Nutrition

Prebiotics and Probiotics in Equine Nutrition

The billions of tiny microbes inside us are gaining widespread recognition from scientists, doctors and the general public for the health benefits they provide. This ‘microbiome’ of tiny living organisms within our gastro-intestinal tract is being studied to a new and exciting level of detail as scientists explore the links between diet, gut microbes, digestion, disease, behaviour and the brain. PREBIOTICS Prebiotics are “a substrate that is selectively utilised by host microorganisms conferring a health Read more…

Nutrition

Feeding Older Horses in Cold Weather

Having the luxury of keeping much-loved horses through their retirement years is an honour many us happily perform for our equine friends. But their needs do change as they age, and keeping condition on older horses through winter can be a worrying problem for many horse owners. From a nutritional perspective, it’s easy to feed to maintain body condition or achieve weight gain and there are many options – but take care of teeth, worming Read more…

Nutrition

How much should I feed?

Although you can look up horse nutrition books and find out how many calories per day your horse needs, feeding exactly the energy intake required with the amount of energy used is quite a balancing act! Individual horses have different rates of metabolism (some do well on less feed, others are ‘poor keepers’ who need more feed). There are likely to be seasonal variations in the amount of energy your horse uses, due to differing Read more…

Nutrition

Feeding Healthy Hooves

Farriers often recommend hoof supplements when they think your horse might be lacking the nutrients needed to grow good strong hoof wall. IF you are already feeding a well balanced diet, doubling up on nutrients with a hoof supplement is unlikely to help. If your horse’s diet doesn’t provide enough nutrients then you do need to supplement. But why add a supplement just to feed feet when a well balanced diet based on roughage and Read more…

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Caring for horses in hot weather

As temperatures soar, remember to take weather conditions into account when planning a ride. Working horses during very hot and/or humid weather can be potentially dangerous for both horse and rider. Humans and horse both rely heavily on their ability to sweat to cool their bodies during exercise. Respiratory cooling (puffing or blowing) also helps us cool down but horses and humans rely less on this method of cooling than dogs who cool by panting. Read more…