Larger, Harder Pelleted Feeds Might Improve Horses’ Digestive Health

By prolonging feeding time and stimulating more saliva production, large pellets of concentrated feeds could extend mealtime and offer protection from gastric ulcers.
Share
Favorite
Close

No account yet? Register

ADVERTISEMENT

Larger, Harder Pelleted Feeds Might Improve Horses’ Digestive Health
Bochnia found that the horses took considerably longer to finish the large pellet meals than the standard ones. | Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt/The Horse

If you feed pellets, your horse might be consuming these concentrated grains faster than he should for optimal health. A new form of pellet that’s larger and harder might be a better choice, said a team of German researchers, especially for performance horses.

By prolonging feeding time and stimulating more saliva production, large pellets of concentrated feeds could help mealtimes last longer while providing better protection from gastric ulcers, said Mandy Bochnia, DrMedVet, researcher at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg’s Institute of Agricultural and Nutritional Sciences Animal Nutrition Group, in Halle/Saale.

In her study, Bochnia measured chewing patterns and compared the time it took six Warmblood mares to consume a 1-kilogram (about 2-pound) meal of standard commercial-sized pellets versus 1 kilogram of pellets that were approximately three times larger. Both pelleted feeds were produced from the same batch of mixed grains, seeds, and forage (oats, wheat, corn, barley, locust bean gum, alfalfa, sugar beet molasses, linseed meal, sunflower seed, and various other components). The horses also received the same amount of hay throughout the day

Create a free account with TheHorse.com to view this content.

TheHorse.com is home to thousands of free articles about horse health care. In order to access some of our exclusive free content, you must be signed into TheHorse.com.

Start your free account today!

Already have an account?
and continue reading.

Share

Written by:

Passionate about horses and science from the time she was riding her first Shetland Pony in Texas, Christa Lesté-Lasserre writes about scientific research that contributes to a better understanding of all equids. After undergrad studies in science, journalism, and literature, she received a master’s degree in creative writing. Now based in France, she aims to present the most fascinating aspect of equine science: the story it creates. Follow Lesté-Lasserre on Twitter @christalestelas.

Related Articles

Stay on top of the most recent Horse Health news with

FREE weekly newsletters from TheHorse.com

Sponsored Content

Weekly Poll

sponsored by:

Do you use slow feeders or slow feed haynets for your horse? Tell us why or why not.
335 votes · 335 answers

Readers’ Most Popular

Sign In

Don’t have an account? Register for a FREE account here.

Need to update your account?

You need to be logged in to fill out this form

Create a free account with TheHorse.com!