Horse Feed Tag Basics
When purchasing feed for your horse, it is important to read the feed tag so you know what you’re getting. Each equine feed tag should have ingredient information typically arranged in descending order, from the largest amounts to the least.
Feed Tag Components
Common components of a feed tag include:
- Lists just those ingredients that are guaranteed to be in the bag at a guaranteed level.
Protein and Amino Acids
- A measure of the total protein in the bag along with specific amino acids such as lysine, methionine and threonine.
Crude Fat and Fiber
- The amount of energy you can expect to get from the feed.
- These are the minerals needed in larger quantities by your horse.
- Calcium, phosphorous and magnesium are the most common.
- Copper, selenium and zinc are common trace minerals.
- Expressed in parts per million (ppm), crucial to the well-being of your horse.
- Typically expressed in international units or mg/lb.
- Many feeds will be fortified with Vitamins A, D, E and Biotin.
Performance Mineral Ingredients
The basics of an equine feed tag seem simple enough, but how do you know if your feed includes Zinpro Performance Minerals®? If you see “complexes” listed in the ingredients, it is a good bet that Zinpro Performance Minerals are in the feed. However, if you see a Zinpro Performance Minerals product logo on the bag, you’ll know it is contained at Zinpro’s recommended level.
These recommended feeding levels have been researched to provide the best performance for your horse. Even without the logo, it is possible that Zinpro Performance Minerals are included at the recommended level, but the feed manufacturer has chosen not to display the logo. In this case, it is best to check with your feed company to know for sure.
Feeding Direction Basics
- Follow the instructions closely.
- Mixing too many products can create an imbalance, disrupting an otherwise carefully thought-out nutritional plan.
- Feed companies formulate each bag to meet the nutrient requirements of each horse. Pay attention to the activity levels.
- Avoid underfeeding or overfeeding products.
Example based on U.S. formulation