Alternative Treats for Metabolic Horses

Last Updated on February 19, 2022 by Allison Price

For horses with insulin disorders or Cushings, it can be hard to find safe treats. Even though horses love a good scratch, it is nice to reward them with a snack.Carrots are rich in sugar and not suitable for horses who are on low-sugar diets.Don’t worry if your horse has a restricted diet. There are still treats that you can give him that won’t cause any problems. Remember that horses with metabolic problems can still receive traditional horse treats in small amounts. This means that your horse will only get one treat per day. Not one at the barn, not after you ride him, and not one after you groom him. Many owners are unaware of how many treats their horses receive each day.

Even a small amount of carrot or alfalfa cube will not cause your horse to become laminitic. However, any amount of these can cause a laminitic episode so it is best to be cautious.Get our weekly Enewsletter about horses

Alternative Treats for Metabolic Horses
Beautiful laminitis prone Horse wearing a grazing muzzle to control its intake of grass.

You should not feed a horse with metabolic problems.

  • Apples and apple sauce
  • Carrots
  • watermelon
  • Flavored yogurt
  • Pretzels, chips, and most cereals
  • Cookies, human and horse
  • Candy, such as peppermints and jelly beans,

These are some of the best snacks:

  • Beet pulp without molasses
  • strawberries
  • Cherries (The pit is toxic, make sure you remove it)
  • Peanuts in the shell
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Celery
  • Sugar-free candy (eliminate anything sweetened with Xylitol).
  • Hay cubes broken into pieces
  • alfalfa pellets
  • Apple peels

Source: Equine Surgical Associates

Many products have been available in stores for those who prefer store-bought treats. These are some of the most popular choices:

Allison Price
Allison Price

I’m Allison, born and raised in San Diego California, the earliest memory I have with horses was at my grandfather’s farm. I used to sit at the stable as a kid and hang out with my Papa while he was training the horses. When I was invited to watch a horse riding competition, I got so fascinated with riding!