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Nutrition

Back-to-Work Feeding Program

Unless you and your horse escape to Florida or somewhere sunny for winter shows, you’ve probably let their work effort and diet slack a little.

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By: Shannon Pratt-Phillips, Ph.D. |

Unless you and your horse escape to Florida or somewhere sunny for winter shows, you’ve probably let his work effort and diet slack a little. He might be eating more round bales outside, a little too much grain, and might have had a bit of a winter vacation. As spring looms, it is time to get back into shape! Ramping up exercise for the show season requires a slow and steady increase in work intensity, frequency, and duration to give those muscles, joints, tendons, and ligaments some time to adjust and eventually strengthen. The diet will also need some adjusting as we go from perhaps a lower level of work to show-shape condition. Balancing Exercise with Caloric Intake As a horse gets back into shape and starts working harder (or more frequently or for longer durations) the energy – or calories – he expends is also going to start increasing.…

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