It’s no secret that vitamins are an important part of every horse’s diet. But does your horse need some type of vitamin supplement? Some horses might benefit from a vitamin supplement, but many are able to obtain the vitamins they need through their regular diets.
Vitamin supplementation might be beneficial for:
- Horses on a high-grain, low-forage diet (such as youngsters in heavy race training), or for those on very poor-quality forage or eating hay that is more than a year old. Vitamins tend to break down over time in stored feed. For example, there is a 9.5% loss of vitamin A activity in hay every month.
- Horses receiving prolonged antibiotic treatment for illness or infection. Broad-spectrum antibiotics inhibit the growth of the beneficial cecal and intestinal bacteria, which inhibit their production of B vitamins and vitamin K.
- Horses in high-stress situations, such as frequent traveling, showing, or racing.
- Horses who are eating poorly—for example, those recovering from surgery or illness.
- Horses who are anemic—although the source of the anemia should be determined and treated first.
Source: the horse