Even though hyalurinic acid intake is commonly thought of with respect to humans, hyaluronic acid is also used as a supplement for horses. The benefits are similar with HA increasing skin and joint elasticity, while also providing lubrication for horses’ joints.
People began using hyaluronic acid for horses in the 1970’s, when HA injections were used as an alternative to steroids as a means of treating arthritis in horses. The hyaluronic acid injections were much more effective than steroid treatments for a few reasons. First, the steroids slowed down metabolism in the horses joints which is bad for circulation and flexibility. The steroids also led to infections and other complications.
Hyaluronic acid for horses works best when used to treat swollen joints caused by regular use and wear. HA can also be a great treatment for new flare ups, and can sometimes be effective in treating older or recurring joint issues as well. If your horse has a history of stiffness and bad arthritis, there is a chance hyaluronic acid may not greatly impact the condition of the horse’s joints.
In addition to injections, hyaluronic acid for horses comes in the form of liquids, powders, and gels which can all be taken orally. All of these oral alternatives are typically tasteless and can be easily administered to horses.
Since horses are large animals, their hyaluronic acid supplements are higher in molecular weight than HA supplements for humans. A higher molecular weight hyaluronic acid can retain more water and lubricate larger joints better than a lower weight hyaluronic acid.
How much hyaluronic acid should my horse take?
It varies depending on the specification of the supplement, so be sure to read the instructions provided with the supplement. As a general rule of thumb though, a 2 ounce serving per day is appropriate for normal maintenance. Performance horses may need closer to 3 or 4 ounces per day in supplements to maintain great joint health.
Below are some examples of best hyaluronic acid for horses supplements:
Equithrive Joint is a great supplement which includes many great anti-inflammatory components, hyaluronic acid included. The product comes in powder form, so it is very easy to include with a horse’s daily feed. In addition to hyaluronic acid, the main active ingredient of this supplement is resveratol, which is a natural molecule that reduces expression of inflammatory enzymes.
Equithrive Joint comes in a 2 pound tub and has had great results in reducing soreness, swelling, and joint pain in horses.
LubriSyn Joint Supplement for Equine
LubriSyn’s joint supplement was designed to replenish hyaluronic acid to joints which had been lost over time. Natural aging and regular exercise can drain HA over time, and this supplement has proven to combat low HA levels to keep joints mobile.
This is a liquid supplement which is clear and tasteless, and once again can be easily incorporated into any regular feed program. LubriSyn sells iterations in 8 ounce, 16 ounce, 32 ounce, 64 ounce, and 1 gallon jugs.
Adeptus Nutrition Nimble Mega Nutrient
Adeptus created an all in one supplement which, in addition to hyaluronic acid, includes selenium, vitamin e, omega-3 fatty acids, and hoof nutrients. Their formula is loaded with beneficial antioxidants and nutrients which promote joint, ligament, and tendon support.
They sell tubs in 3.75 pounds, 10 pounds, and 20 pounds, so buying in bulk is a breeze.
HylaRx Complete Joint Care Supplement for Horses
This supplement is the total package when it comes to joint care for horses. Along with hyaluronic acid, HylaRx’s supplement contains glucosamine, HCI, MSM and chondroitin sulfate. Unlike the other supplements on this page, this one is created with rice bran in an effort to make the supplement easily edible for horses.
The complete joint care supplement comes in 2.5 pound and 5 pound tubs.