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Feeding Salt and Minerals

Many horse owners choose to provide a salt block or salt lick, in effort to allow the horse to regulate his own salt intake. A plain (white) salt block only contains sodium chloride (salt; NaCl) and likely also some iodine. A trace mineral salt block (typically red or brown) also contains several of the trace minerals (such as copper, zinc, iron, etc.) that are required by the horse daily. Within trace mineral blocks, some also may contain selenium, and there are some differences among products, so be sure to read the label. Note that blue salt blocks contain cobalt, which is required for ruminants (and horses) for vitamin B12 (cobalamin) synthesis. Most red blocks also contain cobalt, however. Whichever you choose though, make sure you feed blocks that are designated for horses. Salt and trace mineral blocks typically have consumption rates of about 50 grams per day, but this can…

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