Feeding Your Horse The Natural Way

“Creating products as nature intended… using ingredients that animals would normally eat in a wild state, as unprocessed as possible.” – Dr. Sam Wellspring, Founder of Wild Fed

Feeding is the foundation of every horse’s health. Sure, every owner cares about it, but the answers and education on which food is actually good are hard to find. This can be doubly confusing in an age that mixes excessive information and clever marketing with generational farming methods. Still, what I do know is that horse owners want their horses to live vibrant, healthy lives, which is why so many of them invest in supplements and additional products. Long gone are the days of just tossing a flake of “fine quality” hay and hoping for the best.

The best way to show respect and love for our equine friends is to understand and honor how they are made and what they need to stay strong and healthy. In their native environment, horses take care of themselves by grazing on herbs, barks, grasses, seed heads, and sometimes even roots. These horses are free to eat and roam – nature at its best, allowing these majestic animals to live as intended. However, when it comes to domestic animals, we forget that horses’ needs are still the same as their wild counterparts. Even if the environment has changed, what they are has not. A horse will always be a wild animal at heart, even a foal that is born and lives their entire life on a farm. These modern or domesticated horses rely on their owners to supply the nutrition they are not able to access for themselves, meaning that choosing the right food for them is critical to their holistic well-being.

Commercial feed is an expansive market. Just like the human food supply chain, these companies are in the business of making money. They offer “low-fat” and “sugar-free” products even though the food is incredibly processed and lacking in real nutrition. Such food is often full of byproducts like soybean meal, peanut hulls, beet pulp, and rice bran, and it’s also loaded with synthetic nutrients and sweeteners like molasses. Since these ingredients obviously aren’t natural to a horse’s diet, they create imbalances or overloading, which can result in major problems such as hoof disease, obesity, chronic illness, immune dysfunctions, allergies, dull coat, and much more. If you don’t know what to avoid or add, it’s all too easy to think that you’re doing right by your horse when in reality, you’re doing just the opposite.

I’ve learned a fair bit while researching and consulting with our feed store, and fortunately, this led to my introduction to Wild Fed. Dr. Sam Wellspring, the founder of Wild Fed, has developed small-batch supplements and feed that mimics a wild horse’s diet. She spent years observing the grazing patterns of wild horses and was able to put together a formula made up of unprocessed and organic ingredients, providing a simple solution to many of the health problems seen in domestic horses today. Wild Fed is for a new generation of horse owners seeking a more natural approach to the health of their horses.

Hickory is my senior horse, now 25 years old. I started feeding him Wild Fed Horse Feed when he dropped a ton of weight. Hickory now eats two bowls a day to ensure that he gets the nutrition needed for sound health. He has access to hay all day, but the Wild Fed Horse Feed has the vital nutrients that a hay diet lacks. Because of this, I can feel confident that what Hickory eats is genuinely good for him. I tried several different products in the past but over time, I noticed imbalances, mostly occurring in his hooves. Aside from the health benefits of Wild Fed, Hickory also loves the taste.

Chance, one of our rescued horses, was prescribed Butte for pain management, and I added Wild Fed Stomach Soother to his diet to help protect his stomach and gut lining. A horse’s stomach is acidic by nature, and this formula helped him to digest, break down food, reduce inflammation, and rebuild tissue in the small and large intestines. Pain management medication impacts a horse’s system, and the Stomach Soother was a great way to offset the side effects of his medication.

Several of our other horses are sensitive to fly bites during the summer months. Wild Fed Allergy Support has proven itself each season to reduce their allergic inflammatory response. California has long summers, and keeping horses on this formula is safe, ensuring their comfort until cooler weather arrives.

Please check out the Wild Fed website and ask your local feed store if they carry these products. And remember, always try to avoid corn, soy, sweeteners, and by-products. Instead, simply think about the resources available to horses in the wild and go from there.