STEP 1: FEED A FORAGE BASED DIET
Your horse should receive 1.5-2.5% of its bodyweight per day in forage. That means a 1000 lb horse will eat 15-25 pounds of forage per day depending on body condition and workload. You want to minimize any time your horse does not have access to forage by using a slow feed hay net or feeder.
This is a great option for horses unable to eat long stem/baled hay, or when long stem/baled hay is not available
Chaffhaye– fermented chopped alfalfa (haylage)
Medalist Feed– pelleted alfalfa and barley sprouts
Standlee Hay Company– pelleted alfalfa, orchard, timothy, teff
STEP 2: FILL IN NUTRITIONAL GAPS
Test your hay/pasture and identify any nutritional deficiencies in your basic diet (forage). Most forages are deficient in some vitamins and minerals. A “red mineral” salt lick will not provide adequate minerals to fill any nutritional gaps. Horses that are thin will need some of the forage replaced with higher calorie concentrates.
Nutrition Design Resources:
Dr. Kellon– nutrition courses
Equi-Analytical– forage testing
Feed XL– ration analysis
Pete Ramey- Feeding the Hoof
Purina Outlast Gastric Support