THE NATURAL HORSE NZ RECOMMENDED FEEDING PLAN
THE NATURAL HORSE NZ RECOMMENDED FEEDING PLAN
THE NATURAL HORSE NZ RECOMMENDED FEEDING PLAN
WHY FEED OUR RECOMMENDED GUIDE?
Horses all over the country are suffering from both behavioural and medical issues associated with being fed the wrong foods.....and yet the feed and supplement manufacturers continue to bombard us with careful marketing in order to get us to buy, buy, and buy all their products-good or bad, with very little hard facts to what we are actually buying for our horses.
We test them all all through our own independent research in a bid to help more horses get a better deal from their foods. So far the results haven't been that great for most feeds and supplements coming out as just ok, rather than good or great for our horses :(
Therefore, to help take some of the guess work out of it for horse owners, we have placed our own feeding regime below for you as a guide to help you get the best from your horse's health in a jargon-free and economical way. This is an anti-inflammation diet and works well on all horses to reduce inflammation within the digestive tract, which provides benefits to a host of illnesses and ailments as well as temperament.
This is also a LOW GI diet so it serves to provide a slow-release source of long-lasting and calming energy to your horse, as to prevent spikes in insulin levels, which can lead to causing fizzy behaviour. It has turned hundreds of horses around-from being high energy difficult horses to calm and healthy equine friends. With the added benefits that it can be used for at-risk horses too, such as those with high laminitis or metabolic risks. We use the same diet in different amounts to suit many individual horses needs from minis to our big drafts and every size and breed in between.
All of the hundreds of horses that come through our centre are fed this diet and our long term residents are in excellent health and also of a calm disposition too. The bonus is that it is affordable and easy to use. Plus we rarely have the need to see a vet apart from for medical needs of our new edition rescue horses.
The amounts shown are suited to a average sized 15-16hh horse in light to medium work-if you are unsure amounts for different sized horses or ponies please drop us a line, where we will be happy to offer you guidance to the amounts to feed your horse
email [email protected]
Please be aware ALL horses are different and you may have to change the amounts to suit your horses individual metabolism
and activity levels.
ANTI INFLAMMATORY HEALING DIET FOR HORSES
Our low sugar, anti inflammation diet is both affordable and easy to use. It has been carefully put together to provide your horse with everything they need to build and maintain a healthy body and a calm mind. We have used it for years with all the horses at our rescue centre to fabulous results, and found it to be excellent for helping with a host of medical issues for horses including Ulcers, Laminitis, Cushing's- Pituitary Pars Intermedia Dysfunction (PPID), Colic, Reflux, Grass Affectedness, Allergies, Skin Issues, Head Flicking and many other ailments, including digestive issues too.
Every component of our diet has been carefully put together to compliment each other to provide a whole feeding plan to give your horse balanced and powerful nutrients, for optimum health for our equine friends. With each ingredient bringing its own benefits that are packed with healing and healthful properties.
It not only serves to provide a healthy food source but helps to heal your horse from the inside out, due to providing a host of great health benefits to all horses, no matter what their size, breed or workload, as can be seen below with the vitality of Missy and Max.
NATURAL HORSE NZ ANTI INFLAMMATION EQUINE DIET COMPONENTS
GRASS AND GRASS MANAGEMENT:
Our approach to horses is all about balance. With grass management playing a huge part in that. Whilst we do not support a grass free lifestyle for horses in general, unless they are actively suffering from laminitis or founder, or in recovery from that or any other metabolic conditions, where we advise to take them off all grass until they have healed. For the most part, we recommend for normal healthy horses to have access to some fresh green grass everyday as grass contains vital nutrients for health that cannot be replicated in a grass free diet for our equine friends. However, the amounts of grass access to give to your horse is recommended to be limited such as by break feeding or tracked grazing for the best results. With more severe grass restrictions being used during high risk times such as in Spring or Autumn or for the more "at risk" horses such as miniature, ponies, donkeys, or those with metabolic conditions or with previous lamintis cases. Which is necessary due to the fast and excessive grass growth that we see during these "danger" times, that can have a detrimental affect on our horses health if not managed well. Therefore, we highly recommend a staple diet of some grass and some hay as part of most horses feeding plans in order to achieve a good balance for a healthy, as well as happy horse.
Meadow Hay: hay is a wonderful food source for domesticated horses as it contains high levels of fibre and much lower amounts of both sugar and starches than green grass, as to replicate horses eating more naturally, such as the brown top and tussock grasses they live off in the wild.
We highly recommend to use slow feed hay nets for feeding out all hays for a multitude of reasons -we sell our own models of these which are available on this link SHOP-OTHER
These provide hay 24/7 to all of our horses, and we top up twice a day if necessary...these types of hay net have much smaller holes in them than standard nets, which makes the horse have to work to get hay from the net, mimicking natural grazing behaviours that works well to provide a low sugar food source to protect horses from having an empty stomach, which can over-produce too much stomach acid such as when happens when a slice of hay is given and then when it has been eaten the horse has nothing. This way of feeding via a slow feeder also helps to avoid, reduce and heal ulcers as well as for many other health benefits. We recommend using plain meadow hay without clover in them if possible. Our own nets are placed all over our tracked grazing system as to encourage our herd to forage for their food and therefore move around more.....but they also work well placed at a regular feeding station too and with a bit of planning can be placed in an optimal position to get the most movement from your horse. We advise to use an extra haynet per horse-for example- if you have 2 horses, use 3 haynets, as this discourages food dominance and helps to change the horses attitude towards food for the better -please see our video of one of our big horses using her hay net VIEW CLEO AND HER HAYNET VIDEO
DAILY BUCKET FEED:
This should not be a big meal but is necessary to provide nutrients and supplements missing from your horse's other feed sources...
USE A STAPLE CARRIER:
This component of the feed should be used purely as a carrier to get the other ingredients into your horse’s system. We recommend using a few cupped handfuls (2 hands together) of a low gi forage such as plain meadow chaff, or timothy, or oaten chaff. WE RECOMMEND TO PLEASE AVOID LUCERNE AND LUCERNE BASED PRODUCTS WHICH CAN BE HIGHLY ALLERGENIC AND SPRAYED AS WELL AS CAN CAUSE ALLERGIES AND HEIGHTENED BEHAVIOURS IN HORSES. As long as you don't use too much, you can also use other low Gi forages too such as Equi Fibre Meadow Pro, which we recommend to be used in a handful sized amount to mix with the other chaffs to provide a wide spectrum of forages in order to provide a variety of different nutrients for your horse. (PLEASE NOTE: We only advise a few handfuls of these products so do not give as much as the manufacturers advise. This works well as a low sugar carrier and helps to stop the horse bolting down his feed.
30ML OF COLD PRESSED FLAXSEED/LINSEED OIL:
Linseed is the American name for Flaxseed but they are the same thing. Horses do not have a gall bladder to process fats as humans do, so care is needed when feeding fats and oils and therefore only a small amount is required because it's processed by the liver. We advise drizzling 30ml of our NATURAL HORSE COLD PRESSED FLAXSEED OIL over the feed. Flaxseed oil is the only oil to use with horses, as it provides so many fabulous nutrients, without furring arteries or causing skin issues as we've seen with many other oils. It works to reduce inflammation in the digestive system due to it being a whopping 58% omega 3's, which is a natural source of Alpha-Linolenic Acid, that is a natural anti-inflammatory and serves to help joint, coat, hoof & heart health-it is also a benefit to keeping the digestive system moving fluidly and therefore significantly reduces the risk of colic too. We have now started to sell our own brand of Flaxseed Oil in order to keep the prices down due to excessive jumps in pricing from other suppliers-this can be found on the link below for $11 per 750ml or we can also highly recommend that sold from Waihi Bush under their Animals section on their website -keep it out of the sunlight & use within 3 months for best results.
FIBRE, PROTEIN & MORE OMEGA 3’S:
Use 250G of Flaxseed -this can be either in pelleted form, or in flakes, linseed meal or with freshly ground flaxseeds themselves, which we source from our local Farmlands store. Whichever way you choose to give this, these are a great source of fibre & are the best feed to give to your horse, due to being 100% natural with no chemicals or fillers. Flaxseeds are a super food for horses providing a host of beneficial health benefits from the powerful nutrients, however please be aware that Flaxseed products can cause issues if given in too high of an amount to horses such as scours-therefore to stick to a safe level we advise not to give any horse more than 250g per day maximum . Flaxseed products do not need to be soaked so are easy to use-they significantly boost your horse’s anti-inflammation diet even further as they are another great source of fibre and omega 3's. They also include recommended levels of daily protein and Vitamin E. Please note Miniature horses will only need around 50-75g per day.
APPLE CIDER VINEGAR (ACV):
Please only use straight Apple Cider Vinegar without honey or garlic, preferably with the mother included-see our shop page for our own brand. Use a 10ml capful of our double strength ACV daily added to around a cupful of water stirred into your horse’s food. Good quality cider vinegar contains strands of proteins, enzymes and friendly bacteria, and can also help kill pathogens, whilst helping to reduce blood sugars and insulin responses. It is excellent for digestion and an essential part of the diet for the health benefits it provides.
GRASS PROTECTION SUPPLEMENTS:
Use 20-30g of our-Equi-Protect supplement which addresses "Grass Affectedness"
with a separate dose of our Natural Horse Minerals and Vitamin Formula -see our supplements pages for info on our pure minerals....THESE TWO "SEPERATE" SUPPLEMENTS NEED TO BE USED FOR A MINIMUM OF 2 WEEKS INITIALLY as a loading dose to mop up all active toxins and address any mineral imbalanced, then we recommend to go onto the ALL IN 1 MIX below for maintenance.
This is a mixture of all the essential minerals, vitamins and amino acids that your horse needs blended with our EQUI-PROTECT GRASS AFFECTS FORMULA -please see our supplements pages for more info and prices.
USE 1 Heaped teaspoon of Himalayan Rock Salt.
An average 500kg 16h Horse needs on average 21g of salt per day in total, which will provide 12g of sodium, as is the recommended daily allowance for that size of horse. As this diet already includes salt from several of the feed sources, as some salt is present in most foods, albeit might only be in small amounts. It is important to take into consideration for your horse, the accumulation of salt that is adding up from all sources, including New Zealand soils, along with all food sources and supplements too. Therefore in addition to your horse already getting salt from these areas, we recommend that 1 heaped teaspoon of Himalayan salt, which is about 12g, is mixed into their daily bucket feed in order to meet these total amounts. If your horse is in heavy work, and due to higher levels of perspiration, more salt may be required. However, due to taste issues, we recommend that no more than 3 teaspoons of salt per day should be added to any horses feed, because as you can imagine it would taste awful for the horse to add any more so we recommend to offer free choice salt and/or unrefined salt licks to meet any of these extra requirements.
We are aware that there has been a lot of talk recently about which salts are best for horses, and we have often seen fads come and go over the years regarding this, and throughout all that time continue to use Raw Himalayan Salt with our own herd for nearly twenty years so far, all to excellent results. With 100% of ALL of the hundreds of horses we have taken on through our centre, all showing blood tests supporting no deficiencies in this area. So we are very confident this amount and type works well to support a healthy horse. We can highly recommend Raw Himalayan Salt as it is all-natural, chemical free, unbleached and unprocessed, and provides 84 trace minerals to our horses. We recommend not to use any other type of PROCESSED salts as they are normally bleached with chemicals, as well as include chemical anti caking agents to stop them clumping, and can also include high iron content, which is not required for New Zealand horses, who already get plenty of iron. Please see our supplements page to buy for an affordable rate.PS-as our minerals include seaweed, they provide a good source of iodine and therefore meet all iodine daily requirements so iodised salt is not required when using our feeding plan.
The above amounts are for a average 15-16h horse at approx 5-550kg bodyweight, that is ridden a few times per week.
ADDITIONAL CALORIES FOR HORSES IN WORK OR POOR DOERS:
We recommend the use of the above diet as a base diet and do not advise to swap out any of the above components or you risk losing the health benefits of this carefully balanced feeding plan. However, for horses who require more energy
such as those with higher work loads or poor doers, aging horses, pregnant mares, or growing youngsters etc.... we recommend to top up the diet with a choice or mixture of any of the following whole feeds to provide extra protein, which is 4 times as dense as carbohydrates so is ideal for aiding body condition, muscle development, recovery, growth and other health benefits such as cellular repair etc..
RAPESEED MEAL: (PLEASE NOTE: we do not recommend to feed Rapeseed oil). Rapeseed or Oilseed as it is also known is part of the brassica plant family. Which are a plant genus that is related to mustard, cabbage, broccoli and turnip family. The Rapeseed Plant is initially squeezed for it's oil as part of the agricultural industry and what is left is dried and turned into Rapeseed meal. We like it for horses as it is a natural wholefood source that has a whopping 37% protein. So a little can to go a long way to meet our horses moderate protein needs for an affordable price. Plus Rapeseed meal is also a low starch product too, which also has health benefits to those with metabolic risks. We recommend to feed this product sparingly as too much protein can cause a lot of health issues so advise a maximum of 500g per horse per day. Rapeseed meal is mostly sold in a powdered form which can be mixed well into your horses feed.
RICEBRAN : Another good protein food source with a low Gi Energy to keep an even temperament-however caution is still needed as if fed in high amounts Ricebran can be heating so we recommend to feed at no more than 1kg maximum per day.
HEMPSEED: An excellent and all natural whole-feed source of protein with low starch and sugar-due to it high protein content we recommend not to feed anymore than 250g pre day as a little goes a long way.
WEATHER AND SHELTER/RUGS:
How hot, wet or cold it is can have a massive impact on body score and the overall health and condition for most horses. Therefore, finding a happy balance to try to keep the horse warm and dry, whilst still allowing for natural behaviours such as rolling and roaming is required to have a happy and healthy horse. Again, our own approach to this is to achieve and happy middle ground and we do with with all of our horses by providing access to a tracked grazing system 24/7, along with several run-in a field shelters-See below, plus trees to act as a windbreak and offer weather protection.
Whilst we do not need to rug our horses due to our facilities, we also are not advocating that you let your poor horse shiver by being staunch and totally rugless.....as we understand that not all owners can provide shelter......so if you cannot provide shelter for your horse/s, and enough of a slow-release food-source for the herd to keep warm as in 24/7 access to hay, you may need to consider a LIGHT WATERPROOF RUG for harsh weather conditions (that was not 6 layers and 3 rugs either though...lol :)) .
Testimonials From Horse Owners
Who Are Using Our Diet
27/7/2021 Susan Writes
I would like to let you know my horses have never looked better or been more relaxed.....and this is the first year that they have been thrush free in winter. I have followed your diet recommendations exactly and cannot thankyou enough.
5/4/2021 Andrea Writes
These are just some of the improvements we have seen from our horses whilst being on your diet. We can't thank you enough for putting this easy feeding plan together. Our herd is a very healthy and happy bunch for being on it and we can't recommend it highly enough......
And it saved us heaps of money too :-)
4/2021 Paul Writes:
Totally amazing results with this diet. It was due to desperation that I tried this feed plan after my horse turned into a basket case. She was previously anxious, stressed and spent all her time fence running. But since being on this diet has stopped all of that. She is now calm, connected and willing to work. I'm in awe of these guys who helped me for free and I can highly recommend their diet plan as it really worked. Plus it was way cheaper for us and easier to use too. Thankyou for giving me my horse back.
23/3/2021 Jo Writes
Bloody Hell-It worked!!!! I literally could see my gelding chilling out a bit more each day after starting this feeding regime. He's now the sweet and cruisey super dude I always hoped he would be. Thanks so much for all the help and advice.
Your diet has made such a huge difference to us.
21/3/2021 Billie Writes
I can't believe I was within days of euthanising my mare as she was so stressed and no matter what I tried, or so I had thought, I couldn't reach her. She was a nightmare to ride, and crab walked, spooked, bucked, bolted and felt like a coiled spring to even lead. She was head shaking all the time and a stumbling mess. The vet, my bodyworker, various farriers and 4 different trainers all thought she was a lost cause. Then I met Tracy from Natural Horse at the dentist of all places. We were in the waiting room and got talking horses and the rest is history. My girl was nothing more than grass affected and this diet (and Tracy) taught me all I needed to know to stop and prevent all of that. It is affordable and easy to follow and best of all it is all-natural ingredients too. I'm now enjoying hacking my horse out to the beach in a rope halter would you believe, whereas before I needed so much tack on her head to even stop her!!! She is no longer stressed and is calm and responsive. Love my horse and can't thank Natural Horse NZ enough for all your support and this fabulous feeding plan. Xxx
I wanted to say how pleased we are with using your feeding plan. It is so easy that we keep thinking we have forgotten something-lol. Our previously fussy horses now devour every last bit of their bucket feed and they look absolutely fantastic on it. We have seen dapples come out for the first time and no more washed out or fading coats. Our older boy is running around like a spring lamb and his joint health has improved tenfold, with the whole herd being so full of health.
Thanks so much for developing such a simple but effective way to feed horses.
2/11/2020 Debbie writes
I had to write to tell you how impressed we are with this new way of feeding our horse. Burt has gone from being a grumpy sourface to now seeking us out for fuss and cuddles since changing to this diet. I'm stunned at the difference in his behaviour as he now comes to meet us at the gate and no more pinned back ears. His poos are so much better too and he is definitely moving more freely on it. The farrier has already mentioned how much better his hooves are and we can see that they are now growing more connected down from the coronary band so we are just thrilled with the benefits. Thank you very much for all your help and advise. This whole new approach to diet has made owning horses so much more rewarding.
I love it , I love it and I love it some more. I started off with this diet due to one of my horses being severely grass affected and I can't believe how much better he is. Not only that but I saw instant results to his body as well as his mind. I was so impressed that now all four of my horses are now on it and are literally gleaming with health. Plus they are calm in their temperaments and it's all natural and affordable too. I can't recommend this highly enough.
My horse has been on this diet for just 4 weeks and already we have seen such amazing improvements to both his physique as well as his temperament. He is now meeting me at the gate and wants to be ridden. I am paying half what I was previously paying but now for much better ingredients and its so easy. Thanks so much to the team at Natural Horse
I never knew feeding could be so easy, and wow-the results are outstanding. I love this diet for my horse so much. Plus my gelding is looking the best he has ever done. I cannot recommend using this feeding guide for your horse highly enough. Thank you Natural Horse NZ.
29/1/2019 Dave writes:
5 days in and everything changed for the better with our whole herd using this diet. We are very grateful and it is so easy to use.
Yay, I have my cruisy horse back for Xmas. We've had an awful time with him being so badly grass affected and all that has gone in just 5 days. I took him to the beach this morning for the first time and he behaved like a pro. That would not of been possible until using this way of feeding-thankyou, thankyou, thankyou for this amazing way to feed my horse-you lovely people at NATURAL HORSE NZ. Xxx
11/11/2018 Amanda writes:
2 Days on this diet and the head flicking just stopped!
5 days in and he calmed right down just like you said he would.
2 weeks on and I'm back in the saddle :)
My boy is calm and connected to me and I can't believe how easy it is-Thankyou so much xxx-YOU HAVE LITERALLY
SAVED MY HORSES LIFE!
OMG-our wee mini went nuts and turned into a nasty wee boy. These lovely folks helped to put him back together again with this diet. I had no idea that grass and grains could do all that to a horse so this has been an education indeed. But even a non horse person like me can put it together once its been spelled out and now the family and I follow this plan for our daughters pony to very pleasing results. We can't thank the nice people at Natural Horse NZ enough as we are very happy with the turnaround and the bonus is it costs less than the expensive crap in a shiney package we were feeding him before and we get way better results.
22/11/2017 Marjory writes:
Dray was a misery guts prior to starting this dietary plan, which we now know was from digestive upsets due to feeding him an unsuitable diet despite the glossy pamphlet telling us it was good for him from the grain store. So, we took a chance and tried him on this diet and wow! We were blown away on how much of a difference it made to his personality. I had no idea food could play such a role on temperament. Now he is a much happier horse and has tuned into a cheeky fun loving monkey. He's so much more willing to come in and be caught too and works so well with all his schooling. We are thrilled with the results and have converted the rest of our horses and the grazers ponies to this too, all to happy results. Many thanks.
13/7/2O17 Mike writes:
I bought my daughter a pony and it all turned to custard. He went from calm and easy to stressed and dangerous. So I rang these people and they helped to turn him back around. He's now on these foods and is calm and relaxed again for the kids. It's very worrying to see your teens having to handle dangerous horses so I was very happy for the help given by Natural Horses. Thankyou as its made a big difference.
19/7/2016 Darma Writes:
All I can say after seeing the amazing changes to my horse from feeding this plan, is to be highly sceptical of all the glossy packets and slick marketing of feed and supplement companies as they do not have your horses best interests at heart. We fell for it and were feeding what we thought were similar products to the Natural Horse range but the results were just not happening. Our horse looked like an ageing geriatric at rising 16 on his previous feeding plan and supplements. His back was swaying and his top-line was none existent, with joint issue, crumbling hooves, and 2 colic episodes so far to name just a few of his health issues. Even the vet recommended retiring him. Then I attended a free clinic and nutritional seminar put on by Natural Horse. They talked a lot of sense so I decided to follow their feeding plan and use their supplements. Now our horse looks like a healthy ten year old. His back is much straighter and he's developed an nice rounded top-line. He has not had any more joint issues and the colic has not ever happened again after 3 years of using it so far. We have taken also advice and gone bitless and barefoot with him too and are very happy with how that has panned out. His hooves have improved tenfold and he no longer needs shoes, which has been great
and has saved us a fortune. We now have a healthy horse and are delighted with the improvements to both his health and behaviour. Our vet didn't recognise him and his blood work since has always come back as ideal. We highly recommend to follow this dietary plan.
Many thanks to the NATURAL HORSE TEAM.
Yay-all the allergies have gone. Chester was plagued with itchy skin & rubbed himself raw on every thing he could scratch himself on. His skin was always inflamed & it was an ongoing battle. We don't have any of that anymore & he's so much happier for it too. The diet worked immediately & within a few days he just stopped rubbing himself & hasn't done it for over a year now. The thing I love the most is the gloss to his coat & every time we attend a show people comment on his health. I'm asked over & over again which shampoo I'm using-lol. When I tell them it is his diet nobody gets it-lol. But we do. THANKYOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR NATURAL FEEDING PLAN xxx
Wow, what a difference!!! I now realise I was previously feeding my horse a cocktail of total crap which has hindered his health rather than helping it. Now he is on your great anti-inflammation diet he is a changed boy and is so happy and obliging, plus he looks
fantastic on it too. He also has an incredible shiny coat.
15/3/2015 Lyla Writes:
I have paid professional nutritionists, the world over and not seen the excellent results that I've seen from the fabulous anti-inflammation diet which you recommended for my allergy-ridden horse. I'm so impressed with the results that I'm now using it on all of my 12 horses, to equally as impressive results-thanks Tracy-you are a total star in your field, and we all appreciate it :)
12/3/2015 Elaine Writes:
This has saved me a complete fortune from all the gimmicky feeds, supplements, lotions and add ons that I was previously feeding my horse before and all only to only mediocre results too :(. The NATURAL HORSE RECOMMENDED DIET is working a treat and I'm seeing tangible health benefits to all my horses who are on it and all without the high price-tag that I've paid in the past.
We're very thankful-thanks guys.
10/3/2015 Brian Writes
We cannot shout about this feeding guide enough as it has saved our horses life. We've had a horse plagued by ill health and allergies etc and tried everything available before we finally found this miracle guide, which has changed everything for the better for us. Our boy is now relaxed and happy, and no more head flicking or rubbing himself raw. We are so pleased-thanks NATURAL HORSE NZ.
*The information on this website is intended to offer you written support and should not replace the advice of a registered veterinarian for your horse.
*Natural Horse NZ will not be responsible for the incorrect use of these products as you are responsible for the safety of your equine so please follow the instructions and only use the dose rates provided in the recommended way.