We are back with a short and sweet one regarding balancers...
Balancer pellets have been created to be a low intake, highly concentrated source of essential protein, vitamins and minerals. They are designed for all horses where additional calories are not required but rather just need additional vitamin and mineral supplements. They do not contribute significant amounts of energy. Suggested feeding amount is generally 100g of balancer per 100kg of body weight per day.
Feeding the correct amount of balancer for your horse’s workload and bodyweight will ensure that they are receiving all the nutrients they require and essentially have a balanced diet. Horses that have a balanced diet will have a shiny coat, strong healthy hooves, great muscle tone and a good topline that matches the work and training they are in. Horses that are not getting enough vitamins are lack lustre and lazy, but once they receive the nutrients they require, their metabolism improves, and they start to feel better and more energetic.
Balancers can be fed in many scenarios. Some being: diet consists of roughage alone, feeding less than the recommended amount of hard feed, feeding straights like oats or barley.
Forage only diets often lack nutrients, so although your horse or pony might look okay, they could be missing out. Horses that tend to get hot on commercial feeds can be fed a forage-based diet with a balancer for example, as they will maintain condition but keep their mind. Good doers that tend to put on too much weight can also be fed a forage-based diet with a balancer added to ensure all nutritional requirements are being met. Roughage is the most important thing we can feed our horses, so it is preferable to cut out concentrates if we need to but add a balancer to maintain a balanced diet.
For performance horse's quality protein is required, therefore feeding a balancer that is specifically formulated for performance horses is important. Performance horses that are just not building muscle as they should, can be fed a balancer with high quality protein to help boost that muscle building transition. Balancers also help with muscle health as the body has all the nutrients it needs to perform at optimum levels.