Q. I saw glycerin on your site and am wondering how you recommend its use with horses.
A lot of the questions we get will be about our commodities. We do not put directions on them because they are much like sugar and flour and used in numerous different applications and disciplines. Our primary focus is on horses but for instance our Venice is used on Violins and who knows what else. But, I thought we would take a moment and look at a few. Glycerin or Glycerine—big debate over which is the accurate spelling, and we will go with Spell check!
Glycerin is a neutral, sweet-tasting, colorless, thick liquid. Glycerin can be dissolved into water or alcohol, but not oils. On the other hand, many things will dissolve into glycerin easier than they do into water or alcohol. So it is a good solvent or mixing agent for topical products. It is known for its moisturizing properties. Our Glycerin is a Vegetable Glycerin and is derived entirely from vegetable oil and pure; it is hypoallergenic and safe for food and cosmetic purposes. It is used in lotions, soaps, cosmetics and in baking to name a few. We use Glycerin in the horse industry both orally and topically.
Q. When do you give Glycerin orally to your horse?
Orally—Glycerin lubricates the throat of the horse. Sometimes it is mixed with Peppermint oil adding the aromatic and possibly the decongestant quality of the peppermint oil. Peppermint is also known to sooth the stomach and help in ulcer situations—horses usually love peppermint. Often when the weather is real cold or if it has been extremely dry many people will administer glycerin orally prior to exercise to aid in lubricating the throat whether it has peppermint added or not. We recommend 1 ounce or 30 cc per dose. I think you can easy give 2 doses in a morning if you so desired but for the most part a dose is considered 1 ounce.
If your horse has suffered from a cold or allergies then Glycerin and glycerin & Peppermint mix will not work to reduce mucus like Wind Aid will. But, you will notice Wind Aid is in a Glycerin base for the lubricating quality glycerin gives and it has peppermint and eucalyptus oil for the properties they contribute and potassium iodide which acts like an expectorant and aids in reducing or eliminating mucus. The potassium iodide is what sets Wind Aid apart from the others. I know up in Canada they often just grab for the Glycerin prior to exercise and this is fine but “in my opinion,” if I had a quart of each in my tack room I would definitely go for the Wind Aid over just Glycerin.
Q. How do you recommend we use glycerin topically?
The second use for Glycerin in the barn is using it mixed with other topical. For instance, I mix ½ Choate’s liniment, ¼ Witch Hazel and ¼ Glycerin as a beginners leg brace. The glycerin tames the Choate’s down and makes it a moisturizing brace. I also mix glycerin with Doc’s leg paint. Right now while Thurben is on vacation he is getting his legs painted with a mix of glycerin and Doc’s. The glycerin will help to add a moisturizer to the Doc’s so it doesn’t blister as easily but lets the Doc’s work as a counterirritant bringing blood to the area and hopefully healing any minor issues he may have had at the end of the meet. Some People use glycerin to sweat a neck or legs and this will work fine, Glycerin is an excellent choice because it washes off with water and it is hypoallergenic and moisturizing.