Equine Asthma: Are Steroids the Only Option?

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Source: Arenus Animal Health 

Stall confinement. 

Tighter living quarters. 

Trailering and travel.  

Indoor exercise and dusty arenas.  

These factors have led to a significant increase in allergic reactions and low-level respiratory disease. More horses than ever before show symptoms of low-level cough, drippy noses, and low-level breathing difficulties due to the early effects of airway inflammation. 

In addition to these everyday irritants, overall air quality has been heavily affected by wildfires, putting our horses at great respiratory risk. 

Up to 50 percent of performance horses suffer from equine asthma (inflammatory airway disease or recurrent airway obstruction).  Medications such as steroids are not always the best option; they offer a quick fix and, while at times are very necessary, often don’t get to the root of the problem and can be performance limiting. At Arenus, we wanted to find a non-pharmaceutical way to counter these issues, especially when the environment or level of performance cannot be altered. 

Video: See What These Airway Specialists Have to Say

Aleira Video

The respiratory system is one of the first lines of defense against allergens and works in conjunction with the digestive, lymphatic, and adrenal systems to maintain a healthy immune system. A properly functioning respiratory system allows for oxygen exchange with blood, removes carbon dioxide, and prevents allergens from accessing the deep portions of the lungs and entering the body. To function at its best, the respiratory system must be free of inflammation, have great circulation, and a strong cellular lining. This is why we created Aleira.  

A Non-Pharmaceutical Solution 

Years of research by our veterinarians and nutritionists have resulted in an algal-DHA formula — a formula not only unique, but the only such formulation patented and recommended by equine internists throughout the country. Aleira makes a dramatic difference in horses with breathing and allergy challenges by reducing inflammation and modulating immune responses. 

In A World of Its Own 

Aleira Respiratory and Immune Support for Horses, Arenus Animal Health 

While other products may claim the same results as Aleira, none of them contain the same ingredients. There are three main omega-3 fatty acids that are referenced in studies and used in respiratory supplements — docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and alpha-linolenic acid (ALA). DHA and EPA are primarily responsible for the improvement in ailments and dysfunctions of the immune, respiratory, and reproductive systems. ALA, which can be found in flaxseed, must be converted by the body to DHA and EPA for the horse to enjoy the beneficial effects associated with omega-3s. Horses can’t convert ALA effectively enough to provide DHA or EPA benefits. To effectively supplement DHA and EPA, the source must be oceanic. Fish oil is the common form available for supplementation and is very effective for carnivores. However, this source of omega-3s can expose horses to heavy metal toxins and is not as easily absorbed by herbivores. Aleira uses an oceanic, algae-derived source of DHA, the best possible for respiratory and immune issues in horses and the same source of DHA found in prenatal vitamins. 

More bioavailable than flaxseed or fish oil, our purified, algal-DHA acts at a cellular level to not only strengthen and support cell membranes, but also confer increased elasticity and flexibility. Additionally, our proprietary mushroom blend provides potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects, promotes normal respiratory function, and supports healthy lung and immune function. Another key ingredient, methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), has anti-inflammatory capabilities. Data in humans suggests that MSM may be useful in the reduction of symptoms of seasonal rhinitis, also known as “hay fever.” Aleira also contains vitamin C for normal cellular immunity and its function as an antioxidant. 

Aleira: Fights Equine Asthma 

The only nonpharmaceutical solution recommended by the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine for the treatment of equine asthma, Aleira provides respiratory support through the most bioavailable source, algal-DHA, which acts directly on the cell membranes within the lungs. Aleira can be used safely with traditional treatments and, for many horses, the use of steroids and bronchodilators can be significantly decreased or eliminated. In this year of increased respiratory challenges, give your horse the researched respiratory support needed to fight equine asthma with Aleira

Your veterinarian will be your best first opinion on the nature and severity of your horse’s respiratory or immune health. But should you or your vet have further questions about how to incorporate Aleira into a therapy regimen, don’t hesitate to contact one of our Solutions Specialists. They’re just a quick call away at (866)-791-3344 or by online chat — helping your horse along the path to breathing better.


Arenus Animal Health