It’s Christmas! Time to eat, drink and celebrate with our friends and family and if you’re anything like us, family also includes our horses!!!!!! Whilst it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to fit them in around the dinner table, you may wish to save them something special to enjoy. That’s why we’ve drawn up a list of festive treats that are delicious and most importantly safe for your horse or pony to eat on Christmas Day...
- If feeding a mash or soaked feed, why not try adding a little peppermint oil or cinnamon as a festive flavour?
- Carrots, swede and parsnips make for healthy and tasty treats. However broccoli, potatoes, sprouts and anything belonging to the nightshade family should be reserved for your own Christmas dinner as these can be toxic for horses.
- Many fruits can be fed safely in small amounts so why not try breaking away from the traditional apple and try offering your horse something a little more exotic? Possible options include bananas, pears or melon. Tinned pumpkin is a particular favourite in the US!
- Stout and other ales are a traditional Christmas day treat for many horses but should only be given in small amounts. A ‘glug’ added to your horse’s feed is fine but resist the temptation to pour in the whole bottle!
- If you want to buy your horse a present then a bag of SPILLERS Treats makes the perfect gift for them to open on Christmas Day. SPILLERS Meadow Herb® Treats are our original tasty flavour and come in three variants; original, plus biotin for hooves and plus glucosamine for healthy joints. The treats are also available in Apple and Spearmint flavours too.
Remember, if your horse is competing under FEI or BHA rules, when treating your horse, stick to commercially produced treats approved by BETA NOPS to avoid the risk of feeding Naturally Occurring Prohibited Substances (NOPS). It’s worth noting that confectionary and drinks such as tea and coffee are a high risk for NOPS so take extra care when tucking into any festive treats of your own on the yard.
When it comes to treating your horse, keep the quantities small – everything in moderation is best to help avoid the post-Christmas bulge!
Happy Christmas from everyone at Team SPILLERS.