As a leader in horse research and equine feed development, Purina knows that different horses, different lifestyles and different circumstances call for different feeds. So whether you’re feeding an elite equine athlete, or a geriatric horse, or you need an all-round formula like Strategy for an entire herd, Purina makes a formula just right for you.

Martha feeds her horses Purina Mills feed plus lots of good, fresh hay.

FAQS On Feeding Your Horse With Purina Mills

  1. Q: What is a good feed and feeding regiment to help put weight on a malnourished Senior Horse?

It takes awhile to put weight back on an older horse once they've lost weight.  The first thing needs to be a vet check-up to determine if the horse has anything wrong healthwise (thyroid condition, Cushings Disease, parasites, blood disorders, etc.). If your vet has the proper equipment, a dental exam is highly recommended. Not all vets have the newest equipment to handle proper floating of teeth. If this is the case, you might want to have someone who specializes in Equine Dentistry examine the horse.

Purina Mills was the first feed company to develop a feed for older horse, named Equine Senior. We did extensive research for several years to determine what an older horse requires nutritionally. What we found was that older horses have a harder time digesting fiber because their digestive systems have slowed down. They also begin to have challenges to their immune system, requiring higher levels of Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Zinc, and Folic Acid. Feeding a 14% Protein, found in Equine Senior, is necessary to help them maintain muscle tissue.  The quality of protein and other ingredients is very important in helping an older horse process feed, hay, and pasture.

One thing that also happens is older horses, due to their difficulty digesting hay or pasture, will graze, but once they've chewed the grass they spit it out. It's not something you may notice, since they're usually small dried balls of fiber. They cannot process it properly. Equine Senior is designed to be fed as a complete feed, requiring no additional hay or pasture. This is the best way to feed if you're not sure what quality your hay or pasture is or if your horse is having a hard time processing hay or pasture. You can also feed Equine Senior with hay or pasture, as long as it is good quality. Try to feed as least 2 or more times per day. Be consistent with your feeding times. Keep clean, fresh water available at all times. Make sure you have salt available free choice.

Remember to feed based on the weight of your horse. If they are underweight, you will have to feed more calories to get them to the weight they need to be. Weigh your feed to know exactly how many pounds you are feeding per day. Directions for how much to feed are on the back of the feed bag.

  1. Q: Do all horses get the same feed?

For example: A performance horse, like a barrel horse, roping horse, cutting horse, etc. needs to be fed a diet with a higher level of calories than a horse that may only be ridden once or twice a week. As activity levels increase, a 14% protein and higher amount of energy should be supplied in the diet. If activity level decreases, no less than 10% protein should be fed, including a lower level or energy. It is important to feed a good quality hay, which keeps the digestive tract working properly. Hay or forage also provides some level of energy. Other considerations should be given to young growing horses, older horse, breeding horses, etc. All of these types require different types of feeds. Knowing the wight of you horse is also important to determine how much to feed. If your veterinarian has a scale, be sure to weigh your horse while you are at the vet clinic. You can also use a horse weight tape to get a good idea of your horse's weight. You should be able to get one of these at your local Purina dealer. If they don't have one in stock, they can order one for you. Be sure to weigh your feed too. All feeds weigh differently. You can use a fishing scale, diet scale, or take your feed to your local feed dealer. They usually have a scale and can weigh it for you. They are also a good source of information on how to feed.

  1. Q: What is the best time to feed my horse?

Feeding times vary, depending on what you're doing with your horse. You should be feeding at least twice a day and it is best to feed every 12 hours. I know many rodeo people who feed at 10:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. to accommodate their rodeo schedule and give their horse time to recover from the rodeo performance. Most people who work will feed differently because of their schedule. The main thing is to be consistent as much as possible. If you're feeding a good balanced feed and good quality hay or pasture, you're less likely to have a problem.

  1. Q: What is the difference between Strategy and Omolene 200?

Strategy is a pelleted feed and Omolene 200 is a sweet grain mix feed. Purina originally designed Strategy for large breeding operations where the farm would have many different age groups of horses, including broodmares, stallions, young growing horses, and horses in training. These farms wanted one feed they could feed to all these groups safely, butgive them all the proper balanced nutrition they needed for their age, weight, and level of activity. That is why we can recommend Strategy for any lifestage. Strategy is 14% protein and 6% fat. Omolene is available in 3 types: Omolene 100 is recommended for Adult Horses who need a maintenance ration because they are not being ridden much and is 110% protein and 4.5% fat. Omolene 200 is for Performance horses, growing horses over a year of age, and breeding horses. It is 14% protein and 6 % fat. Omolene 300 id designed for young growing horses under a year of age or lactating broodmares being fed with their foals. It is 16% protein and 4.5 % fat. Strategy has a slightly higher level of amino acid, Lysine, which helps the young, growing horse.

  1. Q: What is a good feeding program for older horses?

Older horses have challenges with their immune system, digestive system, etc. Purina recommends Equine Senior for older horses. It is a pelleted feed with an added nugget, Athlete, and has a processed molasses coating that is easier for the older horse to chew. It also has a higher fiber level, because a lot of older horsess have teeth problems and a slower digestive system, making it harder for them to eat and digest fiber. Older horses can get to the point where they might chew hay or pasture, but don't swallow it because it's too hard for them to digest it. You can feed Equine Senior as a complete feed (Complete feeds provide all the nutrients in the horse's diet, including hay). It also has a higher levers of Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Zinc and Folic Acid to help the older horse with their immune system.

  1. Q: Is it good to feed your horse 3 times a day?

Purina recommends feeding at least twice a day, unless you have a horse who is not being ridden much and is only being fed a small amount of feed. A horse's stomach is small and cannot handle large amount of feed or grain at one time. If too much is fed at one time it can cause digestive upsets and lead ato colic or laminitis. It is always best to feed the highest quality of feed and hay you can. It should be balanced and provide the nutrients your horse requires for their age, weight, and activity level. A nutrient dense feed is best, because you don't have to feed as much per day. You might need to feed 3 or more times per day if your horse's activity level is high, requiring more calories to maintain body condition and level of activity.

  1. Q: If I'm going to run my horse at a show around 8:00 or 9:00 p.m. could I feed him a 1/2 feeding around mid afternoon and the other half after I run?

This depends on what time you feed in the morning. If you feed at 7:00 a.m. you might want to feed a partial feeding at 7:00 a.m. and the remainder after your run. It is important to feed on a consistent basis, including hay. I know some people who feed at 10:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. to accommodate their show schedule.

  1. Q: If I'm feeding another Purina feed like Sweet 10, which is a 10% feed, could I mix it with Omolene 200 to help give me a little extra with the athlete in Omolene?

Anytime you mix feeds, you change the balance of the protein, including protein, energy, vitamins and minerals. If your horse is not being ridden much, a 10% protein feed would work. You would be better off feeding Omolene 100 instead of Sweet 10, because it is more nutrient dense and balanced. You wouldn't have to feed as much Omolene 100 as Sweet 10. If your activity level is higher, we would recommend Omolene 200.

  1. Q: If I'm feeding Omolene 200 could I add an additive, like Equine Bloom, to help enhance main and tail growth?

Omolene 200 is a balanced feed and does not need additives. Make sure you are feeding a good quality hay or pasture. Suring the summer, you might need to use some electrolytes if you're riding and hauling your horse a lot. Anytime you use additives, you change the balance of the feed. Adding vitamins and/or minerals can actually inhibit the absorption of some nutrients. Adding vitamins and/or minerals can also create toxicity problems. Some people like to mix oats and Omolene 200 because they think it makes their horse sweat less. What causes a horse to sweat it outside tempertaure and humidity, level of activity, and fiber in the diet. Oats are high in fiber. They are also very deficient in vitamins and minerals, creating a dietary imbalance.


Where there is a will, there is a way.

When I started barrel racing, I had no arena, no cowboy boots, no barrel racing saddle and no entry fee money. But I hunted up three old trash cans and put them on a little spot of ground in my grandmother's meadow. Grandma's hay crop was not too good that year, but my barrel racing sure improved!

Being a goal setter is a must for every barrel racer. You've got to WANT the win! You have to set the goal, want it and then go for it.

Keep These Simple Principles In Mind So You Will Enjoy Your Barrel Racing

  1. Be prepared. Do your homework and then let your training work for you.

  1. Back off when things are not going as you have planned. This will allow you to gain the proper perspective needed to find the solution to your problems.

  1. Convert mistakes into learning opportunities.

  1. Haul with people who enjoy the sport and make it enjoyable for you.