3In the horse, all true digestion is by enzymatic digestion and takes place in the fore gut (ahead of the cecum). This accounts for 52-58% of the crude protein digestion and virtually all soluble carbohydrate digestion (fiber excluded).
4In addition, bacterial or microbial digestion of Fiber occurs in the Hindgut (cecum and colon) where large quantities of volatile fatty acids are produced through fermentation and are absorbed.
5This dual system allows the horse to digest: 1. Simple carbohydrate sources such as starch from grain in the Fore Gut= ENZYMATIC DIGESTION 2. Fibrous sources such as oat hulls, soy hulls, beet pulp, hay and pasture are digested in the Hind Gut= BACTERIAL/ MICROBIAL DIGESTION
6FORE- GUT HIND- GUT Duration in the Foregut= 1.5 hours Duration in the Hind-Gut= 2-3 days
7For enzymatic and microbial action to digest feed efficiently, the horse needs healthy teeth to grind feed and allow enzymes and bacteria to attack the plant cell walls.Teeth should be examined during the annual health check to ensure that they are wearing normally and are effectively grinding the feed.
8The emptying time of the stomach after filling can be about 12 minutes, and the rate of passage down the small intestine is about 1 ft/min. The net result is that food can go from the mouth to the cecum in about 1½ hours (FOREGUT TO HINDGUT= 1.5 hours)
9The small volume of the stomach and rapid passage of food from the stomach is the reason horses eat almost continuously, thus the name……………………. “HAY BURNERS”
10Various studies on total passage time, indicate 2-3 days is required from when food is ingested until it is passed in the manure. …..The mature horse's large intestine makes up more than half of the total volume of the digestive tract, is important for microbial digestion of food and is a major reservoir for water.
11When undigested starch and sugars reaches the hindgut, the microbial fermentation process in the cecum produces a higher level of lactic acid. This creates a more acidic environment in the hindgut (lowering the pH), resulting in the state known as…………………….. “HINDGUT ACIDOSIS”
12Risks Related to Hindgut Acidosis Hindgut acidosis is itself a health risk, as the lower pH can kill beneficial bacteria and allow dangerous pathogens to prosper – It is the beginning of more serious digestive distress.A high volume of lactic acid in the bloodstream may also reduce the ability of the horse’s muscles to clear lactic acid that builds up during exercise. This may, in turn, lead to a slower recovery from exercise or………. “Tying Up”.Hindgut acidosis is also known to lead to:Laminitis,Colonic UlcerationPotentially to Colic.
13There are good bacteria and bad bacteria in the horse’s gut There are good bacteria and bad bacteria in the horse’s gut. The good bacteria are killed off by sugars, creating lactic acid, which then causes lesions or ULCERS in the hindgut. The bad bacteria die off very quickly however, creating Endotoxins.These Endotoxins seep into the bloodstream through the gut lesions and go straight to the LAMINAE of the horse’s foot, causing inflammation and destroying it. The once tightly connected epidermal and dermal laminae lose hold of each other. …………………………… This is LAMINITIS.
16SIGNS OF ULCERS Overall Poor Condition Inability to Gain Weight/ Poor AppetiteExcessive Chewing/ Teeth Grinding/ Wood Chewing/, etc.Pawing the Ground when eatingPhysical DiscomfortPoor PerformanceReluctance to move/ bend / extendSensitive to external pressure (colonic)Tucked Up/ Tucked Under Body PositionPresence of Hemoglobin (Gastric) and Albumin (Colonic)- Fecal Blood Test
17SIGNS OF COLIC Gas/ Spasmodic, Impaction, Sand, Parasite, Twisted Gut Flank WatchingPawing the GroundRolling/ Lying DownRestlessnessSweatingMuscle Tremors/ ShakingDepression/ Decreased AppetiteLack of Manure Droppings/ DiarrheaSwishing TailSlow Capillary Refill Time/ PulseKicking / Biting at the BellyBucking
18NUTRITION TIPS FOR OPTIMAL FEEDING (To Aid/ Prevent -HIND GUT ACIDOSIS, LAMINITIS, ULCERS AND COLIC, etc.)Feed your horse only what they need (based on Body Condition and Activity Level)Feed Low Starch- High Fiber/ High Fat RationsPromote “Healthy Bacteria” in the Hind GutOffer Free Choice -Good Quality Forage (obtain a forage analysis if available)Feed/ Ration Balancers in small/ frequent portions (2 -4 x’s per day)Follow an Effective De-Worming Schedule/ Parasite ControlSchedule an Annual Dental/ Teeth CheckupAvoid sudden changes in feed/ forage/ rations.Offer access to Clean Water at all times.Offer “Balanced” Chelated/ Organic Vitamins & MineralsMaintain Hydration levels (ie: salt blocks, direct fed electrolytes)Feed a high quality Feed produced specifically for horses (no cross contamination)
19NUTRITION FOR FOALSThe foal and growing horse have undeveloped cecal and colonic digestion as compared to the adult horse. There is very little microbial digestion before three months of age. Therefore, the foal requires a diet low in fiber and easily digested in the fore gut.Foals who are seen eating their mothers manure are thought to be obtaining a bacterial culture necessary for future microbial digestion
20Equine Internal Parasites Where they live……….How to find them…….Fecal Egg Count
22SIGNS OF INTERNAL PARASITES •Dull, rough haircoat•Lethargy (decreased energy) or depression•Decreased stamina•Unthriftiness or loss of condition•Slowed growth in young horses•Pot belly (especially in young horses)•Colic•Diarrhea
23YOUR HORSE’S CHECKLIST Clean Water To maintain proper hydration levelsTo protect from ingestion of mycotoxinsBalanced Vitamins / Minerals For absorption / utilization of nutrientsEnzymes To allow for digestion of feed/ forageActive Probiotics To Promote/ Maintain gut healthElectrolytes To Maintain proper hydration levelsProtein To Promote / maintain optimal body conditionFiber To optimize FermentationFat To provide “cool” energy/ optimal body conditionCarbohydrates (Non-structural) To control Starch/ SugarSupplements To address specific health-related concernsWorming Program To protect your horse from internal damageAnnual Dental Check To promote proper digestion
24To build a Happy, Healthy and “Willing Partner”……
25VITAMIN AND MINERAL SUPPLEMENTS FOR HORSES A vitamin and mineral premix should be specific for the classification of horse (age, reproduction status, workload, etc). The key to using vitamin and mineral supplements is to incorporate them to “balance the diet” and to avoid over-supplementation.NOTE: Overfeeding vitamin and mineral supplements may create an imbalance in the amount of vitamins and minerals in your horse’s diet and can be toxic.
26HAY BALANCERS/ RATION BALANCERS If your horse is primarily receiving its nutrition from hay, then you should consider a supplement that balances for the vitamins, minerals and nutrients that may not be present or may have leached out of the hay.**The longer the hay has been stored the lower the nutritional content will be**.NOTE: Obtaining a Hay Analysis is helpful when confirming the vitamins/ minerals in the forage and the deficiencies that exist.
27Equi-Ferm XL is a Pre-Biotic and Pro-Biotic in all Tribute Equine Nutrition Feeds. Equi-Ferm XL works by:Stabilizing digestive floraImproving fiber digestionMaximizing the absorption of key nutrientsSource of essential amino acidsEqui-Ferm XL is a micro-encapsulated live yeast (reaches the hindgut in the active form), a rich source of metabolites to improve your horses feed and fiber digestion. This powerful combination enhances digestive functions so the horse gets the most out of everything it eats. This strain has been screened and selected from thousands of other strains for it’s capacity for improved digestive function and animal performance. It has been validated by leading research centers and in more then 50 scientific publications. EQUI-FERM XL will propel the performance and overall well-being of your horse to the next level.
28THE ESSENTIALS RATION BALANCER EXTRUDED FAT SUPPLEMENT To be used as a “TOP DRESS” or as a RATION BALANCER…. To add an Active Pro-biotic and “fill the gaps in the forage” or “bulk feed” program.
30Your Horse’s Nutrition Plan is based on: EVERY HORSE IS DIFFERENT……..What is the “RIGHT PLAN?” for yours??Your Horse’s Nutrition Plan is based on:Body ConditionActivity LevelAge / Breed/ Reproduction NeedsSpecial Conditions (ie: Cushings, etc.)Training/ Performance NeedsType of Forage the Horse is fedOwners BudgetFeeding Schedule/ Arrangement
31We specialize in developing the “Right Plan” for your Budget and your Horse (s)…….. What’s included:Individual Body Condition ScoringPerformance/ Activity Level – “Goals Based Analysis”Review of Specific Needs/ Special ConditionsFeed Cost Calculators (comparison of different options)Consultation with your Vet or Farrier as neededCustomized Rations offered thru our Certified Equine NutritionistLiaison with Coach/ Trainer / OwnersCorrespondence with Saddle Fitter/ Maker to discuss goals with relation to body condition.We are here to help protect the “health of your horse” and “your investment” in your Equine Partners and Equestrian Pursuits………