Getting the Best Horse Feed Nutrition & Value for Your Money

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It seems as though diesel, groceries, fertilizer, grain and hay are all on the price escalator going up, up, up.

There are many reasons for soaring prices, including pressure on crops from ethanol production, higher fuel prices, poor climate conditions in some areas, and the declining value of the dollar. Of course, none of these factors lessen the impact on our pocketbooks, and horse owners are feeling the financial strain. This has caused many horse owners to become more focused on getting the most value for their dollar when it comes to feeding horses.

Finding the best horse feed value means looking past price per bag and calculating the actual cost per day to feed. Divide the price per bag by 50 pounds to determine price per pound. Then, multiply the price per pound by the pounds fed per day. Horse owners are often surprised to find the cheapest horse feed by the bag may be more expensive per day, because cheaper feeds often must be fed at a higher rate per day and/or require added supplements to meet minimum daily nutrient requirements or
performance goals.

By investing in your horse’s nutrition right from the start with a better quality feed, you are getting more bang for your buck. A feed with the proper balance of protein, vitamins and minerals will pencil out to a more cost-efficient strategy because basic supplements will add to the daily cost of feeding your horse. Owners who use low-cost alternatives may also need to feed more volume to match the nutritional value of high quality feed, further minimizing the savings from the lower cost feed.

Most people are not very accurate when estimating amounts of hay and grain being fed. For example, a 3-pound coffee can hold 3 pounds of coffee, but it will hold 4 pounds of Purina (R) Strategy (R) Healthy Edge (R) Performance horse feed. We all know the weight of hay bales can vary significantly, so choices based on the cost per bale can be deceiving if the bales are lighter. Weighing your feed and your hay measures how much you’re actually feeding and lets you calculate exactly how much you’re spending per day to feed your horses.

The cost of owning horses has certainly gone up over the last few years, and there doesn’t appear to be a change in that trend in the forecast. However, using a scale and a calculator to do a little figuring can reveal possible ways to save money without compromising the health and well-being of your horses.

Use the Purina horse feed calculator to find the correct amount of feed for your horse.