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Nutrition Terms for Horses


Drs. Foster & Smith Educational Staff
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There is a wealth of jargon used throughout the horse world. This is especially true when discussing equine nutrition. Learning this vocabulary allows you to better understand articles, event language, and what trainers, farriers, veterinarians, and other horse owners are saying. The following list of terms, while in no way comprehensive, contains some of the terms used to discuss horse nutrition.

Antioxidants: Substances such as Vitamin E and selenium that protect cells against damage caused by by-products of normal metabolic processes (free radicals).

At Grass: A horse that has been turned out in a paddock or field.

Concentrates: Feeds which are low in fiber and high in total digestible nutrients.

Forages: Feeds high in fiber and low in total digestible nutrients.

Palatable: Agreeable and pleasing to the taste.

Ration: The entire feed regimen a horse receives in a day.

Total Digestible Nutrients (TDN): The sum of the digestible components of feed: protein, carbohydrates, and fats.

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