Although a horse can function properly on a hay diet around the year, lets look at it this way, would we ourselves be happy and healthy with a diet that does not have a bit of variety, adds a bit of flavor or a bit of vitamin boost in our lives? The minute green grass is cut to make hay, the vitamin levels automatically drop by up to 80 percent. Vitamins are a most vital organic compound found in green grass and they are necessary in a horse’s diet to ensure normal growth and optimum functioning.
Benefits of adding grass in a horse’s diet.
Vitamin E as a component in green grass aids in boosting the immunity of a horse, in reproduction and in vital tissue formation. Horses are very active animals and denying them vitamin E could have adverse effects on their well-being.
Whilst one may consider the option of prepared feeds to aid in giving their horse a vitamin E supplement, it is important to note that the balance may not be quite right. Most of the natural vitamins are destroyed during food processing, and the feeds may also contain an excess of the required vitamins. The proper balance can only be acquired naturally, in grass.
There are cases in which a horse may be in dire need of a grass diet, as we shall discuss below.
One of the cases is when a horse is expectant. This is a horse that is likely to suffer vitamin E deficiencies as most of the vitamins are taken up by the foal the horse is nurturing. A horse that is also on a high breeding demand needs enough vitamin E to keep up the vitality. Feeding such a horse could be the lifesaver needed for its proper functioning and survival.
A horse that is constantly traveling may be exposed to high stress levels and diseases. Putting this horse in a grass diet boosts its immunity and gives it the energy to deal with new weather conditions it may be exposed to.
A recovering horse needs the vital vitamin E found in green grass to aid in muscle and tissue building. The horse may have been injured or may have fallen sick, and the natural vitamin boost will help a lot in proper and quick recovery.
Growing horses need ample grass in their diet so they can benefit from the vitamin E. They need to grow fast and healthy, with strength and vitality. Young horses are very active and if not properly fed they may fail to meet expectations once grown because they could have missed important tissue forming and development vitamins. A constant supply of this aids a lot in their normal growth for the best performance.
It is however important to note that when putting your horse on this diet you should exercise precaution. A horse that is used to a hay diet needs to be transitioned gradually. You also need to exercise precaution by researching on the type of grass available in your area to know the amounts of vitamins or chemicals contained and their effects on the horses. Each horse is also different and has different needs. If you are not careful while introducing horses to this you could expose them to colic and laminitis diseases which are fatal.
The pros of putting your horse on a grass diet have proved to be more than the cons. Grow and nurture happier and healthier horses by putting them on a vital vitamin E diet which is made possible by availing grass to your horses on a regular basis.