Thursday, May 18, 2017
How to use nutrition to heal sick horses.
Nutrition is vital for growth and development in horses, but sick horses also need a healthy plan to stay alive,healthy and recover fast. Sick horses can be difficult to manage if the proper combination of feed is not presented as certain conditions require restrictions of certain food groups to aid healing. Horses with respiratory diseases such as heaves and inflammatory airway disorder should be handled with care as these conditions are intensified with inhalation of particles. Feeding horses with these conditions will require altering typical feed or changing presentation of feed to reduce possibility of inhaling feed particles. Horses with these conditions can be fed using hay cubes or soak the hay for about 10-15 minutes before presentation. Horses can also be fed steamed hay,which will reduce the intensity of dust particles and also sterilize the hay by killing any pathogen in the hay. Hay can also be presented in pelleted form to reduce the chances of inhaling dust particles. When horses have chronic kidney disease ,the aim will be to avoid dietary protein but encourage the normal eating and drinking .Horses with chronic kidney disease fed on dietary protein will urinate excessively thus putting further pressure on kidneys thus protein is not recommended also the amount of calcium must be reduced so as to decrease the amount of substance the kidney must excrete in urine. The horse should be fed high quality hay or keep horses on pasture. Horses that have been off feed for a while or had feed that had restricted energy requirement are prone to hepatic lipidosis which is life-threatening. Horses must be encouraged to eat and a balanced ration presented. The feeding regimen must be aggressive to get the horse back in shape,this can be achieved by using hand feeding or passing of a nasogastric tube.