All horses are subject to digestive upsets associated with lush spring pasture. The content of highly fermentable carbohydrates in lush pasture can be overwhelming to the unadapted digestive system.
European warmbloods and warmblood crosses have become prominent as sport horses in the United States, where they compete regularly in dressage, show jumping, and three-day eventing. Feeding nutritionally balanced rations and attending to nutrition-related idiosyncrasies of warmbloods are the first steps in producing and maintaining sound athletes.
Bran mashes remain a staple in the feeding regime of some horsemen and continue to be a traditional meal for horses recovering from sickness, for mares immediately following foaling, and for aged horses with dental problems. A bran mash is often the meal of choice for horses following an intense workout, especially for those that do not drink adequately during or after intense exercise and teeter on the brink of dehydration.
While obesity-associated laminitis is not well understood among researchers and veterinarians, affected horses may go on to lead otherwise healthy lives if treatment is swift and diligent. Recommended treatments center around corrective trimming and shoeing, use of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications for pain, and strict diet. Forced exercise can be imposed once all laminitis-related pain has abated.
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