Hoof Nutrition Intelligence Hoof Nutrition Intelligence is a twice-a-month web segment that is designed to add to the education of footcare professionals when it comes to effectively feeding the hoof. The goal of this web-exclusive feature is to zero in on specific areas of hoof nutrition and avoid broad-based articles that simply look at the overall equine feeding situation.

Below you will find Part 2 of the latest question and answer installment that you can share with your footcare clients.

Q: I’ve heard some horse owners say they don’t feed bran. What’s the reason?

By Susan Kempson

A: One of the best ways to improve both calcium and phosphorus levels in a horse’s diet is to eliminate bran completely from the ration and reduce the amount of grain being fed. Both of these ingredients can be replaced with alfalfa, which is high in protein and calcium, yet low in phosphorous.

Several research studies have shown horses that failed to show improvement following biotin supplementation were fed a winter diet of bran and chaff, which would certainly have been calcium deficient. Research has shown calcium is essential for the cohesion of cells to one another, particularly in the stratum corneum of keratinized epithelia in the hoof.

Susan Kempson is a hoof researcher and staff member of the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies at Summerhall in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Hoof Nutrition Intelligence is brought to you by W.F. Young Co. (Absorbine). Absorbine

Like many significant achievements, Absorbine® grew out of humble beginnings—and through the tenacity of someone willing to question the status quo. In this case, it was a young woman in late 19th-century Massachusetts: Mary Ida Young. Her husband, Wilbur Fenelon Young, was an enterprising piano deliveryman who relied on the couple’s team of horses to make deliveries throughout the Northeast. Inspired by Mary Ida and Wilbur’s vision, Absorbine® has continued to add innovative products throughout the years — products used every day by horse owners around the world. Which is why, since 1892, we’ve been The Horse World’s Most Trusted Name®.

Click here to read Part 1 of the October 15, 2015 installment: What are the major nutrients that horses need in developing and growing quality hooves?

Click here to read more installments of Hoof Nutrition Intelligence.