Equine health can benefit greatly from the proper use and quality of horse supplements. A lot of variables have to be considered for horses to maintain optimal health. Nutritional elements such as vitamins, proteins, minerals, fats, and carbohydrates have to be carefully balanced.
Using horse supplements is the most efficient way to maintain and improve equine health. Horse supplements allow for greater control over nutritional intake which provides a chain reaction of benefits.
Types of Horse Supplements
The majority of horse supplements can be divided into four groups. Depending on nutritional requirements, overall health, and vet recommendations, your horse may need just one supplement, a combination of supplements, or none.
Skin and Coat Supplements
Healthy coats are shiny and dappled. If your horses are walking around sporting a dull coat, that’s a sign of poor health. Skin and coat horse supplements can help address digestive issues, iron levels and many other conditions that contribute to skin and coat problems. The result is a horse with coat and skin restored to its shiny, healthy appearance.
Joint problems are common in older horses and horses with injuries. Horse supplements that target joint health can help restore joint support and vitality with the use of hydraulic acid, glucosamine, and other beneficial nutrients.
Nutraceutical supplements provide agents required for normal body structure and function and are given with the intent of improving the health and well-being of the animal. These may include vitamins, minerals, herbal components and other compounds, such as chondroitin sulfate, gamma oryzanol, and sterols.
Shadows, creaky door hinges, and leaves blowing in the breeze can all be triggers that place easily-spooked horses in harm’s way. Temperament supplements can help horses stay calm and relaxed. This is usually accomplished by correcting vitamin B1 or magnesium deficiencies.
Benefits of Using Supplements
The benefits of using horse supplements are unique to each individual horse. A horse that’s suffering from an illness will benefit from receiving digestive supplements that provide probiotics, fiber, and yeast. A horse with shelly hooves will benefit from supplements that contain methionine, biotin, zinc, and other nutrients that support hoof health.
The main benefits of horse supplements include:
- Improved digestive health from probiotics
- Stronger hooves due to increased hoof horn quality
- Healthier coat and skin due to increased production of keratin and collagen
- Lower stress and higher resistance to potentially stressful situations as a result of nutrients that calm the nervous system
- Better joint health with improved cartilage and synovial fluid support
Choosing the Best Horse Supplements
Not all horses need supplements, but when they do it’s important to consult with a vet to determine the best type of supplements needed. There are three general guidelines to keep in mind when searching for high-quality horse supplements:
The Life of the Supplement
Many supplements are stored for long periods of time so it’s important to choose ones that can survive for extended periods of time without spoiling.
How the Supplement is Processed
The way supplements and feed additives are processed affects the way horses can digest nutrients. The best horse supplements are processed in a way that helps partially break down proteins and gelatinize starches for increased hydration.
The Nutritional Quality of Supplements
The quality of nutrition in horse supplements varies greatly. Choosing one that enhances the benefits of nutrients and increases bioavailability is essential.
Horse supplements can address basic or specific needs. The most important thing is to choose the best supplement that will boost the overall health and wellbeing of each horse. Healthy equines need a rich supply of vitamins, minerals, proteins, and other nutrients. If they aren’t receiving the nutrients they need through natural grazing, their health will decline. Supplements can transform the value of your equine assets. All it takes is a little time and the best products.