Does my horse NEED a supplement?
While we’re all in a varied COVID-19 holding pattern at the moment, we start to re-assess everything. Some of us are continuing to train our horses in preparation for the day we can compete again. Some of us have scaled it right back for the experienced campaigners and brought young horses into work instead. So, a common question is “should I keep up my horse’s supplements during this period?”.
Supplements are designed to “supplement” a diet where nutrient deficiencies exist or when there is a specific problem and here is why you still need them now.
Gut health is always priority number one
We always want to ensure our horses are getting the most out of their diet! Unfortunately, domestication of horses has also increased the risk of digestive issues such as equine gastric ulcer syndrome (EGUS), hindgut dysbiosis and colic. So, now is the time to get on top of gut health! A supplement that promotes optimal digestive health and function and enhances feed conversion efficiency should be on the shopping list for the majority of horses.
GastroAID Recovery is Kelato’s ultimate supplement, targeting both foregut and hindgut health, and aiding recovery from EGUS and other common digestive conditions. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a supplement to maintain good gut health daily, Kelato’s GastroAID Everyday is a highly palatable, pelleted supplement targeting the total digestive tract.
You’ve decided it’s time for a spell
You’ve put your experienced campaigner out for a spell. He has constant access to forage but doesn’t need the extra calories from as much hard feed. Does he need a vitamin and mineral supplement? The answer is – yes!
Grass doesn’t provide everything a horse needs! Australian pasture, and the hay cut from that pasture, tends to be deficient in certain minerals, particularly selenium, zinc and copper. If you’re feeding forage alone or a home-mixed diet of forage and straight grains, a vitamin and mineral supplement is needed. Or, if you are feeding a commercial feed below the manufacturer’s recommendations – e.g. 1kg/day instead of the recommended 2kg/day – your horse will require a vitamin and mineral supplement to top up those essential nutrients in the diet.
KelatoVIT Performance is a complete all-in-one multivitamin, mineral and antioxidant supplement for horses to ensure their nutrient requirements are met.
Working up a sweat
Horse sweat is hypertonic which means there is a greater concentration of electrolytes in their sweat compared to the blood. That is, they lose large amounts of electrolytes in their sweat, which significantly increases the risk of dehydration and associated disorders. So, if you horse has been sweating, they need an electrolyte replacer!
KelatoLYTE is a scientifically formulated electrolyte supplement designed to mimic the composition of horse sweat, so you know you are effectively replacing what is lost.
‘Social distancing doesn’t mean we should “let ourselves go”!
As we all know, lean muscles don’t just develop out of thin air! Just like us humans, building a svelte physique takes time and hard work. Providing a nutritionally balanced diet in combination with consistent and correct work is the key foundation for building muscle. Here’s where supplements can help. Gamma oryzanol has a stimulant effect on growth, lean muscle mass and strength. In horses, the effects of gamma oryzanol supplementation can be seen as an improved muscle to fat ratio with greater muscle definition over the withers, shoulders and hindquarters.
Kelato’s ZanoBOLIC Concentrate is a lysine and refined rice bran embryo extract (gamma oryzanol) supplement that aids the development of lean muscle, topline and improves coat shine.
Hoof health never turns off
We ask an awful lot of an animal who walks on his middle toenails. Humans have recognised for centuries that the foundation of a horse’s soundness lies in his hooves. Despite receiving a nutritionally balanced diet, some horses may still have dry, brittle hooves. In this situation, the horse may benefit from additional supplementation with biotin to improve hoof strength and integrity. Biotin contains sulphur, an element required for the formation of the reinforcing bonds between strands of collagen, and therefore plays a role in maintaining the health of the skin and hooves.
Kelato’s BiotinMAX Concentrate is an ultra-concentrated biotin supplement to support horses with poor hoof quality.
Wear and tear
Osteoarthritis (OA) is a complex, progressive disease that affects a large proportion of the horse population, including young horses. In fact, studies have shown that more than 60% of equine lameness is attributed to OA! A combination of balanced nutrition, optimal body condition score, a gradual increase in workload and an oral joint supplement, such as NutriFLEX, can minimise wear and tear and prolong your horse’s athletic career.
Kelato’s NutriFLEX provides nutrients for strong and flexible tendons, ligaments, bones and joint cartilage.
Natalie Hackl BAnVetBioSc (Hons), BEqSt. Technical Manager & Nutritionist for Kelato Animal Health.