Feeding The Stallion
With diet playing an important role in the reproductive potential of a stallion, ensuring their nutritional needs are being met throughout the season is crucial.
It is important to ensure that a breeding stallion maintains in an optimum body condition all year round. A stallion’s calorie intake can vary hugely from animal to animal, and whilst some stallions will lose condition throughout the breeding season, others will stay on the heavier side. In addition, some stallions will be more naturally active than others, and once an ideal weight has been achieved, every attempt should be made to keep it.
Obesity in stallions can cause many issues such as predisposition to laminitis, insulin resistance and lameness issues (particularly of the hind legs, which is reflective of the strain placed on them during breeding). Obesity could also increase the likelihood of heart issues, and so regularly monitoring body condition is essential.
Whether a stallion is a good doer or a poor doer, it is always important to ensure their vitamin and mineral requirements are being met, as well as their individual calorie requirements. Quality forage should form the basis of any ration, and forage intakes should never drop below 1.5% of their body weight per day.
Stamm 30 ®
Stamm 30® is a targeted stud balancer which can either be used alongside a traditional stud feed when additional calories are not required, or as a complete ration for a stallion who is likely to gain excess weight if fed the correct amount of a concentrate mix or cube.
STAMM 30® is a highly concentrated source of essential proteins, with patented vitamins, minerals and yeasts designed to supplement the additional nutritional requirements from performance horses to breeding stock. It can be fed alone when additional calories (energy) are not called for, or to top dress the ration to upgrade the nutrient specification of the ration.
Stud Mix is a multipurpose traditional stud feed which is based on a blend of cereals and fibre sources, providing a complete feed well suited to breeding stallions who may also be competing regularly. Stud Mix delivers additional benefits beyond a typical stud feed with the inclusion of BMC® (Buffered Mineral Complex). BMC® is a highly bioavailable source of calcium and other naturally occurring minerals proven to benefit bone development in young performance horses, as well as support digestive function through its natural buffering capacity.
Stud Cubes are a stud feed which is based on a blend of highly digestible sources of fibre and oil, meaning it is lower in starch than a more traditional stud feed. This will provide a ration suitable for stallions who may naturally be more reactive or higher in energy than others. Stud Cubes also delivers the additional benefit of BMC® (Buffered Mineral Complex) which will again help to support optimum digestive health.
Stallion fertility can also benefit from specific supplementation of vitamin E, with both libido and sperm quality having been linked with vitamin E. Research into vitamin E supplementation has found that supplementation with a natural source vitamin E (Nano-E™) can increase total sperm output, concentration, and motility in other species, as well as support a reduction in DNA fragmentation.
Unlike may vitamin E supplements on the market Nano-E™ is a natural vitamin E supplement, ensuring it is easily taken up and retained in the tissues. In addition the vitamin E particles are dispersed in a liquid form making it even more bio-available. Studies carried out by Kentucky Equine Research have shown that Nano-E™ is four times more bioavailable than powdered natural vitamin E supplements, and six times more bioavailable than synthetic vitamin E supplements.
EO-3™ is a unique source of omega-3, derived from marine sources that can help to maintain an optimal omega-3: omega-6 fatty acid ratio in equine diets. These essential fatty acids cannot be made by the horse and have to be supplied by the diet. There are two main categories of essential fatty acids, omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Grass fed horses receive a large proportion of omega-3 essential fatty acids from their grazing. Hay and cereals contain less omega-3’s. The equine body is more suited to a diet higher in omega-3’s compared to omega-6’s. Modern feeding regimes, combined with management and an increased reliance on conserved forages could mean that some horses are receiving a higher proportion of omega’6 fatty acids. Supplementing the diet with EO-3™ will help to restore balance.
Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids are a key fatty acid that are contained in semen. Fatty acids contribute towards sperm motility, sensitivity to cold shock, and fertilisation capacity. Research has shown that supplementing stallions with omega 3 fatty acids (found in EO.3) can increase total motility, progressive motility and rapid motility of sperm. Research also showed that supplemented horses had almost double the concentration of sperm and sperm motility in frozen-thawed sperm was better.
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