What Can Horses Eat and Not Eat? FULL LIST in 2022

What Can Horses Eat and Not Eat

It is very essential to know the kind of food that is okay for your horse to eat, if, given the wrong feed,

it can cause pains and discomfort to your horse, not only that it might as well cause lasting damages to their digestive and urinary tract system.

And in severe cases, it might lead to the horse’s death. It is beneficial to your house if their feed consists mainly of grass or hay and additionally sticks to a regular feeding routine.

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What Foods and Fruits can Horses Eat?

Before feeding your horses, before feeding your horse anything containing sugar, take the time to make research and find out if your horse has minimal sensitivity to insulin,

this can be caused by changes in your horse’s hormones or drugs that inhibit insulin from being released.

To avoid any choking hazards, take your time to cut up hard round fruits and vegetables as a horse’s throat tend to be smaller despite its large body.

Food and treats you should be feeding your horses include:

  • Carrots
  • Feed them Apples without the core
  • Watermelon
  • Plums without stone
  • Pears without the core
  • Apricots without the stone
  • Melons without the Rinds
  • Mango without the seed
  • Pineapples cut into pieces
  • Oranges
  • Green beans
  • Celery
  • Peppermints
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Raisins
  • Grapes
  • Bananas

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What Food Can Horses Eat from Human Food?

Generally, horses can eat human foods such as vegetables, fruits, and whatnots that humans tend to eat and also relishes.

The foods you can feed your horses from human food include apples, celery, cucumbers, raisins, carrots, bananas, etc.

There are a lot of treats that are quite beneficial to their wellbeing, but before indulging your horses, make some research before changing or including some things in their diet.

It won’t be beneficial to feed your horses things that may likely sicken them or kill them in the long run.

Despite horses having huge sizes, their stomach is easily upset and very small compared to their body, put that into consideration when planning on what to feed them or add to their feeding.

Some human foods that are safe to feed your horses include but are not limited to:

  • Cheerios
  • Rice cakes
  • Granola bars
  • Graham crackers
  • Applesauce with no sugar or any artificial sweeteners
  • Watermelons
  • Plums without stones
  • peppermints
What Can Horses Eat and Not Eat

What Vegetables Can Horses Eat?

Just like us humans, horses may have different preferences when it comes to the type of vegetable they will like to eat, most horses will enjoy some if not all the vegetables we will be listing below as treats

The vegetables that are most popular with horses and provide a tasty crunch that horses enjoy are Turnips, parsnips, beetroot, corn, and radishes.

Others include celery, lettuce, kale, collard greens, spinach, and chards for their leafy green crunch

Some options of vegetable horses can eat that are less popular acceptable opinions are cucumber, snow peas, green beans, squash, etc.

List of Foods that Horses Shouldn’t Eat

The food you most certainly should not be feeding your horse.

Some foods are again bad for your horse that no matter what, you should not be caught feeding them as these foods can cause severe indigestion problems to your horse and make your horse severely unwell.

The foods you should not feed them with are listed below:

  • Tomatoes:

Tomatoes are the first on the list of things you should not feed your horse with, tomatoes contain multiple substances that are toxins, these toxins include solanine, demissine, and tropane which when fed to your horse can be very dangerous.

Other things that may likely be dangerous to your horse health just tomatoes because they belong to the same nightshade categories are bell pepper, eggplant, potatoes, tobacco, chili, etc.

Solanine which is the toxin found mostly concentrated in large quantities in the leafy part of the tomatoes by slowing mobility in the digestive part of a horse can cause severe indigestions and swelling of the throat.

The tomato itself increase heart rate, decrease the production of saliva, intestinal motility, cause severe constipation, diarrhea that can be potentially life-threatening for your horse due to the presence of hyoscyamine, also a very deadly toxin to your horse, so as regards all these, if you want your horse in good health, feeding tomatoes to it is a no-no.

  • Garlic and Onion:

garlic and onion are both members of the Allium family which is toxic to horses if they are ingested, they damage a horse red blood cells and causes anemia in horses

  • Dairy products:

Horses just like many other animals are lactose intolerant, feeding your horses dairy products can cause severe diarrhea and colic in the case of prolonged feeding.

Dairy products should be avoided in your horse’s diets by all means.

  • Meat:

Horses are herbivores animal, their system and digestive system are not built to eat meat, it is best to steer clear of any meat-based product as their liver isn’t designed to get rid of the residues of meat products.

  • Processed Food:

Another food to steer clear of from horses’ feed is processed food like bread.

Horses are not able to break down processed food, and this in turn can cause colic and obstruction in their digestive tracts.

  • Potatoes:

All forms of potatoes should be avoided in your horse feed especially raw, green, or rotten, as their chemical combination can cause toxicosis.

Additionally, it can cause a choking hazard for your horses if eating whole.

  • Caffeine:

Caffeine causes irregular heartbeat in horses so it should not be a part of a horse diet.

  • Lawn Clippings, Garden Cuttings and Compost:

Although horses are grazing animals, it is best to feed them with fresh grass only.

The moment a grass is cut, it begins the process of fermentation and this may be carried out in the horse’s stomach, this can potentially rupture a horses’ stomach and also lead to colic.

  • Avocado:

This is another thing you should steer clear of from feeding your horse, your horse should not be fed any part of the Avocado fruit no matter what as every part of the fruit and tree itself is poisonous to horses starting from the leaves, skin, stone and tree barks are a no exception.

Eating avocado can cause a restriction in your horse’s breathing, colic, irregular heartbeat, and death If the case is severe.

  • Cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower:

When eaten by horses they can cause severe abdominal pains caused by gas-related colic.

What to Do If Your Horses Eat Something They SHouldn’t?

If your horse ate what it normally should not have, the first thing to do is temper down the panic, and look out for the source of the poison.

For instance, if the horse was poisoned in its stall, consider removing the horse from the source of poison to curtail further exposure.

Remove every source of food from the stall including hays, grains, and horse beddings.

Some toxins have antidotes you can administer to your horse immediately you noticed a case of poisoning.

Get more knowledge on the kind of things that are poisonous to your horse and limit your horse grazing time as well.

Next is to call your tertiary doctor to come to check out the horse condition, do not attempt to self treat your horse, as you do not know to which extent the horse has been poisoned

Do Horses Eat All Day?

Yes. Horses eat frequently throughout the day. This is a result of their small stomach and that they are unable to digest large quantities of food at a given time.

The ideal way to feed a horse is to give them small quantities of food frequently and not large quantities of feed at a time because feeding them large quantities of feed at a time will cause digestive upset due to the overload of feed in their large intestine.

By feeding your horse small bit-sized food frequently, the horses will find it easier to digest decreasing the chances of your horse having colic problems.

Feeding your horses daily should be done at regular intervals and also in small bits, then again you should time their feeding, thereby making it easy to know the exact time your horse was fed so you can repeat the same tomorrow.

Doing that will aid you in creating a feeding schedule for your horse.

Sudden changes in your horse feeding schedule or not feeding them frequently can lead your horse to have colic.

Risks for colic can be minimized by:

  • availability of forage at all times for your horses
  • feeding smaller meals to your horses frequently throughout the day
  • Feed the horse as a little concentrate in a day as found necessary.

Can Horses Eat Anything?

No. horses cannot and should not eat anything some things are beneficial for horses to eat and others are plain detrimental once eaten by horses.

For you to avoid getting sick you should be extremely careful of what you feed your horses with.

To stay very healthy and fit, horses should be fed food that will be beneficial to their health. To keep their digestive tract working, they must consume lots of fiber, and they must eat little but frequently almost all day.

When given the chance, horses won’t mind eating all day, but this is quite unhealthy for them, it is advisable to feed them often and in small bits.

Things horses should eat include grasses, the grass is their natural food and it is great for their digestive system, although you should check and remove any plants that could cause the horses harm, plants like ragwort should not be found in your horse diet.

Secondly, horses can eat hay or haylage, this is most important in cooler months from autumn to early spring when pasture isn’t available additionally, hays are good for a horse’s digestive system as well just as pastures.

Third, fruit and vegetables should also be added to their diet.

Concentrates should be added to your horse feed, most especially if your horse is old, nursing, competing or pregnant concentrates gives your horses energy.

Can Horses Eat Celery

Yes. Horses can eat celery, mostly because it is beneficial to your horse, but with most horse food, it should only be done in very small quantities.

Celery is a good source of vitamin k, B2, B6, A, and C, this is a necessary vitamin that your horse needs to be healthy.

Do not forget to cut them into smaller bits to avoid your horse choking.

Can Horses Eat Dog Food?

No. although it won’t harm them, horses should not be fed dog food.

Can Horses eat cabbage?

No. it is not healthy to feed your horses with cabbage. Cabbage can cause intestinal gas in horses after eating them, and with the way, the digestive organ of a horse is, intestinal gas can cause them so much pain and discomfort.

Can Horse Eat Lettuce?

Yes. Eating lettuce is good for your horse as its main content is water, although it contains other vitamins and minerals also.

Lettuce serves as roughages your horses can add to their hay diet, lettuce also helps their digestive system due to the roughages.

Can Horses Eat Ice Cream?

Most horses are lactose intolerant, so it will do them a whole world of good to not eat ice cream at all.

Can Horses Eat Chips?

No.it is not healthy for horses to eat chips of any kind, it is detrimental to their health and can also be very fatal.

Can Horses Eat Cheerios?

Yes. Horses can get cheerios. It is a healthy and simple treat to indulge your horse in once in a while.

Can Horses Eat potatoes peeling?

No. Potato skin contains 3 to 10 more solanine than the rest of the potato plant itself.

you should never feed your horse potato peelings because it is simply not healthy for your horse to feed on them.

Solanine is very toxic to your horse, it can even lead to the death of your horse.

no matter how potatoes are prepared, they should not be a part of your horse diet.

Can Horses Eat French Fries?

No. horses should not be given French fries as it is also not healthy for them. It will hurt their digestive system.

Can Horses Eat Potato Chips?

No. potatoes are dangerous to horses as it is toxic, potatoes may likely cause digestive problems in your horses.

Processed potatoes such as chips contain several chemicals and sodium that will hurt your horse’s digestive tracts.

Can Horses Eat Premium Dry Dog Food?

No. dog food is specifically formulated for carnivores, not herbivores. Depending on how much dog food it consumes, it is not good to feed dog food to your horses, a few bites won’t kill them, but it is better not to make it part of their regular diet.

Can Horses Eat Dog Treat?

yes.  But it is not advisable to feed a dog treat to a horse. Most pet food should not be given to horses as a horse’s digestive system are delicate. ensure your cat and dog food is out of the reach of your horse.

Can Horses Eat Cucumber?

Yes.  It is most beneficial to your hose if it is fed cucumber. Cucumber has the nourishments that are required by most horses, most especially if they are homegrown or organic.

Cucumber has vitamins, minerals, low calories, low sugar which are suitable for horses with insulin resistance problems and weight gain.

Cucumber is very rich in vitamin A, K, C, D, potassium, and calcium.

These vitamins are put together to contribute to good bone health in horses and aid them during rigorous activities, cucumber provides horses with natural dietary fibers that aid in horses’ digestion.

Cucumber also helps reduce inflammation in a horse body, for horses needing extra hydration, cucumber will do them lots of good as it contains 95% water.

It does not make horses fat as it contains low carbs and sugar content.

Can Horses Eat Peanut Butter?

Yes.  But it should be given to your horses periodically in very small quantities. Maximum of two tablespoons per week.

Peanut butter is rich in sugar and fat which will likely lead to the horses getting fat if they are fed peanut butter excessively. Additionally, sugar is also not good for your horse’s sugar level.

Peanut butter cookies are dangerous and very poisonous to your horse’s health. The only peanut butter that is safe to feed your horses occasionally is crunchy.

This is because crunchy peanut butter is likely too small to choke a horse.

Can Horses Eat Bread?

No. bread is a form of processed food so horses cannot eat bread. another food to steer clear of from horses is bread. Horses are not able to break down processed food, and this in turn can cause colic and obstruction in their digestive tracts.

Can Horses Eat Honey?

Yes. Honey is incredibly beneficial to horses most especially organic and natural honey. Honey is mostly used as a healing substance apart from its nutritional qualities.

Honey should only be fed to your horses in moderation because of its very high sugar content.

Before feeding honey to your horses, please try and know if your horse is not insulin intolerant as it can prove fatal to them if they are.

You can either feed it alone or add it to any of their other diets. Honey can be very addictive to your horse’s diet but it is best to feed them with honey sparingly because of the many complications that sugar can wreck in your horse system.

Can Horses Eat Apples?

Yes. However, eating too much apple will be detrimental to the health of your horses.

Too many apples cause colic which may further lead to founder. Horses should not be given more than two pieces of apples in a day.

Apples are a horse Achilles heel, they are healthy and very nutritious to many breeds of horses. But keep in mind that just because they can eat apples does not mean they should be fed many apples in a day.

Apple flavor ranges from super sweet to tart and is preferred by different horses according to the flavor.

The key to making apples healthy for your horse is to be very moderate in feeding them and then again horses should mostly be fed fresh apples.

Can Horses Eat Banana?

Yes. Some horses just like eating bananas and bananas are a great source of healthy treats for horses and the amazing thing is that it also covers most nutrition needed for horses to do well.

They can be a tasty and healthy snack for horses if fed in proportion and moderation. All horses can eat bananas in small-sized bit amounts.

Bananas are nutritious and tasty making them very easy and healthy for your horse to chew and digest.

Bananas contain vital vitamins and minerals such as potassium, magnesium, vitamin c, vitamin D, and others.

bananas are also very rich in vitamin B6 which aid in building muscle for your horses and also assist with essential nutrients needed for building energy in your horse.

Additionally, bananas contain fiber which helps in horse digestion it also contains vitamin c which is essential for sustaining your horse’s body’s immune system.

It is appropriate to feed only two bananas each week to your horse. Feeding any treat in excessive amounts can significantly reduce health benefits and cause harmful side effects.

Too much banana in your horse’s system will lead your horse to have digestive problems.

Horses with insulin issues should not be fed too many bananas as this can cause a sugar rush in your horses and it is very detrimental to your horses.

Can Horses Eat Chocolate?

No. chocolate should not be given to horses. Just like dogs, horses are extremely sensitive to the chemical used in making chocolate. Cocoa no matter the size ingested can be very detrimental to a horse.

Chocolate is not good for horses to eat, having theobromine the chemical found in cocoa that is used in making chocolate in the system of a horse can lead to:

  • internal bleeding
  • seizures
  • heart attacks
  • colic

Can Horses Eat Pumpkin?

Yes. Orange pumpkin including the seed is safe to feed your horses in small quantities.

Give your horses one slice at a time to prevent potential choking, one or two slices, or two cups of pumpkin a day is enough and it should not be given to them too often

Can Horses Eat Watermelon?

Yes. Watermelons are a great treat to feed your horses with, albeit before feeding your horse’s watermelons make sure it is cut into smaller pieces to avoid your horse choking on them.

Horses generally prefer the sweet flesh of watermelon to the rind.

Can Horses Eat Meat?

No. horses are herbivores animal, their system and digestive system are not built to eat meat, it is best to steer clear of any meat-based product as their liver isn’t designed to get rid of the residues of meat products.

Can Horses Eat Pears?

Yes. Horses are completely safe to feed your horses, they should be very ripe, crunchy on the outside, and sweet on the inside.

Pears are a naturally high source of fiber and other nutrients that are very necessary for a healthy horse. As a result, they are considered a well-balanced fruit for just about any type of horse.