FEEDING YOUR HORSE THIS SPRING

 

The warmth of spring is welcome to almost all horse owners. It signals after work rides, 24 hour turnout and summer competitions.  It also means you should think about changing your horse’s feed regime to complement the grass growth.

Spring grass is high in soluble carbohydrates, which means plenty of good quality high energy feed is available for your horses and ponies, but this can have negative effects on behaviour and health.  The high sugar content can lead to fizzy behaviours and laminitis often rears its ugly head around now, especially in our hardy native breeds as a result of the high fructan content of grass.  If you do have to limit fresh grass intake, make sure your horse has plenty of other supplementary forage such as hay and chaff to ensure you keep a high percentage of the diet as forage. 

When thinking about changing your horses feed you should consider its workload, body condition and temperament.

If your horse is grazing, and is a ‘good doer’, maybe consider a balancer.  At just 8% starch, the Heygates Equibalancer contains all the vitamins and minerals your horse will need along with a high quality protein content to maintain muscle and topline this spring without having a high soluble carbohydrate level. 

It is likely that you will want more out of your horse with competitions coming up or just longer hacks in the light nights, and this extra work  requires  the correct compound feed to ensure you get the best from your horse and it maintains its condition.  Please contact one of our friendly nutritionists and they will be  happy to help and advise.