When we talk about what to feed animals, we can see how animals love eating. They can have just about any feed. For cats and dogs, we have plenty of options for food to give them. But what is a healthier way to fulfill your horse’s needs? Vegetables and fruits. In the case of horse feed, we cannot feed them certain fruits like avocado, lemon, and grapefruit for obvious reasons. Strawberries are a good choice to give to your equine. So let’s discuss strawberries for horses.
Can Horses Eat Strawberries?
Horses can eat strawberries. It is one of the safest fruits that are for horses to consume. Strawberry plants are green and leafy and grow little white flowers on their ends just before the berries are about to pop out. Strawberries need to be fed occasionally and should be in moderation. All fruits that are safe for horses to eat (Except a Few), can easily fit into a balanced diet. These are very high in sugar and very acidic, so it is important to know that they should only be given in very small amounts and that too on occasion only. If you feed any animal acidic fruit too much, it can greatly increase the horse’s risk of colic.
It is also important to know that no matter what kind of treats you are giving to your horse, they should be eating in very small quantities. Treats should always have controlled portions so digestive issues can be avoided. You should start giving your horse strawberries by only adding 2 to 3 in a week. Not too much not too little. Just enough amount of strawberries. Strawberries are full of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They have vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin B9, magnesium, and potassium in it. All of the nutrients and minerals are for your equines to be well and it also helps in maintaining a healthy and happy horse.
Strawberry for Horse as Snack
There are many products in the market with strawberry flavors. Some of the brands that use strawberry flavor to make horse snacks are Purina Nicker Maker treats in Berry Good, and Standlee makes Whinny Nicker treats in the flavor Apple Strawberry. A brand that is highly liked by its customers is Delicious Horse Treats.
It specializes in all-natural and organic, non-GMO cookies. They have a special strawberry flavor which they call Strawberry Flowers. Strawberries are safe for all horses when used in moderation. They can help stay hydrated and deliver the essential vitamins/ minerals to your Equine.
Strawberry treats are very much liked by horses and they enjoy it so much.
Benefits of Strawberries
Strawberries are full of vitamins C, E, and K. These vitamins are a source of potassium and dietary fiber. They are packed with water and strawberries are a good source of hydration on hot days. Strawberries are rich in antioxidants, which are known as polyphenols They are great for horses’ immune functioning. These also help with weight management, your horse’s digestive issues, and all cardiovascular problems. They have very high amounts of magnesium and potassium in it. Which helps in reducing blood pressure and can aid in proper muscle functioning. It also includes contraction and relaxation.
Things to Remember About Feeding Strawberries
Strawberries have a large amount of sugar in them. If it is fed too much, it can cause harm to your horse’s health. High sugar levels will put your horse’s health at risk. Horses with weak teeth may struggle in chewing and high sugar levels may cause damage to teeth. Strawberries are fairly acidic, if fed too much it can put your horse at risk of colic and abdominal pain. Excessive feeding of strawberries can cause your horse bloating and issues in the digestive system, which may cause pain and discomfort. Bloating may cause your horse to eat less which will eventually make your horse weaker. It is important to ask the vet before giving your horse strawberries, because it may trigger insulin resistance in horses.
How Many Strawberries Be Fed to Horse?
Experts say that only 5 to 10 strawberries should be fed in a week. Strawberries are a great source of nutrition but if not fed moderately they can cause different problems for your horse. If you want to feed your horse strawberries, make sure it is fresh, ripe, thoroughly clean, and mold-free. Make sure to throw away the strawberries that your horse does not eat. Because if you use frozen or strawberries that are not fresh, it may cause some health issues in your horse.
Do’s and Don’ts of Feeding Strawberries to Horses:
- Moderation: Feed strawberries in moderation to avoid excessive sugar intake and potential digestive issues.
- Fresh and Organic: Opt for fresh, organic strawberries without any added sugars or artificial sweeteners.
- Preparation: Wash the strawberries thoroughly and remove any stems or leaves before offering them to your horse.
Potential Risks and Side Effects:
- Allergies: Some horses may be allergic to strawberries, leading to allergic reactions such as hives or respiratory issues. Monitor your horse closely for any signs of allergies.
- Sugar Content: Strawberries contain natural sugars, so it’s important to consider the overall sugar intake in the horse’s diet and limit the number of strawberries accordingly.
- Digestive Sensitivity: Horses with sensitive digestive systems may experience loose stools or gastrointestinal upset if they consume strawberries in excess.
- Individual Horse Factors: Every horse is unique, and their ability to tolerate strawberries may vary. Observe your horse’s response to strawberries and adjust accordingly.
- Balanced Diet: Remember that strawberries should be viewed as a treat and not a substitute for a balanced equine diet. Make sure your horse receives proper nutrition from hay, forage, and appropriate equine feeds.
- Consult Your Veterinarian: If you have concerns about feeding strawberries to your horse or if your horse has any underlying health conditions, consult your veterinarian for personalized advice.
- Introduce Gradually: When introducing strawberries, start with small amounts to assess your horse’s tolerance and prevent any adverse reactions.
Strawberries are full of nutrition. They are very tasty and safe treats that are perfect to give to your equine on special occasions. It can be used as a snack or treat. Strawberries have so many health benefits too. But if you give your horse too many strawberries, it may cause stomach problems, digestive issues, etc. Only 5 to 10 strawberries should be fed in a week. Organic and fresh strawberries are always recommended by nutritionists.