The body condition scoring system is a scientific method used to evaluate the condition of the horse based on the amount of fat on the horse’s body. This article explains the different areas to evaluate when scoring a horse’s body condition, as well as details to consider when scoring a horse
Body condition refers to the amount of fat on a horse’s body. Fat is tissue that serves to store energy and is produced when the horse is digesting more …
Adequate nutrition is one of the main components in the health of a horse. This article provides 10 nutritional tips to keep your horse healthy.
Top 10 Nutrition Tips
- Always supply unlimited quantities of clean, fresh water.
- Maximize forage intake.
- Minimize concentrate consumption.
- The Calcium to Phosphorous ratio (Ca:P) should be between 3:1 to 1:1.
- Supplement minerals and vitamins.
- Balance a horse’s ration in the following order: energy, protein, minerals, vitamins.
- Monitor your horse’s body weight and body condition
Getting a live foal on the ground is only half the battle in getting the baby off to a good start. The second half is the foal’s consumption of colostrum, the dam’s first milk.
Colostrum: The Foal’s Most Important Meal
Colostrum is the first milk secreted by the mare immediately before foaling and up to 24 hours after foaling. It contains extremely high levels of antibodies, which are large protein molecules capable of transmitting immunity against disease. Colostrum is nature’s …
Foals can be orphaned by a variety of situations: sickness, death, poor milk production and injury to, or disease of, the mare’s udder. Although colostrum consumption within the first 15 hours of life is critical to the foal’s survival, proper nutrition later is equally important to the foal’s growth.
Horsemen faced with raising an orphan foal have two possibilities for providing adequate nutrients. These solutions include bonding the foal to a nurse mare or providing a supplemental milk source …
Equine digestive disorders, such as colic and laminitis, can affect any horse owner. Understanding the distinctive digestive anatomy of the horse that can lead to these disorders, however, can help horse owners to better manage their feeding program. This article explains the anatomical peculiarities of the horse’s digestive tract, as well as feeding management steps horse owners can take to help prevent digestive disasters.
Often, it is the way rations are fed rather than their composition that leads to digestive …
As the temperatures begin to fall in the early winter months, horses require additional energy to stay warm. This additional energy requirement usually calls for changes or alterations in feeding practices. This article explains how cold weather can impact your horse and what you can do to make your winter feeding program more efficient.
The Impact of Cold Weather
During cold weather, the horse requires additional energy to maintain its internal body temperature and keep warm. The exact amount of
The broodmare owner should supply the amount and balance of nutrients that will aid in maximum conception rates and best meet the needs during gestation and lactation. This article provides information on body condition and nutritional needs of broodmares in different stages of gestation and lactation.
Mare and Foal
The success of any breeding program depends partially on correct nutritional management of broodmares. Past history reveals the common use of many different nutritional management practices for broodmares. Many of these …
Horse owners should have a general knowledge of nutrients, how nutrient needs change with different production and use classes of horses, and how to determine if nutrient supply is aligned with requirements. This article provides information related to the different feedstuffs available for horses, as well as evaluating the appropriate ration for individual horses.
Horses are fed a variety of feeds. Diets range from 100 percent pasture forage to 100 percent completely processed mixes. Most horses are fed forage …
Recent research has demonstrated the effectiveness of high-fat diets for horses. Although such diets may be bad for humans, fat is an important, safe and efficient energy source for horses. This article will clarify how to take advantage of recent research findings on high-fat diets.
On high-fat diets, horses perform longer without fatiguing, incur fewer injuries, and maintain body weight with less grain intake, while maximizing forage intake. Adding fat to a horse’s diet permits safe weight gain …