Aug 1, 2019, 4:08 PM
For an endurance horse to reach its full potential, a lot of things have to be perfect. It needs to have the right trainers, good riders, and should also be put under a proper diet. If you’re not feeding your horse a quality brand of horse feed, you cannot expect it to do you proud on the day of the big race. Unfortunately, finding quality horse feed can be a challenge, which is why many horse owners unknowingly purchase products from subpar brands. In this article, we’ll be examining the contents of a quality horse feed to help you separate the quality formulas from the not-so-great ones.
Fiber is an energy source that is often overlooked in horse nutrition. Fermentation of fiber in the hindgut of horses give rise to Volatile Fatty Acids (VFA’s) which is converted in to energy sources like glucose and fat. High-fiber food will also promote the healthy functioning of your horse’s digestive system. Apart from preventing constipation, this will give your horse higher energy and facilitate faster development of the muscles. A great formula should also include a healthy mix of prebiotics. H-350 from Royal Horse, for example, utilizes Mannan Oligo Saccharides to keep the horses' digestive system healthy.
Some people will tell you that a full-grown horse does not need a whole lot of protein. They are mistaken. Proteins should be present in any formula you feed your horse. It speeds up cellular growth, which results in faster muscle growth. It also aids in cell renewal, making it a necessity for any endurance horse that is recovering from an injury.
Electrolyte deficiency can result in dehydration and colic, in addition to other undesirable health conditions in an endurance horse. Horses generate electrolytes naturally. However, they expel them almost as fast as they produce it. Electrolytes are primarily lost through urine, feces, and sweat. Competition horses in Middle East are particularly at risk of an electrolyte deficiency as the hot weather increases sweating dramatically. Electrolytes should be present in the formula you feed your horse to make up for those they lose throughout the day.
A horse feed should be rich in antioxidants. Without them, your horse is likely to suffer from oxidative stress. Oxidative stress occurs when the body’s free radicals are put in check. It can lead to inflammation and obesity, leaving your horse in no condition to perform. Royal Horse’s aforementioned H-350 utilizes vegetable antioxidants to eradicate the risk of oxidative stress.
Fat is an extremely useful dietary energy source. Fat has glucose and glycogen sparing effect that delays fatigue in endurance exercise.