Please find a range of FAQs on this page, if your question is not answered do not hesitate to contact us and one of our Technical Advisors will be more than happy to help.

Please email us on info@equinepremium.com or call us on +44 (0) 1460 243 230.

Acid Ease
When should I choose Acid Ease instead of Gut Balancer?

Acid Ease contains the same probiotic and prebiotics found in Gut Balancer, alongside a combination of calcium and magnesium carbonate, fibre, kaolin and amino acids which together act to buffer excess acid and soothe the gut lining. Acid Ease is suitable to calm excess acid in all horses and weaned foals.

Can I give Acid Ease and Omeprazole together?

Yes it is safe to give Acid Ease alongside a pharmaceutical such as omeprazole.  

Can I give Acid Ease long term?

Yes, Acid Ease is safe to use to support optimal gastrointestinal pH for long periods.  The daily amount given can be reduced to the maintenance level for long term use.  

Can I give Acid Ease and Gut Balancer together?

Acid Ease contains a high concentration of probiotic organisms which should be sufficient for most horses. However, for additional probiotic support Gut Balancer can safely be given alongside Acid Ease.

What is the BETA NOPS scheme?

The BETA NOPS scheme was set up in 2009 to help reduce the risk of naturally occurring prohibited substances (NOPS) in equine feed.

The definition of a prohibited substance is 'any substance that can exert an effect on a horse' which is a broad, all-encompassing definition. A naturally occurring prohibited substance (or NOPS) is one that is either naturally present within certain ingredients or that occurs as a result of inadvertent cross contamination during processing before arriving at the feed manufacturer’s facility.

Companies have to be audited to become members. Once accepted, members can feature the BETA NOPS Code logo on product packaging to reassure horse owners, trainers and riders of the stringent quality management procedures that have been set in place. The scheme is a company scheme so the assumption is that all products placed on the market by a scheme member will be NOPS compliant.

ADM Protexin Limited are proud to be members of BETA and are NOPS accredited so you can be assured that all products within the Protexin Equine Premium range are fully compliant.

For more details on the BETA NOPS scheme please visit the BETA website.

Are Protexin Equine Premium products NOPS accredited?

ADM Protexin Limited are proud to be members of BETA and are NOPS accredited so you can be assured that all products within the Protexin Equine Premium range are fully compliant.

For more details on the BETA NOPS scheme please visit the BETA website.

Cosequin Equine
What makes Cosequin Equine different to other joint products?

The patented ingredients in Cosequin Equine are supported by unrivalled clinical evidence in horses. Glucosamine Hydrochloride (FCHG49®) and Chondroitin Sulphate (TRH122®) feature in extensive research in equine and companion animal joint health support – including over 50 published scientific articles.

Both ingredients are of the highest quality and importantly both have proven bioavailability (absorption from the diet into the bloodstream). This makes Cosequin one of the most trusted joint products on the market for horse owners, trainers and vets.

Fifteen Plus
Can Fifteen Plus be used instead of Gut Balancer?

Whilst Fifteen Plus contains a lower level of probiotic than Gut Balancer it is sufficient for the majority of senior horses. Those that require extra help may benefit from the additional support of Gut Balancer at half the usual daily amount. Fifteen Plus contains the same Preplex prebiotics as Gut Balancer.

Can Fifteen Plus be used instead of Acid Ease for my older horse?

Acid Ease contains ingredients specifically targeted to help calm excess acid which are not found in Fifteen Plus. If you think your horse would benefit from additional support for their stomach please continue using Acid Ease alongside Fifteen Plus.

Fifteen Plus supports joints. Can it be used instead of Cosequin Equine or other joint support products?

Fifteen Plus provides support for joints, through the inclusion of glucosamine, highly bioavailable curcumin and omega-3s. This will be sufficient support for most senior horses, but some, such as those in regular hard work, will benefit from the additional support of Cosequin Equine. Cosequin Equine is our most advanced joint support product and contains two well-researched ingredients at high levels - Glucosamine HCl (FCHG49®) and Chondroitin Sulphate (TRH122®).

Can Fifteen Plus be given to horses prone to laminitis?

Yes, Fifteen Plus is suitable for horses with laminitis.

Can Fifteen Plus be used every day for an older horse?

Absolutely. The product is designed to be fed continuously to support the older horse.

Gut Balancer
Can Gut Balancer be given to my horse long term?

Gut Balancer is designed to be given daily, for the life of the horse where necessary. The horse’s gastrointestinal system is influenced by many different factors throughout its life and is constantly changing. Therefore any horse at any age can benefit from the support provided by Gut Balancer.

Gut Lix
Why is saliva production important?

Saliva is important to coat and lubricate the food, begin the process of digestion and to help to neutralise the stomach acid. In the wild, horses eat for up to 18 hours per day, but modern management systems and the calorie density of modern feeds mean that most horses eat for much shorter periods. This means less chewing and less saliva production. When there is no food in the stomach and low saliva production, the stomach becomes more acidic which can contribute to gastric ulcer syndrome. Increasing saliva may help to neutralise the stomach acid and support the stomach lining.

What are electrolytes and minerals?

Minerals are inorganic substances needed by the body for normal function. Electrolytes (or macrominerals) are a class of mineral which the body requires in relatively large quantities. This includes sodium which is readily lost in sweat and urine. Microminerals such as copper and cobalt are required in small amounts but are hugely important in many body systems – such as the immune system, the nervous system and the formation of natural antioxidants.

What are the signs of electrolyte deficiency?

The signs of electrolyte deficiency vary widely depending on the severity of the deficit. Some horses will be lethargic or recover more slowly from exercise, whilst others will become stiff or ‘tie up’, have a high heart rate, and can even twitch or become uncoordinated.

Why is electrolyte replacement important?

Horses lose large amounts of electrolytes when they sweat. These electrolytes are vital for the body to function normally.

How does salt encourage thirst?

A horse’s desire to drink is controlled by the salt concentration of its blood. Taking in salt after exercise stimulates the thirst response and leads to better rehydration. But, it’s better to offer your horse the choice rather than add salt to the diet as too much in one go can make dehydration worse.

Why should I choose Gut Lix?

Gut Lix uses the best British salt with vital minerals and is scientifically formulated to suit a horse’s requirements. Plus Gut Lix contains our unique Preplex® prebiotic to support your horse’s digestive health. Electrolyte and mineral uptake and gut health are intricately linked; only Gut Lix supports both systems.

Does Gut Lix have a high sugar content?

No. Gut Lix is made with the finest British salt, Preplex® prebiotic and a tasty artificial apple flavouring. We don’t need to add lots of sugar to encourage your horse to eat it. Gut Lix is a safe, low calorie way to provide electrolytes and support your horse’s digestive health.

When should I use Gut Lix?

Gut Lix can be used all year round, but it is especially useful during periods of regular exercise, warm weather, or dietary change.

How long will Gut Lix last my horse?

In our product trials each 2kg Gut Lix lasted on average 30 days, but all horses are different – both in terms of appetite and salt requirement.

Can I compete a horse which has access to Gut Lix?

Yes. Gut Lix carries the BETA NOPS logo, meaning you can be confident that it complies with the BETA NOPS code of practice. For more information on BETA NOPS please visit their website.

Does Gut Lix fit into a standard salt lick holder?

Yes. Gut Lix is 20cm x 5cm and will fit into most salt lick holders. Alternatively, you can put a Gut Lix into a feed bucket and feed from the floor.

Gut Sponge
Can Gut Sponge be used alongside Gut Balancer?

Yes. Both Gut Sponge and Gut Balancer support hind gut health, but by different mechanisms. The addition of Gut Balancer provides probiotic and additional prebiotic support. They can be fed together, but when you’re feeding Gut Sponge once daily it’s best to feed Gut Balancer at the opposite end of the day.

Can Gut Sponge be used with Gut Bind?

Whilst it would be safe to feed both products together, Gut Sponge and Gut Bind support gut health in a similar way. It would be better to feed Gut Balancer alongside Gut Sponge to provide additional probiotic and prebiotic support.

Can Gut Sponge be used alongside other Protexin products?

Yes. It is safe to feed Gut Sponge alongside all other Protexin products. For more information on Gut Balancer and Gut Bind see above; for other products, or to ask a specific question about your horse please get in touch with our technical team.

What is a macrolide?

Macrolides are a class of antibiotics, including erythromycin, clarithromycin and others. Smectite clays are known to bind macrolides and stop them from working. It is therefore not recommended to use Gut Sponge alongside oral macrolides. However, macrolides are very rarely used in horses – except when treating Rhodococcus equi infection in foals. If you have any doubts, please speak to your vet.

Hind Gut
Do our probiotic supplements support the hind gut?

Yes absolutely! The hind gut provides an excellent environment for microorganisms and consequently this is where the microbiota is most highly concentrated. Hind gut conditions, such as acidosis, are closely linked with an imbalance in the microbiota. Probiotics have been shown to increase the numbers of ‘good’ microorganisms, promoting a healthy hind gut, and healthy horse.

Probiotic and Prebiotic FAQs
What is a probiotic?

Probiotics are defined by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as "live microorganisms which when administered in adequate amounts confer a health benefit on the host".

How do probiotics work?

Probiotics have been shown to work by the following mechanisms:

  • Competition for nutrients

Within the gut, beneficial as well as pathogenic microorganisms will be utilising the same types of nutrients. This results in a general competition between microorganisms for these nutrients. When a probiotic is administered there is an overall reduction in nutrients available for pathogenic bacteria and consequently this minimises the levels of pathogenic microorganisms.

  • Competition for adhesion sites

Probiotics can attach to the gut wall and form colonies at various sites throughout the gut. This prevents pathogenic bacteria from gaining a foothold, resulting in their expulsion from the body.

  • Improvement in digestion

Probiotics have been shown to increase the efficiency of digestion.  In horses this centres around the improvement of fibre digestion in the hind gut, which is essential for gastrointestinal and general health.

  • Effect on immunity

Probiotics have been shown to increase the levels of cell-signalling chemicals and the effectiveness of infection-fighting cells (white blood cells).

What makes a good probiotic?

Safety - the microorganism chosen must be non-pathogenic and non-toxic. Within the EU all probiotics must be registered for use in an individual animal species. For example, Saccharomyces cerevisiae (NCYC Sc47) 4b1702 is registered for use in horses.

Viability - the microorganisms within a probiotic product should remain viable during their storage. The probiotics should also be able to pass safely through the stomach so that they can colonise the gut. A good freeze-drying process will enable the product to be stored at room temperature throughout the duration of its shelf life. 

Sufficient numbers - the concentration of a probiotic must be such that inclusion rates provide a beneficial effect.

Quality assurance - when manufacturing probiotic products, high quality standards and processes are imperative. This ensures that the product meets label specifications and is also effective and safe to use.

Do the probiotics survive the very acidic conditions of the stomach?

All Protexin probiotics have been shown to survive the high acidity of stomach acid which allows them to reach the small intestine where they can find sites to grow.

Do your products support the hind gut?

Yes absolutely! The hind gut provides an excellent environment for microorganisms and consequently this is where the microbiota is most highly concentrated. Hind gut conditions, such as acidosis, are closely linked with an imbalance in the microbiota. Probiotics have been shown to increase the numbers of ‘good’ microorganisms, promoting a healthy hind gut, and healthy horse.

Can probiotics be used at the same time as antibiotics?

Yes, evidence shows that taking a probiotic at the same time as an antibiotic can reduce the incidence of antibiotic-associated diarrhoea. The probiotic will not affect the efficacy of the antibiotic.

Are there any side effects associated with the use of probiotics? Can you give too much?

There are no side effects associated with the use of probiotics. All EU-registered probiotics have to pass stringent safety trials before being approved for use in each species. It is not possible to give too great a quantity of probiotics as any excess will simply pass out in the faeces.

How do probiotics help horses that have been wormed?

Anthelmintic products (wormers) are used regularly to keep a horse worm-free. Wormers can disrupt the microbiota causing a temporary dysbiosis (imbalance). A short course of probiotics before, during and after the worming regime can restore the healthy normal flora. For more information see our factsheet.

What is a prebiotic?

A prebiotic is a non-digestible carbohydrate (complex sugar) which acts as a food source for beneficial bacteria in the microbiota and therefore stimulates their growth. Preplex® prebiotic is exclusive to Protexin and consists of Fructo-oligosaccharide (FOS) and Acacia (Gum arabic). This dual source prebiotic is of benefit across a larger area of the gut compared to a single source prebiotic.

What is the microbiota?

The microbiota consists of various bacteria, protozoa and yeasts. These are distributed throughout the length of the gut and coexist in a symbiotic (mutual) relationship in the healthy animal.

What is dysbiosis?

Dysbiosis is when there is a microbial imbalance on or within the body.

What can cause dysbiosis?

The main causes of dysbiosis include:

  • Antibiotic treatment
  • Intestinal pathogens
  • Poor or inappropriate diet
  • Rapid dietary change
  • Worming
  • Stress (e.g. travel and competing)
  • Life-stage (e.g. weaning and old age)

The most common symptoms associated with dysbiosis are diarrhoea, colic and altered appetite but increasingly there is evidence linking a dysbiosis in the gut with a huge range of clinical conditions including laminitis and EMS.

Quick Fix
How do I use a Quick Fix alongside worming?

Anthelmintic products (wormers) are used regularly to keep a horse worm-free. Wormers can disrupt the microbiota causing a temporary dysbiosis (imbalance). A short course of probiotics before, during and after the worming regime can re-establish the horses gut microbiota. Quick Fix is perfect for this purpose. It can be given at twice the standard amount the day before, day of, and day after worming. There are no contraindications to giving Quick Fix alongside a wormer. Most horses like the taste of a Quick Fix, so it can even make them more amenable to worming! 

How do I use a Quick Fix when travelling or competing?

All horses respond differently to travel and competition, but for those requiring some support Quick Fix should be given at twice the standard amount, the day before, day of and day after competing to keep the microbiota in balance, and encourage a stress free competition day.

What colour is Quick Fix paste?

Quick fix paste is a light brown colour.

Recycling our packaging
Are Protexin pots and tubs recyclable?

All of our plastic pots and lids can be recycled without any special consideration (their plastic-type number will be on the base/underside of lid), as long as they are clean.

You may also need to check with your local recycling centre or kerbside collection service, as they may require labels to be removed, but most do not.

How can I tell which type of plastic the packaging is?

A good tip for checking to see if you can recycle any Protexin Equine Premium packaging is to look out for the plastic type number which is in a triangle; this number corresponds to a type of plastic. For example, a number 2 is HDPE, high-density polyethylene.

Using this information you can then determine if your council collects the plastic via kerbside or local recycling centres.

Are Protexin syringes recyclable?

The syringes are five assembled components; featuring HDPE and LDPE plastics, as a result they will need cleaning and separating before recycling.

To find more about which type of plastics can be recycled in your area contact your local council.

Can you recycle the sachet foil?

Unfortunately our sachet foil cannot be recycled at the moment; however, we are looking into alternatives.

Do Protexin products require any special storage methods?

We would recommend that Protexin products are stored in dry, clean conditions, out of direct sunlight and kept sealed once the original container has been opened in order to exclude moisture and thermal decomposition. The shelf life of Protexin products, if stored at room temperature, is 2 years (24 months).