Signs That You May Need to Change or Adjust Your Horse Feed


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Picking out the right horse feed for your horse can be a detailed process. After all, you have to consider the feed’s contents, your horse’s nutritional needs, and how much feed he needs to receive. Sometimes changes in your horse’s lifestyle or body can necessitate that you change or adjust his feed. Be on the lookout for these signs which may indicate a feed change is in order.

Your Horse Undergoes a Major Lifestyle Change

Sometimes our horses undergo major lifestyle changes which require us to either increase their feed amounts or change them to a different horse feed. If your horse retires from riding, and you had previously been riding him five days a week, then you will need to reduce his feed a bit to help keep him from gaining weight in his more sedentary lifestyle. Similarly, if you increase your horse’s athletic workload, then you will need to increase his feed to compensate for the calories that he will burn.

Your Horse Loses or Gains Weight

Weight loss or weight gain in your horse can indicate that it’s time to change or adjust what you’re feeding him. Weight loss and gain can be symptomatic of other issues, so if a feed change doesn’t solve the issue, be sure to check for problems like internal parasites, Cushing’s, and ulcers.

Your Horse Experiences Frequent, Recurrent Colic Episodes

Recurring colic episodes can indicate that something in your horse’s diet is amiss. If you’re feeding your horse high amounts of concentrated feed with lesser amounts of forage, this can put him in a situation where he colics frequently. Examine your horse’s diet and see what changes could be made to reduce his colic.

Your Horse’s Coat Loses Its Shine

If your horse’s coat goes from a healthy, shiny coat to a dull, lackluster coat, this may indicate that he is lacking something in his diet. If your horse is deficient in vitamins or minerals, his coat may lose its quality. Check with your vet or an equine nutritionist to determine what may be amiss.

Your Horse Lacks Energy

A horse depends on his diet to supply his body with the nutrition it needs to function and perform. If you find that your horse lacks energy, increasing his feed or changing to a horse feed with more protein can help to restore that energy. However, remember that lack of energy may also indicate that your horse is sick or has some other medical problem.

If you encounter any of the above problems with your horse, a change or adjustment of his horse feed may be necessary. Be sure to consult with your veterinarian if you have any questions, or if the feed change doesn’t solve your horse’s issue.

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