Are you ready to start using FeedXL to build a balanced diet for your horse? Entering accurate information on your horse and what you are actually feeding is so important for making sure the diets you get out are accurate. Here are the most important things you need to get right!
Your horse’s bodyweight is the most important piece of information used to calculate your horse’s daily nutrient requirements.
- If it is too heavy, nutrient requirements will be overestimated and you will end up over feeding your horse.
- If it is too light, nutrient requirements will be underestimated and you may end up under feeding your horse.
The best way to get a bodyweight for your horse is to weigh him. BUT, when weigh scales are not available, we recommend using our bodyweight calculator.
The bodyweight calculator lets you enter the girth and length measurements of your horse and it calculates the bodyweight for you. We highly recommend that you measure your horse’s girth and length, and whenever possible weigh your horse on a set of scales to calibrate or confirm the girth and length weight measurement method. All you have to do is measure your horse as shown here and then enter the measurements into FeedXL and we calculate the weight for you. Easy!
You can change the horse’s weight after it has been saved by using the Retrieve Horse button and editing the weight. It is important to check and update your horse’s weight regularly and update the diet if the weight has changed.
Tip: To get to this screen, click the ‘Bodyweight Calculator’ button when entering your horse’s details.
Weight of Hay
It is really easy to over or underestimate the weight of hay you are feeding. If your horse has access to Free Choice hay, enter it here at the ‘Free Choice Forages’ step.
If you feed hay in specific amounts each day, get yourself a set of fish or luggage scales and weigh each type of hay you feed so you can enter the weight accurately. This can then be entered in the ‘Prepare Diet’ step where you will add any other items fed by weight.
Weight of Feeds and Supplements
It’s also very difficult to accurately estimate the weight of feeds and supplements you might use as their weight per volume is so different depending on the ingredient. Get yourself a set of $20 kitchen scales and weigh everything you feed so you can get a really accurate assessment of your horse’s diet.
Entering accurate information means the assessment of your horse’s current diet will be accurate. And of course, when you make adjustments and create your preferred diet, you should also weigh accurate amounts when you are feeding to make sure what you are feeding is the right amount!
Now you’re ready! Have fun!
Do you have a question or comment? Do you need help with feeding?
We would love to welcome you to our FeedXL Horse Nutrition Facebook Group. Ask questions and have them answered by PhD and Masters qualified equine nutritionists and spend time with like-minded horse owners. It’s free!