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Horse Feed & Supplements For Weight Gain

Feeding For Weight Gain 

The elite performance horse. The hard-keeper. The picky eater. Packing on the pounds is never easy when owning one of these types of horses. In most cases, the strategy must be to increase the amount of calories in the horse’s diet or improve the digestion of those calories. Note that certain medical conditions may require specific nutritional support, so be sure to consult your veterinarian and/or contact us in these cases.

There are a few ways to adjust the diet of your horse to improve weight gain. 

  1. Add calories by making changes to your horse’s current diet.  Forage, particularly hay, can vary in the available calories to your horse depending on the type and maturity when cut in the field.  But good quality hay can be hard to find and costly. The solution to this would be to add a higher quality forage source to replace a portion of your hay, such as Wrangler Pellets or Cubes. Forage helps to keep the hindgut healthy and is a more natural way of feeding for the horse. 

    Grain products vary in calories depending on proportion of ingredients used to mix the grain. Choose a grain that is higher in calories per pound, such as Cadence™, Cadence™ Ultra, Trifecta or Supreme™ 14. This is the easiest option to minimize the volume of feed needed and the complexity of adding supplements. It may also save you some money in the long run as well.

  2. Add calories to the current grain with a fat supplement.  Using fat, you can easily add calories without a drastic increase in the amount of grain your horse has to eat per day. You can accomplish this with ULTIMATE FINISH® 25, 40 or 100. These options are easy to use and less messy than adding vegetable oils. If you are feeding multiple horses, you can tailor their calories to meet their individual needs.

  3. Consider the form of grain you are using. The ability to digest the feed you are providing to your horse can be as unique as each individual horse. Ulcers and other digestive disturbances can reduce digestion and limit maximum breakdown and usage of the nutrients in grain. Change to a pelleted or extruded form of feed – or both. This allows more calories to be available for your horse to utilize versus a texturized form. Products to help with this include EQ8® Gut Health, EQ8® Senior, Cadence™ Ultra and Trifecta.