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Acupuncture, Biotin for Laminitic HorsesBy Kentucky Equine Research Staff · September 14, 2017

In recent years, the Western world appears to be increasingly interested in revisiting Eastern or traditional medicine, embracing such therapies as nutritional and herbal supplementation and acupuncture, among others. Several studies support acupuncture for various equine ailments, including:

  • Musculoskeletal, neuromuscular, and circulatory disorders;
  • Skin diseases;
  • Endocrine or hormonal irregularities;
  • Respiratory conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease;
  • Digestive disorders, like colic; and
  • Maximizing reproductive efficiency.

Acupuncture was studied previously in horses with laminitis and showed promising results. One recent study* further explored the benefits of acupuncture for this leading cause of pain and loss of life in horses. The researchers recruited 12 adult horses diagnosed with chronic laminitis. Each horse underwent two acupuncture treatments spaced one week apart. Horses were reassessed for lameness using a commercial lameness evaluation system (Lameness Locator) and routine examinations following American Association of Equine Practitioners scoring guidelines.

Following acupuncture, a significant reduction in lameness severity was identified using both lameness evaluation techniques. As a result, the researchers concluded, “Our results support using acupuncture, along with other treatment options, in treating chronic equine laminitis.”

“Other treatment options alluded to by the researchers include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications and nutritional supplements that contain biotin and other nutrients to support hoof growth and strength,” said Kathleen Crandell, Ph.D., an equine nutritionist for Kentucky Equine Research (KER).

According to Crandell, “In addition to biotin, Bio•Bloom PS also contains methionine, iodine, chelated zinc, lecithin, and essential fatty acids from full-fat soybean, ingredients that are necessary for production of resilient hoof horn and shiny coats.”

Australian horse owners should look for these research-proven products.

*Faramarzi, B., D. Lee, K. May, et al. 2017. Response to acupuncture treatment in horses with chronic laminitis. Canadian Veterinary Journal. 58(8):823-827.