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You dont need supplements....

You don't need suppleness.

Recently I've been sorting through my loft and I came across some old study cards. Written on the front was supplements and on the back it said if you feed the right mix you don't need supplements!!!

I remember standing in the feed room during my first position at a big competition livery yard and the yard manager saying I don't know why everyone wastes their money on these and if they fed the right mix they wouldn't need a supplement.

And for a long time I believed that was true. On loaning my first horse I brought some farriers formula for him as the farrier told me too and to be fair we did see a difference with his feet. But I was still in the mindset that 'you don't need supplements'

Fast forward 15 years and I buy rash a box of supplements, I'll be honest I did it to look like I was doing the right thing, and was still not a believer. I fed the first tub and then stop using them as he didn't look as good in his movement, condition and wasn't as focused during schooling, so I brought a different brand and the did helped but no in the same way the Equus products do.

2 years later I started to work for Equus in the warehouse I liked Dawn I liked the products and I needed a job.

My passion for supplements has grown over the years I find them fascinating and I love looking into what may help the horse. Once I've finished my nutrition course I'm going to look into a herbalist course. Anyway I digress.

So what do I believe now….. Through research and on the job training this is my thought on supplements.

Horses are natural forages, in the wild they will seek out the plant they need to help them, Garlic for the blood, Dandelion for the kidney etc. I often see mine eating the hedge and yet there is plenty of grass so it's not that they are just hungry.

When we take away the option of foraging we need to work out what our horse may need and offer it to them. If they don't take it its probably they feel they don't need it.

Now life would be so much easier if you could talk to your horse and they could tell us what's going on, but instead we have to get to know our horses and spot the signs and unfortunately part if it is a give it a go. We are not vets and don't have access to all the blood tests etc. and let's be honest I for one, try to keep vet bills to the essentials.

But complete feed already contains the supplement - yes it does but are you feeding the right amount? Are you feeding the recommended daily requirement? Now let's look at Bob, being a good doer I restrict his hard feed to help keep his weight down so he only gets a quarter if that of the daily recommend amount therefore he isn't getting the right quantity of vitamins and minerals, so I had the balancer.

Rash has a veteran mix Containing Glucosamine - now I've always been told not to add joint supplements to my feed until I am ready to feed as they deteriorate, I am sure the feed company has some magic science to stop this but the horse has to break through the science to get to the good stuff. I may do more research on this in the future. So I feed Flexi limbs adding, it also means during the cold weather or if I've upped his work I can add extra.

Each horse is different. - the herbs and supplements added to the complete veteran mix, (I use veteran as an example purely because it's one I feed, it could be any mix.) are a very broad range to help all veterans your horse may not need them all or may need extra.

So what is the answer??

Keep it simple - start with your basic fibre feeds and add to it. Add your chosen complete feed get the quantity right for the horses weight and they take a step back and look at your horse ask your self

Are you feeding the recommended daily amount?

Does your horse look good?

Is your horse getting the joint and gut support they need?

Are you happy with the cost of it all?

Answered no to any of the above then drop me a message.

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