having a trial period first). I am interested in doing the best I possibly can by this lovely guy, and want him to be as comfortable as possible!
My trainer has suggested a glucosamine/chondroitin supplement (I'm assuming she basically means Cosequin) and a hyaluronic acid supp as well. Is there anything else I should be looking at as far as slightly senior equine + comfort goes? In the past, I have only owned young horses, so this is new territory!
LOVE Platinum Performance CJ. Vet recommended it to me because it has good quantities of all the joint stuff, including ASU, and also has the regular Platinum Performance "base' ingredients for hooves, coat etc. My 20 yr old has done extremely well on it. It's pricey but worth it.
Do a search and you'll find 1000 opinions and anecdotes about what works and what doesn't. It's tough to figure out what will be best for your own horse and your expense account also comes into play. FWIW, this is what I do for my 17-year-old mare:
Daily: Force Flex (cheap and 100 mg HA) and SmartRepair from Smartpak. The latter is somewhat expensive, but has a lot of good things in it and I'm one for going overboard.
After trying Cosequin ASU and not finding it made a huge difference, I looked into something cheaper. I've been using SmartFlex Senior. My guy is 14, but has had some issues. I liked the quantity of glucosamine, chondroitin and MSM for the price. He got better through other treatments, but I figured it can't hurt and at only 60 or 70 cents a day, I'm happy with it.
Its a bit pricey but I use Hylasport on my duaghters 28 year old Arab/Welsh. Her popping disappeared and she moves so freely. She jumps 2'6" courses with no problems and at 28 I'd say thats pretty impressive.
Adequan. The upfront cost is daunting if you do the loading dose, but a maintenance dose costs about the same as most oral supps and it's a 'direct-delivery' product that really helps their whole body. I found that it extended the 'life' of hock injections as well.