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What fruits/veggies are safe and not safe for horses?

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  • What fruits/veggies are safe and not safe for horses?

    Title pretty much says it all.... I know horses can eat bananas, grapes, and so on. What else can be fed SAFELY and what can not be fed to horses? I heard once that peaches and cherries were poisonous - is this true? What about stuff like Squash? Beans? Nuts? What else is good/bad? Just wondering if there is anything I have sitting around here that would be a good treat or just something different for them to nibble on here and there.

  • #2
    Every Halloween I feed my guy a pumpkin.

    I cut off the top and carve out the inside so it's like a bowl and I fill it with soaked hay cubes or bran mash, apples and carrots. He eats the whole thing and loves it!

    I think some other COTH'ers do this as well.


    • #3
      Originally posted by ThoroughbredFancy View Post
      Every Halloween I feed my guy a pumpkin.

      I cut off the top and carve out the inside so it's like a bowl and I fill it with soaked hay cubes or bran mash, apples and carrots. He eats the whole thing and loves it!

      I think some other COTH'ers do this as well.
      I LOVE this idea! I want to try it! I am not sure if my new guy would like it, but I think my "old guy" - 3 yr old rehabbing, isn't old, but was my first lease - would love it!


      • #4
        I've been feeding mine watermelon rind for years. He is crazy about it. I give him half the watermelon one day, and the other half the next. I chop the whole thing up into bite-sized pieces and put the whole mess in a huge bucket so the juice can run out of his mouth and into the bucket for slurping after the pieces are gone. This entertains him for a long time.

        My horse is no good at eating various vegetable scraps: he won't eat lettuce, raw asparagus, or cooked corn. But he loves grapes, watermelon, bread, raw pasta, cooked popcorn, and corn chips.
        I have a Fjord! Life With Oden


        • #5
          I roll a few pumpkins in to their paddocks - they LOVE them whole! Munch munch munch. And on a hot day nothing beats a cold whole watermelon! Fun to eat fun to play with!
          "If you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there"


          • #6
            Lettuce is bad for rats, mice, rabbits, guinea pigs, etc... It gives them diarrhea so I would be wary about giving to horses as a treat?

            um... avocado is poisonous to birds, onion to dogs,

            Having a bit of a brain blank at the moment.. I would like to know if peanuts are ok for horses for a treat? My gelding loves salty potato crisps and I reckon he's probably like a handful of peanuts too.


            • #7
              According to my research:

              1. Hay
              2. Grain
              3. Oats
              4. Apples
              5. Carrots
              6. Special Horse Treats
              7. Sugar cubes
              8. Grass
              9. A couple of simple butter cookies
              10. Pears
              11. Coconut
              12. Watermelon Rind
              13. Strawberries
              14. Cucumber
              15. Celery
              16. Chocolate (in moderation and not plain...in a cookie or someting)
              17. Bread
              18. Jellly/jube Lollies (In moderation)
              19. Crisps (in Moderation)
              20. Kiwi Fruit
              21. Honey
              22. Grapes
              23. Pumpkin
              24. Apricots
              25. Beets
              26. Blackberries
              27. Blueberries
              28. Cherries
              29. Corn
              30. Dates
              31. Figs
              32. Grapefruit
              33. Horseradish
              34. Lettuce
              35. Mangoes
              36. Oranges
              37. Peaches
              38. Pineapple
              39. Plums
              40. Raisins
              41. Rutabagas
              42. Squash
              43. Strawberries
              44. Sweet potatoes
              45. Turnips
              46. Watermelon (rind and pulp)
              47. Popcorn
              48. Chips (in small ammounts and not on a regular basis)

              ~ Avocado
              ~ Onions
              ~ Potatoes
              ~ Persimmons
              ~ Rhubarb
              ~ Tomatoes
              ~ Any other members of the nightshade family which includes peppers
              ~ Broccoli or Cauliflower (may cause gas, which in turn may cause gas colic)


              • #8
                i had always heard that peaches were bad for horses too? ... i might be wrong tho


                • #9
                  Is pumpkin safe for IR horses?
                  Proud owner of Gus & Gringo.
                  See G2's blog


                  • #10
                    Well my sister's horse loves apple and I once asked a doctor if this is just a Hollywood clichée -bubble or if it is really helpful or actually healthy for a horse to eat apples. He told me that we do not have to be afraid that it might harm the horse or anything like that, and that it is very healthy because horses it apples with the paring and that they get a lot of vitamins that way.


                    • #11
                      One of my horses loves bananas. He will eat the skin, but I don't give it to him, although it's probably fine (except for the chemicals on non-organic bananas). One of the Olympic teams (Australia, maybe) gives their horses tons of fruits/veggies, including bananas.

                      That horse also loves guava juice My OTTB loves wine (hey, that's a fruit), as I found out at my wedding when I was holding a glass of white wine and he started slurping it up!
                      "If you can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em."


                      • #12
                        members of the Brassica family should be avoided... they contain a number of substances which are typically more toxic to ruminants, but can cause oral and GI irritation to horses. They cause anemia in ruminants.

                        Members include: kale, turnips, cabbage, rape, broccoli, rutabaga, horseradish, and radish.

                        Probably OK in very small quantities, but I wouldn't make it part of a normal meal. Probably not worth the risk of colic.


                        • #13
                          This is a copy from another thread ...
                          Base 'natural vegetable/fruit/nut/seed' diet: (leave skin, seeds, etc. all on veggie - just chop up and feed 1X daily)

                          1 - 2 yams
                          3-4 carrots
                          1 apple
                          1 orange
                          1/2 - 1 avocado (no pit)
                          1 radish
                          1 egg
                          handful of fresh sprouts
                          big handful of fresh spring mix greens
                          1/4 - 1 cup flax
                          1 cup Black Oil Sunflower Seed
                          1 tbsp kelp
                          1/4 cup Safflower infused with clove of garlic and sprig of rosemary

                          to this, if you want, you can add other veggies and fruits that you might have around i.e. any squash, melons, trail mix (w/o the chocolate - just add small handful), raw pumpkin seeds, pumpkin skin, seeds and all, beans, peas, green leafy veggies, broccoli, swiss chard, dandelion, beet greens, ... etc.

                          NO tomatoes, NO potatoes, NO eggplant.

                          Feed this just 1X daily whenever you feel like it. It makes about 1/3rd - 1/2 a 20 qt. bucket.

                          Mixing up a salad and adding it to regular rations (just a handful or two of salad) will benefit as well if one doesn't feel comfortable giving up all grain.
                          --Gwen <><
                          "Treat others as you want to be treated and be the change you want to see in the world."


                          • #14
                            Peaches, cherries, plums and other PRUNUS species should not be fed to horses unless in small quantities and with the pits and stones removed first. The leaves from those fruit trees are also said to be toxic to horses, but I see the deer eating them with no apparent ill effect. Many tree species have fungus growing on them that can produce various toxins which are not safe for grazers to eat. The real problem is when horse gets into a ripe orchard of these trees and consumes a large quantity of fruit-stones and all. This can lead to a very serious colic from the stones and pits. As well, the kernels inside the pits contain small amounts of cyanic acids which are highly toxic if released though chewing or fermentation. And they will eat the fruit if it is available- they love the sweet taste.

                            In the vegetable group, most root vegetables are palatable and of benefit to horses. In the wild they dig up the roots of wild carrot and other plants and eat them. I have heard of horses in Russia and Canada during the Depression being kept alive through a hard winter by feeding them beets, sugar beets, swedes, turnips, rutbagas and also pumpkins.

                            Mine also loved the sunflower plants- leaves and seeds.
                            Interesting about some things causing anemia, I guess the effect is not immediately toxic but occurs over the longer term. Like when they eat bracken fern- it robs their body of a B vitamin and that cuases anemia.
                            "The Threat of Internet Ignorance: ... we are witnessing the rise of an age of equestrian disinformation, one where a trusting public can graze on nonsense packaged to look like fact."-LRG-AF


                            • #15
                              My understanding was that any fruit tree (peaches, plums, cherries...) with a pit has leaves which are toxic to horses in the fall when the leaves drop.


                              • #16
                                My horses went crazy for zucchini a couple days ago. I called my vet to ask about it, and he said he didn't know any reason it wouldn't be safe.


                                • #17
                                  I know folks say Persimmons are bad for horses but I used to feed my old stallion tons of them and he would get them off the ground and never had the first problem with him. Certainly we never heard they were toxic to horses back then, so fortunately there were no problems.


                                  • #18
                                    I had a mare who loved bananas, peels & all, Doritoes, Big Red gum, pop tarts, and hotdogs.
                                    My last gelding loved apple pies from McD's.
                                    So far, my new filly loves grapes, animal crackers, and pimiento cheese sandwiches.
                                    Crayola posse~ orange yellow, official pilot
                                    Proud owner of "High Flight" & "Shorty"


                                    • #19
                                      The problem with persimmons is that not-quite-ripe ones cause a reaction in the stomach that makes everything gooey. The persimmon pits and other stuff get all glued together into a mass called a bezoar (people can get this, too) that can't pass out of the stomach.
                                      There was an article in PH, I think, where the vets treated a pony for persimmon bezoars by giving it several cans of coke. Apparently the coke dissolved the mass.
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                                      • #20
                                        I know a horse that will maul me for oranges!!! Wondered if they were really ok! Glad to see they were on the ok list!
                                        www.easternprospects.com not updated Time for a total rehaul