The majority of horses that are not engaged in the realization of a productive activity, such as reproduction, gestation, lactation, growth, fattening, work and sports, require only a maintenance diet. This is the condition in which the animal does not gain or lose weight through ingested food, but it allows the horse to maintain basic body metabolism, the renewal of cells and tissues of its body and body temperature. These basic needs can be met through a paddock with a good pasture or with a maintenance diet.
In the case of growing animals, pregnant or lactating mares, or those hoses that perform intense work or subjected to a sport, they have greater nutritional needs, due to their activity, and require the incorporation into the diet of one or more substances to supplement the food that at that moment does not satisfy their demands. Therefore, it should be added to the basic food (pasture or hay) another element called concentrate or supplement (e.g. alfalfa pellets) in order to transform that imperfect nutrition into something integral and balanced according to the requirements of the animal, and allowing to achieve a better physiological benefit of its potential.
Nutritional needs, in quality and quantity, are expressed through the administration of a set of basic and fundamental elements in the feeding of horses, which are: water, energy, fiber, proteins, minerals and vitamins.
The fiber (cellulose) generates a lower level of energy, but it is essential to administer it in a suitable proportion to ensure a normal transit of the intestines. The digestibility of a certain food is inversely proportional to the amount of cellulose.
The hay or bale contains a lower concentration of energy than the grains. The leaves contain two thirds of the energy, three quarters of the proteins and most of the nutrients. From the nutritional point of view, supplied hay must have to be well used: fine stems, abundance of adhering leaves, good quality and optimum harvest time, and must be free of fungi. The hay in pellets has certain advantages, among them can be mentioned the lower loss of leaves.
|Soy expeller 41||30||-||-||-|
|Total in kilograms =||1000||-||-||-|
|Gross protein (minimum)||13%||-||-||-|
|Fatty matter (minimum)||3%||-||-||-|
|Metabolizable Energy||2600 kcal||-||-||-|
|Total gross fiber||13.5%||-||-||-|
|Total calcium (average)||0.9%||-||-||-|
|Total phosphorus (average)||0.3%||-||-||-|
|Total digestive nutrients||80%||-||-||-|