Raising a performance horse can be a thing of joy. Watching your equine trot and race along the track generates satisfaction that you can’t quantify. However, training the horse is only part of the job. You also need to give your equine the best horse feed for performance horses. But how do you go about choosing it? That’s what we’ll be discussing in this guide. We’ll also give you 15 top recommendations/products to buy. Finally, we’ll cap the guide with some tips every equestrian needs to know, especially when it comes to performance horses.
Guide to Getting the Best Performance Feed for Your Horses
Sometimes, it helps to look at feeding your performance horse the same way you feed a human athlete. Athletes need all kinds of nutrients. And, these nutrients need to be sufficient for different purposes, from maintaining joint function to building weight. With horses, the same thing applies. Here are some factors to consider when selecting feed for your performance horses.
Energy is the primary ingredient for any performance-based activity. You need to find feed and supplement that are high in calories so that your horse can gain access to the much-needed energy.
Performance horses move around a lot and therefore experience more wear and tear in their joints. You also need to get supplements that can protect and regenerate joint parts like cartilage and connective tissue.
You need to find a performance feed that supports your horse’s gut health. This point applies to any other kind of horse supplement that you might get. This is because horses are highly prone to gut disorders like ulcer and inefficient digestion. Supplements that promote gut health often have prebiotics and probiotics. These are necessary for the proper function of the gut.
Vitamins are essential for a performance horse. They can boost the immune system and maintain the horse’s overall bodily function. The effect and benefit of vitamins are more felt in their absence, where they can cause several impairments and diseases.
Top 15 Best Horse Feed for Performance Horses
As you’ve seen, getting feed that provides energy alone isn’t enough. You also have to pay attention to many of the horse’s bodily needs. The supplements highlighted below are tailored to do just that.
Farnam Weight Builder
Performance for horses is all about calories and muscle mass. The horse needs the right amount of muscle to exert force on the ground and move faster. Likewise, calories ensure that it doesn’t run out of juice as it exercises. Farnam weight builder is a unique intersection of both of these performance needs.
The feed has an improved formula that delivers a high dose of calming energy for horses. The feed can be consumed without the threat of digestive or gastric upset. It is also devoid of sugar as it sticks to only the essential ingredients. This makes it suitable for all horses with dietary restriction or health needs. Among other things, it is rich in Onega-3 fatty acids.
Purina|Omolene #200 Performance Horses Feed
Purina provides steady energy and fuel to the horses’ systems. It is most needed when the horse requires that extra kick or boost during running or other energy-intense activities. Like with all horse feed, it is also designed to support the gastric system of the horse. It does this via the patented Outlast supplement which regulates the pH of the horse’s digestive system.
The feed also contains multiple energy providing elements, including carbohydrates and whole grain. Furthermore, it has a palatable and lovable taste. Adding these to the obvious benefits that the feed provides gives you an unmatchable product.
Farnam Next Level Performance Equine Joint Pellet
Most equestrians understand that taking care of a performance horse is more than diet and exercise. You have to pay attention to its other, not so apparent needs. Like its joint and gastric health, for example. Farnam Next level addresses one of these points in a unique and effective way.
The formula contains Micro Lactin, Farnam’s patented milk protein. Micro Lactin manages inflammation in the joints that could be caused by daily exercising and use of the muscles. It also contains other joint supporting elements like Chondroitin Sulfate and glucosamine. These support the structural integrity of the joints and connective tissue.
Forco Digestive Fortifier
What we have with Forco is a very unique and very potent prebiotic. Unlike probiotics, prebiotics are indigestible foods that promote the growth of gut bacteria. For horses, gut bacteria are important for various functions, especially promoting good gut health.
As an equestrian, you know that horses are prone to diseases like ulcer, and so, good gut health is necessary. The feed is in pellet form, and Forco brags of having put 25 years of research behind it. For performance horses that consume a lot of calorie-heavy foods, Forco Digestive Fortifier is a necessity.
Kalmbach Feeds Tribute Kalm Ultra for Horse
Kalmbach Feeds delivers a high and steady dose of fat to your performance horses. The feed is also rich in organic minerals, amino acids, antioxidants, and of course, essential nutrients. The natural minerals replenish the body tissue stores that might have been depleted during exercise.
Further, the nutrients, amino acids, and antioxidants can provide boosted immunity for the horse. Kalmbach also contains EquiFerm XL. This acts as both a pre and probiotic, providing maximum support to the gut while improving digestibility.
Kentucky Performance Prod Elevate Maintenance Powder
This feed does one thing, and it does it very effectively – it supplies your horse with Vitamin E. Vitamin E is very important in horses because it maintains muscle function. Muscle function is crucial in performance horses for obvious reasons, and giving your equine a steady dose of the vitamin can go a long way in boosting its performance.
Vitamin E also helps to prevent muscular diseases, and it provides antioxidants that can protect the body tissue. Elevate Maintenance Powder is a reliable source of Vitamin E. Also, because it doesn’t contain any other vitamins or minerals, you can directly influence how much of it your horse gets.
Horse Health Red Cell Pellets
As the name suggests, this product supports normal blood cell health. It is a vitamin supplement that contains loads of other ingredients and nutrients. Horse Health Red Cell Pellets have a palatable and often irresistible Yucca flavoring.
The product contains chelated iron (300 Mg per pellet), as well as Vitamins A, D3, E, B12, Folic Acid, and Biotin.
Majesty’s Flex Wafers – Horse Hip and Joint Support Supplement
As discussed earlier, joint health is crucial to the care of performance horses. Because they have more activity, they are more prone to joint wear and tear than other non-performance equines. As a result, their joints and connective tissues require a lot of fortification. Enter the Majesty’s Flex Wafers.
The product contains multiple joint-supporting active ingredients, including Yucca Extract, Chondroitin Sulfate, Ascorbic Acid, and MSM. It also contains many ingredients for taste like Apple sauce, Cane Molasses, Cornmeal, Cracked Wheat, and others. Not more than two wafers are recommended for horses daily.
Vita Flex Vision Focusing & Calming Supplement for Horses
This product contains seven different active ingredients, all working in harmony to boost the performance of your horse. What’s unique is that these seven ingredients work without affecting the horse’s performance in any way. Its active ingredients include Tryptophan, Thiamine, Riboflavin and Magnesium. Its inactive ingredients include Alfalfa meal, distillers dried grains, and mineral oil.
Vita Flex Vision is meant for highly demanding training and performance activities like racing. Besides boosting performance, it also helps to calm the horses, which is just as important. Unfortunately, the product is not as palatable for picky eaters, so it may be best to combine with other supplements.
Manna Pro Cool Calories 100
Most of this supplement is fat – 99% – which is a fantastic amount for horses that require a lot of energy. Fats have double the caloric output of carbohydrates, and they are adequate for performance horses. The calories in Manna Pro Cool Calories also support healthy weight gain in horses and preserve the overall body condition.
The supplement is also great for underweight horses. Manna Pro Cool Calories has been shown to be very palatable for horses. This is a good thing because your horses can’t benefit from something they can’t eat!
Innovet Pet Products Equine PCR Hemp Pellets
Innovet is one of the pioneering brands in horse supplement manufacturing. They have made valuable hemp products available to horses in the most palatable and consumable way possible – pellets. Hemp has the same benefits for humans as it does for horses – reduced anxiety and pain.
Additionally, because these are performance horses, Hemp can also provide joint support and help calm them down. Another great thing about the supplement is that you can’t overfeed your horse, which is always a comfort. Besides Hemp, it also provides fiber, proteins and Omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acids.
Equithrive Joint Supplement
We can say a lot about this product, but all you really need to know is that it is an incredible source of joint supporting ingredients for your equines. It contains MSM, chondroitin Sulfate, as well as other active ingredients. The product is powdered. This means that you can administer it along with your horse’s daily intake; there’s no need to convince your horse to consume it.
Equithirve Joint Supplement also reduces the gene expression of inflammatory mediators and relieves soreness. These are both pain points, especially for performance horses. Equithrive Joint Supplement also provides insulation for increased comfort.
AniMed Anihist-H to Support Normal Histamine Levels in Horses
While the other products have focused on improving performance in your horse, this one focuses on enhancing physiological functions and reactions. Histamine is known to be a potent agent in promoting the proper performance of the immune system.
AniMed Anihist contains histamine in generous amounts, and it aids in the horse in fighting environmental irritants and pollutants. The product is 100% natural, and it is designed for horses in all classes. However, it is doubly effective in performance horses because of their increased activity.
Peak Performance Horse Supplements
Manufactured by Peak Performance, this supplement is geared towards the gut health of horses. But as you know, every part of caring for a performance horse is essential; not just the performance part. Specifically speaking, improved gut health can promote digestion and absorption, which then leads to good energy output.
Peak Performance not only supports gut health, but it can provide relief from irritability as well. It contains active ingredients that stabilize gut pH and improve overall health. It also promotes healthy weight gain in horses, improves hoof growth, and promotes a fuller coat.
Horse Guard Mega Dose Equine Vitamin Mineral Hoof
If you’re looking for a complete dose of vitamins and minerals for your performance horse, Horse Guard Mega Dose will provide it. It’s a one-stop shop for all your horse’s nutritional needs. Firstly, it promotes a healthy gut via its prebiotic and probiotic ingredients. It also encourages the growth of healthy hoofs and a full coat.
Perhaps the most alluring feature of this supplement is that daily doses are all your horse needs for a complete nutritional requirement. It contains vitamins, minerals, and pre and probiotics.
Our Final Thoughts on the Feed for Performance Horses
While feeding your horses for performance, it’s also essential to focus on other things besides what you feed them. Firstly, understand what kind of exercise your horse is performing. There are aerobic exercises – low to medium intensity exercises that persist for several minutes. And there are anaerobic exercises – short and repetitive activities that require bursts of energy. Knowing what you’re training your horse for can help you tailor its’ routine. Secondly, don’t feed it only the best horse feed for performance horses. Forage like hay can help maintain your horse’s energy levels. They can also help prevent gastric problems like ulcers. In conclusion, rearing a performance horse requires commitment and conscious effort. You need to be conscious of what you feed your horse, as well as the kind of exercises it performs.