Weighing diet options for geriatric horses

By Connie Orcutt • Published: May 1st, 2017
Category: Animal Airwaves

As horses age, they are at risk of certain medical problems, like chronic weight gain or loss. That’s why staying on top of nutrition becomes more important than ever.

It’s often a matter of checks and balances. If your horse has no problems with fat or glucose metabolism, you might keep him a bit stockier as a buffer to weight loss during future illness. But if your buddy has arthritis, you’ll want to go lighter to take weight off sensitive joints.

Overweight or inactive horses do best on a low-calorie, forage-based diet with a vitamin/mineral ration balancer. But horses who tend to be thin need a calorie boost to forage in the form of beet pulp, a commercial senior horse feed or a fat supplement.

The bottom line? Work with your veterinarian to design a diet plan that addresses your horse’s activity level and health concerns.