Horses tend to eat the same things daily, so an exciting treat can add some enrichment to their day. However, there are a few things that are important to know before feeding a horse a treat:
What treats are healthy for horses?
According to the Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, the following treats are healthy for horses:
Be sure to remove all pits, cores, and stems from the fruit before feeding.
How many treats can a horse have?
According to the Nutrena Feed Room, the appropriate treat serving size for the average horse is one or two carrots.
That might not seem like very much food considering how large horses are; however, horses have very sensitive stomachs. Serving too many treats, even healthy ones, may cause a horse to colic.
How to feed a horse a treat
There are some guidelines to keep in mind when feeding horses treats, such as:
- Always offer treats on a flat palm to avoid fingers being nipped.
- If a horse has dental problems, be sure to cut the treats into easy-to-chew bites or mash them up.
- Some horses become nippy when they expect treats. To prevent or combat this behavior, give horses treats as a reward for positive behavior and not constantly available.
What treats are not healthy for horses?
According to the Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine and the Nutrena Feed Room, horses should NOT be fed the following items because they are toxic:
- Brussel Sprouts
- Lawn clippings
Horses may enjoy healthy treats in moderation. Sharing a snack with a horse is an excellent way to add fruits and vegetables to your diet.