Feeding to maintain or build condition this winter
Many horses struggle to maintain their body condition on a year-round basis on forage alone, which means they require high calorie feeds to support their weight. This issue can be exaggerated during the winter, where changes in routine and their environment can mean they require more calories for maintenance of their body condition. Adjusting their diet whilst taking in to account their current body condition and workload can help with this.
For horses that require a high calorie ration, a complete feed such as Dodson & Horrell Build Up Conditioning Mix may be suitable. Build Up Conditioning Mix is designed to help support weight gain, as well as containing Actisaf Yeast to help support hindgut health; all in a palatable muesli. Oil is also an ideal solution to adding in concentrated calories, and Build Up Conditioning Mix incorporates several high oil ingredients, contributing to its high calorie content, without being too heating.
Build Up Conditioning Mix also contains a full spectrum of vitamins and minerals, meaning that when its fed at the recommended feeding rate of 400g/100kg of bodyweight per day, it provides a fully balanced feed. B vitamins are also included to support appetite, as well as the inclusion of mint and basil to encourage eating up.
Chelated minerals are included to promote uptake and utilisation within the body. Build Up Conditioning Mix contains good quality protein, with excellent levels of essential amino acids, lysine and methionine to promote muscle condition and topline maintenance.
Increasing your horse’s dietary energy intake, and therefore their calories, can help to maintain their weight over winter. Keeping an eye on body condition, and using a weight tape regularly can also help to identify early stages of weight loss that may not be so obvious when your horse is rugged up.
Stay ahead of the game – Winter is better with us!