We all want the best possible nutrition for our horses. When you walk into a feed store and see rows of grain options it is easy to become distracted from the most important aspect of your horses diet, forage.
Ration Balancers can provide your horse with a concentrated source of minerals, vitamins and protein. Due to their low feed rate (usually around 1lb per day), they do not provide a lot of calories. This is great for our easy keepers! But are these power packed pellets truly providing your horse a balanced diet? Maybe not.
When horse owners think about joint supplements, one popular ingredient they look for is HA (Hyaluronic Acid). Unfortunately, finding the best product for your horse is not as cut and dry as seeing Hyaluronic Acid listed in the ingredients.
Certain horses do best on low sugar (ESC) & starch grains / concentrates, such as those with metabolic concerns, ulcers, PSSM etc. Horses with metabolic conditions should strive for feeds with combined sugar and starch under 10%. For these horses, owners turn to feed companies to help provide them with safe options. Almost every grain company offers a low sugar and starch option. Some may market them as “Low Carb”, “Low Starch”, or simply “Safe”. Can owners rely on the information printed on the front of these bags? The sad answer is No.
The Journal of Equine Veterinary Science just published a review article titled “The Dietary Components and Feeding Management as Options to Offset Digestive Disturbances in Horses”. I know not everyone enjoys diving head first into a seven page study like I do, so I thought I’d give you the Cliff Note version.
Trace minerals; the amount a horse needs to consume is so minimal it’s hard to imagine they have any effect over such a large animal. Yet deficiencies in two trace minerals; copper and zinc can be very noticeable.