Inflammation is the body’s answer to injury or disease whether human or horse.
It is a biochemical reaction that starts as the first stage in healing. The first steps include blood vessels opening in the area, which produces redness and warmth at the sight. Also included are blood vessel leakage, which causes swelling. Last, but not least, is also the attraction of white blood cells to the location of the injury or disease to fight pathogens.
However, sometimes this answer to injury or disease gets out of control or interferes with the healing process and that’s when we humans come into play to help our horses get better. Cool wraps for thirty minutes a few times a day within the first couple of days of the injury helps and after that period, heat wraps can help. This can help injury to tendons, joints, ligaments and muscles. It doesn’t answer all problems, but it helps with the healing.
Anti-inflammatory Medication for Horses most often used to treat inflammation are in a family called Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID’s). In horses, the three most commonly used medications are phenylbutazone (commonly known as “bute”), acetylsalicylic acid (also known as ASA or aspirin), and flunixin (also known as Banamine).
All medicines can have side-effects and unfortunately, anti-inflammatories are no different. The most common side effects in horses are colic and diarrhea. Long-term use can lead to ulcers and kidney issues. As with all medications, you should talk to your veterinarian before starting a treatment plan on your horse. Probiotics such as AbActive can help soothe your horse’s stomach.
AbButazone contains phenylbutazone and is a great anti-inflammatory medication for horses to reduce inflammation and bring down temperatures. It comes in an easy to feed, bright orange, coated granule that helps you keep track of how much of a dose your horse is getting, covers the bitter taste of the medicine and is easy to measure and deliver.