Difference Between Canine & Equine Adequan


Luitpold Pharmaceuticals founded its Animal Health Division in 1984 with the goal of developing and manufacturing a treatment for degenerative joint disease (DJD) in horses and, later, to finding treatments for osteoarthritis in dogs. Adequan is the result.

What Is Adequan?

  • Adequan is polysulfated glycosaminoglycan or PSGAG.


  • Adequan works by inhibiting enzymes that break down cartilage and slowing its degeneration. It also reduces joint inflammation and pain, and improves lubrication of joints.


  • Adequan comes in two forms for horses, Adequan i.a. (intra-articular) and Adequan i.m. (intra-muscular), and one for dogs, Adequan Canine.


  • Except for the dosing regimen, no significant differences exist between equine and canine Adequan, according to Dr. Gary Kaufman, a veterinarian in Scottsdale, Arizona. Injections of Adequan i.a. go directly into the joint, while Adequan i.m. and Adequan Canine are injected into the muscle.

Percentage of PSGAG

  • Adequan i.a. has a higher percentage of PSGAG by weight composition—at 25 percent—than Adequan Canine and Adequan i.m., which are both at 10 percent, according to the product inserts.


  • Novartis has manufactured Adequan Canine since 2004, while Luitpold still makes the equine versions.

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