8 Common Questions About Chia for Horses Answered
You may have heard about the benefits of chia for horses, but you're contentious; you only give your horse the best and you do your due diligence before introducing anything new into their diet. We're here to help. Here are eight of the most common questions about chia for horses answered!
1. IS CHIA GOOD FOR HORSES?
Yes! Chia is GREAT for your horse. It is:
- Highly palatable.
- Highly digestible protein.
- High in Omega 3 fatty acids to support an anti-inflammatory response.
- Contains significant amounts of fiber.
- High in mucilage so better than psyllium or flax for sweeping the gut.
2. DO I HAVE TO SOAK THE CHIA BEFORE FEEDING IT TO MY HORSE?
No. Chia has a very soft shell that begins breaking down upon contact with saliva.
3. DO I HAVE TO GRIND CHIA LIKE FLAX?
No. Flax has a hard external shell so the horse cannot digest it unless it is ground.
4. WHICH IS BETTER, CHIA OR FLAX?
In my opinion, chia.
The ALA’s in flax must be converted for use by the horse whereas the ALA’s in chia do not, which gives it a little edge over flax in terms of bioavailability of key nutrients.
5. HOW MUCH CHIA DO I NEED TO FEED MY HORSE TO SEE A DIFFERENCE?
This powerful little seed gets results in horses with just ¼-⅓ cup per day!
6. IS ALL CHIA THE SAME?
No, but there is no such thing as “bad” chia.
Soil conditions, elevation, weather, rainfall and timing of harvest all have an impact on the chia plant and its seeds. While the majority of chia sold in the United States comes from Mexico, StableFeed sources our chia from Nicaragua, Bolivia and Peru before purchasing it from just south of the border. Why? The Omega 3 content in the chia from Nicaragua, Bolivia and Peru is significantly higher and we want to give our client’s horses as much anti-inflammatory support as possible.
7. IS ORGANIC CHIA BETTER FOR MY HORSE THAN NON-ORGANIC OR CONVENTIONAL CHIA?
At StableFeed we believe chemicals, preservatives and chemically treated organic matter (binders) should be left out of horse food as much as possible. However, while sourcing our chia we discovered that the difference between “organic” and “conventional” chia often depends on when the Supplier closes the chamber on the conveyor belt that is being used to fill the bags. That’s right, the chia marked “organic” and sold for a much higher price point may come from the same truck and same load as the chia without organic certification. Since it’s impossible for us to know how the chia was handled StableFeed purchases only USDA Organic Certified chia so we know the product we are using is clean.
8. WHAT HAPPENS IF I FEED MY HORSE A DOZEN STABLEFEED CHIA BISCUITS?
We do not recommend over-feeding anything to your horse, but if your horse gets more StableFeed biscuits than you planned it will not harm them. They will, however, have a very large bowel movement.
Ready to experience the benefits that chia for horses offers? Click here to view all of our chia feed options!