Nutrition is a huge part when it comes to equine care. Feeding and providing the right supplements and care to one’s horses is needed to ensure their maximum health and productivity. Horses that are out of shape are not only susceptible to diseases but they too become more vulnerable to accidents and injuries. That said, we teamed up with equi-box.co.uk to bring you the following list of nutrients to ensure maximum care for your horses.
Dehydration is the number one cause of death among these animals so adequate levels of water intake are necessary. On average, they are to consume 2 liters of water for every pound of hay consumed. A 500 kg animal will drink up from 30-45 liters of water on a daily basis with lactating mares needing more. This will also increase depending on the climate and the size of the animal.
This is the integral source of energy in their bodies and must therefore be present. This is the content of most feeds in the market. The needs of every animal will always be unique depending on which category they fall under: maintenance, growth, pregnancy, lactation or work.
Adequate and healthy levels of fat are needed in equine care. Fat is stored energy and it is very much needed in certain cases, the winter months for example where animals tend to shed pounds and eat less. However, constant check is required to avoid feeding them with too much as obesity is a health risk as well.
Minerals form an integral aspect of equine care too as they aid in the support of various functional needs. Calcium, chloride, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, and sulfur are needed in relatively high amounts compared to others like cobalt, copper, iodine, iron, selenium, and zinc.
A building block for muscle development, protein must be part of their daily nutrition for growth and exercise agility. Absence or lack of it can result to unhealthy and coarse hair coat, stunted growth, poor milk production, weight loss, high injury rates and poor performance.
According to Equine America, horses need a significant level of Vitamins A, B-complex, C, D, E and K in their diets. Majority of these vitamins are found in the roughage and feeds that are given to the animals but certain cases will necessitate for added supplements which must of course be done under veterinary supervision.
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