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What are the 4 nutritional phases during the first 12 months?

1. Nursing for first few weeks
2. Incorporate solid feeds ~10 days postpartum
3. wean ~6 months of age
4. continue rapid growth to 12 months of age


Describe the importance of colostrum in the first 24 hours.

- rich in protein, dry matter and vitamin A
- contains immunglobins (absorbed through small intestinal)
- efficiency of absorption declines after 12 hours postpartum
- no longer absorbed at 24 hours post partum


Describe nursing behaviour within the first 24 hours.

- nurse within 1-2 hours after birth
- nurse 10 times/hr in first 24 hours
- nursing lasts about 1-2 min
- consume 15% BW as milk in first 24 hours


What is the digestibility of milk?



How long does milk supply all nutritional needs?

6-8 weeks


How does total solids, energy, protein, fat, lactose and minerals change in milk as time passes?

- total solids decrease
- energy decreases
- protein decreases
- fat decreases
- lactose increases
- minerals decrease


Why do so many nutrients decrease in milk?

- encourages weaning
- foal will naturally try to supplement diet by weaning


How is the composition of mammals milk related to growth rate of the young animal?

Protein, Ca and P increase as the 'days required to double birth weight' decreases


How many days do horses require to double their birth weight?

- 60 days


In what order are tissues deposited as the horse grows?

bone then muscle then fat


How does the tissue order of deposition affect the nutritional requirement of certain ingredients?

- will require calcium and phosphorous first and most importantly for bone development


At 1 month of age, what percentage of height has been reached?



If nutrition is compromised in the mare, how does this affect the foal?

- during pregnancy,, will divert energy to foal
- however, during lactation, may result in reduced milk production
- can wean early to prevent this affecting growth


Does weaning age affect growth rate?

- little influence
- initial colostrum necessary for regular growth
- weaning dependent on management practices


At what age do foals spend ~50% of their day eating solid feed?

- 21 weeks
- dam allows foals to eat grain, especially if in confined box stall
- seek solid food source for nutrient supply
- copies dam


Describe creep feeding.

- provides nutrient dense source of feed to foals but is protected from ingestion by mares
- helps reduce weaning stress
- adapt micro biome
- increased ADG from foals not creep fed
- voluntary intake varies between foals


Where does growth of long bones occur?

- metaphyseal plates (growth plates)


What is an easy way to tell if a foal is not done growing?

- croup is higher than shoulder


What is the general energy requirement for growth?

- energy for growth = energy for maintenance + growth


As the growth rate slows, does the energy required for 1kg gain increase or decreases?

- increase


Describe the protein requirements for growth

- sensitive to protein quality
- lysine is first limiting AA


How can protein requirements be determined?

- nitrogen balance should be positive in growing horses


Describe calcium requirements in growing horses.

- deficiency can lead to osteopenia (problem with remodelling)
- poor mineralization of osteoid tissue
- creates enlarged joints and crooked long bones
- Ca requirement = maintenance + gain


Describe the result of phosphorous deficiency in growing horses?

- rachitic like changes
- excess reduced Ca uptake
- can lead to nutritional secondary hyperparathyroidism


What does PTH do?

- increased from bone
- decreased in urine
- increased from intestine
- in response to low blood calcium


Describe nutritional secondary hyperparathyroidism.

- inadequate dietary Ca due to low Ca or high P
- Ca:P needs to be 2:1 for growing horses
- manage by altering diet
- prevent by providing right ratio or supplement with Ca carbonate


Describe development orthopaedic disease.

- complex of musculoskeletal abnormalities (angular limb deformities, physics, subchondral bone cysts, osteochondrosis)
- occurs in as much as 80% of horses (corrective trimming, surgical correction)
- cervical vertebral malformation can cause compression of spinal cord
- idiopathic (hereditary) or acquired (trauma or nutritional)
- originate from abnormalities of growth plate
- found in horses with high ADG


What are the nutritional causes of DOD?

- excessive energy intake
- may cause hormonal abnormalities if high non fibre CHOs fed
- try to increase energy with fat
- must regulate feeding to prevent
- high protein have no effect on DOD
- imbalances of Ca and P


How can DOD be prevented?

- regulate feeding
- copper supplementation
- voluntary exercise