ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

What Do Horses Eat?

Updated on August 26, 2009

The typical horse will not be very happy with the monotony of eating dry stuff - hay, chaff and oats - every day during the winter. However, avoid an abrupt and radical change of diet.

In addition, since the prices of various feed fluctuate considerably, you may be forced to adujst the feeding from time to time on grounds of economy. But do it gradually.

How much food, how much of any constituent feeding stuffs, should you give your horse?

Chaff... You can feed hay 'long' - as it is, or 'short' - chopped up with a chaff-cutter, which is so named because short hay is called chaff or chop. The quality must be no less good. You can include a certain amount of chopped oat straw if you like, but it is then less nutritious. Chaff is particularly useful when mixed with oats or other concentrated and high-energy feeding stuffs, as it adds bulk and ensures better mastication by slowing down the horse's rate of eating.

Broad bran... is good for the digestion and also gives bulk to the oat ration. It is not so easy to get, and expensive. Its second use, and an important one, is as a mash, which is mildly laxative and is also good for sick horses. To make a bran mash, fill a stable bucket about two-thirds full of bran. Stir in enough freshly boiled water to make it thoroughly wet (but not sloppy) and cover with a sack until cool. A good mash will me 'crumble dry' when touched. A tablespoonful of salt will make it more palatable, and it should be served fresh.

Oats... are the standard high-energy concentrated feed. Suitable for horses doing hard or fast work. They should be fed with great caution and mixed with a bulky feed, as they are over-heating for a horse doing little work. Too little is less dangerous error than too much. Oats should be crushed. Though your horse is capable of crunching them up to tiny digestible morsels if his teeth are all right, he will probably be too impatient. It is a waste of money as well as of nourishment, and deleterious to the digestive system, if they come out at the other end with their goodness not properly absorbed into the body. You will no doubt buy them ready crushed, and it is therefore impossible for you to really judge their quality. But, if you see them first, remember that good oats are very hard, heavy, light in color and comparatively rounded, dry-smelling and free from dust.

Flaked maize... is a good fattening food. It has a high energy value but is low in protein, and so should not be used alone.

Barley... either flaked or boiled before feeding, also helps to put flesh on a horse. Do not use wheat.

Sugar beet... in the form of dry pulp or nuts, is also good for fattening and adding bulk, but is not a suitable for feed for fast work. It must be soaked for at least twelve hours before feeding. It swells up, and it is absolutely essential that this phenomenon should occur outside your horse, unless you want him to burst.

Linseed cake... is dear, but is useful in very small quantities, especially for horses in rather low condition and also to improve the coats. But do not try to experiment with preparing linseed yourself. Unless properly boiled first, it will poison your horse.

Horse cubes... are a useful convenience food which can replace other concentrated feeds. They are very skilfully and scientifically compounded, and the mineral and vitamins additives may lead you to think that they and they only contain the secret of health and a long life. Do not be carried away by this. And check the labels carefully. because there is not much point in feeding a semi-idle cart gelding with a ration specially designed for a pregnant mare.

Hay... according to the sixth principle of feeding, hay is the foundation of good feeding. It is good roughage and a good subsistence diet. Seeds hay is the best. Clover hay is also all right, and a little more laxative. Hay must be of the finest quality you can get, and properly made. When you open the bale it should smell delicious - just like hay! If it is too dry and crumbly, it has little value. If dust flies out, it is moldy. If it has gone a dark color, it was made too quickly and has heated. Badly made hay not only fails as a feeding stuff, but can do a lot of harm - if your horse condescends to eat it. Hay in good condition, but made from coarse rubbish, remains what it was before it was made: rubbish.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      julia 

      5 years ago

      i love horses! HORSES are #1!!!!!!!!

    • Destrier profile imageAUTHOR

      Destrier 

      6 years ago from Rural Australia

      The first thing you need to know is that it's "horses". ;)

    • profile image

      jade 

      6 years ago

      hi i love love hourses and i an going to hourse club and i wanna know a little bit a about hourses

    • profile image

      awsome 

      6 years ago

      hi i love horses

    • profile image

      allendra 

      6 years ago

      i used this imformation for my speech thanks

    • profile image

      emily 

      6 years ago

      what do horses eat

    • profile image

      isra 

      6 years ago

      i love horses

    • profile image

      isra 

      6 years ago

      Not a very common topic... probably because it is a rather dry topic. Good info though!

    • profile image

      ISRA 

      6 years ago

      Flaked maize... is a good fattening food. It has a high energy value but is low in protein, and so should not be used alone.

    • profile image

      isra 

      6 years ago

      do u like horses they are cool

    • profile image

      baker987 

      6 years ago

      Not a very common topic... probably because it is a rather dry topic. Good info though!

    • profile image

      Kaila 

      7 years ago

      It's "okay".

    • profile image

      makayla 

      7 years ago

      awsome

    • profile image

      shania 

      7 years ago

      wow!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      W- what do u think?

      O- out of order !!

      W- why did you write so much?

    • Destrier profile imageAUTHOR

      Destrier 

      8 years ago from Rural Australia

      Of course it is boring for a person who has difficulty with words :)

    • profile image

      donky head 

      8 years ago

      boring

    • bengriston profile image

      bengriston 

      9 years ago

      It seems to me that there should be a quality mix available that includes several of the above balanced out for your horse.

    • profile image

      Linda 

      9 years ago

      I agree very nice! Thanks for the information...

    • Kimberly Bunch profile image

      Kimberly Bunch 

      9 years ago from EAST WENATCHEE

      Very Nice! Here's one I wrote: http://hubpages.com/hub/horsesfacts

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)