Just like us, horses may need additional supplements introduced into their diet, this can be due to a whole host of reasons, such as, age, lifestyle, work load and breeding. As your horses health and wellbeing is I’m sure a priority for you, we have compiled a list of the most common issues and recommended the best supplements to help with those issues.
I have put together a list of the top 5 most common issues and how supplements may be a helpful aid in keeping your beloved horse healthy, happy and comfortable.
Did you know that between 50% and 90% of horses suffer from gastric ulcers? These gut disturbances can be brought on by changes in diet, weight loss, training intensity, age, disease or even transportation.
Maintaining a healthy gut is vital for your horse. Without a well-functioning digestive system, your horse wont be able fully absorb nutrients. The horses digestive system functions far better when moving so if your horse spends a lot of time in the stable your horse could be more prone to gut issues. Gut supplements work by encouraging normal digestive function due to the pre and pro biotic ingredients.
Research has recently found that the horses microbiome communicates with the central nervous system which in turn can alter the horse’s behaviour via a mechanism called “gut-brain axis”.
Hoof issues are one of the most common concerns horse owners have. Supplementing with biotin (Biotin is a sulphur containing B vitamin essential for cell proliferation) is know to improve overall hoof quality and is a popular choice for horses that are prone to cracked or brittle hoofs. As well as benefiting hoof health in horses, biotin is involved in many other essential processes in the horse’s body including protein and fat metabolism.
Please note it can take up to 9 months before you start seeing improvements in your horse’s hoof/s.
If you have a horse that is in hard work or you have a horse that struggles In the heat, it is vital to use an electrolyte supplement aid in replenishing any salts and minerals that will be or have been lost. Electrolytes should be fed before as well as after as they are not a quick fix and wont be efficient enough if only given on hard working or hot days.
Joint supplements are a great way of keeping a veteran horses as mobile and comfortable as possible. They are also designed to be used for younger horses who are in hard work or competing regularly as this level of work will put a lot of strain on your horses joints, tendons and ligaments.
Glucosmamine, methyl sulphonyl methane (MSM) and hyaluronic acid (HA) are three of the most popular ingredients for supporting joints.
Methyl sulphonyl methane (MSM) is particularly known for maintaining the health of tendons, ligaments and connective tissues. MSM offers natural soft tissue and cartilage support, delivering sulphur to the areas it is needed most, particularly around the joints, enabling optimum flexibility.
Glucosamine mainly assists with healthy cartilage production but also benefits the health of collagen, joint fluid, tendons and ligaments.
Hyaluronic acid (HA) is linked to healthily managing inflammation and maintaining the synovial fluid which lubricates joints..
Due to the modern way we keep horses, it isn’t uncommon for horses to be deficient in a particular vitamin or mineral. General purpose supplements provide a broad spectrum of vitamins and minerals for general health. You may not have any concerns with your horses health or coat condition but some owners choose to use a general purpose supplement to ensure that their horses are getting everything that they require to maintain healthy.
General purpose supplements are also ideal for horses and ponies that are on strict diets and are receiving less than manufacturers recommended hard feed rates.
Athena is our Equine specialist, who has been riding and competing (predominantly in show jumping) since the age of 6 years old.
She also has a diploma in Equine management and has 3 horses of her own.
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