Cabbage is a type of vegetable that we use in a lot of dishes but can horses eat cabbage? Some things that we enjoy might not be good for them so is cabbage one of these? Vegetables are a great source of vitamins and they will improve the immunity of your horse but they also have various effects that you might not expect, as is the case with avocado.
Cabbage and Horses
The main diet of a horse can come from flakes of hay or scoops of feed combined with a large quantity of water but you will probably also want to spice things up with some treats. Sadly cabbage is considered quite a bad choice as a snack for your horse as just like broccoli or other cruciferous plants it creates a lot of gas while being digested.
We get gas too when we eat this but we are fine after a while and if it is properly cooked we won’t even notice the side effects. Horses on the other hand, are prone to have gas-related colic and it can be deadly which is why many nutrition experts consider it a bad idea.
This view isn’t unanimous, many horse owners have given a few leaves of cabbage to their horse and watched them enjoy this a lot. This is why other nutrition specialists think that providing two to four ounces to your horse (a handful of leaves) won’t do them harm but it is finally up to you.
Since the research isn’t completely in agreement on the subject you could try it out but make sure you start with very small quantities and increase them only if there aren’t any problems. In our opinion the risks outweigh the benefits in this case so our recommendation is to find other alternatives, especially if you are looking for something that you want to offer to your horse on a regular basis.
You should always clean the vegetables as if you were going to eat them yourself since even if horses are much larger and more hardy than us, they can still get sick from bacteria. Cut the vegetables so that there is no threat of choking as if they have some problems with it they aren’t able to vomit it as we do so it will simply get stuck in their esophagus meaning that a veterinarian will have to be contacted to remove it.
Among the best choices for vegetables that you can use as treats or supplements we would mention carrots, celery or pumpkin as they will love their taste and they also provide a large amount of vitamins. Corn is also a good choice and it can be mixed with other grains for a more balanced diet as it does contain a lot of starch.
Some other vegetables that aren’t recommended for horses are avocados, Brussels sprouts (for the same reason why cabbage is a bad idea), onions, tomatoes, peppers or potatoes as each of these poses a threat to their health.
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