January 27, 2006, Newsletter Issue #161: Cartilage Care

Tip of the Week

Is your horse at a greater risk of developing arthritis? Much like with humans, arthritis becomes more of a risk with age. During the first two years of life, a horse's joints will produce more new cartilage than is being worn away. When a horse passes the age of 2, however, the amount of cartilage being created and the amount of cartilage being worn away will equalize. And, when the horse reaches 15 years of age, more cartilage is worn away than is being created—this is when he is at the highest risk of developing arthritis. In addition, horses with toes turned in or out, or horses with crooked legs, are more inclined to develop arthritis and degenerative joint disease (DJD) as the horse will be more prone to uneven, irregular wearing of the cartilage.

Talk to your vet about things that you can do to maintain the health of your horse and his joints. There are many great supplements for horses that can help reduce inflammation, increase circulation, and alleviate pain. Using this option can help you keep your horse acting like a colt even when he’s past his prime.

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