A Guide To Basic Horse Nutrition

Information on the Basic Nutrients Horses Need

When you are feeding horses, it is vital that you recognise that there are six basic categories for the nutrients they need which have to be met:

  1. Carbohydrates
  2. Protein
  3. Fat
  4. Vitamins
  5. Minerals
  6. Water

Normal, healthy horses will consume between 5 and 15 gallons of water per day, or more, so make sure that you provide this clean, on a daily basis, and that it is always available for your horse to drink. Once you have checked that all these requirements are being met you can reward yourself with a little time enjoying the sports betting NZ has to offer!

Carbs are Not the Enemy for Horses

Carbohydrates, in fact, will probably be the biggest part of your horse’s diet. Structural carbs are found in the greatest amount in the roughage your horse is eating, and these are digestible thanks to the way that the horse’s intestinal tract has been designed. After the carbohydrates have been digested in the stomach and the small intestine, it enters into the large intestine, which, in a horse, consists of the colon and cecum.

Pack in the Protein

Proteins get broken down into amino acids the horse’s small intestine, and these are then recombined in order to make the proteins in the body that create muscles, hair, and hooves. It is vital that you realise that proteins are made up of amino acids, and that the proteins that the body creates have very particular amino acid sequences.

The amount of protein that the body is able to synthesize is limited by the amino acid that, essentially, runs out first. In horses, this is usually lysine, and this is why many horse feeds add this to their bags.

Feed Your Horse Fats

Feeding horses high-fat diets is a new trend in the horse industry, but it has been demonstrated that horses are able to tolerate relatively high levels of fat in their diets, and this is a wonderful, and easily digestible, source of energy for them.

Review Your Horse’s Vitamin Intake

Vitamins are absolutely essential organic compounds, and have to be present in the body in order to allow for important reactions to take place -those which allow the animal to live!

Vitamins are divided into two categories:

  1. The water-soluble group, consisting of the B-complex vitamins
  2. The fat-soluble group, comprised of vitamins A, D, E, and K

Some vitamins also have associated names, with B1, for example, also known as thiamine, and it is important to recognise that your horse is able to synthesize many of the vitamins it requires itself, so it does not typically require much supplementation.

Make Your Horse Mineral-Rich

Minerals are very important inorganic materials that have to be present in sufficient amounts for the body to be able to function properly. You must also understand that your horse’s requirements in terms of minerals will change as it ages, and whether it is working, gestating, or lactating. Most commercial horse feed companies balance out their feed in order to meet the mineral requirements for the different classifications of horses.


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