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  • Trick or treat, what can your horse eat?

    October 30 2019 | Insight

    With Halloween just over the horizon, BedKind takes a look at how you can get your horse involved in the trick-or-treat fun!

    Whether you’re going out in costume or bringing treats to the stable, make sure you only share foods that your horse can eat.

    Sweet treats – no tricks!

    We all know Halloween and a bucket full of sweets go hand-in-hand for kids, so if you want to give your horse something sweet too, sugar cubes are a great place to start. Peppermints or carob treats are also great ‘sweets’.

    To keep with the theme of the season, you can give horses their own version of a toffee apple by slicing an apple up – make sure you don’t give the core to your horse – and mixing it with alternative chocolates for horses, like carob.

    You can also set up apple bobbing for your horse, chopping up the apple pieces and floating them in the trough! Our Ambassador Becca does this with our Animal Ambassador, Billy. She says, “It’s a great way to keep horses entertained through drinking water and eating snacks!”

    And when you’re done carving your pumpkins, leftover pieces of pumpkin flesh are a great option for your horse – seasonal and sweet without being too sugary.

    Seasonal foods to stay away from

    Some seasonal foods can’t be translated for a horse’s diet, though!

    We know that Halloween buckets end up filled with chocolate, but you must make sure your horse doesn’t have any – the caffeine can cause horses to fail drugs test, and chocolate itself can cause colic.

    Boxty and colcannon are traditional Irish foods that are eaten at this time of year. Boxty are potato pancakes, but you should avoid trying to make a horsey version, as potatoes can cause toxicosis if they’re too green, and horses could choke on a whole potato.

    Similarly, colcannon is full of cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower, which could cause severe gas if eaten in large quantities.

    Fruits and vegetables

    Pitted dates, stoned apricots, raisins, and berries are also great sweet alternatives to sugar cubes, to help keep your horse in on the trick-or-treat action – but you must make sure the fruits don’t have stones in them, or your horse could choke. Other fruits, like banana, grapes, pineapple, and watermelon, are also sweet without being too sugary.

    There are some fruits and vegetables you should stay away from, though. Avocado is poisonous to horses, as are rhubarb leaves, which can cause kidney failure. Tomatoes, aubergines, and chilli peppers are bad for horses, too, as they can cause colic.  

    And don’t hang up garlic to keep vampires away, because if your horse eats it, it could affect their red blood cells, resulting in anaemia.

    Whatever treats you’re giving your horse this Halloween, remember to keep it in moderation – just like with trick-or-treating kids, beware of too much sugar!

    If candy gives you the frights, we’re giving a prize to the owner of the best dressed horse this Halloween, so don’t forget to tag us in your Halloween posts on social media! 

    If you have any other questions about how BedKind please get in touch by using our handy contact form, giving us a quick call on 01234 862169, or emailing us via info@bedkind.co.uk.

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