The main source of a horse’s diet should be roughage – a feed that a horse will consume for the most part of the day. The best type is fresh pasture grass since it contains the highest quantity of vitamins and minerals, which are essential for horses’ homeostasis. Unfortunately, this type of grass is not available throughout the whole year; the grass is most often substituted by less nutritious hay.
To ensure your horse won’t lose weight during the fall-winter season, it is essential to enrich their diet with additional feeds and supplements.
Which nutrients are fundamental in keeping a horse’s weight or gaining weight?
Before you purchase horse supplements, read through this list of essential nutrients for horse’s homeostasis.
Protein is a building block of a horse’s body; therefore, it is crucial to ensure your horse’s diet contains enough of it. The best sources of protein for horses are legume seeds, legumes, linseed or fodder yeast.
Starch and carbohydrates supply a horse with enough energy for proper body function. The most popular sources of starch in a horse’s diet are oats, barley and corn.
Vitamins and minerals
Before you start to supply your horse, you need to remember that vitamin deficiency is just as dangerous as excess of them. It is best to consult every diet change with your veterinarian.
Horses need an adequate amount of vitamins: A, B, C, D, E and K. Vitamin A and K play a crucial role in a horse’s immune system. Additionally, vitamin A supports proper function of skeletal system and eyesight.
Vitamins in group B, such as: B3 (niacin), B7 (biotin) or B5 (pantothenic acid) are needed for proper functioning of whole body, therefore they are especially important. They are produced in horse’s body or extracted from organic compounds. Most of the vitamins from this group are produced in the intestine, therefore it is crucial to support this organ function.
Additionally, vitamins D, E and K are needed for proper functioning of skeletal system cardiovascular system as well as development and support of muscles.
Best feeds for horses
Now that you know what nutrients your horse needs for proper body function and development, you can look at our list of feeds. Those feeds contain the most important nutrients that a horse’s diet might lack during the fall-winter season.
1. Feed Saracen Competition Fit Cubes
This feed contains a high-quality protein that excellently supports muscle regeneration and supplies the horse with an adequate dose of energy. This feed also contains vitamins and minerals essential for proper body functioning. The oil included in this feed supports the fur and skin of a horse.
The feed lacks any kind of synthetic preservatives and additives. All the feed’s ingredients are selected and of the highest quality.
Additionally, thanks to this feed extra ingredient – yeast, it supports proper functioning of the digestive system, the intestine and stomach are fully protected, which results in acceleration of metabolism.
2. Stud Muffins horse treats
Treats in the form of muffins should appeal to any horse. Their composition is rich in high-quality nutrients, and the products contained in the treats are natural, with no enhancers or chemical additives.
The ingredients include flaxseed, which supports the digestive system and nurtures the coat and hooves, and fenugreek, which has a strengthening effect, enhances the appetite and supports performance.
3. Oasis alfalfa pellets
This is an organic product with an easy to feed form. This pellet is made into a concentrated granulate.
This pellet is available at a bargain price and its properties allow for quicker weight gain and better maintenance of horse’s weight. Thanks to its natural ingredients, the product is full of essential vitamins and minerals. Remember to read feeding instructions before adding this product to your horse’s diet; because of its concentrated form, you can easily overfeed your horse.
4. Dodson&Horrell complex of vitamins
This intended for everyday use product, supplements essential nutrients and replenishes deficiencies. These vitamins are convenient to feed a horse with any meal of the day.
These vitamins are intended for all horses, regardless of their age or training.
In the list of ingredients, you can find an optimal amount of protein (11%), fat (2,5%) and carbohydrates (4,5%). This product is made only from natural ingredients such as: wild rose, kale, alfalfa or basil.
5. Feed Saracen Show Improver Cubes
This feed improves a horse’s health while supporting the muscular system and fur. Thanks to this feed’s ingredients, the intestine is fully supported.
The protein included in this feed excellently supports muscle development and ensures an adequate body weight.
In addition to good quality protein, the feed contains a complex of vitamins and minerals.
6. Omega Nibblers treats with low sugar and starch content
These treats contain only 6,7% of sugar and 7,4% of starch. They are also rich in Omega 3 and 9 acids. Those are very nutritious ingredients not only for horses, but also for humans. The product is fully made of natural ingredients and lacks any kind of synthetic additives or preservatives.
The quality of these treats makes them very popular among horse owners. They are also available at a very affordable price.
Starch is a very crucial part of a horse’s diet, however the quantity of it must be monitored. If your horse is fed with a high starch feed, then any treats used to reward you horse, should not contain high amounts of it.
7. Purina pelleted feed for horse
This feed supports the digestive system of a horse. A properly functioning digestive system is the key to gaining and maintaining weight.
The feed contains an amazing source of protein, as well as amino acids, and Omega 3 and 9 fats. Additionally, fibers contained in the feed ensure a healthy digestive system.
The feed provides all the necessary nutritional value your horse needs, so you don’t need to implement additional supplementation.
8. Probiotic supplement Horse Guard
This supplement contains the right amount of protein, starch, fats and sugars. The probiotic that the supplement provides is crucial in a properly functioning digestive system which plays the most important part in digesting nutrients.
This product ensures resistant and properly functioning intestines, as well as strengthening the entire digestive system.
The multitude of benefits for your horse’s digestive system proves that Horse Guard is the best supplement you can choose for your horse.
9. Purina strengthening supplements
These supplements are rich in healthy fats, which excellently help with the weight-gaining process for your horse.
hat’s more, the right measurement of calories contained in the product stimulates your horse’s metabolism. Purina supplements also provide your horse with a correct dose of vitamin E and selenium, calming it and strengthening its body.
As a horse owner, you should provide all the necessary vitamins and nutrients your horse needs. That way your horse will stay healthy throughout the year.
The products mentioned above contain essential vitamins necessary for your horse’s overall health.
However, remember to familiarize yourself with the proper dosage of each of those products. If you don’t know which specific vitamins your horse needs, it’s important to contact a veterinarian.