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Lets talk joint supplements for the eventer/steeplechaser!

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  • Lets talk joint supplements for the eventer/steeplechaser!

    Hey guys!

    Looking for someone to share there experiences on joint supplements (ie. what supplement you used, results, price, etc). I've talked to my vet about it but I just wanted to hear your guys' experience

    My guy is a steeplechaser and I've just now started his training for eventing. My boyfriend steeplechases him in the spring. He was hurdle raced all last spring but didn't do so well so Spring of 2013 my boyfriend will try him over hurdles one more time an if he shows nothing great- ill completely take him over So he has been in intense work and will be next spring but once my boyfriend is done with him he'll just start going BN and work his way up.
    “A horse is the projection of peoples' dreams about themselves - strong, powerful, beautiful - and it has the capability of giving us escape from our mundane existence.”

  • #2
    Personally I don't use "joint supplements" or any supplement other than vitamins and minerals, as I'm unconvinced the majority of horses needs them. If I have a horse with joint problems I try to get a concrete diagnosis first, then usually go with injectable products if they're needed. I'm a fan of Pentosan for my one teenaged mare who has moderately creaky hocks and it's helped her tremendously (or her hocks have fused) to move and jump better. My other horses get nothing in particular, even the one who's had multiple injuries, since none of the injuries he's had are really related to articular cartilage problems, and that's all the injectables really work to help. Oral joint products are (IMHO) overpriced, overhyped, and overused. Maybe MSM would be something I'd think about for a horse with stiffness or some achy joints, if I didn't want to use Pentosan.
    Click here before you buy.


    • #3
      I buy pure Glucosamine and MSM from Jeffers. They carry the forceflex brand and they make everything in the pure form. It is also pretty cheap so if it doesn't really work then oh well. I'm also a fan of Legend. Maybe talk to your vet about using it before and during the season to help him out. I use it every month starting in April-Oct. How old is the horse? And what work schedule is he in? All of this is information you would need to know before giving your horse any type of injection.


      • #4
        I'm not a huge fan of them. I spend my money on injectable stuff like Pentosan, Legend, or Adequan. My horse does get MSM, but it's for skin inflammation, NOT his joints (he feels the same as he did when I added it, so I'm skeptical of its joint help!).

        The only oral sup I've seen help is Cosequin ASU, and even then, it hasn't been every horse. The Cosequin products are also the only products with actual scientific data backing their claims up...food for thought.


        • #5


          • #6
            Is there something specifically wrong you are seeing? Have you had a recent vet work up?

            Kind of with deltawave here...there are things to make the horse more comfortable if they are not going comfortably but I remain unconvinced in their effectiveness to prevent normal wear and tear. Informed decisions about farrier, workload and footing probably do more along with a good diet then any shotgunning of supplements in hope something will work and/or prevent damage down the road.

            I did have older horses and tried just about everything for diagnosed OCD and navicular issues in several high mileage mid teen competition (Hunters) horses but mostly just ended up with expensive piss. Joint injections (after diagnostics), Legend, Adequan and the oral gel HAs did work for awhile until age really caught up to them-but they are not cheap.

            Unless there is something going on? I would save my money. If there is something? Start with a good work up and make sure what you are trying to deal with.
            When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

            The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


            • #7
              Boy, this is the wrong crowd to which to ask that question.

              As for Pentosan, just get Adequan. Same stuff. Same effect.


              • #8
                I am a fan of Equithrive, and also use Adequan and HA paste before/during an event. Good results so far on a younger horse that competed a lot this year.
                No Trouble
                2/2/05 - 7/29/13
                Rest In Peace my quirky brave boy, I will love you forever.


                • #9
                  As you may know, I come from a race horse management background, and have event horses, too. I've tried everything out there, and I also do my research, and try to keep up on the trends and the science when it's available.

                  Recently I was able to try the Smartpak Senior Flex supplement on my 14yo event horse, and after two months, I had to take him off it in order to tighten our financial belts. Things eased up and I was able to re-order and put him back on the Senior Flex this fall.

                  My own little on-off experiement with a horse I've known and ridden for many years opened my eyes. I did notice a stiffness difference, and a difference in the amount of time needed to "warm up". He's freer to move when turned out after being in the stall. Sure, this is anecdotal, but there's not much better evidence that good observation. I found this particular supplement to be very useful in his case. He's a picky eater and it comes incorporated in the alfalfa pellet, which he will eat. This particular horse also did well (as in better) when on Cosequin, but I can't afford to use that all the time, and it's very dismaying at the price to see the powder left in the tub untouched....so while I agree, many supplements are a waste of time and money, my particular experience with this supplement has been good and I do recommend it.
                  Proud & Permanent Student Of The Long Road
                  Read me: EN (http://eventingnation.com/author/annemarch/) and HJU (http://horsejunkiesunited.com/author/holly-covey/)


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by RAyers View Post
                    Boy, this is the wrong crowd to which to ask that question.

                    As for Pentosan, just get Adequan. Same stuff. Same effect.
                    It is my understanding that they are NOT the same, but, yes, the effect is similar.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by RAyers View Post
                      Boy, this is the wrong crowd to which to ask that question.

                      As for Pentosan, just get Adequan. Same stuff. Same effect.
                      Why Adequan???.....most of us use Pentosan because it is a lot cheaper than Adequan.

                      I used to use Adequan and now use Pentosan in all my horses who are working hard. We use Adequan on the baby horses (starting as weanlings) as it supposedly helps with OCD---this is backed with research in the racing industry.
                      ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by yellowbritches View Post
                        The Cosequin products are also the only products with actual scientific data backing their claims up...food for thought.
                        So they keep insisting. Those "data" are skimpy at best, and some products are catching up in the "skimpy data" department.
                        Click here before you buy.


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by RAyers View Post
                          Boy, this is the wrong crowd to which to ask that question.

                          As for Pentosan, just get Adequan. Same stuff. Same effect.
                          Don't think it is the same thing either. I have had far better results with Pentosan than Adequan. Both have their place depending on the horse, the history and the planned useage. As for the feed supplements. . . I'm with Deltawave. Save your money.



                          • #14
                            I suggest you all do your homework. Adequan and Pentosan are both polysulfated polysaccharides. They act in the same manner with similar effect in joints. While Adequan does not directly affect chondrocytes as PPS does, they both can inhibit fibrous cartilage formation as well as modifying the disease through incorporation into the cartilage.

                            I refer you to a series of recent papers/presentations from CSU's orthopaedics group.

                            The greatest effect is obtained with concurrent administration of IA Adequan and triamcinolone.


                            • #15
                              So why recommend adequan over pentosan? (assuming one is going the IM and not the IA route)
                              Click here before you buy.


                              • #16
                                How do Pentosan and Adequan compare in terms of research support?


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                                  So why recommend adequan over pentosan? (assuming one is going the IM and not the IA route)

                                  That is my question too. Adequan runs close to $40 per dose while Pentosan is more like $15 per dose. So if they are similar....I'm confused....I'm going to pick the more affordable one personally. I've had good results with both though.
                                  ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **


                                  • #18
                                    OK I am gonna go back to 2005 to discuss this, but in any case here's what worked for me.

                                    Lad came to Belmont and we trained him there for the spring point to point and hurdle seasons. He was given Legend about once every 2-3 months. And was on Chondrogen EQ and Omega Horseshine daily.

                                    He never had issues on this. I think in prep for his first hurdle race of 2006, we did give him both Adequan and Legend a week out.

                                    But I really liked Chondrogen Eq.

                                    "Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever but the cautious do not live at all." ~2001 The Princess Diaries


                                    • #19
                                      This is anecdotal, but I think I had really good results with a hoof supplement. Old OTTB with at least a decade of crappy hooves. I bought him, put him on Select's hoof supplement, and his hooves quit being crappy. It's mostly vitamins and minerals, though. He just might have needed extra biotin.
                                      "I'm a lumberjack, and I'm okay."
                                      Thread killer Extraordinaire


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by ahbaumgardner View Post
                                        How do Pentosan and Adequan compare in terms of research support?
                                        I am not. Given pentosan is not approved for treatment of arthritis, some vets are very hesitant about prescribing it as it can open them up to liability. Additionally, if pentosan in the US is compounded, there is the issue of purity and efficacy as compounding pharmacies are not subject to oversight (hence why it is so cheap).

                                        At the same time, pentosan is not some new miracle as it has been around as far back as 1996. Only recently has it come back into favor as the result of more long term studies in Europe and Australia.