How can seasonal management changes impact gut health?

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Adverse weather conditions and colder temperatures in autumn and winter mean reduced pasture quality and fewer nutrients in grass, which often results in horses struggling to maintain condition.  

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Horses also experience longer periods of time stabled, which can reduce their access to forage and lead to management changes to their routine and diet.

Dysbiosis

Changes in weather, routine and diet can all lead to an imbalance of beneficial and pathogenic bacteria in the gut, known as dysbiosis, particularly if these changes are sudden.

Dysbiosis can cause a decrease in gut pH and subsequent inflammation in the gut, leading to clinical problems such as:

  • Diarrhoea

  • Behavioural change

  • Weight loss

  • Poor performance

  • Colic

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To help prevent this, try to ensure changes in your horse’s routine and diet are made as gradually as possible.

It’s also advisable to feed your horse a supplement containing prebiotics and postbiotics, which can help maintain a healthy balance of hindgut microflora.

Coopers Gut range

Feeding Coopers Gut which contains both prebiotics and postbiotics will help to support beneficial bacteria in the hindgut, improving digestion, and therefore helping to maintain body condition. 

Furthermore, Coopers Gut Support is naturally rich in free amino acids, which also helps to maintain body condition.

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