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  1. #1
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    Default Feed/supplements 10yoOTTB Update - great results! #44

    2/22 - see my post today, below...



    So I try to approach this rationally, but get confused the more I look at brochures, read suggestions. Not sure what is a priority. What really works... Sorry this is long, and appreciate your plowing through it all... I have been getting advice from a mishmash of former knows-all-the-drugsandsupplements barn owners, and those who prefer to use nothing. But I'm in between, so need help!

    I know my horse's former trainer from the track. There she said they used Platinum Performance Plus CJ and recommends it highly. He really looked great. Hooves look great in track photos. Was retired at age 7 after racing for 4 years in good company at Belmont/Saratoga. Expected to be sound for his next career - just didn't want to push him any further for racing. I haven't used the Platinum Performance yet.

    Had him retired to my friend's boarding facility, but he had a few issues. I took him on a year and a half ago. Had thorough vetting by a lameness specialist, since he was a tough ride - frequent bucking, quirky cantering. Diagnosed with kissing spine, some arthritis in his LF ankle, and "hocky". Prescribed isoxuprine and Vitamin E. Thought maybe hock injections might be a good idea down the road. We found later that a Naproxen daily makes a big difference when he was kicked in the pasture, and he was a new horse when given Bute.

    Moved him to full pasture board this past spring, found a wonderful visiting trainer (who is in Aiken for the winter, though ) and we're moving well forward. I think the pasture board/constant movement has been a huge help physically, and attitude suppressor. He has also learned to pay attention now to his new job, rather than wig out when he feels like exploding. To me, this had certainly been brought on more by feeling good, than feeling pain. And with my trainer, we have had a couple of CTJ moments, which have resulted in greatly improved trust, respect, and rideability!

    My concerns are: 1)hoof growth, 2)ulcers, 3)arthritis/joints, and 4)improved overall condition.

    In addition to full pasture, and great quality hay grown here (immediate farms are high end hay producers) he gets Safechoice Original. Is on the Isoxuprene, and a small dose of Naproxen 1x daily. I took him off the Vitamin E once he moved to full pasture board. He has been on Biotin 800 since November 2011.

    He HATES flies, and that, in addition to a terrible farrier job this past summer, ruined his feet, although he has always had less than desirable feet. Have a new farrier who is right there for any issues. We put aluminum plates on him this fall and I had applied a hoof oil almost daily. Removed his shoes this winter, and I've been using Keratex for a few weeks. Was just trimmed last week. Feet are growing in well, but not outstanding. But good for him.

    As far as the initial vet exam is concerned, I don't think his kissing spine is really an issue at this time. I purchased a custom saddle and have played around with saddle pads, and observations have been he goes equally well with/without a rider. Have not yet given him injections. But I can see when doing his back feet, that he can be a bit ouchy in his hocks. I would like to add some glucosamine/chondroitin to his diet, so have been looking at overall supplements. And also wondering if the Biotin 800 is enough for his hooves, or if I'm missing something else, or should change hoof supplements.

    Finally, he has always been girthy, and we wondered if he has an ulcer problem. Know he had them at the track. But last year at this time, I paid for a month of Gastrogard, and it didn't change much. Turns out he did have awful teeth - they've now been done twice this past year by a specialist, and fine. I know the ibuprofen is not a good idea with any tendency towards ulcers. But I think the full time pasture board has helped any possible stomach issues also. But have thought about doing the pop rocks?

    Additionally, I added SmartPak Bugoff at the end of the summer until winter. Not sure if it was the supplement, fly spray, or just being out 24/7, but his coat was really bleached out and just kind of bleh. I have bought a fly sheet for him, and will be using it consistently on him this summer. But not sure how to keep the dam* flies off his legs with the warmer weather coming up (some day...? ).

    Oh, and my goal! Trying to get him to begin eventing. We are still working on getting the canter going smoothly (which, by the way, is much better outside), but with the weather, then my getting sick, starting a business, then his just being trimmed and ouchy for a few days, and finally the BO putting a bunch of equipment in the indoor - I've not really been able to get a regular routine of working on it. I had hoped to ride him 4x a week, but until recently had only managed 2x. Now, stuff in the indoor or not , I'm determined to ride him 4x!

    Would one of the overall SmartPak/Platinum Performance supplements be a good idea, and keep using the Biotin 800? Or replace the Biotin 800 with one of the Hoof Supplements?

    Is Platinum Performance Plus CJ too much for a horse just being ridden 4x a week? Would I have to have a hoof supplement with that?

    I am a rerider from "the old days" and all these supplements have my head spinning. Plus, I don't have unlimited funds. I think the 24/7 turnout and great hay is key. But I would like to add something for his joints/arthritis issues. Thus considering the glucosamine/chondroitin.

    One final note. He is fairly lazy. Or really fast. Right now in the winter, he is being lazy, but steps it up when working on cantering, which I'm just trying to get him comfortable and relaxed with. I don't want to overdo until I know I'm addressing these issues. Taking my time warming him up, use a Back-on-Track sheet for a half hour before riding. Knock on wood, he hasn't been lame all winter, just a little ouchy after his last hoof trim - pretty frozen ground outside, but he's a careful fellow.

    Thanks for hanging in there with my long diatribe. Appreciate any advice/ideas!
    Last edited by CVPeg; Apr. 4, 2013 at 01:20 PM. Reason: update
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  2. #2
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    I am a firm believer in Platinum Performance CJ - but it is for performance horses.. Doesn't mean your horse couldn't benefit from it.

    http://www.platinumperformance.com/P...ctinfo/EPCJG10

    That has some information on it.. I'm not an expert, but I can say firsthand I worked for an upper level eventer for a while and we tried her "sticky" and "sour" mare on it - it made the world of a difference, she had ulcers too. She went from being pretty dull to being sassy and enjoyable, and over several months of the supplements we noticed a huge difference in her feet. She was an OTTB too, was 6 at the time and doing Prelim.

    If your horse has ulcers you could try doing full turn-out and alfalfa, It's no Gastroguard but doesnt come with the cost of it either. Horses are going to be a little happier outside, and for OTTBs (and any horse really) I'm of the firm conviction the more time they spend outside (when it's not freezing) the happier and healthier and sounder they are.

    The Platinum CJ has joint supplements in it, so it's really a "complete" supplement - it addresses joint function, skin/hoof health, and digestive health. It's expensive, but if you pared it down and bought each supplement in CJ individually and fed them all together, it would run roughly the same. That combined with alfalfa may make a difference for you. I've heard people worry that alfalfa makes a horse hot.. but if the horse is outside, I don't think it makes a difference in their demeanor. If the horse is locked inside however.. .
    AETERNUM VALE, INVICTUS - 7/10/2012


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  3. #3
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    Ok, I'll try to answer your questions/concerns to the best of my knowledge.

    I know my horse's former trainer from the track. There she said they used Platinum Performance Plus CJ and recommends it highly. He really looked great. Hooves look great in track photos. Was retired at age 7 after racing for 4 years in good company at Belmont/Saratoga. Expected to be sound for his next career - just didn't want to push him any further for racing. I haven't used the Platinum Performance yet.
    PP CJ is a great supplement. It covers a lot of bases ingredient wise and has some of the most comprehensive joint coverage I've seen in an oral supplement. That being said, it is an ORAL supplement, and the majority of the price you're paying is for the joint ingredients in it, which may or may not be effective. There are a lack of reliable studies on the effectiveness of joint supplements, with many believing the ingredients aren't bioavailable. I personally agree with them. If you want to provide joint supplementation, go with an IM injection like Adequan or Pentosan. If you're looking at PP CJ for its other ingredients, look into regular PP or Smartpak's Daily Omegas Plus. However I think all of these oral supplements are overpriced and really you shouldn't need them for a horse on a healthy diet.

    Moved him to full pasture board this past spring, found a wonderful visiting trainer (who is in Aiken for the winter, though ) and we're moving well forward. I think the pasture board/constant movement has been a huge help physically, and attitude suppressor. He has also learned to pay attention now to his new job, rather than wig out when he feels like exploding. To me, this had certainly been brought on more by feeling good, than feeling pain. And with my trainer, we have had a couple of CTJ moments, which have resulted in greatly improved trust, respect, and rideability!
    Pasture board is AWESOME for horses with arthritic issues. The constant movement prevents stiffness and builds muscle. It also keeps them entertained and less likely to do airs above the ground when you ride. Great to hear you're moving forward and bonding with your boy, it's a great feeling.

    In addition to full pasture, and great quality hay grown here (immediate farms are high end hay producers) he gets Safechoice Original. Is on the Isoxuprene, and a small dose of Naproxen 1x daily. I took him off the Vitamin E once he moved to full pasture board. He has been on Biotin 800 since November 2011.
    Sounds like a good forage diet but I'm not a fan of Safechoice Original. If it works for him, great! But IMO there are better feeds out there. I've also never bought into the effectiveness of Isoxuprene. There are probably plenty of threads on it you can look at. I checked out the Biotin 800 and it looks like a good supplement but IIRC biotin absorption stops at around 20-30 mg (someone please correct me if I'm wrong!), meaning 50 mg is a bit overkill and you're wasting money. If you want something cheap and effective, I feed BioFlax 20, but it's really up to you. The Biotin 800 certainly isn't going to hurt him.

    But I can see when doing his back feet, that he can be a bit ouchy in his hocks. I would like to add some glucosamine/chondroitin to his diet, so have been looking at overall supplements. And also wondering if the Biotin 800 is enough for his hooves, or if I'm missing something else, or should change hoof supplements.
    As mentioned before, I personally don't buy into the effectiveness of oral joint supplements. Also, to get the level of ingredients that are "supposed" to be effective, you will be paying a lot per month! IM injections are pretty easy to do and the drugs used have studies behind them proving effectiveness.

    But have thought about doing the pop rocks?
    By all means, if you suspect ulcers, treat for them. However, you could also buy a week's worth of ulcerguard and see if he shows any improvement before you go and buy the pop rocks. A lot of times being girthy is a symptom of ulcers but it definitely isn't always the case.

    but his coat was really bleached out and just kind of bleh.
    Hot summer sun and sweaty horse is a great combo for a bleached coat. You can add whole flax (I typically use 1 cup) to combat this. A fly sheet will also help. To help prevent stomping at flies you can use fly boots or those Summer Whinny socks.

    then his just being trimmed and ouchy for a few days
    It isn't normal for a horse to walk off "ouchy" after a trim. 4 out of 5 horses at my barn are barefoot, no one walks off lame after a trim, even in the frozen mud rut weather.

    I am a rerider from "the old days" and all these supplements have my head spinning.
    Supplements are 99% hype. For every supplement out there you will have people swearing by it and people telling you it's bullsh!t. Don't be guilted into using a bunch of supplements. Good feed, good hay, good farrier, good vet, properly fitting tack, and a well footed area to ride in are the important things.

    PP CJ wouldn't be too much, but IMO it is unnecessary for any horse.

    Eventing is great, almost any horse can go through the lower levels (ask my pudgy, badly conformed QH gelding). It is a blast and really forces you to work your horse correctly!

    One final note. He is fairly lazy. Or really fast. Right now in the winter, he is being lazy, but steps it up when working on cantering, which I'm just trying to get him comfortable and relaxed with. I don't want to overdo until I know I'm addressing these issues. Taking my time warming him up, use a Back-on-Track sheet for a half hour before riding. Knock on wood, he hasn't been lame all winter, just a little ouchy after his last hoof trim - pretty frozen ground outside, but he's a careful fellow.
    Yes, I have one of those lazy or fast ones too. Just ride the horse you have under you and it will come together.

    Hopefully I answered most of your questions in a helpful way! Best of luck


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  4. #4
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Both of these answers help a lot. Appreciate it!

    I know PPCJ is expensive, but had thought perhaps if it has everything...

    SAcres - I'm not familiar with those studies - just others' experiences with Glucosamine/Chondroitin. My ex, for one, who had/has awful neck/back arthritis issues. He is the biggest complainer I've ever known, but admitted it helped him a great deal. Also, my 8yo Irish Wolfhound greatly benefits from a supplement containing these ingredients.

    Is it horses that reportedly do not have proven studies for oral supplements - glucosamine/chondroitin, or is it anyone/anything in general? Just curious.

    I was wondering about the big push for injections upon returning. Glucosamine/chondroitin was new, but fairly accepted by some when I left riding years ago, and so the injections new to me now. Frankly, hadn't understood them. And they are used fairly frequently at the barn I left, which had horrible turnout/care/upkeep, but they were big on meds, so I've been a little jaded. Plus want to make sure I'm not doing anything outside of competition standards/drug protocols. I called the USEF about having isoxyprine and naproxen, and they said as long as the isoxyprine had a prescription, the combination was fine. But I've also wondered about the efficacy of the isoxyprine, but considering his hoof concerns, didn't dare omit it.

    As far as "ouchiness" is concerned. My guy is a bit of a prima donna. But I frankly appreciate it. He's being careful! So in the past sometimes he'll not move forward purposefully right off a hoof trim, but fine a day or two later - what I mean by ouchy. For some farriers he'll say "no thank you!" - for others - he's fine. He was also like this at the track. Some days he just didn't want to run - and he was pretty fast. Other days he was great. A puzzle for his trainer, but so many racehorses are. His trainer an old school, superb horseman (his wife told me about the PPCJ).

    This is great information, and I appreciate everyone's input!
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  5. #5
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    Have his hocks done! Also, you can go to one of the injectable (either IM or IV) joint solutions rather than the oral supplements. Oral supplements are expensive and I've just never seen the data that they work.

    I'm going to guess that he's going to feel better and work better after hock injections. Also, if most of his arthritic ouchiness is coming from his back end then you may be able to take him off of the low-level pain meds which will help his stomach feel better.

    Finally, I have a Tb and she's been on plain Platinum Performance for years - the mare approves and her coat always looks great.


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  6. #6
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    Just as a note I train race horses and have about half my stable on actiflex (liquid joint supp) and since putting certain ones on it we have not had to inject their joints, all swelling and heat has disappeared, and arthritic joints are now sound without bute. I LOVE it now because I can truly say it works.
    Race training and retraining Thoroughbreds.


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  7. #7
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    Is he barefoot? If so I would at least put front shoes on him if you want to ride 4x's a week. If he's got sore hocks, I would have him shod all the way around. JMO. I know he's on 24/7 turnout and didn't notice where you're located, so if you're worried about snowballs in the feet, rim pads work really well. Oh and if he's hocks are sore, IMO I wouldn't mess around with feed throughs that may or may not work. Go with what is known to work and that's hock injections or an injectable like Adequan or Pentosan. They have research behind them and are cheaper per month than any quality feed through. You know the horse is getting it all and it doesn't need to be digested then metabolized before it (maybe) gets where it needs to go.

    I'm curious... Why the Isox? I know it's to increase blood flow but I've only heard it used for horses with "navicular" or heel pain. If he's got heel pain, one of the causes of that can be sore hocks. Sore hocks can also cause back pain, which can lead to a girthy horse. Sore front feet can also lead to sore withers, which can lead to a girthy horse.

    Before you start throwing a bunch of supplements ($$$) at him, get his feet straightened out, get his hocks injected and have him seen by a massage therapist and chiro. That may wipe out a lot of whats going on with him and save you from dumping a lot of money on supplements that may or may not treat the symptom, not the cause.

    Horses don't lie, some are just more stoic and are better at hiding pain than others. My boy is not stoic at all and I'm really glad for that, then I know something is wrong and it's not as hard to figure out like with the stoic ones.
    Last edited by BoyleHeightsKid; Feb. 11, 2013 at 08:48 AM.
    Boyle Heights Kid 1998 OTTB Dark Bay Gelding
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  8. #8
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    Diagnosed with kissing spine, some arthritis in his LF ankle, and "hocky".

    With all that you have said...he really doesn't sound like a candidate for sport.
    Especially when we read further along and you talk about girthy, ulcers, and so forth.
    There comes a point when, if you have to pull the acts of God to get a horse sound for sport then maybe it might not be meant to be.

    That being said,
    Get the hocks done right away. There is no reason to let that linger. It's a no brainer.

    MSM is a proven feed through supplement.
    Yucca might work well.

    That PP that you mentioned is probably one of the best supplements + joint supplements on the market. If you can swing it, go for it.

    A lot of people swear by Liquid HA. We get it in the form of Flex Force through Valley Vet? I believe.. It's the same as Lubricin. It's $70 for a gallon and lasts a LOOOOONG time.

    With a goal like eventing, and his already diagnosed issues and who knows what is undiagnosed, it's going to be a tough road for both of you. Life could be much simpler...
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  9. #9
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Thanks everyone for the comments and suggestions. I've been doing some more reading this morning. Have to say, the whole "injections" idea sounded so nefarious. And I didn't even realize it was akin to glucosamine, etc. - I thought more of some kind of "drug" - i.e.pain killer in place. So I am catching up knowledge wise. But this conversation really helped me understand where to go. Believe I will be creating a grid of pluses and minuses, costs, and causes and effects, and start one thing at a time, and soon! You've all been a great help.

    The diagnoses were from a lameness vet that, to me, is good, but was the "go to" at the aforementioned barn whose owner regaled herself as an expert in all things medical, while letting all things practical, to a dangerous point, slide at her barn. I do take this vet's advices to a good degree. But she seems to really prescribe every pricey solution under the sun. And noted everything I could possibly want to know. Then suggests using the highest end items one can find.

    The kissing spine was the most troublesome diagnosis. But once we got the saddle right, there have not been any signs of his having back issues. We'll see what happens, and this is in mind as we move forward.

    The horse has only been lame under my care when shod incorrectly, and very briefly after being kicked during turnout. He has not been lame regularly riding at all. But I know what's there, so want to do the right thing by him.

    And when I say eventing, I'm not looking to go to the top, but hopefully have something he can do at an enjoyable level, so that he has a job. My goal really is misstated - not so much eventing, as to give him a job. And I frankly, don't agree with so many I've met along the way the past two years of getting back into riding, that want me to buy something that is for my fun and make it easy for me. I am rather, going in a direction that I think will accommodate him.

    First thought, perhaps, going back to my old standby of H/J/eq. Well, now seeing how that has changed from a practical way of riding, to a more "posed" way of looking for ribbons (apologize - that sounds snarky, but seeing that more often, and perhaps a bit more boring? for me is a better way to say it), that is definitely not going to fit his lifestyle, nor mine, I'm afraid. I've had OTTBs before that have been push button, but he isn't going to be. And I've just finally ridden in my first hunt, which I loved, but a) can't see him wanting to wait in the back, or wait quietly for any length of time and b) is probably too much while still tweaking his diagnosed 'issues'.

    He is a lovely mover, bright, and quite willing. Not easy and straightforward - requires a confident, quiet ride, and no-nonsense. But very gratifying as each item in the list moving forward is checked off.

    My trainer has said also, why don't I just go and find a horse that can do it? Because this guy needs a job, and I'm trying to find the right balance for him. If I can't keep him for good after his racing career, I don't want him to end up ??? But if my goal is finding something that will fit him, then he can have a future. Am hoping to conservatively try what might work for him. And have been finding answers along the way the past several months - so much the better for him. If it doesn't turn out ultimately, it doesn't turn out. But he's no cripple at this point. We just know what's under the x-rays.

    He is barefoot right now for our awful upstate NY winters. Farrier felt it a good idea, rather than have nail holes that will provide a breaking off point down the road. And we do have an indoor to ride in. Has worked well! Have only walked outside down the road and across snow covered fields. Once the snow is pretty much behind us, we'll go back to regular shoes. He did have shoes on last winter with snow pads and they worked well. Except for the fact it was before we moved to 24/7 turnout, and he was still "back at the track". Just the timing this year did not work out well for good feet, after a calamitous shoeing job this summer, and the incessant flies. They aren't awful - farrier is pleased - but they are something to watch.
    Last edited by CVPeg; Feb. 11, 2013 at 11:05 AM. Reason: add info
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  10. #10
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    Here's what works for my TB. Your mileage may vary.

    He came to me with crappy feet -- not from the track but from his first adoptive home.

    I tried every hoof supplement under the sun. What finally worked for him was to keep him barefoot for awhile (we actually didn't have that much choice because he was having so much trouble holding a shoe), using hoof boots and adding MSM to his diet. He has no hoof "supplement" just a balanced diet plus MSM (the sulfur is good for hooves and is an anti-inflammatory). This past fall I did put shoes back on him for hunting and his hooves look great.

    He's an anxious horse so I feed him alfalfa with every meal. According to a study (I think it was university of Texas), feeding alfalfa can help prevent ulcers and heal them. His grain is Triple Crown senior which is low in starch and higher in fat. He will fret off calories but any feed with a high starch content is like rocket fuel.

    Have a vet examine his hocks and if necessary, inject them. When my older horse needed hock injections, the difference before and after was amazing. I felt terrible that I'd put them off because he was so much more comfortable.

    My current OTTB has not shown the need for injections yet. However, he definitely feels better on an anti-inflammatory like MSM and I do feed Corta-Flx. It probably makes me feel better more than having an effect on him, but it's inexpensive and the company has published results which is more than most supplement manufacturers.

    In the past, I've used Chondroprotec and it did make my horse feel better. The range of joint supplements available changes all the time.

    I also have a horse that I'm fostering over the winter for CANTER. He raced 65+ times and has pretty clean legs but looked stiff to me (hardly surprising). I started him on MSM right away and along with 24/7 turnout, he looks a lot better (I've had him since mid November).
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    Have you looked into Pentosan? My vet likes it because it helps support all the joints, rather than injecting one joint or another. I like it because it's administered IM and is reasonably priced compared to lots of other things. It's made a big difference for my mare and the other horses in my barn who tried it. I'd rather do Pentosan than oral supplements.


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    Ditto all of the above - really, all good advice. You can ditch the hope oil though - al it does is soften the hooves, and God made those to be hard. If you must use anything, switch to Keratex.


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    You may want to get a second opinion... To me prescribing vitamine E and Isox to a horse that's been diagnosed with kissing spine and arthritis doesn't add up.

    I also agree that SafeChoice is not the best pick for an OTTB, especially one that might have tummy issues. There are much better quality choices out there like Triple Crown Senior and Fibregized that would be better for his tummy.
    Last edited by BoyleHeightsKid; Feb. 11, 2013 at 11:51 AM.
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  14. #14
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Well, thanks everyone for your contributions. I have a plan. We'll see how it goes.

    He has one more month of Isoxuprine and Vitamin E Smartpaks. For now going to add the liquid Actiflex since it has glucosamine/chondroitin.

    We'll see how it goes, but probably going to Smartpak Senior the following month, since it has glucosamine/chondroitin, MSM & hyaluronic acid - plus the probiotics for his tummy. Will just keep him on the Biotin 800 I already have for his feet (big container). Hooves are looking great. Moves fine. Has a bruise growing out apparent on a rear hoof, but the farrier said it's from the nightmare farrier job done on him last summer (which had him lame for about a month until he grew some hoof.)

    Once he's been on the gluc/chond for 3-4 weeks, I'll try dropping the Naproxen.

    After that, perhaps injections later if he's at all hesitant. He is not lame. Just careful. Plus only getting work under saddle right now. We'll see how he's going in the spring. If only this friggin' cold would get lost. Yesterday the temps at the house read 17 (my cut off 15), so I drove to the barn - dropped down to 11 near the highway, then back to 17. The wind was so horrid - think we could have filmed Dr Zhivago at the barn. And the indoor was howling. So I gave him apples, said hello and left - he was quite content in the run-in. Back out tomorrow...

    Question - does adding alfalfa make much difference if he is on 24/7 pasture? (No grass of course during the winter, but they do have great hay from the farm here.)

    Thanks again! All of these responses have really helped make my understanding of the materials, and my decision easier.
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    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Well, have done more reading - thought the Smartpak Senior sounded good, but having read further, now realize it has Devil's Claw (raised in the comments section),which is prohibited by USEF. I won't be competing for awhile, however wanted to make sure anything I used was allowed so I wouldn't be lulled into his being fine on what he was being given. Learning more and more. Thought most of the general Smartpak Supplements would have allowed ingredients.
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



  16. #16
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    My 10 year old Tb who raced from 2 through 6 gets Ultium and Beet Pulp along with lots of high quality Rye hay (I'm out west, and my horse is stalled because pasture board is basically not an option here). As far as supplements go, she had an unhappy tummy for a while so she was started on AssureGuard, which is tricky to find, but totally changed her attitude. She gets TriSport as a joint supplement, and I do a half scoop of Apple-A-Day electrolyte because otherwise she only drinks about 4 gallons of water a day. I cut up an apple and put it in her bucket. Lately she's been getting whole flax seed and liquid HA, but I haven't really seen much of a difference, and she's been on those for a month (a friend gave me the rest of hers when she retired her horse). I don't think I'll buy more when the rest of these run out.

    What I did was eliminate any extra refined sugar and processed grains from her diet to avoid blood sugar spikes and to protect her tummy. So no cookies or peppermints for her, just apples and carrots.

    For hooves, I have to say that I think oral supplements are a bit of a waste. I've never seen them work, but that's just me. What I have seen work is good management: fly spray on the legs during the summer, applications of Keratex when needed (I use the gel) and correct shoeing. A great farrier is your greatest asset when it comes to significant changes in hooves. My mare raced in toe grabs, and she gets borium or small studs on her hind shoes. It helps her to not drag her toes, instead of shuffling she can actually push and then lift and place the hoof down. Has helped her be able to come round through her back greatly. She gets big wide flat steel shoes, to help support her hoof wall because her feet, as my farrier says "want to spread out, so I hafta keep some support there for them."

    As far as back issues go, really a well-made and -fitted saddle is the key, (sadly that usually means going fully custom, not just your average pick a tree, pick some pre-made panels type saddles) along with proper riding and training. Stretching and massage can also help you, I really like http://www.amazon.com/Equine-Fitness...ref=pd_sim_b_7 this book. If your saddle fits, then you should be able to go with a simple pad (either a cotton quilt, a sheepskin if your horse tends to have hyper sensitive skin like mine, or a Thinline to help absorb shock)

    And then my trainer wants her fit, fit, FIT. This is fine because I can work her hard 6 days/week for an hour a day (4 days flat/dressage, 2 days track work/hills/ditches/banks/cantering in a field). She is a jumper, so when we go back into jump training (we do 6 months in jump training, 6 months no jumping) one of the "outside" days will turn into a jump/poles day.

    Hope this gave you some ides! Management is your best friend, not a bunch of powders in your horse's bucket.



  17. #17
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    I highly recommend Succeed Oral Paste Syringes, KER Ritetrac, or Smartdigest Ultra/SmartGut Ultra for gastric and Hind gut Ulcers-any of these are great choices....I also started using the Canadian Omeprazole from Horseprerace.com-a fraction of the price of GG/UG ....that aside Platinum Performance CJ is wonderful if you can afford it....also Omega Alphas Antiflamm and Sinuex are great choices too along with Gastra Fx....I use Grand Hoof Pellets and have good results...Horse First has a good hoof supp with high levels of biotin ...along with Formula 4 Feet

    I've had success using injectable Pentosan and Adaquan IM as well for additional joint support

    Chiro/acupuncture too

    As much turn out as possible...Safe choice surprisingly is fairly high in starch/sugar as compared to some others....you might be better off with a Triple Crown Senior...or plain soaked beet pulp/alfalfa pellets and maybe a ration balancer

    I feed Fibrebeet or Speedibeet along with Progressive Nutritions Pro Avantage Grass Diet Balancer and Envision Classic(extruded fat supplement)....my horses have never looked better !



  18. #18
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    Also ...steel shoes have worked out better for mine who need more support...


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  19. #19
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by CVPeg View Post
    Well, have done more reading - thought the Smartpak Senior sounded good, but having read further, now realize it has Devil's Claw (raised in the comments section),which is prohibited by USEF. I won't be competing for awhile, however wanted to make sure anything I used was allowed so I wouldn't be lulled into his being fine on what he was being given. Learning more and more. Thought most of the general Smartpak Supplements would have allowed ingredients.
    I think SmartFlex Senior is one of the few SmartPak brand supplements that does contain ingredients that aren't allowed. There is an herb-free version of SmartFlex Senior without the Devil's Claw: http://www.smartpakequine.com/smartf...x?cm_vc=Search

    It costs a little more, but it has higher levels of glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, and HA (I'm assuming to make up for the ingredients that it can't include, like Devil's Claw).


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  20. #20
    CVPeg is offline Grand Prix Premium Member
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    Great - appreciate the additional info. I agree on the toe grabs - he had them with farrier #1, who was very good, but too far to travel when I moved the horse. He sent his replacement, who was horrible - one of those "scared of Thoroughbreds" and they both hated each other when it was over (which actually never happened - the horse was having a fit after 3 hours and only 2 feet shod - on exceedingly short feet ).

    Current farrier should be on top of the TV next to the saints . He patched his feet back together, then used only aluminum for the fall, before removing them altogether for a winter break. They get along just fine, thank you. He'll be getting shod with steel when the snow is gone.

    I did learn that SmartPak has reproduced the Senior "herb free" so it will hopefully be ok USEF wise. (Thanks hj0519 - I just also found this out - crossed with yours.)

    If that doesn't work acceptably, will probably next try an injection - may try Pentosan considering he has arthritis LF, and possibly stiff in his hocks, so that may help both? Then direct injections if that doesn't work.

    Again, he's not lame, but he can be a little achy to start - so all of this is in consideration of that, and hopefully helping/improving/maintaining his overall condition.

    I have treated for ulcers with GG which did nothing, but he does seem to be ok while on pasture. But any untoward effects in the future, which I'm always keeping in mind, will definitely try some of the above suggestions.
    Being right half the time beats being half-right all the time. Malcolm Forbes



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