what fruits can horses eat

What Fruits Can Horses Eat?

Written by: Annemarie Dutton

As a horse owner, you love your horse and probably like to spoil them with some treats from time to time. But unfortunately, everyone has a different idea of what treats are best, and your horse will gobble up everything you place in front of them.

We ask: What fruits are healthy treats?

This article will list healthy fruits that can be fed to your horse in moderation as treats and touch on the fruits that we should avoid.  If you would like to find out more, please read on.

Can Horses Eat Fruit?

Horses can eat most fruits, especially apples, pears, and melons. However, you should always remove any stones, pips, or seeds as these can be a possible choking hazard. 

Can Horses Eat Apples?

We all know how much horses love apples, ask any person what horses like to eat, and chances are they’ll mention apples. As well as being tasty and juicy, they’re also extremely healthy.

Apples are full of vitamins and minerals that can have benefits such as reducing the risk of obesity and heart problems. They also contain dietary fiber, which helps the horse digest the apple and all other foods.

Can Horses Eat Bananas?

Not only can horses eat the whole banana (including the peel), but it also has several health benefits too, including preventing ulcers and even repairing cell damage.

Can Horses Eat Apricots?

Apricots are full of goodness and high in vitamins A, C, and E and antioxidants that can help protect your horse from many illnesses and bacterial diseases.

Like apples, apricots also contain dietary fiber that will help to keep your horse’s digestive system in tiptop condition from start to finish.

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Can Horses Eat Pears?

Pears contain a few more calories than apples but have less sugar and 50% more dietary fiber. As with apples, you should remove the stalk, seeds, and leaves before cutting them in half and feeding them to your horse.

Can Horses Eat Oranges?

Not all horses will like the taste of oranges but they’re perfectly okay for them to eat. What’s more, they can also help to boost your horse’s energy levels.

Oranges have the same amount of sugar as melons but have fewer calories and more vitamin C.

Can Horses Eat Grapes?

Red and green grapes make wonderful juicy treats for horses.  You can serve them fresh or frozen. The sweeter the grape, the more likely your horse is to accept this treat. 

Recent research by supplement companies has found that grapes are packed full of prebiotics and probiotics, which means that grapes have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antioxidant, and even anti-cancer properties.

Can Horses Eat Mango?

Mangos are perfectly okay for horses to eat, but they are relatively high in sugar, so they should only be fed as an occasional treat.

Before feeding mangos to your horse, though, you should remove the peel and the stone because they both contain toxins. 

Can Horses Eat Melon?

As long as you remove the seeds from the melons, you can safely feed them to your horse. They’re delicious in the summer for helping to cool your horse down.

Whether it’s honeydew, cantaloupe, honey globe, or snap, all melons are perfectly okay for horses to eat. They generally have a low sugar content and a high water content which means that your horse can eat more of them than some other fruits. As long as you clean it properly first you can also feed the rind to your horse, although I wouldn’t recommend feeding the seeds.

The exact amount varies between different melons, but they all have a plethora of vitamins and minerals that will help keep your horse healthy. From their coat to their bones, melons can benefit every part of your horse.

You might also like: Can Horses Eat Watermelon Rind?

Can Horses Eat Strawberries?

Strawberries make fantastic healthy treats for horses. They’re packed with nutrients that help boost your horse’s immune system and an assortment of vitamins and minerals that will keep your horse healthy. They’re also low in sodium and are virtually fat-free.

Can Horses Eat Pineapples?

The flesh of the pineapple is more than okay for horses to eat. It’s tasty and can help boost your horse’s overall health.

Not only are pineapples super tasty they also contain a lot of bromelains that will help your horse digest their food.

How to Feed Fruit to Horses

While they don’t contain as much as oranges (and nowhere near the amount of kiwi), pineapples still have their fair share of vitamin C.

There are many ways to feed fruit to your horse with the most obvious way being to cut the fruit into smaller pieces and then provide it straight to your horse but if you want to make treats a bit more ‘interesting’ for your horse then here are a few different ways to feed them to your horse.

Mix with their feed

It might not seem like a treat to your horse, but it’s a great way to spoil them without encouraging bad habits. Your horse will just think it’s part of its food but will still get the goodness from the fruit.

Ice lollies

You can chop some fruit up, mix them with water and then either pour them into an ice cube mold or, if you have a big enough freezer, freeze a block and feed your horse. It will keep them cool and keep them occupied for a while.

Hide the fruit

If you have a horse feeder, you can put chopped-up pieces of fruit inside and allow your horse to find them for himself. This will keep him stimulated but will also encourage his natural foraging instincts.

Use a syringe

Once you’ve blended the fruit into a puree, you can put it into an old dewormer syringe and then squirt it directly into your horse’s mouth, as you would do with dewormer. This will stop your horse from associating the syringes with dewormer paste, making that task easier next time too!

Final Thought

Fruits are rich sources of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, making them a valuable addition to any horse’s feeding regimen. Diets that need to be low in sugar and starch can still safely accommodate moderate amounts of fresh fruits. It will not only be pleasing to your horse but will offer additional nutrients that likely do not exist in the current diet.

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