There are a lot of mixed messages and controversy about what and how to feed your horse. It doesn't help that a lot of the big feed brand names are pushing marketing messages onto you, making it very difficult to know what is true and what are facts and what are myths. Honestly, we would probably scrap all the random stuff and follow a balanced commercial diet that is as close to natural as possible. As long as you make sure to feed at least the minimum recommended amount, taking into account the amount of work the horse is in and the age.
Reasons Sloping Topline
- Age: Older horses tend to loose their topline (this is natural and nothing to worry about)
- Breed: Some breeds have a more distinct topline than others
- Quality of Feed: Grass or hay that is dry and low in nutritional value won't help you even if you feed a lot of it. Make sure you add extra hay if your natural pasture is dry or not enough
- Amount of work: Horses that are kept in full work require more feed, make sure you feed enough fats, carbs and proteins.
- Broodmare: Broodmares tend to get a sloping topline due to natural reasons.
- Muscle density: Horses that are on 'spell' and not in full work can loose their back muscles, making the topline more distinct.
5 Best Horse Feeds to Build Topline
Number one advise is to keep it simple, don't buy every expensive formula and vitamines you come across. Use common sense! Remember the most important thing is to give your horse a balanced diet, and make sure you feed enough of it from a quality source. The following feeds are great for filling out the topline.
1) Copra Meal
The high fat content in copra meal makes it a great additive for horses that easily drop in weight. It also provides extra shine to the horse's coat.
2) Quality Hay/Grass
As previously stated, keep it simple and stick to natural sources. A balanced diet with a lot of hay will do wonders to your horses topline.
3) Full fat soya bean meal
Soya bean meal is a great carb and protein source for your horse, just make sure you get it from a quality source.
Speedibeet is an allround feed with high nutrional content. It is not only known to fill out the topline, but also to give extra shine to your horses coat, and sometimes develop dapples.
5) Amino acids (Lysine & Methionine)
If you want to give any additives, amino acids are essential. Especially lysines and methionine.
Checkout the best saddle for a high withered horse here.