Improving Horse Performance Through Smart Nutrition
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By Dan Leiterman
Horses are tremendous athletes; and as such have high nutritional requirements. For horses that are expected to work or compete for a living, there are advanced nutritional tools that can help keep them performing at their very best. A nutritional program that focuses on improving endurance and providing rapid post-exercise recovery, while also supporting a strong immune function and overall vitality is paramount for any performance horse.
Crystal Creek® has taken these advanced nutritional concepts and designed a program that brings the most biologically sound and efficient nutrition principles to the equine industry. The Crystal Advantage® line of equine minerals come in two forms. The pelleted mineral is available in 25 and 50 lb bags while the granular mineral is available in a 10 lb pail and 50 lb bag.
Advanced Nutrition Concept #1:
Use only the most bio-available, easily digestible mineral sources.
Our Crystal Advantage® Equine Pelleted and Granular Minerals are formulated using only the highest quality vitamins and minerals. Our minerals contain:
A Cleaned Phosphorus Source.
Phosphorus is very important to many body functions, but especially for optimum feed efficiency. Crystal Advantage® products are formulated with cleaned phosphorus sources to reduce levels of contaminates such as iron, fluoride and aluminum that can reduce phosphorus and other nutrient utilization in the body.
Polysaccharide Chelated Trace Minerals.
Crystal Advantage® Equine Pelleted Mineral and Granular Mineral are both fully formulated with polysaccharide chelated trace minerals which are nearly 100% bio-available. The chelation process protects the minerals and prepares them for better absorption in the lower gastrointestinal tract. Cheaper, more common sources of trace minerals such as sulfates and oxides are typically less than 50% bio-available. Look on your feed label and see if your horse feed contains cheap, poor quality trace minerals such as, zinc oxide, zinc sulfate, manganese oxide, manganese sulfate, copper oxide or copper sulfate.
100% Selenium Yeast.
Crystal Advantage® products use only 100% selenium yeast which is 85% available to the horse. Other lower quality products will use a cheap selenium source such as sodium selenite which is at best 25% available.
Strong Vitamin Fortification.
Crystal Advantage® minerals provide significant levels of vitamins A, D and E to meet the fat soluble vitamin requirements for even the most athletic horse. Crystal Advantage® minerals also provide high levels of water soluble vitamins such as biotin for healthy hoof wall strength and to speed the repair of cracked and damaged hooves.
Crystal Advantage® Equine Pelleted Mineral provides only high quality sources of protein for muscle support and development.
Advanced Nutrition Concept #2:
High quality ingredients are often the most economical to feed.
High quality, highly bio-available ingredients like those used in the Crystal Advantage® line of equine supplements provide the most efficient nutrient delivery. The cost of any nutrition program should be based on the cost per unit of nutrient that is absorbed by the horse, not based on just the price per bag.
For example, which feed do you think would provide the most economical nutrition to your horse?
A $20.00 bag of equine mineral that is formulated with ingredients that are 10% available, or a $40.00 bag of mineral with ingredients that are over 95% available to the horse? Although the $20 bag of mineral is cheaper, 90% of the nutrients in the bag ARE NOT ABSORBED BY THE HORSE!!
Armed with some basic information on ingredient quality (provided in concept #1 of this article), a consumer can be more aware of ingredient value and use that information to make a more educated decision regarding their horse’s nutrition.
Advanced Nutrition Concept #3:
Feeding a high quality ration daily will eliminate the need for expensive supplemental products.
Crystal Advantage® Pelleted and Granular Minerals are highly fortified with the finest quality ingredients so that you can build a strong basal diet for your horse. You will not need to feed additional levels of vitamin E, biotin, zinc or b-complex vitamins when using the Crystal Advantage® line of mineral products.
Crystal Advantage® Equine Pelleted Mineral Feeding Directions:
Top Dress Rates (1100 lb. horse):
An 8 oz. measuring cup level full contains approximately 6 oz. of Crystal Advantage® Pelleted Mineral.
Maintenance 2 oz./hd./day
Light Work 4 oz./hd./day
Moderate Work 6 oz./hd./day
Heavy/Intense Work 8 to 10 oz./hd./day
Lactating Mares 6 to 10 oz./hd./day
Growing Foals 1/2 oz. per
100 lbs. of body weight
Breeding Stallions 6 oz./hd./day
Mixed With Grain:
Typical 12% Crude Protein Grain Mix
lbs./Ton % Inclusion Rate
Shelled Corn 900 45.0
Oats 750 37.5
Pelleted Mineral 250 12.5
Liquid Molasses 100 5.0
2,000 lbs. 100 %
If you are interested in a high quality equine nutrition program that supports
- Improved endurance
- Faster post-exercise muscle recovery
- Stronger immune function
- Better hoof health
- Reduced need for additional nutrition packs
- Feeding Flexibility – top dress or mix into grain
- A broad range of equine applications; working, performance, pleasure, growing foals, breeding stock
- Lower feed cost
then the Crystal Advantage® nutrition program is designed for you and your horses. For more information on our complete equine nutritional products, or for more grain mix options, call Crystal Creek® at 1-800-376-6777.