Do I need to add water to my horses grain, cube, or pellet meals?
Short answer - No, you don’t HAVE TO, but it’s best. And why is it best? For a few reasons:
Pellets and grains are often crunchy when they come out of the bag. Then you add your powdered supplements and electrolytes, and sometimes medications. (Bad tasting medications, usually!) And then you serve - and what you end up with sometimes looks like the good parts have been picked out and eaten, and the powder stuff is left behind!
Water just added, in a few minutes this will be horse oatmeal.
But, adding water can accomplish a few things, all beneficial to your horse:
- Pellets and cubes are softened and can reduce the chance of your horse choking.
- Your horse’s supplements can now stick to and be properly mixed with the rest of his meal.
- In the summer, your horse can get more water to stay hydrated! In the winter, you can use warm water and give your horse a nice mash.
- You may have to add water to some horse feeds - like beet pulp.
- Mushy meals are easier to chew for older horses or horses that have dental issues.
Raid your kitchen for a handy spoon to stir it up.
It may be a bit of a science experiment to determine how much water to add to each meal, and how long in advance you need to add the water. For beet pulps, soaking for several hours is necessary, for most feed pellets and grains a few minutes is just fine.
Yummy soaking beet pulp.
Your horse will also tell you how much water is good for him, some horses want to drink their meals and others prefer a bit of texture!
Hay cubes often benefit from a little soaking to make them easier to chew.
Do you add water to your horse’s pellets and grains?