Feeding Management Techniques

Comments

Transcription

Feeding Management Techniques
Feeding Management
Techniques
IMS #8895-E
Objectives

Discuss the concept of group feeding for
horses

List types of feeding facilities for horses

Explain the importance of feeding time and
frequency for horses
Objectives

Discuss the importance of age & body
condition on the quantity of feed required
by a horse

Recognize the effects of ration changes on
horses

Explain the effect of appetite and obesity
relative to feeding horses.
Overview

Individuals

Different tendencies

How they eat

What they eat

How they behave
Overview

Small stomach & short intestine

Sensitive to changes or inconsistencies

Unable to regurgitate food

Food passes quickly through digestive
system
Overview

Because feed does not remain long in
digestive tract, they need diet of high
quality forages

Feeding not a simple practice

Art learned through experience & study of
basic scientific principles
Overview

Must have knowledge of nutrient needs,
content, & use of feeds most commonly
eaten

Most kept in separate stalls or paddocks

Hair coats in excellent condition

Perform well
Overview

Some digest & use nutrients better

Others do not get as much out of their
feed

Each must be looked at individually

May get too fat or too thin
Percentages of horse’s digestive organs by
volume. Notice the stomach in comparison to other
parts of the digestive system
Feeding in Groups

Tend to congregate

Social animals

If fed in groups, there are some basic
management techniques
Feeding in Groups

If fed in a single trough, provide enough space

Group feeding works best with young horses
Feeding in Groups

As horses get older,
they develop a
pecking order

Meaner horses will get
more than more timid
horses
Feeding in Groups

Individual feeders may be the solution

Allow distance of 50 feet between each
feeder

Provide extra feeder so shy horses will
have feeder if a bully chases him/her off
Feeding in Groups

Best to feed timid, finicky, or slow eating
horses separately

Group feeding with foals works well as
long as there is enough space available

Feeder should not have sharp edges or
projecting points
Feeding in Groups

Trough should not be too wide

Feed should be spread along entire length
of trough

Ensure each horse gets their share
Feeding Facilities

Horses eat feed from a variety of ways

In the pasture, horses naturally eat from the
ground

In the stall, feed may become contaminated with:



Dirt
Manure
Urine
Feeding Facilities

Hay may be wasted as they walk around stalls
& trample it

Dirty hay contains parasite eggs from manure

Ground feeding advised against

Unless cleaned several times a day
Feeding Facilities

Do not place hay feeder too high

Hay particles & debris may fall into eyes

Feed troughs & hay mangers must be
cleaned often

May develop colic or digestive disorders
from eating spoiled grain or hay
Feeding Facilities

Important to check for manure in water or
feed trough

Manure makes feed & water taste terrible

May contain parasites
Feeding Times

Horses need to eat at same time each day

Creatures of habit

Greatly anticipate each feeding

Love food

Will eat enough to kill them
Feeding Times

Feeding at crazy times will cause horses
to develop bad habits such as eating too
fast


Causes digestive upsets
Should be fed more than once a day
Feeding Times

Since they are herbivores that evolved as
grazing animals, they are used to eating
small, frequent meals

Should be fed once in the morning & once
in the evening
Feeding Times

If exercised a lot, should be fed three
times daily

Working horses should be fed two hours
before beginning work or one hour after
hard work

Allows them to digest part of ration before
work when their blood supply goes to muscles
& not stomach
Feeding Times

After work, give horse time to cool off
before eating

Feeding one-half grain in the morning,
one-quarter at noon, & one-quarter at
night, works well for hard-working horses
Age and Pregnancy

After birth, it is advised to give foals
opportunity to eat mixed concentrate ration

Average 14-16% crude protein

Creep feed

Box placed next to mare’s trough that
contains ration
Age and Pregnancy

Foal’s feed box has rods spaced above
feed level that lets foal get its mouth in and
eat


Mare cannot
If several mares are kept together in a
pasture, it is recommended to put creep
feeder with an enclosure

Only lets in foals to eat
Age and Pregnancy

Foals eat creep feed
until weaned

Important to make
sure they are able to
get to ration following
weaning
Age and Pregnancy

Yearlings & twoyear olds should
be managed as
adult horses

Needs should be
met, not exceeded
Age and Pregnancy

Older horses have hard time chewing

Teeth may be:
worn down
 Gone
 Not floated (not filed) often enough


May become anorexic or so thin they do
not have an appetite
Age and Pregnancy

Horses should be fed high energy feed
especially formulated for older horses

Prefer feed that is:
Soft,
 Pelleted
 Palatable


Palatable feed may be able to get horse
out of being anorexic
Age and Pregnancy

Give plenty of time to eat & without
interruption

Require more energy to perform work so
they need more feed per unit of body
weight
Age and Pregnancy

Preferred that mares be in moderate to
fleshy condition when bred

Body score of 5-7 is adequate
Age and Pregnancy

Body condition score does not affect
stallion’s reproductive ability

Mares in thin condition do not show good
reproductive performance

Cheaper to maintain in moderate to fat
condition than attempting to increase
weight during breeding season
Age and Pregnancy

Thin mares need more energy to gain fat
than fleshy mares

In last trimester of pregnancy, mares eat
adequate nutrients to:

Provide enough nutrients to promote normal
fetal development

Gain appropriate weight to support pregnancy
Age and Pregnancy

Milk production requires a lot of energy

During lactation, mares will eat enough to:

Regain body condition lost in pregnancy

Meet the demands of producing milk
Areas Emphasized in Body
Condition Scoring
Ration Changes

When rations altered, changes should be
made gradually over period of one week

Sudden changes may cause:
Colic
 Finicky eating
 Loss of condition
 Digestive problems

Ration Changes

Change ration by switching 25% of old
ration to new ration every two days

Move horses from hay to pasture gradually

Start with 30 minutes of pasture grazing

Steadily increase to length of time on
pasture
Ration Changes

For horses returning home from strenuous
performance training, gradually decrease
exercise & high-energy feed over period of
two weeks

Horses may get azoturia & tie up if they
are brought down from exercise suddenly
& fed the same amount
Ration Changes

Azoturia - Condition affecting muscles

Ranging from stiffness to mild cramps to
the horse being unable to stand

Caused by carbohydrate overloading &
vitamin deficiency
Overweight and Appetite

Obesity - common form of malnutrition

Being too kind & generous with feed scoop
and/or not exercising a horse enough
contributes to obesity

Weight monitored using weighing scale or
weight tape
Overweight and Appetite

Estimating by sight is not accurate

Weight tapes are within 5% of the actual
weight

Not as expensive as weighing scales
Overweight and Appetite

Place around barrel or girth of relaxed
horse

Tape should not be twisted & should be
snug
Overweight and Appetite

Tape accuracy dependent on:
User
 Breed
 Age of horse


Not accurate on:
Miniature horses
 Foals
 High withered horses

Overweight and Appetite

Body score condition is one way to make sure
horses are “fat enough” but not too fat
Overweight and Appetite

Thinness in horses cause by:
Poor quality feed
 Inadequate feed
 Internal parasites
 Poor teeth
 Milk production
 Pregnancy
 Excessive work

Overweight and Appetite

Dental problems lead to improper chewing &
digestive problems

Teeth should be regularly checked for unusual
wear, tear, & broken teeth

With good management, conditions may be
corrected

Problem must be diagnosed & corrected
Overweight and Appetite

May develop a metabolic disorder

Any one of the abnormalities in normal body
functions that is of a biochemical origin
relating to metabolic functions of the body

Many horse owners feed by volume

Should feed by weight
Overweight and Appetite

Scoop full of oats weighs
much less than a scoop full
of corn

If gelding eats a scoop full
of corn, he’ll get 2 to 3
times more energy than he
will with a similar scoop of
oats
Overweight and Appetite

Make adjustments in weight so that horse does
not get excess energy

Would cause him to get fat or cause tying up
Overweight and Appetite
Recommended Daily Feed Intake by Horses (values
are percentages of body weight)
State of Horse
Forage
Grain
Total
Mature (idle)
1.5-2.0
0.0-0.5
1.5-2.0
Late Gestation
(mare)
1.0-1.5
0.5-1.0
1.5-2.0
Lactation (mare)
1.0-2.0
1.0-2.0
2.0-3.0
Working (lt., med.,
hard)
0.8-2.0
0.5-2.0
1.5-3.0
Growing
(weanling)
0.5-1.0
1.5-3.0
2.0-3.6
Growing (yearling)
1.0-1.5
1.0-2.0
2.0-3.0
Overweight and Appetite
For example
 1,000 pound mare that is lactating would
get:

10-20 pounds of forage

10-20 pounds of grain

Total of 20-40 pounds of feed
Overweight and Appetite

The following is a sample showing how to
proportion quantities of hay & grain fed to
horses according to weights & whether
they are idle or performing light, medium,
or heavy work
Overweight and Appetite
Recommended Proportions of Hay and Grain
for a 1,100-lb Horse (values are in pounds)
1,100-pound horse
Hay
Grain
Idle
20
0
Light Work (1-2 hrs/day)
1.5
5
Medium Work (3-5 hrs/day)
14
13
Hard Work (5+ hrs/day)
13
15
Overweight and Appetite

Charts serve as general guides

Horse owners must

Estimate how much feed to provide

To evaluate body condition

To make necessary adjustments in feeding
Other Factors

Regularly examine horse manure to look
for changes in:
Consistency
 Odor
 Color
 Composition


May indicate a disorder
Other Factors

When closely confined, may crave unnatural
feeds

If fed pelleted or cubed rations with no hay, they
may decide to:



Chew wood
Eat hair
Eat Dirt
Other Factors

Foals have more of a tendency to chew
the tails of their mothers or eat manure
than older horses

Foals can easily get internal parasites
from eating eggs found in manure
Other Factors

Internal parasites:
Lower digestive efficiencies
 Cause digestive disturbances

 Colic
 Diarrhea

External parasites need to be controlled

Use a lot of energy to fight them off
Summary

Some horses digest & use nutrients better
than others

Others do not get as much out of their
feed

Each must be looked at individually

May get too fat or too thin
Summary

Tend to congregate

Social animals

If fed in groups, there
are basic management
techniques

Will eat feed from a
variety of ways
Summary

In the pasture, horses naturally eat from
the ground

In the stall, the feed may become
contaminated with:
Dirt
 Manure
 Urine

Summary

Keep stalls, feed troughs, & water clean to
prevent horse from developing digestive
disorders

Horses should be fed at the same time two
to three times daily depending on amount
of exercise or work
Summary

Special considerations and observations
should be made of:
Foals
 Pregnant
 Nursing
 Older horses


Rations changed gradually

Too abruptly will cause harm
Summary

Horse owners must:

Estimate how much feed to provide

Evaluate body condition

Make necessary adjustments in their feeding
to prevent malnutrition
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Reproduction or redistribution of all, or part, of this
presentation without written
permission is prohibited.
Instructional Materials Service
Texas A&M University
2588 TAMUS
College Station, Texas 77843-2588
http://www-ims.tamu.edu
2009

Similar documents