Missed Your Horse's Meal Time? Don't Worry.

A delay in your horse's ration won't hurt him and may even be a good thing. Here's why you don't need to panic if you're running late with the grain.
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No need to excuse yourself from a summer barbeque to feed the horses at a specific time. A ration delivered a few hours earlier or later won't harm a pleasure horse or one in light work. If anything, varying the schedule may help prevent anticipatory behaviors such as pacing and stall kicking.

A meal that's served late isn't going to harm most horses.

A meal that's served late isn't going to harm most horses.

One key to feeding flexibility is to offer free-choice hay and then enough grain to maintain a horse's condition divided into as many meals a day as possible. Chowing down a heaping serving of starchy grain on an empty stomach can lead to laminitis or colic.

An elite athlete, however, needs to eat on a more rigid schedule. Every calorie he consumes is precious, and a regimen that delivers meals at the same hour each day give or take 30 minutes optimizes digestion so he extracts every bit of energy from his grain.