As the weather heats up, many equestrians are sure to supplement with electrolytes – whether during a show, after a trail ride, or before a haul. We know that electrolytes are essential for replacing minerals necessary for proper bodily functioning lost through sweat. But on the other side of that is a not well-known and occasionally overlooked problem – anhidrosis.
What Is Anhidrosis?
Anhidrosis is the inability of a horse to sweat properly. Sweating is a crucial part of a horse’s natural body temperature regulation. It is what helps them cool down during exercise or in hot weather. The inability to sweat can drastically increase the risk of hyperthermia (overheating). The cause of anhidrosis is not entirely defined but is thought to be related to overstimulation of the sweat glands due to stress hormones. Regardless of origin, we know anhidrosis can be a dangerous condition requiring attention and treatment.
Signs of Anhidrosis
The obvious sign of anhidrosis is if your horse doesn’t sweat during workouts. However, at times it is more subtle than that. Sometimes a horse will sweat only in partial areas while staying dry in other spots. Other times, it manifests as only reduced sweating, and the only sign is lethargy or reduced performance in warmer weather. Increased breathing rate and difficulty cooling down after exercise are also common symptoms. Horses with chronic anhidrosis will often have a dry and unhealthy hair coat appearance. If you notice your horse has any of these symptoms, consult your veterinarian regarding anhidrosis tests and treatment.
Products that can Help
Luckily, there are a few options to help your horse increase its sweating. After all the time you spend cleaning up your horse and tack after a sweaty ride, who knew you’d ever want to make them sweat more? Even though it means more grooming and baths to keep them clean, it is imperative that we give our horses the best mechanisms to keep themselves cool. Each of these products helps improve sweating through different supportive nutrients.
Equine Mega Sweat from O3 Animal Health contains a specific formulation of omega fatty acids from soybean oil, fish oil, and vitamin E to help induce sweating. This all-natural supplement has a success rate of about 90% of horses starting to sweat within 24-48 hours! O3 Animal Health suggests a two-week loading dose of 4-5 ounces, then switch to Equine Omega Complete for maintenance.
Sweat-Up from Hygain contains electrolytes and minerals in addition to Omega-3 fatty acids. This supplement induces thirst and replenishes electrolytes. Sweat-Up helps restore normal respiration rates and improves sweating within 4-7 days for acute cases, or within three weeks for more chronic cases. Hygain recommends keeping any horse susceptible to anhidrosis on Sweat-Up whenever in a hot climate or in a situation that may cause a flare-up of symptoms.
MetaSweat from Perfect Products addresses anhidrosis via metabolic support, specifically through the sympathetic nervous system, pituitary, and thyroid glands. Because research shows anhidrosis might be a problem originating in the glands, this supplement is an excellent pick for restoring proper metabolic functioning and, thus, proper sweating. MetaSweat contains a blend of natural ingredients with no prohibited substances, making it a perfect show-safe option to help your horse sweat.
Summing It All Up
Hot and sweaty are a match made in heaven. Hot without the sweaty can have critical effects on your horse. Even signs as subtle as heavy breathing or reduced performance abilities might be a result of anhidrosis. Be sure your horse is getting adequate electrolytes, and try one of these supplements to improve their sweating rates. Always consult your veterinarian if you are concerned about adverse symptoms in your horse.
We carry multiple other supplements for anhidrosis available to shop here. Or, you can shop all our products at FarmVet.com 24/7. You can also call one of our friendly Sales Associates at 1-888-837-3626 or email your order to email@example.com.
So, your horse doesn’t have a sweating problem, but you want to learn more about how to support them in the hot summer months? Check out our blog “Beating the Heat with Electrolytes” for deep dive into various formulas!
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