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voltaren gel for horses

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  • voltaren gel for horses

    Someone mentioned using voltaren gel on horses, and the idea of a product not involving needles, dosing syringes and creative feed doctoring looks good to me. The pharmacy is also a lot more convenient than the vet office as well.
    How generously do you apply? How long does it last? What about the hair? How "strong" an effect does it have ie good for a bit of mild stiffness or will it work on more definate chronic lameness - I have an old mare with ringbone and navicular who is mostly sound with good shoeing but has a some bad days, she responds well to previcox but I would love something that isn't oral.
    thanks for any input

  • #2
    Voltaren gel (diclofenac sodium) is for people and you need a prescription for it (in the US). I use it frequently on various crippled parts of my body. The tubes aren't that big, so I would think it wouldn't be very economical.

    The brand name for equine use is Surpass. Ask your vet about it.
    It comes as a cream for horses. It's not a magic cure, but it can help with pain. Same as it helps me, but in conjunction with other therapies too.

    In fact my vet said Surpass works better on people than Voltaren - something about absorption. I've never tried it on myself because it's expensive and I don't want to waste it!


    • #3
      It is dirt cheap everywhere besides the US though so worth getting if you can. Surpass does work better on horses because the base is different but it doesn't work 6X better which is what the price difference is. For best results clip area closely so it gets down to the skin better.
      McDowell Racing Stables

      Home Away From Home


      • #4
        We can buy in over the counter at walmart here in Canada- have any friends who might be willing to ship you some?


        • Original Poster

          I actually am in Canada (Manitoba).
          thanks for the input


          • #6
            Diclofenac is still an NSAID and use still puts your horse at increased risk of gastric ulceration. Just something to keep in mind for long term use...
            Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO


            • #7
              If you can get something called Tendonil, its a 1000 times better than voltaren. Its an equine gel, but I've used it on myself and it has kept me riding with ankle arthritis (I've only started getting injections a couple of months ago but the arthritis has been there for a long time).


              • #8
                Originally posted by sherian View Post
                I actually am in Canada (Manitoba).
                thanks for the input
                The cheapest place to buy it in Canada that I've found is Costco: two 150g tubes for $19.95. (No prescription required.)

                I've used it on my arthritic horse's hocks and it seems to help, but I make sure that I don't use it when I've given bute as both are NSAIDS and as someone else pointed out, they can cause gastric problems. I also use disposable vinyl gloves when applying it as I am anticoagulated and Voltaren can increase the effects of the Warfarin. On the horse, I use a similar amount to that as directed in the product specifications for Surpass which I think is a five or six inch strip. I haven't clipped his hair as my horse has sensitive skin and his hair coat is not that long even in winter. You do not wrap over top the Voltaren.

                I've also used it on myself sparingly for the odd muscular or arthritic ache or pain and it usually does provide relief.

                It's so cheap here in Canada (one of the few things that IS cheaper than the U.S.!) that it's worth it to give it a try.
                Last edited by Kimstar; Jan. 30, 2013, 02:13 PM.
                "Facts or opinions which are to pass through the hands of so many, to be misconceived by folly in one, and ignorance in another, can hardly have much truth left." - Jane Austen: "Persuasion"


                • #9
                  Oh god, I bet Costco in Canada is even BETTER than here! Lucky! Yes, Voltaren is the human version of Surpass and I've had GREAT efficacy with that product on horses.
                  "The Son Dee Times" "Sustained" "Somerset" "Franklin Square"


                  • #10
                    I love Surpass.

                    Use a 5" ribbon on the joint once or twice daily. They tell you to wear gloves, but I never did and the arthritis that I have in my hands benefited greatly. You can leave the joint unclipped--just rub in the gel very well--but I always found it easier to just clip, at least in the winter.

                    Only about 3% of the diclofenac applied topically is absorbed systemically, so it's an excellent option for those horses with a sensitive stomach.

                    It also actually *improves* the cartilage matrix in the joint.

                    For those in the US, I've ordered Voltaren gel from feelbest.com and been very happy with the service. It's a considerable savings over buying Surpass here in the US.


                    • Original Poster

                      I'll pick up a tube this week at costco to try, if nothing else I can use it for myself. She won't eat any flavour of bute, and previcox is rather pricy (and my vet is great, however his office staff are a pain to deal with) - she is a charity case and with hay, grain and bedding up in cost its nice to squeeze a bit of money back.
                      Texakarna at the risk of sounding callous she really doesn't have a long term to worry about - she's 23, has ringbone, navicular, heaves and a lot of melanoma's. That being said she will probably live to be 40 - good thing she's pretty!


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by sherian View Post
                        Texakarna at the risk of sounding callous she really doesn't have a long term to worry about - she's 23, has ringbone, navicular, heaves and a lot of melanoma's. That being said she will probably live to be 40 - good thing she's pretty!
                        I don't think you sound callous at all. Nor was I trying to dissuade you from using it. Just pointing it out because most people (including myself) don't really think about gastrointestinal side effects in topicals!

                        She sounds like a grand gal.
                        Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO


                        • #13
                          Actually, I had just read an article lately and the systemic absorption is 6% versus 94% via oral version.(the 6% was mentioned for human though-not sure if it is the same for equine) I use Voltaren for a chronic achilles tendon issue. My accupuncture doctor prescribes it and it is compounded to 10x the dose in the over the counter version. It also includes Lidocaine. I get a large pump tube for $40 which considering how much the vets charge for the lower dose seems like a deal. I order from Feelbest.com for the Voltaren for my horse. I turned everyone at the barn onto it. Usually what I do is order enough to get $100 for free shipping and everyone at the barn gives me money for a tube.


                          • #14
                            Kimstar, I noticed you mentioned that you were on Warfarin. I am too, and like I mentioned use a 10x dose 2-3x per day and it has had no effect on my INR.


                            • #15
                              My vet had the pharmacist mix Voltaren with DMSO for better absorption for a particular horse, so you could ask your vet about that too. Definitely wear gloves if you do that!


                              • #16
                                thanks for the heads up on feelsbest.....just ordered voltaren for me and the horses last night
                                "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"


                                • #17
                                  Just an aside, I use Voltaren for migraine headaches caused by tightness in the neck muscles. Almost instant relief. You can even get it in the grocery store now, yep about $19.

                                  I will keep it in mind for the horse.



                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by sherian View Post
                                    I actually am in Canada (Manitoba).
                                    thanks for the input
                                    You can get it at Shoppers off the shelf. At my Shoppers it's often on sale- I just got some for $15


                                    • #19
                                      Laurierace this is an older thread I realize but happened upon a windfall of the stuff (thanks my canadian friend!) Does this test in racehorses?


                                      • #20
                                        Like Spooks said, mix with DMSO and it will work best. I use it on an elbow of mine and only works for me when mixed together and rubbed in.

                                        DO NOT BANDAGE OVER THE TOP OF IT.
                                        Burns the skin off.
                                        Charlie Piccione
                                        Natural Performance Hoof Care