Horses that are overweight add stress to their joints and are at risk of founder. They are also much more difficult to fit correctly for a saddle. The best way to decide if your horse is overweight is by using, and tracking their body condition score. Horses that are a 6 or higher, should be on a nutrition and exercise plan that will bring them back to a healthy weight. Forage should still be fed 24/7, but hay should be kept in a slow feeder net to reduce the total amount consumed by the horse. Feeder sources can be found in Nutrition Part 1.
Insulin resistance and metabolic disorders are another health concern facing many horses. The best way to identify if your horse is at risk for metabolic disorders is by tracking their crest score. Horses with a score of 3 or higher are at risk of metabolic disease and insulin resistance. Horses with a 3 or higher should be fed low NSC feeds. No grains or high sugar feeds, ever. Good sources of low sugar feeds can be found in Nutrition Part 2.