Calculate your horse’s feed ration

What requirements need to be taken into consideration
in a horse’s feed ration? 

  • Dry matter (DM) 
  • Protein (EDNM) 
  • Energy (EFU) 
  • Cellulose 
  • Minerals and trace elements 
                                             

How to evaluate your horse’s requirement?

You have to know: 

 

Horses on artificial bedding (shavings, flax, etc.):

No straw in the stable for the horses to feed on (less chewing activity; risk of cellulose deficiency, etc.)

  • Provide larger quantities of hay: 7 to 8 kg per day
  • Choose a combined feed with a safe formula in terms of protein/cellulose balance (S 100, S 200, S 250)

 

How to evaluate nutritional content?

Nutritional content in the basic ration excluding combined feeds:

  • Type of basic ration (straw, hay, cereals, grass)
  • Characteristics (hay quality, grass composition (seasonal effect)
  • Exact quantities ingested

Nutritional content to be sourced from combined feeds in order to supplement the basic ration:

=> Please Refer to the technical data sheet for the feed stating its nutritional characteristics and nutrient content.

 Typical ration calculation:

Requirements as per the INRA (the French National Institute for Agricultural Research):

Horses weighing 500 kg, undergoing moderate work: 1 to 2 hours a day, walking, trotting, cantering, require:

  • 7.5 EFU
  • 480 g of EDNM
  • 10 to 12 kg of DM

 

Nutritional content of a theoretical basic ration for a given day:

  • 5 kg of hay: 2.2 EFU
  • 4.2 kg of DM
  • 3 to 4 kg of straw: 0.8 EFU
  • 2.6 to 3.5 kg of DM
  • Total EFU provided in the basic forage ration: 3.0 EFU
  • Total dry matter content: 7.2 kg

Nutritional content required from the feed in 2 or 3 rations:
Provision of daily EFU requirements: 7.5 EFU – 3.0 EFU = 4.5 EFU

Exemple:

With S 200: 4.5 EFU (to be provided) / 0.75 EFU (provided in 1 kg of feed) = 6 kg/day, i.e. 9.2 litres (5.3 kg of dry matter provided by the feed)

Provision of dry matter requirements: 7.2 kg DM + 5.3 kg DM = 12.5 kg of DM

Reminder:

A horse on wheat straw consumes approximately 3 to 4 kg/day, i.e. 0.88 EFU.
One segment of meadow hay = 1.5 to 2 kg, i.e. 0.67 to 0.90 EFU

 Density and equivalent values:

  •  Whole cereals 1 litre = approx. 550 g for oats
  • 1 litre = approx. 600 g for barley
  • Rolled cereals 1 litre = approx. 300 g
  • Pelleted feeds 1 litre = approx. 650 g
  • Flaked feeds 1 litre = approx. 450 g
  • Mash 1 litre = approx. 380 g

CAUTION: Remember to distinguish between litres and kilos and please weigh so as to avoid any risk of mistakes!

1 kilo of feed, irrespective of type = 88 % dry matter

* See glossary of abbreviations in Heading: Your Horse / Glossary