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Ask H&H: feeding a veteran

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Q: My horse is 19 years old, but still behaves like a two-year-old. When do I need to switch to a veteran feed?

Horses, like people, age at different rates – we all know of a 20-year-old who acts as though they are four and a 70-year-old who doesn’t look a day over 50.

When deciding what to feed, you need to meet the requirements of the horse in front of you and sometimes his biological age is younger than his chronological age, as seems to be the case with your horse.

So if we assume that he is looking like a youngster, as well as behaving like one, then continue to feed for what he is doing.

If he is in light work, then give Leisure Mix or High Fibre Nuts, if he is competing then feed Staypower Cubes – they provide slow release energy, so will not exaggerate his behaviour.

All D&H horse feeds are formulated to maximise your horse’s health, but if you want to add a little to his feed ‘just in case’, then think about Ultimate Balancer (100g/100kgBW).

He will only need a very small amount and the balancer contains omega 3 fatty acids, pro and prebiotics, high levels of B vitamins including biotin, MSM, mobility herbs and bioplex minerals.

You’ll know when to swap over to a 16+ feed, as he will start to show signs of aging – a little stiffness, loss of fat and muscle, a slightly duller coat and beginning to slow down. Sometimes not being able to chew hay as easily is the first warning sign.

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