November 2013 Issue - page 7

November 2013
Page 7
Winter Ready
The difference between a hard winter and a manageable one is all in the preparation. The information on the
following pages can help you in many ways to plan for the inevitable short, cold days Old Man Winter has in store.
To keep horses healthy
and in good condition through
the winter, provide adequate
shelter to protect from wind
and moisture, fresh water at a
temperature above 45ºF, and a
diet with adequate calories to
maintain body temperature and
function. The level of calories
needed depends on the environ-
ment (severity and length of the
cold period, moisture, and wind
chill) and the animal (hair coat
and body condition). Monitoring
body condition is key to accurate
assessment of your horse and
whether adjustments to diet are
necessary. Evaluate your horse
with a visual inspection and
manually by feeling over the ribs
and back.
Typically, increased for-
age intake is the first choice
for meeting elevated energy
requirements. Fermentation of
fiber by microorganisms in the
hind-gut creates heat, which
helps keep the horse warm.
Although grains contain more
digestible energy per pound
than hay, the amount of actual
heat given off by the diges-
tion process is significantly
less. A horse should consume
a minimum of 1.5 to 1.75% of
its body weight in forage daily.
If forage is limited, Blue Seal
Hay Stretcher, ēcube™ Senior,
or Dynasty® Forage are good
supplemental alternatives from
the Kent Nutrition Group.
For horses unable to main-
tain good body condition by
increasing forage intake, provid-
ing a higher fat diet may be
desirable. Blue Seal Sentinel®
products offer both high fat and
high fiber in a highly digestible
extruded form for safest feeding
of additional calories. Blue Seal
Dynasty® pelleted and textured
products offer a synergistic
blend of calorie sources includ-
ing high fat to meet the diverse
energy requirements of all
When making changes to
equine diets, gradually introduce
or increase feed over a period of
at least 10 days to minimize po-
tential digestive upset. Ensuring
adequate water intake during the
winter is also crucial for healthy
digestive function.
Winter Feeding
For Desired Body
Condition & Health
with Blue Seal
1,2,3,4,5,6 8,9,10,11,12,13,14,15,16,17,...40
Powered by FlippingBook