Improving topline and condition for showing and performance horses not only helps to impress the judge but is also required for balance and strength.
Achieving that perfect topline can be affected by several factors including genetics, confirmation, age, exercise, chronic back pain, illnesses such as gastric ulcers and nutrition. It is important to consider the body condition score first, before altering the diet.
Adding extra calories and not enough quality protein sources can be inadequate for optimal muscular performance and negatively impact the development of topline muscles. Quality protein sources are required to support growth and the performance horse who needs more amino acids to help support muscle growth and repair. Three essential amino acids that need to be provided in the diet include lysine, threonine and methionine. Forage has been proven to have less than half of the essential amino acids absorbed, and protein digested compared to a concentrate. Commercial feeds such as the Bluegrass Stamm 30 balancer, are designed to ensure the essential nutrients are provided in the diet including quality protein sources for optimum bioavailability.
Getting the balance right
Before picking up the high oil show feed, performing an accurate condition score will give an insight into the fat distribution across the horse and help to determine the current energy balance. A horse maintaining their current weight and considered an average body condition score is receiving adequate energy to meet the expenditure requirements, this is known as a “zero energy balance”. A horse with a lower condition score than average recommendations and are decreasing in weight over a period of time would be considered to be in a negative energy balance where they are receiving less than they are expending.
When increasing condition and improving topline for a horse in a negative energy balance, key vitamins and minerals are essential alongside additional calories. By using alternative energy sources such as oils, stabilised race bran such as Equi-Jewel and super fibres, high cereal diets can be avoided. Bluegrass Flaxplus contains flaxseed, an oil naturally high in omega 3 and 6 to encourage condition, coat health, shine and promote the immune system. Flaxplus is fortified in Bluegrass Stamm 30, ensuring the high-quality proteins, vitamins and minerals are provided in the diet and with the inclusion of unique yeast cultures to enhance the bioavailability.
For more information of the Bluegrass Horse Feed product range or to speak with a nutritional consultant or call 028 3754 8726