5 Practical Research-Based Horse Feeding Considerations
It’s one of the most common questions an owner asks: What should I feed my horse? Equine nutritionists look both to research and their own experience to answer this question. Besides considering life stage and activity level, they must weigh variables such as environment, climate, genetics, and health conditions, which can alter the horse’s needs and lead to, perhaps, the most appropriate answer to this question: “Well, it depends.”
The Kentucky Equine Research (KER) Conference 2018, held Oct. 29-30, in Lexington, ended with a roundtable session on putting feeding requirements—particularly those outlined in the National Research Council’s (NRC) Nutrient Requirements of Horses Sixth Revised Edition, 2007—into practice around the world. Pat Harris MA, VetMB, PhD, Dipl. ECVCN, MRCVS, from the WALTHAM Centre for Pet Nutrition and MARS Horsecare, based in the U.K.; Peter Huntington, BVSc, MANZCVSc, director of nutrition at KER’s Australasian facility, in Victoria, Australia; and Laurie Lawrence, PhD, professor of equine nutrition at the University of Kentucky, in Lexington, fielded questions posed by moderator Joe D. Pagan, PhD, founder and president of KER, with main headquarters in Versailles, Kentucky.
Here are five take-home messages for horse owners from this
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