Stop The Spooking By Adding Fat

It’s common knowledge that a horse’s diet will affect his attitude; ask anyone who has had to exercise a fit horse that eats loads of sweet feed! Similar to people, excessive amount of sugar can make horses not feel well, which they can demonstrate by being spooky, having a short attention span, becoming very sensitive or being overly alert to surroundings–these actions are collectively referred to as the horse being “hot.” This can be caused by the  significant highs and lows in blood glucose levels after indulging in an extra-sugary meal.

However, not every horse will respond the same after ingesting a meal with high sugar and starch. However, it’s important to feed more than just grass and hay if your horse needs more calories to support his workload.

What can an equine caretaker add to the diet without increasing the likelihood that the horse will become overly anxious and hot? Fat. Providing more than double the calories of carbohydrates gram for gram, fat is well digested and has a calming effect on equine behavior. A study conducted by Virginia Polytechnic Institute confirmed that horses fed a diet high in fat were less reactive to startling stimuli and were less anxious and excitable than horses fed a traditional grain-based diet. The horses in the experiment received 15 percent of their total daily calories from fat, which is a high portion for most horses.

Some commonly used types of fat fed to horses includes: rice bran oil, corn oil, canola oil, flaxseed oil and soybean oil. All fat has the same number of calories, regardless of where it comes form. However, it’s better to steer clear of animal fats and those oils that have a plethora of omega 6s, which can increase inflammation.

Read more about fat and how to feed it at HorseTalk 

The post Stop The Spooking By Adding Fat appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

DYFD Winter - 300x90

Comments are closed.