The horse has a unique and delicate digestive systems. They are grazing animals with small stomachs designed to process small amounts of food almost continuously. When we confine horses and feed them relatively large amounts according to our schedules, we have to be very careful with what and how we feed. The amount and type of feed you give your horse varies according to activity, age, breed, weather, quality of feed, quality of shelter, condition of teeth, etc.
We are often called out to horses that are in poor body condition, or failing to gain weight. Once ruling out other medical conditions such as parasites or infection, this problem can often be be related to poor or inappropriate diets. Feeding large amounts of grains is not a natural diet for the horse and can lead to complications, such as ulcers, colic or laminitis.
If your horse is leaving feed, has a reduced appetite, or is in poor body condition then you should get a thorough veterinary exam at which time diet can be discussed.