Can I feed my horse hay in the summer?
While we specialise in horse bedding here at P.H Winterton, we also often get quizzed about horse feeding habits; especially when the weather heats up.
For this blog, we will focus on answering all of your burning questions.
Expert advice about horse feeding from horse bedding specialists
Horses out at grass may require hay over the summer but it depends on the quality of the pasture, the weather conditions plus the horse’s condition.
If the pasture is of poor quality, the horses on the pasture do not appear to be thriving, including a mare supporting a foal, non-native breeds, equines in hard work, or the weather is poor, then they may need hay throughout the summer.
If the horse has free access to grass, they usually won’t need to forage as hay will be provided.
What are the telltale signs you should be feeding hay?
Signs that hay supplementation is needed include horses on the pasture losing weight that drops below an acceptable body condition score. In some instances, if the pasture is poor and the weather is poor, extra hay keeps the horses warm.
How do owners decide how much hay to feed stabled horses?
If your horse is stabled part of the time, you can decide by determining how the horse is maintaining their weight. If they are overweight then they will only need a small amount of hay and fed no more than 1.5% of their body weight per day; especially if this is their sole dietary intake.
If the horse is turned out on grass during the day, the majority of the hay ration can be removed from the diet.
Contact us for further advice
If you need further advice about feeding your horse, please do not hesitate to get in touch now. P.H Winterton is also the leading supplier of horse bedding and biomass fuel for clients all over the country.