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Natural Sciences Education Abstract - Animal Science Education

An Overview of Vitamin Requirements of the Domestic Horse


This article in NSE

  1. Vol. 42 No. 1, p. 179-184
    Received: June 21, 2012
    Published: January 7, 2014

    * Corresponding author(s): cryoungs@iastate.edu
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  1. Brette N. Manthea and
  2. Curtis R. Youngs *a
  1. a Dep. of Animal Science, 2356B Kildee Hall, Iowa State Univ., Ames, IA 50011


Vitamins are small organic compounds that are needed in relatively small amounts in the diet of the domestic horse (Equus caballus) to ensure its overall health and normal body function. The objective of this review article is to provide readers with a basic understanding of vitamins, the important role they play in a horse’s health and well-being, knowledge of common feeds where each vitamin is abundant, and the consequences of inadequate or excessive dietary levels of a particular vitamin in a horse’s diet. Management considerations, such as forage testing and feeding of vitamin supplements, to ensure an adequate amount of each of the four most important vitamins in a horse’s diet (vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E, and biotin) are also discussed.

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