Independent equine nutrition consultancy can offer improvements and assistance in a variety of areas, regardless of whether your horse is a ‘performance type’ or simply a much-loved ‘pet’.
There are a number of different services that are offered, all seeking to improve your experience with your horse:-
General Equine Nutrition
This involves assessing the correct equine nutrition programme for your horse or pony – starting with an individual accurate weighing session and, if required, leading to specific advice tailored to your horse’s requirements.
It can include:-
– Assessment of body condition,
– Assistance with weight gain / weight loss,
– Evaluation of current feeding programme,
– Formulation of a new feeding programme,
– Advice on improving condition and coat shine,
– Ensuring provision of a full and balanced diet,
– Encouraging fussy eaters,
– General help and assistance with any nutritional queries.
This involves working alongside your horse’s veterinary surgeon, if appropriate, in order to ensure that ‘prevention is better than cure’.
It can assist in the reduction of incidences of:-
– Metabolic Disorders, such as obesity,
– Equine Rhabdomyolysis Syndrome (ERS) (‘tying-up’, azoturia),
– Recurrent Airway Obstruction (ROA)
– PPID / Cushing’s Disease
– Developmental Orthopaedic Disease (DOD) (see Breeding Nutrition section)
– Gastric Ulcers
– Allergies and Intolerances.
This involves assisting in improving the performance of horses in various disciplines and ensuring the correct nutrition in line with their individual temperament, condition, age, etc., dependent upon their performance.
This can help to:-
– Achieve optimal performance
– Improve fitness / muscle ‘recovery rates’
– Improve training
– Reduce the risk of performance related injuries.
This involves ensuring that the feeding programme for both brood mares and stallions is tailored to meet their individual needs and takes in to account specific seasonal adjustments – for example, the beta-carotene in grass is known to have a beneficial effect on the quality of the mare’s egg produced.
Pregnant mares have varying nutrient requirements throughout their pregnancy, which must be addressed in order to avoid developmental issues in the foal, such as those associated with Developmental Orthopaedic Disease (DOD).
This involves assistance and advice with feeding youngsters from weaning to adulthood, dependent upon their breed, growth rate, time of year and age in order to help fulfill their full genetic potential.
The nutrient requirements of older horses and ponies are different to those of younger ones. Ensuring that their current diet is meeting all of their nutritional needs, can help to:-
– Reduce incidences of laminitis and Cushing’s Disease,
– Maintain condition – throughout the year,
– Assist with dental related issues,
– Assist in maintaining long life expectancy.
Sward Management – Grass and Soil Sampling
Micronutrient levels in pastureland are linked to the mineral and trace element content of the soil and grass. These vary according to the parent rock and soil type. Deficiencies of minerals and trace elements can be identified by soil analysis and sampling.
NOTE:- Analysis of the grass should also be carried out, as there is not a direct relationship between mineral levels in the soil and in the grass.
Soil analysis is not able to show what percentage of soil mineral content is available to the plant.