Can horses cope with sudden cold weather?
Horses can survive and even thrive in what we consider to be very inhospitable conditions, but they do need plenty of feed to fuel them and keep them warm.
The festive season, being perhaps the most expensive time of the year, may have you asking yourself if everything you're adding into your feed bowl is really necessary? It's a sensible question to ask at the best of times and the answer can vary.
At Simple System Horse Feeds we typically advise feeding a pellet, a chop and a balancer. The soaked forage pellet providing the bulk of the nutrition, the chop adds the right amount of 'chew' and the balancer tops up the essential vitamins and minerals that your horse needs to thrive.
So what about the balancer, is it essential? For us the answer is YES. But, given we are a horse feed company that's no surprise, so allow us to explain...
Our high quality pelleted and chopped forages are packed with vitamins and minerals, but each forage type is different. Grass, which is shallow rooting, can sometimes have a lesser mineral content than other options. This is fairly common for minerals like copper and selenium. Lucerne / alfalfa on the other hand is a legume with deeper roots so it can absorb more minerals - such as calcium to support a horse's muscles and bones. Sainfoin is deeper rooting still , is a source of condensed tannins and has more copper than grass. Going back full circle, grass has good levels of Vitamin E, more so than sainfoin or lucerne.
Finding the optimum balance is a tad complex. Too much and it's an expensive waste of money - more often than not ending up in the poo pile. Too little and your horse could be lacking, potentially leading to poor performance and even poor health.
Luckily, we know a fair bit about feeding horses - we've been doing so for over 25 years. Our knowledge and experience has allowed us to build a comprehensive range of balancers to help your horse look, and more importantly, feel great.
Total Eclipse is our most economical balancer. It's suitable for most horses and is fed at a rate of just 25g ber 100kg, per day. Simple Balance + is a pelleted version, but with the addition of two forages (lucerne and Timothy grass). It's a smidge more costly per gram but it's a great option for those that are our grazing 24/7, as you don't need to add any other feed to carry the balancer. FlexiBalance is another that is kind to the pocket as it combines our joint aid (Joint Eclipse) with Total Eclipse, so there's no need to buy both.
We also offer a balancer for those on box rest or in recovery (Eclipse Recovery), a balancer for broodmares and foals - which is also ideal for hormonal or tempermental equines (Lunar Eclipse), a balancer with calming support (Calm Balance +), a balancer for those prone to weight gain or metabolic issues (MetaSlim) and a balancer to support our wonderful older horses (Veteran Balance +). All of which come into their own when is comes to saving money by helping to keep your horse healthy.
Our balancers also cost less to feed than you might think. Our handy table below shows the cost per day for an average 500kg horse.
|Cost per horse per day
|One bag lasts...
|Simple Balance +
|Calm Balance +
|Veteran Balance +
Calculations are based on the largest bag sizes available to purchase on our website and are correct at the time of publication.
If you're unsure which balancer best meets your horse's requirments our equine nutrition experts will be happy to help. Contact the Feed Line on 01728 604 008 or complete our online form.