Am I not giving my horse too many supplements? If I add this or that, is that possible, or will it be too much? These are questions we regularly receive from horse owners and understandable! We have customers who give 1 product, but sometimes we also hear that a large number of products are given. Sometimes the question is indeed; Are you giving your horse too many supplements? In this blog we explain what you should take into account.
Doesn’t it help? Then it can hurt!
You will never hear us say “if it doesn’t help, it won’t hurt”. Because natural products can also have a negative impact on the body if they are used incorrectly. Therefore, never just give a supplement to your horse, but always use it for a reason. And of course there are also products that you can give without any problems, but why give something if it is not necessary? Our advice is therefore always: use a supplement for the period that it is necessary and stop as soon as possible.
Give up to 4 supplements at a time
There is no hard and fast rule that says you can only give a certain number of supplements at a time. There is therefore no maximum number of supplements that you give to your horse at the same time, but we prefer to give a maximum of 4 at a time. And for many horses you don’t even reach this max, but with a horse with an injury or condition you may (temporarily) use several supplements at the same time.
We keep it to a maximum of 4 because the horse must also have the opportunity to properly absorb and process the products. “Less is more” is sometimes true. The more we add to the horse’s feed, the harder the body has to work to absorb it all. It is also not always necessary to give products for months in a row. Therefore, alternate in supplements and stop occasionally (if possible).
Put down your basic ration and replenish it!
The basis of your horse’s ration should always be roughage. You will supplement based on the roughage and that supplement is different for every horse. A healthy horse without problems may have sufficient roughage + a balancer. For example, you occasionally give them a cure of nettle or extra minerals during the moulting period. But you may want extra support for a young horse, or a horse with a condition.
Here are a few examples:
- Healthy adult horse: Roughage + balancer + occasional cure of nettle tincture
- Healthy young horse: Roughage + balancer + silicon to support the entire system + an occasional cure of nettle tincture.
- Horse with pssm: Roughage + balancer + Vitamin E + Magnesium Chelate
- Horse with mites: Roughage + balancer + 2 x a year a detox and 4 x a year stinging nettle tincture and in the winter period a supplement against stamping.
- Horse with joint problems: Roughage + balancer + silicon + clove extract and a cure every 3 months with a supplement for joints
Think of a supplement as an addition to your ration. You give a supplement because your horse needs something extra that it cannot get enough from its basic ration. But in most cases it is not necessary to supplement magnesium and/or vitamin E throughout the year. You can also choose to give a bottle of magnesium and as soon as it is used up, switch to a bottle of vitamin E. Then you regularly supplement any deficiencies in the body, but you also give the body the chance to arrange things itself. . This works fine for most problems/conditions. Does your horse respond well to a product and has it been stable for a while? Then try to scale down and see how that goes!
In any case, it is always advisable to take a stop week of 1 week every 6-8 weeks for herbal products. This prevents habituation from occurring, but more importantly: there are herbs that will eventually have the opposite effect. That is why you have to take a stop week every now and then.
Some supplements work better if you give them for a long time
Silicon and cloves are supplements that you often have to give for a longer period of time. You can see this as a kind of base. For example, silicon needs a longer exposure time to be fully active in the body. It is a building material and that always takes longer. Especially if you want to use it as an alternative to powdered glucosamine. Silicon stimulates the production of glucosamine. But because it is a building material you have to take into account 2-3 months, so the longer you give it, the better the effect!
You can also see this with a product based on clove extract. The longer you give it, the more the body and mind come into balance and the self-healing ability of the horse is therefore activated. Of course you can also use cloves for acute injuries and then temporarily, but with osteoarthritis, for example, it works better to use it permanently.
Take a critical look at your feeding schedule
We sometimes advise customers to give fewer supplements and then see if the horse shows a change. Or to start giving 2 products and see what complaints are still there after about 4 weeks. Firstly, you can better see what effect a product has on your horse, but you can also use more targeted products.
Therefore, always take a critical look at your feeding schedule and ask yourself whether everything you give has added value. Of course we like to sell our products, but it must always be of added value for the horse.