Arthritis in Horses
Arthritis is one of the most common ailments for horses, especially older horses and ponies. The condition; where the cartilage of a joint wears down, results in pain (sometimes leading to lameness) and difficulty moving about. This can most often be recognized with stiffness and swelling around a joint. Although arthritis cannot be cured, it can often be managed, especially if recognized early.
Protechmasta for Equine Arthritis
This is Puzzle, a 19-year-old cheeky 14.1hh pony who acts neither his age, nor his size. Having enjoyed jumping, hunting, low level dressage and general hacking out for many years, he has recently begun to feel a bit stiff. The cause; the beginning of arthritis in his hip and hock.
Managing Arthritis in Horses
When arthritis is recognized, the main goal is to reduce further inflammation around the affected joint, preventing further damage and easing any pain. Luckily, there are a number of ways to do this which can be easily worked in to an everyday routine. To manage his early arthritis, Puzzle’s routine has a few key elements:
- Exercise. To ease stiffness and help strengthen muscles which stabilize joints, light to moderate riding is encouraged, as long as your horse is comfortable. Puzzle still enjoys regular hacking, schooling and polework.
- Warm up thoroughly. Puzzle needs a little longer to loosen up now; riding at a walk for 10-15 minutes at the beginning of session (much to his dismay!)
- Optimize turnout. Being turned out during the day means your horse is constantly moving around, again helping to reduce stiffness which can occur from being stationery.
- Stretches, Puzzle’s favourite trick. Carrot stretches are great for helping with mobility and keeping the muscles flexible. Puzzle does this by reaching for a carrot either side of his belly, then between his legs, where he has to bow down to reach it.
How Protechmasta helps treat Arthritis in Horses
Woven with special ceramic fibres, the Protechmasta rug emits and reflects Far Infrared rays. Having been used as an aid to healing for centuries, Far Infrared helps to enhance the body’s natural functions.
Protechmasta works by gently regulating the horse’s temperature and increasing circulation. For arthritic horses this is especially important, as not only does it reduce joint pain, but it allows the muscle to warm up before exercise, and similarly cool down safely afterwards.
In addition to this, Protechmasta also helps to reduce inflammation through expanding the blood vessels and allowing removal of toxins and build-up of fluid, a key concern for horses with arthritis. Puzzle is starting to wear his Protechmasta as part of his prevention and management routine. He wears his rug before and after exercise to aid warming up, and overnight to prevent onset of stiffness.
More information about the benefits of Protechmasta, including a clinical trial can be found here.