The Importance of Equine Foot Health
Landmark hosted an equine education meeting in early April and we were fortunate to have great speakers and topics. The first speaker and topic that we will be recapping from the equine meeting is Floyd Sutton from Zinpro Corporation who spoke on Equine Hoof Health.
Vitamins and minerals are already formulated in most equine feeds. Although some are formulated for the minimum daily requirements, some are formulated for daily optimal requirements. A balanced combination of: Zinc, Manganese, Copper, and Cobalt supports:
- Hoof integrity
- Skeletal Development
- Energy for Growth and Performance
- Lifetime Performance
Biotin is a B vitamin that is used for cell to cell adhesion in the outer hoof wall. Essentially it is an inter-cellular cementing substance similar to mortar in a brick wall. Horses cannot produce it themselves and obtain it through their diet. In some cases, additional Biotin can be fed at a therapeutic level. However, a horse’s body can only absorb so much on a daily basis so any excess will be excreted out through their urine.
While bricks and blocks have been the “go-to” mineral source for many years, here are a few things to keep in mind:
- The texture on a horses tongue is not the same as on the tongues of cattle. Consumption rates won’t be the same and meeting nutritional requirements can be challenging.
- Horses on no form of fortified grain, supplemental vitamins or minerals run a higher chance of being nutrient deficient.
- Although quality forage can provide the daily nutrients needed, it’s not commonly seen.
We are fortunate that there are many other palatable sources of mineral now available. Forage, pasture and soil testing are the best way to identify where the deficiencies start. Your Landmark Services Cooperative representative can pull these samples, share the analysis results, and provide options as needed.
Next month we will look at Understanding Essential Nutrients – Amino Acids & Omega Amino Acids from Kalambach Feeds.