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: Won’t a well-balanced ration provide the necessary minerals and vitamins needed for quality hoof growth?
By Joe Pagan
A: A well-balanced ration will offer a full compliment of vitamins and minerals. Premium feeds will contain chelated forms of minerals. Chelation, a process that binds a mineral to an amino acid, enhances absorption of the mineral. Zinc has been the focus of much research, as it is involved in the health of skin, hair and hooves.
Evidence suggests that low levels of zinc may cause horses to be more susceptible to hoof problems. One research study showed that 25 horses with poor-quality hooves had lower blood and hoof levels of zinc than 38 horses with normal hooves. A study in Japan revealed that horses consuming diets low in zinc and copper were more likely to have white line disease than horses supplemented with higher levels of trace minerals.
Joe D. Pagan is the founder and president of Kentucky Equine Research in Versailles, Ky. The company is an international research, consulting and product development firm working in the areas of equine nutrition and sports medicine.
Hoof Nutrition Intelligence is brought to you by W.F. Young Co. (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 January 1, 2016 installment: Just how important is methionine for hoof growth and health?