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  • Q:

    My 13-year-old Paint mare has had equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM) in the past, though she seems to be recovered now except for some intermittent stumbling. She’s moderately fleshy, which is a good weight for her. She is fed 1 lb (0.45 kg) of fortified sweet feed, alfalfa and timothy hay pellets, soaked beet pulp, and pasture 24/7. Would a vitamin E supplement be good for her? Is there such as thing as too much vitamin E?

  • A:

    Supplemental vitamin E within the range of 5,000-10,000 IUs per day is typically recommended for horses suffering from neurologic and neuromuscular conditions. If you are not actively treating your mare for EPM, then lower supplemental levels of vitamin E at 1,000-3,000 IUs per day may suffice. I recommend working with your veterinarian to determine the appropriate dose of vitamin E based on your mare’s clinical signs. Typically, 10,000 IUs per day of natural-source vitamin E is the upper-range recommendation.

    Nano•E is a research-proven vitamin E product, a powerful water-soluble liquid that utilizes a unique delivery system to ensure superior bioavailability and peak antioxidant protection. Natural-source vitamin E (d-alpha tocopherol), such as Nano•E, is proven to be more effective than synthetic vitamin E (dl-alpha tocopherol) and other available natural source products. Nano-E offers superior antioxidant protection.

    The current feeding program is meeting the mare’s energy needs, as she is maintaining a desirable body condition. However, the low amount of fortified sweet feed offered (1 lb or 0.45 kg) is not providing complete nutrition, particularly undersupplying trace minerals and vitamins. Replacing the small amount of sweet feed with a balancer pellet will provide complete and balanced nutrition.

    On the other hand, if you are happy with your current program, then adding a concentrated vitamin and mineral supplement, such as Micro-Max (or Gold Pellet in Australia), will provide the additional nutrients necessary to meet the mare’s dietary needs without adding excess calories.

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