As far as horse feed goes, nothing beats fresh grass growing on a healthy pasture. They are healthy, filled with nutrients, and they allow horses to stay active all year round. Unfortunately, fresh grass isn’t enough. Much like human beings, horses need essential nutrients to survive and grow. Since most pastures are don’t have enough nutrients cater to a horse’s full dietary needs, supplements and feed become a mandatory part of raising a healthy horse. If you are looking to raise a healthy horse, maintaining its weight and muscle tone must matter a great deal to you. In this guide, we will go over some of the best horse feed for weight gain and give you guidelines to help you simplify the decision-making process.
- 1 What to Look out for When Buying the Feed for Weight Gain
- 2 Top 11 of the Best Horse Feed for Weight Gain
- 2.1 Manna Pro Senior Weight Accelerator
- 2.2 Organic Horse Feed, Oasis Alfalfa Pellets
- 2.3 Total Feeds Total Equine
- 2.4 Purina Animal Nutrition True choice
- 2.5 Formula 707 Daily Fresh Packs Equine Supplements
- 2.6 Purina Animal Nutrition Strategy Healthy Edge
- 2.7 Purina Animal Nutrition Amplify Equine Supplement
- 2.8 Horse Guard Glow
- 2.9 Horse Guard Super Weight Gain Equine Weight Gain Supplement
- 2.10 Purina Animal Omolene 500
- 2.11 Flix-100% Flax Treats for Horses
- 3 Conclusion
What to Look out for When Buying the Feed for Weight Gain
While regular hay mixed with legumes will do wonders for your favorite horse, it isn’t as impressive and as nourishing as professionally prepared equine feeds. These feed come prepared with essential minerals and protein. In fact, you’d be surprised at how similar humans and horses’ dietary needs are. Horses need all the vital classes of nutrients to grow and gain weight, and so every great horse feed aimed at increasing the animal’s weight should contain the following:
Even though horses are herbivores, they still need a lot of protein. The best horse feed should contain a reliable source of protein. Some of the common sources include legumes, milk proteins, alfalfa meals, soybeans, linseeds, cottonseeds, safflowers, and sunflowers. Since protein is essential for growth, it should make up a bulk of the nutrients in a horse feed designed for weight gain.
Starch or Carbohydrates
The best feed for performance uses a mixture of oats, barley, hay, and beet pulp. Feed designed to help horses gain weight should be no different. They should contain most of the accessible sources of quick digesting starches and carbs. Even though the starches and sugars shouldn’t be as prominent as the protein, they should be enough to provide the horse with the necessary energy.
Fats, Vitamins, and Minerals
Healthy grains and fruits are an equestrian’s go-to source for minerals and vitamins. They are an essential source of energy, and they provide protection for the immune system. Also, everyday foods like tomatoes, berries, and even apples contain antioxidants that can boost performance, increase the shelf life of the feed, and help horses fight off illnesses.
The Age of the Horse
When procuring a proper weight gain feed, it’s important to consider the age of the horse you are buying the feed for. Older horses have a harder time digesting regular food like hay, feed and pasture. If you have an old mare, it’s vital to always opt for high fat, easily soluble feeds that are dedicated to senior equines.
Top 11 of the Best Horse Feed for Weight Gain
Now that we’ve established what you need to look out for in horse feed let’s review the top fifteen picks for horse weight gain. Remember that the feed you finally choose should meet your horse’s specific needs. Even though some of the items on this list aren’t technically horse feed, they are still fantastic for weight gain. Some of them are equally great when you combine them with hay or other feed.
Manna Pro Senior Weight Accelerator
Manna senior pro is a fast-acting nutritious feed that contains essential fats, lots of calories, essential vitamins, and antioxidants. It is not protein-heavy. Instead, it relies on Omega 3 fatty acids for its weight building effects.
Manna Pro is packed full of antioxidants and vitamins that smoothen the skin coat, increase hoof growth, and regulate your horse’s digestion. It comes in an easily digestible prilled powder form and is quite popular among older mares because of its taste.
Organic Horse Feed, Oasis Alfalfa Pellets
If you are particular about what kind of pastures your horse eats from, and you’re passionate about saving the environment, then you’ll love this product. Most pastures simply don’t have the volume and quality of nutrients a growing horse needs. This product ensures that you don’t have to rely on feeds or any other form of processed forages for your horse’s dietary needs.
Oasis Alfafa pellets are the closest things to an all-inclusive all-natural meal that you’ll ever get at such a low price. Alfalfa pellets contain 100% fresh-cut non-GMO high-protein Alfafa grass with zero additives. It also contains carbohydrates and of course, healthy fats. It is the pellet equivalent of your horse grazing on a pesticide and fertilizer-free, all-natural field. There are no additives or preservatives added during the manufacturing process, so it is as all-natural as Oasis claims. It comes in a large 50lb bag and is perfect for foals and seniors alike.
Total Feeds Total Equine
Total Equine is one of the most well-rounded feeds ever to grace the commercial market. It is the dream feed, and unlike most feeds out there, it relies heavily on protein for weight gain, instead of just healthy fats. It contains fiber, protein, minerals, vitamins, and Total Feeds’ proprietary ingredient, TOTEQ.
Some of its other ingredients include alfalfa hay, dehydrated Alfafa meal, Grain Sorghum, Bran, wheat Middling, and Soybeans. These are all essential for the weight gain and general health of a horse. There are also a hand full of preservatives, antioxidants, and minerals in the feed. The recommended feeding average of this feed is about 4lbs for a thousand-pound horse. You can adjust the serving as frequently as you need to.
Purina Animal Nutrition True choice
The Purina True choice feed is one of the most protein-rich feeds on the market. It comes with layers of textured sweets, and it is made of delicious Alfalfa grass. It also has about 12% of pure/crude protein. Much like Total Equine, it relies heavily on a subtle mix of protein and fats.
Purina True Choice helps horses maintain their weight and overall health. This feed is not as easy on the horse’s dentition as pelleted foods, but it can be as great-tasting and nutritious.
Formula 707 Daily Fresh Packs Equine Supplements
Technically speaking, Formula 707 isn’t a horse feed. But, it qualifies as a weight gaining supplement, and so, it can be beneficial when you’re trying to increase your horse’s weight. When combined with an appropriate high-calorie diet, Formula 707 can be a powerful tool increases, or at least maintains the weight of your horse.
It contains vegetable fat, calcium, amino acids, and fibers, and it’s perfect for old horses. Formula 707 can increase your horse’s metabolism, help it to retain muscle mass and boosts its strength. It contains numerous essential minerals, vitamins, and antibiotics. The supplement comes in a 28-day or 56-day package, depending on the one you buy.
Purina Animal Nutrition Strategy Healthy Edge
Although Purina Strategy Healthy Edge is predominantly a performance-enhancing feed, it can still be considered as one of the best feed for your horse’s weight management. It moderates the gastrointestinal system of the animal and improves its performance. Much of this feed’s actions are performed through the heavy doses of calories and fats in its ingredients.
Purina Strategy Healthy Edge has stable protein sources like amino acids, lots of healthy fats, antioxidants and minerals. It also has fiber that aids in your horse’s digestion. It comes in a textured form and is mostly recommended for growing and mature horses. Purina Strategy Healthy Edge is an extremely balanced feed, and it could even potentially replace standard forages in your horse’s diet.
Purina Animal Nutrition Amplify Equine Supplement
It is the third supplement by Purina on this list. Purina is famous for manufacturing great supplements for horses, and this one doesn’t disappoint. It uses high fats and calories to boost metabolism and performance while helping the horse to put on weight. It is also packed with minerals, vitamins and antioxidants.
The fatty acids in this feed increase the coat shine and reduce the horse’s chances of developing skin diseases. It also has a sizeable protein source, although it’s not as significant as the fat. Talking about the ingredients, Purina Amplify Equine Supplement utilizes fat and vegetable oils to increase metabolism and increase performance. However, before you buy this supplement, you should know that this product was designed for performance horses, and it doesn’t have enough protein for a growing horse.
Horse Guard Glow
This gem of a feed is by far one the richest sources of protein and fat in the market. It is packed with soybeans and omega-3. Although it boosts weight gain, it has also been known to help improve coat health, increase metabolism, and reinforce the immune system. This feed has Soy at its major source of protein, and so, it is easily digestible and is an excellent source of phosphorus. About 25% of the entire feed contains protein, and another 25% contains fat.
This feed debunks all the negative theories and notions associated with the consumption of soy meals. It proves to horse owners that their horses can enjoy a fully nutritious soy meal without having to worry too much about their digestion. Horse Guard Glow has remarkable anti-inflammatory properties, and it is surprisingly light in starch and sugar. This light carbohydrate makeup means that it is perfect for horses that have trouble regulating their blood sugar.
Horse Guard Super Weight Gain Equine Weight Gain Supplement
This protein-heavy supplement is perfect for performance horses, neglected horses, growing horses, and even Hard-keepers. It is rich in protein, starch, fat, and sugars. Aside from the obvious nutritive value of this supplement, it can also provide relief from mild digestive issues. While it will not solve the issues completely, it should alleviate indigestions and improve gut health.
Horse Gard Weight Gain Supplement contains lots of minerals, vitamins, probiotics, and it improves fur and skin health. It is also a very rich source of probiotics, and that makes it one of the most rounded feed on this list.
Purina Animal Omolene 500
The Purina Omolene 500 is a horse feed specifically designed for equine athletes. However, it can also cause a significant weight gain in your horse because of its high-fat content. Purina Omolene 500 contains lots of fibers and sugar. It has a great taste and is perfect for horses with digestion problems. It utilizes a unique blend of molasses and soy oil to achieve its fat and sugar-filled performance boosts.
Purina Omolene 500 contains lots of healthy vitamins and minerals, and so, it provides a very balanced nutritional care for your horse, even though it’s a feed for weight gain. Although this feed can be given to your horse as is, it is tastes best when mixed with hay or pasture.
Flix-100% Flax Treats for Horses
Flix-100% isn’t technically a feed, but, they edible nonetheless make in-between meal snacks. When mixed with pastures or forages, they can be efficient for weight gain. The treats come in a convenient, lightweight 9lb bag.
Flix-100% is high in protein, packed with omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants, and it has anti-inflammatory properties. It also improves coat shine. It contains about 10% crude fat, 9% fiber, 6% ash, calcium and phosphorus, and 25% protein. About ounces are recommended for a thousand-pound horse.
Every horse has its unique needs, and it’s your responsibility as a horse owner to identify what those needs are and try to meet them. One of those needs is a steady and healthy weight gain. Many of the feeds on this list will help you do just that. Total Feeds Total Equine is especially good in this regard. Not only does it support weight gain it is also packed with other nutrients that are crucial to the health of your horse.
On the other hand, Formula 707 is great as an additive. It’s more of a supplement than a feed, but, it’s equally effective in improving Equine weight gain. All the feed on this list don’t have the same amount of ingredients, but they all serve their purposes. The brief guidelines we discussed, in the beginning, can help you decide which feed type is best for your horse (Protein-packed, or rounded). Once you find your perfect product, you can sit back and watch your horse gain weight.