Summit v Adequan

  • 4 min read

OThe question I am getting asked most often in PM regarding Summit Joint Performance is this:


How does Summit compare to Adequan?


Executive Summary

I can’t say whether Summit Joint Perfomance will produce the same results for every horse, I don’t know if it is a “Super Soldier Serum” that will make every horse Captain America.  I can say that in my riding horse, I felt a difference and I experienced a change in his performance that I feel is pretty objective regarding picking up leads, flying changes and jumping form.  Some of the other change are a bit more subjective, regarding willingness to reach for the bridle,etc.  I cannot say that Adequan has ever given me either that objective or subjective feel.  But, I note, I have not used Adequan on Grail.  So, am I skeptical?  Yes.  I am currently in the land of “this is too good to be true”.  Do I think it is the answer to turning my little TB into a World Beater?  No.  Do I think it is worth a try, because I don’t see any harm nor do my vets?  Yes.


Extended Analysis

First, let me give you my experience with Adequan.  I started using Adequan sometime back in the early 2000’s with both Edgar and Ike.  Ike was already moving down the levels at about 18 years old.  He had hocks that needed lots of help because he worked hard his entire life and joint injections weren’t terribly common during much of his career which started in the 80’s.  Edgar was a preliminary horse (8-10 years old) at that time with one or possibly two long format CCI’s under his girth.  I also used Adequan on Ernie (Baby Green through 1st Year Pre-Green Hunter) and Vinnie (Baby Green through 2nd Year Green, National Derbies and Training Level Eventing).  I am a pretty big fan of following the directions and then making adjustments from there.  So I always did the 28 day loading protocol, with monthly or bi-monthly maintenance depending on the workload of the horse.  If I stopped the maintenance for any reason, I re-loaded.  I also gave additional doses for CCI’s and National Derbies.


Oral supplement-wise, all my horses have usually been on Vitamin E and Selenium, but I would change that up a bit depending on where we were living/showing and what kind of pasture and hay they were getting (I have been based in North Carolina, Alabama, Chicago/Wisconsin and Ocala, Florida.)  I have also given biotin or Farrier’s Formula for crappy TB feet.  I have never given any sort of oral joint supplement to any of my horses as I have never been fully convinced of the bioavailability when given orally.  As someone who takes insulin, I am all too familiar with the fact that some things just don’t survive the digestive process (and I am not talking about things that can be given sublingual).

Adequan is the only FDA-approved treatment proven to relieve symptoms of non-infectious degenerative osteoarthritis, to stimulate cartilage repair and reverse the joint disease process.

So, I believe it does that. 

Here is where we get anecdotal!  I cannot say that I ever saw much of a day to day difference in performance using Adequan, I relied on scientific studies to tell me that if I wanted my performance horses’ joints to last, I should give Adequan.  I also continued to treat specific joints with intra articular injection as recommended by my veterinarian.  I did see and feel performance changes after IA injections, generally related to an improvement in range of motion, pushing power, comfort and overall willingness to work.

Regarding supplements, a wise horseman once said to me, “You are only going to see a change if that horse is deficient in that nutrient and if you supplement to the level required by thathorse to eliminate his deficiency.”  So I am willing to try things that work for other people, but I am not usually surprised when I don’t see the same results, even from one horse to the next in my own little barn, which has had a collection of Thoroughbreds, warmbloods and ponies. 

Getting to the point, Adequan is polysulfated glycosaminoglycan.  Summit is Chondroitin sulfate.  They are different compounds.  I have had visible results using Summit on two off the track thoroughbreds, similar in type, on the same pasture and hay as well as two different formulations of Platinum Performance, but different grain and separated by 20 years in age.  Grail has never had a dose of Adequan.  Edgar had boxes and boxes over his career.  I saw a visible difference in Edgar’s comfort and “way of going” within 12 hours of his first injection.  After several days on his feet, he felt confident enough to lay down in his stall and roll in fresh shavings.  Creating a dust cloud has always been his favorite thing to do.  The only way I can summarize the change in Grail is to say that he became loose throughout his entire body.  Specifically, over his topline and in his hips.

Make no mistake.  I am representing the company.  I get compensated if you purchase through me.  If I learn something I don’t like, I will say so.  Full Stop!  Contact me via PM if you have questions or want to do your own little “experiment”.  I am 100% interested in seeing all my friends and their horses succeed.  Summit isn’t going to change my lifestyle, but it did make a change in my boys.


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