Nutritional myth: When fed free-choice vitamins and minerals, horses will pick what they need.


Researchers learned that horses have some nutritional sense for salt, but not for other nutrients. Horses will seek out salt when they need it, but if you feed other minerals and vitamins “free choice” you are bound to end up with some excesses and deficiencies. Taste is the major driver of consumption, not nutritional wisdom. If it tastes good, they will eat it.

Take-home message: Your best bet when feeding vitamins and minerals is to provide your horse with a well-balanced commercial feed or supplement that has been formulated by a qualified equine nutritionist.

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