Horses - Diet and Nutrition/only bran to horses


hello ma'am. at what situations, should the trainer feed only bran mixed with water to horses rather than including grains?

Hello Caine,

Thank you for your question.  Bran and grains are two vastly different feed ingredients, with different purposes in a ration.  Traditionally horse owners use bran in a horse's diet in the hopes of mitigating the risk of impaction colic.  The theory is that bran has a laxative effect.  In reality, its the water mixed with bran that provides some protection against impactions and not the bran itself, as brand does not have the same effect on a horse's digestive system as it does in humans. Cereal grains provide a source of energy in the diet, and would be fed to increase the ration's energy density. A trainer's decision of what to feed and when should be based on a horse's needs.

Thanks, Corlena  

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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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