Apples, carrots, sugar beets- useful tips for the right feeding
Fruits and vegetable are loved by horses and a great variation to the normal cereal fodder.
However before feeding there are some aspects horse owners need to consider.
Here we summarized some useful tips:
Fruits and vegetables offer many vitamins for horses
Apples are the favorite fruit of every horse. However there is a limitation for the quantity: apples offer a lot of pectin (sugar in citrus fruits) which are water-insoluble and therefore indigestible. A high quantity of apples (and pears) can lead to a painful stomach or even a colic. Before feeding apples you can check the consistence of it. They should be mellow and should not offer any rotten parts or worms.
Before feeding carrots you can make sure that the vegetable is not rotten and free of molds (molds can cause colics and diarrhea). Due to their digestibility and their high concentration of carotenes they are a good supplement to the normal roughage. Horses can eat up to 10 kg of carrots per day. In winter the right storage can be really difficult because the vegetables should not be stored below 2 Degrees. Otherwise they start to rot and get moldy. You can make use of a robust and isolated chest (1m wide and 75 cm high). The ground can be isolated with a further warm blanket before you start to pile the carrots. In the middle of the chest you can integrate some dry and coarse sand for some further isolation. When the temperatures outside are becoming very cold you can even put some straw outside the chest for some further isolation. Generally we advise you to avoid the storage in the cellar: there often is a lot of humidity and the temperatures are too warm for an effective storage.
Sugar beets can be stored on the same way as carrots but only the chest has to be a bit bigger. Horses can eat up to 8 kg of sugar beets per day. This already correlates with one third of the daily needed energy. Referring to this you do not need to feed any further concentrated feed if your horse already gets the maximum daily ration of sugar beets. Normally sugar beets are very dirty so that they need to be cleaned before feeding. Otherwise the dirt can cause problems and pain in the intestinal tract.
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