One of man’s closest and most loyal friends is the horse, and horses need special care in terms of any food that is consumed

One of man’s closest and most loyal friends is the horse, and horses need special care in terms of any food that is consumed. Even though horses may look like a large animal, they actually have a small stomach, and can’t store large quantities of food. The ideal way to feed a horse is to spread food over the course of a day, rather than once or twice a day.

Horses are susceptible to colic related diseases. This is mainly due to that fact that the horse is the only known species which doesn’t vomit. The horse’s food pipe is a special design – it doesn’t let the food come back along its path. This compels the consumed food to necessarily pass through the entire digestive system. This system makes it very critical to feed the horse in the most optimum way possible. It shouldn’t lead to under or over feeding.

Choice of Grain

The most important food for horses is grain. It is difficult to exactly define the quantity of grain to be consumed by a horse in a day, but a few parameters can help. Look at the size of the horse, the build and the amount of work done in a day, as these are the factors to be considered while feeding grain to horse. A large hard working horse can be given five to ten pounds of grain each day. Similarly, smaller horses can be given a proportionately smaller quantity of grain.

Corn and oats make up the standard food for horses. While corn is supposed to provide fats and energy, oats provide the essential digestion of the meal. Salt should be added to feed mix. It should be ensured before feeding that the readily available feed doesn’t contain salt.

One may consider adding one to two ounces of salt to the feed mix. If your preference is not to mix it with the feed, then you may consider giving it in a block form as well. Carbohydrates and taste are taken care of by adding some molasses to the feed mix.

Like human beings, it is essential for your horse to live on minerals like calcium, magnesium, iodine, potassium, etc.

Always carefully read the ingredients of the feed bought from the marketplace. Add only those which are not present in the ready to eat feed.

Hay makes up another good dish for horses. There are standard recommendations available from experts for the quantity of hay to be consumed by your horse. Horse build, weight and work done in a day decide the quantity of the hay to be consumed. General recommendations fall in the region of one to two pounds of hay for a 100-pound body weight. One can compute the hay need for the horse with this ballpark figure.


Water, as in case of human beings, is also a very critical component of the horse body. Almost half of the horses body constitutes water. And is more than three fourths in the case of baby horses. It is difficult to place an exact mark on the water consumption of the horse over a day, it can be kept in the range of 5 to 15 gallons. Although it is important to never ever let your horse consume water in a gulp or just after a heavy work out.

Allow your pet to consume water only when the body temperature is normal. Second, cold water should never be given particularly after a work out. This can prove to be fatal to your pet. Last but not the least, never let your horse drink water more than what is needed.

These tips will help you to have a happy and healthy horse.

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