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Fish Oil... can I give this to my horse?

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  • Fish Oil... can I give this to my horse?

    I recently started taking Fish Oil myself, just because I know there is suppose to be added health benefits. I realized the other day I wasn't having any problems with my feet( bunions) like I had been having ....even though I had started running more miles then I had in a long time( cut back due to the bunions). I've been taking it about 2 months now.

    I looked up Fish oil and saw that it was suppose to be nearly as effective as an anti-inflammatory as NSAIDS.

    So then I started thinking... how can I give my horse this? If I can benefit from it, then certainly he could too!

    Any suggestions? Can horses eat fish oil? Can I find something plant based that has the same Omega fatty acids?

    thanks in advance!
    Formally Marinewife91

  • #2
    Sure, there is even a product made for horses (Wellpride?) that is fish oil.

    Flaxseed has a good amount of the Omega-3 fatty acids that are found in fish oil, although in a slightly less complex form.

    Very little risk, uncertain benefit, good luck getting the horse to eat it!
    Click here before you buy.

    Comment


    • #3
      Yes, you can. Wellpride has fish oil as deltawave mentioned above. So does Smart Omega 3 from SmartPak. I've had my mare on the Smart Omega for three months or so and really love the product. She looks great and eats it just fine.

      Caitlin
      Caitlin
      *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
      http://community.webshots.com/user/redmare01

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      • #4
        Is the SmartPak stuff fish-based or flax-based?
        Click here before you buy.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by deltawave View Post
          Is the SmartPak stuff fish-based or flax-based?
          If it doesn't say on the website I'm sure they'd find out for you. (They were extremely helpful when I was investigating new dog foods.)

          One thing to keep in mind, however, is that omega oils can cause blood thinning (like aspirin) and also changes to blood sugar in people so I'd keep an eye on that if I had a horse that had metabolic issues.

          (I believe it actually tends to lower the overall blood sugar levels, which is of course something diabetics need to be aware of if they're giving themselves insulin, as the dose might need to be changed. I don't know enough about horses with metabolic problems to know if their diet might need to be altered as a result also.)

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          • #6
            I started giving my horse fish oil recently and have seen positive improvement almost immediately.

            I don't know about the Wellpride but I saw in my feed store that Triple Crown has a powdered fish oil supplement available now. It also contains rice bran and flax and vegetable oil, so all the omegas are balanced. This is very convenient and certainly the horse will eat it but it's darn expensive. A 4-lb. tub costs almost $60 dollars and it's only 10% fish oil. That works out to 6 ounces total fish oil if I'm not mistaken and that sounds really pricey. They say a serving is 40 to 80 grams, I haven't calculated how many servings it is, but that's 4 to 8 grams per serving which is decent but not great. Can someone compare to the WEllpride?

            I'm buying softgels and melting them in hot water and it's a lot cheaper that way but not convenient. He's getting in the neighborhood of 17 grams per day. At first he seemed finicky about it but now when I pour it on grain he eats it right up. Sometimes I add in some fenugreek which is 'horses' favorite flavoring' and also helps control blood sugar (supposedly).

            Triple Crown also makes a treat cookie with fish oil for $8/bag. And it's flavored with fenugreek. My horse absolutely loves them. I don't think there's enough FO to make a therapeutic difference but if you have to feed a treat it might as well be health-ier.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by kdow View Post
              and also changes to blood sugar in people so I'd keep an eye on that if I had a horse that had metabolic issues.
              Changes to blood sugar? What does that mean? Do you have references?

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                Flaxseed has a good amount of the Omega-3 fatty acids that are found in fish oil, although in a slightly less complex form.
                Which ones would those be? The omegas in fish oil that are considered the 'beneficial biggies' are DHA and EPA. I've never heardof those being in flax seed.

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                • #9
                  Alpha-linoleic (sp?) acid, isn't it? DHA and EPA are the so-called "best" ones but we can make some of that for ourselves.

                  One does wonder how people and animals with ZERO fish intake could possibly ever survive, to listen to the fish-based DHA/EPA hyperbole.
                  Click here before you buy.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Androcles View Post
                    Changes to blood sugar? What does that mean? Do you have references?
                    Like I said, I think it's that it actually tends to lower the blood sugar levels overall - I know it's not a BAD thing for people with diabetes, just something they need to be aware of. (Because of course if you're on insulin then you may need to adjust your dose.) I don't have references off hand because I didn't read it myself - my mom's a nurse and reads various studies as part of her continuing education, and she just happened to mention to my dad that he should tell his doctor if he started taking Omega 3 supplements regularly. (My dad has type II diabetes.)

                    ... Okay, I just went and talked to her and the issue is that omega 3s can increase the body's sensitivity to insulin. (In people, at least.) It doesn't seem to be entirely cut and dry as to what dose has what effect, since they're still studying it, so it basically just boils down to being something you need to mention to your doctor (or with a horse, your vet) IN CASE it's relevant to any test result changes they're seeing.

                    So it's not 'omg, don't do it!' but rather just 'this is something you need to tell your doctor about, even though you might think it's just a supplement and therefore not important.'

                    (Though strictly speaking, you should inform your doctor/vet of any supplements, since some of them can interact with medications.)

                    Anyway, she wasn't aware of any studies specifically about type I diabetes and omega 3s, but type II diabetes and treatment/education plans are more her area of study anyway.

                    (She's at home and doesn't have access to the medical journal databases here, so no actual journal references.)

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                    • #11
                      The effects of Omega 3 fatty acids on blood sugar are negligible. The "blood thinning" effects are also negligible-to-zero in reality.
                      Click here before you buy.

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                      • #12
                        Triple Crown has a Fish Oil powder supplement that is getting rave reviews (and yes many horses like to eat it!)...take a look at the website page on the fish oil powder. You can see the guaranteed analysis, ingredient list, feeding directions and watch the video with Dr. Bill Vandergrift explaining the benefits of adding fish oil to a horses diet, DHA and EPA are in fish oil and are "proven" to benefit different aspects of a horse's health, EPA and DHA are not in flaxseed, flaxseed contains alpha-linolenic which of course is good for the body too. But it has been proven through "very limited" studies that horses supplemented with fish oil have shown "increased stride length", and as mentioned Omega 3's have been shown to decrease inflammation, increase immune responses and maintain healthy membranes. There is still a lot to learn and more studies that will need to be conducted and questions remain such as what are the ideal supplementation levels based on a horses age and activity levels etc.

                        http://www.triplecrownfeed.com/suppl...ish-oil-powder
                        Last edited by tcnhorsefeed; Jun. 25, 2010, 11:16 AM. Reason: spelling
                        Triple Crown feed fan?
                        Join Triple Crown Nutrition, Inc. on facebook at:
                        http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#/p...6908807?ref=mf

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by tcnhorsefeed View Post
                          Triple Crown has a Fish Oil powder supplement that is getting rave reviews
                          You should probably read the thread before posting your advertisement. Who's giving it rave reviews? This product is crazy expensive. How long does 4 lbs. last? How much fish oil per day does a horse need?

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            How much fish oil per day does a horse need?
                            And how much do horses normally get in their daily foraging?
                            Click here before you buy.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                              And how much do horses normally get in their daily foraging?
                              grass does contain EFA's.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                                One does wonder how people and animals with ZERO fish intake could possibly ever survive, to listen to the fish-based DHA/EPA hyperbole.
                                And people 'survived' too before the advent of statins, NSAIDS, antihistamines, SSRI's, cox-2 inhibitors, etc. Nothing like setting a low bar for yourself.
                                Last edited by Androcles; Jun. 25, 2010, 12:59 PM.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  The Smart Omega 3 from SmartPak is from flax and fish oil. They also have one called SmartShine Ultra that has even more EPA and DHA than the Omega 3.

                                  I feed my horse fish oil for heart health. He has lone atrial fibrillation. I buy the human fish oil capsules from Wal-Mart and throw eight of them into his grain each day. Apparently they aren't bad because he never notices them.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by dwblover View Post
                                    I feed my horse fish oil for heart health. He has lone atrial fibrillation. I buy the human fish oil capsules from Wal-Mart and throw eight of them into his grain each day. Apparently they aren't bad because he never notices them.
                                    I tried that, and let's just say, my horse acted as if he had just been poisoned. The dog OTOH was very happy to eat what my horse wouldn't.

                                    HOw did you decide how much to give your horse?

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      In replying to this:

                                      How much fish oil per day does a horse need?
                                      I asked how much FISH OIL horses got in their natural foraging.

                                      As to surviving without NSAIDs, I daresay we'd do better without them. Statins are another story. I don't mind dying, but would sooner not do so needlessly and prematurely, like too many have done in years past and are doing less often now thanks to good old evil pharmaceuticals.

                                      Fish oil has no recommended use or indication for atrial fibrillation in humans.
                                      Click here before you buy.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I've used the smart omega and i love it! Its done wonders for my horse all around! I definitely recommend the stuff!
                                        Calm & Collected, 13, OTTB
                                        Forrest Gump (Catasauqua) , 17, OTTB
                                        Little Bit Indian, 29, TB
                                        Owner of Spur of the Moment, Custom made spur straps! Find us on Facebook

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