Horses need a balanced diet to stay healthy! Feeding should always be tailored to the horse's individual needs and physical condition. In principle, feeding should always include sufficient hay, grass, water and, if necessary, additional concentrated feed.
Feeding horses is crucial to their health, performance and well-being. Here are some important aspects to consider:
Quality of feed: Use high-quality hay, straw and, if necessary, grass as a staple diet. These should be clean, free of mold and well stored. The quality of the feed has a major impact on your horse's health.
Water: Always provide fresh, clean water. Horses need plenty of water to meet their hydration needs, especially during warm weather or intense physical activity.
Basic feed: Hay and grass are the main components of horse feed. They provide fiber, which is important for digestion. The quantity and quality of hay should be adjusted to the horse's needs.
Concentrated feed: Depending on the horse's activity level and needs, concentrated feed (e.g. pellets or oats) can be fed. This should be done in appropriate quantities to avoid obesity or deficiency symptoms.
Minerals and trace elements: Make sure that your horse receives sufficient minerals and trace elements. A deficiency can cause health problems. Supplements may be necessary but should be used cautiously.
Vitamins: Horses require various vitamins, including vitamins A, D, E and various B vitamins. These are important for growth, immune function and other physiological processes.
Meal scheduling: Horses have sensitive digestive systems and should be fed several small meals throughout the day rather than a few large meals.
Weight Control: Monitor your horse's weight carefully and adjust feeding accordingly to avoid overweight or underweight.
Individual Needs: Consider your horse’s individual needs. Age, activity level, breed and health status can influence nutritional requirements.
Slow feed intake: Horses should be allowed to consume their food slowly to prevent colic and other digestive problems. Divide the amount of food into as many small meals as possible and use hay nets, for example, to slow down food intake.
Veterinary advice: Consult a veterinarian or horse nutrition expert regularly to ensure your horse's diet meets his individual needs.
Proper feeding is crucial to your horse's health and well-being. It is important to understand your horse's needs and provide a balanced and appropriate diet. A healthy horse will thank you with its vitality and performance.
Supplementary feed can be useful in certain cases to meet specific needs. Here are some supplements horses may need to support their health and performance:
Minerals and trace elements : Horses need minerals such as calcium, phosphorus, sodium and potassium as well as trace elements such as zinc, copper, selenium and iron. These are important for bone health, muscle contraction and other physiological processes.
Vitamins : Vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E and various B vitamins are essential for skin, eye, muscle and nerve health.
Proteins : High-quality proteins are important for muscle growth, tissue repair and immune function.
Fat : Fat can be an efficient source of energy for horses, especially high-performance horses. It also supports the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins.
Amino Acids : Horses require essential amino acids such as lysine, methionine and threonine to build and maintain proteins.
Omega-3 fatty acids : These fatty acids are known for their anti-inflammatory properties and can support joint health and the immune system.
Antioxidants : Antioxidants such as vitamin C and vitamin E protect cells from oxidative stress and support the immune system.
Electrolytes : During intense physical activity or heat, electrolytes such as sodium, potassium and chloride can be lost and may need to be supplemented to prevent dehydration and electrolyte imbalances.
Joint-supporting substances : For sport horses or older horses, supplements such as glucosamine and chondroitin can be useful to support joint health.
Supplements for gastrointestinal health : For stomach problems, supplements such as probiotics or prebiotics can be given to support intestinal flora and digestion.
It is important to note that a horse's needs can vary depending on age, activity level, health status and breed. Therefore, it is advisable to work with a veterinarian or qualified equine professional to determine your horse's specific needs and select the right supplement. A balanced diet and regular monitoring are key to maintaining your horse's health and performance.