The Most Current Reports Concerning Education

Dec 03, 2020


Providing a balanced diet that meets your horse’s nutritional needs and being aware of possible shortcomings are vital for his care. We’ll describe seven aspects of your horse’s diet that might not be up to par. Horse owners don’t often consider water to be a commonly deficient nutrient, but do you agree when it’s unavailable or of poor quality, it can lead to a life-threatening insufficiency. Jessica Leatherwood, MS, PhD, assistant professor of equine science in Texas A&M University’s Department of Animal Science, in College Station, says dehydration often occurs in winter, when water is extremely cold or covered in ice. “Horses typically will drink less if they are cold and offered cold water,” she says. “Less water consumption coupled with increased forage intake to stay warm predisposes the horse to dehydration and possible impaction colic .” Dehydration also puts horses at risk for impaired muscle and nerve function and reduces their ability to regulate their internal temperature. Leatherwood encourages owners to combat this by offering warm water during cold months and by ensuring ice does not cover troughs or waterers. Horses can also become dehydrated during and after performing intense exercise, especially if they’ve sweated profusely due to heat and humidity. Lack of water intake during travel is another concern. In hot, humid conditions or when traveling, some horse owners opt to add electrolytes , which include the minerals sodium, potassium, chloride, calcium, and magnesium. These additives mask changes in water sources so horses will be more inclined to drink. [Production]