The Effect of Commercial Horse Feeds versus Home Mixed Feed Grains on Foal Growth
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Publisher:The Ohio State University
Series/Report no.:The Ohio State University. Department of Animal Sciences Honors Theses; 2007
Most horse owners prefer to buy commercially prepared feeds because they are more convenient and the nutrient levels are usually balanced. Commercial prepared feeds usually are marketed at higher cost for these reasons. Home mixed feed grains take more time to prepare but usually cost less. The objectives of this study were to evaluate any difference in foal growth. To determine if feeding home mixed grains, costing 30 – 50 % less, would meet the growing foal’s needs as well as the commercial prepared feeds and to determine which type of concentrate produces the most efficient growth for the least cost. There were six foals used during the study, located at the Ohio State University Equine Center. The first group was fed a commercial creep feed, Omolene 300, produced by Purina Mills. The second group was fed a home mixed ration consisting of: whole shelled corn, soybean oil meal, calcium, phosphorous, salt and trace minerals. The foals were weighed with the use of a scale. Body measurements were taken for: knee, hock, hip and wither height from the ground and a measurement of body length. The results show that there is really no significant difference in foal growth between the two groups. The growth curve comparing weight and wither height show no significant differences. However, due to a small sample size the results prove insignificant. As a suggestion for future research, the use of more foals would be beneficial. Advisor Dr. Robert C. Kline
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