Feeding the Eventer

Feeding the Eventer

Horses require a lot of energy to perform in all three phases of an Event. The suitable feeds or combinations of feeds will vary depending on the individual horse, its temperament, type, workload and metabolic rate. Requirements may even vary for each horse from the start of the season to those best suited at the later part of the season.

Fats are a great calorie-dense supplement for the eventer. With high workloads some Eventers may struggle to maintain condition during the season. When using vegetable oils, the energy density of the ration can be increased without the horse needing to eat more feed - beneficial if you are concerned about meal size or can only feed once or twice a day. A further bonus of using oils is that they will enhance skin and coat condition, and for more highly strung types, they will provides a ‘cool’ calorie source.

Suitable products:
Dunstan Trifecta Oil - a highly palatable blended vegetable oil.

Dunstan Muscle'n Shine – a low intake calorie-dense supplement. Great for enhancing skin and coat condition as well as ‘topline’, horses find it delicious.

Full Feeds
A full feed contains added vitamins and minerals and therefore contribute both calories for weight gain but also ensure the diet is balanced regarding the addition of key nutrients. A full feed is needed to be fed at the recommended intake (depending on the size of the horse) to receive the full intake of these nutrients. For ‘good doers’ use a ‘semi concentrate’ that will provide the necessary daily intake of nutrients in a low intake of feed.

Low Starch Feeds
Low starch feeds are a great feed choice for hotter horses and for Thoroughbreds off-the-track that are embarking on their new career path. Low starch feeding regimes are becoming well recognised for the impact they have on equine behaviour, particularly for horses showing a less anxious and more settled disposition. The newer low-starch feeds like Dunstan Maxim Low-GI is a medium energy feed and therefore unlike the traditional ‘coolfeeds’ it will contribute a medium-calorie feed to maintain condition for these working horses.

Suitable products:
Dunstan Maxim Low-GI – A low starch, high fibre complete feed. Dunstan Maxim Low – GI is ideal for horses that do not tolerate a grain-based feed. Dunstan Maxim Low-GI contains a full profile of vitamins and minerals including organic minerals and Natural Vitamin E. It also contains a live yeast to aid digestion and assist with maintaining an optimum hindgut pH

Dunstan Resolve® – also a low starch feed, Dunstan Resolve® is suitable for the ‘good doers’ that do not require the full feed feeding rates, and are inclined to get ‘hot’ on a grain based ration. Complete nutrition is provided in a lower intake of feed. Dunstan Resolve® utilises organic minerals and Natural Vitamin E and also has the inclusion of Melofeed, a new age antioxidant which benefits muscular and joint health. Dunstan Resolve® is ideal for the warmblood or crossbred types that may be taking to the eventing circuit and have a more efficient metabolism than others!

Grain-based premixed feeds
Grain is an important energy source as it provides a calorie-dense feed to maintain body condition in working horses.
Many Eventers, due to their heavier workloads, will benefit from the traditional grain-based feeding regimes to meet their more intensive energy demands.

Suitable products:
Dunstan Eezymix – highly palatable, fully extruded cereal grain nugget containing two oilseeds (Linseed and Full Fat Soya) for enhanced skin and coat quality as well as a full vitamin and mineral premix. Dunstan Eezymix utilises organic minerals and Natural Vitamin E. Fully extruded, Dunstan Eezymix is a great way to provide grains to the horse’s diet, and with enhanced digestibility through the cooking of the grains there is less risk of digestive disturbances resulting from undigested starch making its way into the hindgut.

Dunstan Competition Mix – a lightly molassed textured muesli containing a blend of extruded grains (Barley and Maize) however excluding Oats. Dunstan Competition Mix is a full feed and it contains a full profile of vitamins and minerals including organic minerals and Natural Vitamin E.

Dunstan Athlete – a highly palatable semi-concentrate. This is the ideal feed for the ‘good doer’ when the higher intakes of a full feed is not required to maintain condition. Unlike Dunstan Resolve® it is grain-based so ideal for those better ‘doers’ that require a bit more ‘energy’ in their work. Dunstan Athlete is a highly palatable textured muesli and contains a blend of extruded grains (excluding Oats). It contains an elevated level of vitamins and minerals (resulting in the reduced feed rate) and utilises organic minerals and Natural vitamin E. The addition of oil enhances coat condition and boosts the calorie density of the ration.

Straight grains
If you are feeding a premixed feed or providing an alternative source of vitamins and minerals, you can utilise some unfortified grains to increase the energy density of the ration to meet the calorie demands of the eventing workload and maintain a desirable body condition.

Dunstan Extruded Rice – Fully extruded rice with added rice bran oil which provides an energy dense supplement. A great conditioner to add to the ration as well as enhancing ‘topline’.

Dunstan Extruded Barley -Fully extruded, it provides a ‘safer’ way to feed Barley. Barley is very indigestible to the horse in its uncooked form therefore potentially increasing the risk of digestive upsets. Feeding Dunstan Extruded Barley will provide a valuable energy source without doubling up mineral contribution.

Super Fibre
Dunstan Betabeet – a non molassed sugarbeet flake. Sugarbeet is a ‘super fibre’ and therefore more calorie-dense than traditional fibre sources so a great fibre addition for hardworking horses or poor doers. As a fibre source it is beneficial for digestive health and the required soaking prior to feeding is great for hydration. Low in starch and sugar it is suitable for horses that require a ‘cool’ energy source.

Dunstan Sugarbeet Flakes – beet flakes with added molasses. With the addition of molasses Dunstan Sugarbeet Flakes can be even more tempting for the fussiest of eaters, and as they are slightly more calorie dense ideal for horses with higher energy demands. Dunstan Sugarbeet Flakes continue to provide all the benefits of fibre for digestive health and again soaking prior to feeding assists with hydration.

Vitamins and minerals
The diet should provide a balanced intake of a full profile of vitamins and minerals. If you are using a premixed feed at the recommended intake, in most situations adequate vitamin and mineral intake will be provided. For ‘good doers’ a semi-concentrate will provide key nutrients in a lower intake of feed or a balancer pellet for those feeding unfortified feeds/grains or just needing to balance pasture intake.

Suitable supplement:
Dunstan Multi-Ultra – low intake vitamin and mineral pellet. Balances forage and unfortified grain rations.

The latest addition to the Dunstan range,Dunstan Recovery Mash is proving exceptionally popular during the competition season to help horses bounce back after strenuous work. This diet includes a combination of traditional ingredients accompanied by the ‘super fibres’ Soya Hulls and beet as well a quality a protein source. With no added micro minerals, it will not impact on the mineral balance of your current ration. However, with the addition of Vitamin E , it’s ideal for hardworking horses that require increased antioxidant support. The inclusion of the new age antioxidant, Melofeed®, further assists muscular health and recovery. With water added to soak to as recommended, it makes a delicious mash that horses find irresistible. A high water inclusion after soaking assists with rehydration and therefore recovery.



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