Looking for a joint supplement for my 3 year old, that is no more then $1 a day, but
SO, my little COTH Giveaway, is still having issues. Her hock was X-rayed 7 times, and was found to have a very minor - but old - injury that caused some mild changes. But...when she canters, she still canters like a Rabbit, with both back feet almost together. She has almost gone through a tub of MSM, and I have yet to see any major changes, so I was thinking about switching her to a more powerful joint supplement - but I would love one that was in the $30 a month or less range. Between her back end soundness and her hooves - came with horrdid thrush, now we are just dealing with a white line/seedy toe issue (and no, her toes are not too long - she just flares like a Draft horse) I just want a sound horse that I can start training again.
The vet said that most people would not have even seen it. He flexed her - both sides - trotted her, lunged her, etc. She isn't "off" per say. she just doesn't want to get that leg up underneath of her. At the trot it's fairly even though.
"Two-footing" or "rabbit-canter" or whatever you want to call that thing where they don't separate their hind legs in the canter is very often a symptom of an SI issue, and more rarely a symptom of a stifle issue. I wouldn't suspect the minor hock issue you found on the x-ray.
I'd save money for an exam, and perhaps an SI injection.
To answer the question, my favorite inexpensive joint supp is SmartFlex Senior (assuming you aren't actively showing).
I love joint armor from Kentucky performance products. I went through many oral supplements with my older guy with minor hock arthritis and it was the only thing that helped him at all. The rest was really throwing my money away. It's about 70 dollars but that is for 2 or 3 months. 2 for sure but I haven't used it in a bit so can't remember. I do injections now only new horse and the older one is retired and takes previcox daily.
Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole
Personally I'd spend that money on a firm diagnosis, targeted therapy, and taking measures to make the problem better (if possible) going forward. A "strong" joint supplement is like buying a cheap scratch-off lottery ticket--only costs you a few bucks, MAYBE you will win a little bit, but in the end you're throwing your money away unless you get REALLY lucky.
A year's worth of a dollar-a-day supplement, or about $400, would go a long way towards a thorough lameness exam, therapeutic farriery, injections, or some other means of moving the horse in the right direction more decidedly than the crapshoot of oral joint supplements. IMO.
She has had a complete Lameness exam, and she has a great trimmer, and I think is on the right road as far as her feet go - I just got back from feeding her, and treating her seedy toes. If it was her SI, would she be back sore? I felt all along her back/pelvis/SI area, and did not react at all. Hmm....if it was an SI issue, would a Chiro help? I'm not a huge Chiro fan, because for teh most part, if something is "out" and gets adjusted, the muscles will just pull it right back to where it was, unless you do daily Physical Therapy - which is hard to do for a horse. But, I'm willing to try. She is such an incredible mover, and I think she would be an awesome hunter pony...I just want her to have a chance to be one.
Hmm...I guess as soon as I get the seedy toe under control - she's still a bit sore in the front from it - I'll be calling the vet again.
Have you had a good chiro out? That would be my first step since you've already had the vet out.
I agree with others that it is more likely hip/SI.
My gelding was displaying some strange lateral canter and is doing much better after a couple of adjustments. By the way, my chiro is also a DVM and flexed said horse to make sure she wasn't missing something else.
Horse has also been started walking over cavalettis 3 times a day, working up ton trotting to strengthen his hind.
This is overly simplistic, but the "short" route to dealing with SI problems is to inject, while the "long" route involves quite a long period of stall rest and very gradual and stepwise re-introduction of exercise. IME horses do not particularly seem back sore to the touch/palpation, but they hop or swap in the canter or buck on canter departs frequently.
Ditto what deltawave said. Sore SI's don't always palpate in the back or even over the SI. The area is deep within the body.
My preferred course of action is an SI injection (ultrasound guided) and an immediate start to a rehab/strengthening program- 6 days a week of walking, building up to hills and trotting (no cantering, jumping for several months). Some choose to skip the injection and start with stall rest instead.
Robaxin is a good, conservative first step in treating muscle soreness in the back or hindquarters- but that's not what this sounds like. If the horse palpated sore in the back, my first choice would be to shoot a few x-rays to confirm no kissing spines or arthritis.
If you have one in your area, consider trying an Osteopath.
I was very sceptical about using one myself, but had a boarder that was desperate to resolve her horse's issues...and the multiple vets and specialists were unable to assist over the course of months, so we had an Osteopath out, and the horse is slowly, but surely improving... after over a year of being off.
The thing I like the most about Osteo vs. chiro, is that the effect/improvement is immediate, and often only one trip is needed (unless the issue is really layers of issues). The treatments are mild, and less risky that some chiro adjustments.
I now use this Osteo on other horses who have issues such as being stiff on one side, with the treatments often being while i am riding, and I can feel the difference immediately. I have even had some work done on myself, and it has offered some relief with my own issues. I do not think it replaced vet work, but if the vet has come up blank, an Osteo may be a very affordable next step.
Also on board with the full lameness exam and either Adequan or Pentosan.
The only oral supplement I have ever seen any results from is Flex Force HA which I feed in a double dose. Its oral and is syringed on the gums. Truly, it's the only oral thing I've had any success on for joints/flexibility.