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Can you feed your horse carrots?

Customers tell us they can’t feed their horses carrots because they are high in sugar.

FACT: Raw carrots contain only 4.7% sugar and 1.4% starch. Carrots are 85% water! Compare that to average hay at 8 to 10% sugar, and non molassed sugar beet at 5 to 8% sugar.

So why are carrots the bad guys? One extra large carrot weighing 85g contains just 4g sugar! In the 1950’s, healthy horses with no exercise had a typical diet of 12lb of hay, 2lb of bran, 4lb of oats and 7lb of carrots. (This type of diet was fed to horses in little exercise in the 1990’s with no ill effect, before commercial bagged feeds became really popular). So what has changed?

We would like to hear from you if you genuinely cannot feed carrots to your horse because you have actually observed that they adversely affect your horse in some way (increase in metabolic syndrome symptoms, laminitis, etc). Or is everyone avoiding carrots because they mistakenly think they are high in sugar? Share this post and lets see if we can find an answer!

This blog is part of an archived library.  These blogs were originally written from 2009 through to 2014, so some are over a decade old (apologies the exact dates have been lost on website updates).  Research and informed opinions are a constantly evolving stream of work, so there will always be updates required to any older blog post, research paper, etc.  For the latest information, please email info@thunderbrook.co.uk or telephone 01953 797050 for nutritional advice.  Thank you. 

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