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Horses - Diet and Nutrition/oats cannot digest easily


hello ma'am. may i know why cant horses digest grains easily when compared to roughage?

Hello Caine,

Physiologically, horses digestive systems have limited capability to digest grains.  They small grain storage and digesting space, and fast rates of passage when fed large amounts of grain or if they are exercised excessively.  Conversely, the horse's digestive system is ideally designed to provide adequate space and capacity to digest forages.  

Thanks, Corlena  

Horses - Diet and Nutrition

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Corlena Patterson


I can help with any of your horse nutrition questions and concerns. I have been involved with horses for closing on 40 years, with a B.Sc in Animal Science and currently working on an M.Sc in Equine Science with the University of Edinburgh. I have owned my own feed store, consulted professionally as an equine nutritionist, and lectured in the fields of equine and dairy nutrition at the University level for 5 years. I have developed and currently market 'Ration-X', a ration formulation program for horses...designed for the everyday horse owner. I am happy to help in any way I can.


Experienced in developing and implementing feed programs for horses of all disciplines, creating custom horse supplements and managing inter-disciplinary equine facilities. Specialize in equine nutrition consulting.

The American Society of Equine Appraisers

'Stable Management' Handbook, Equine Canada.

M.Sc (Equine Science-current), B.Sc(Agr) Animal Science, Equine Sports Massage Therapy Certification, Farrier Certification, Equine Consultant Certification, Certified Equine Appraiser, Certified in Emergency Equine Rescue.

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