Nutritional Articles

Influence of starch intake on growth and skeletal development of weanling horses

Published: 2005-08-29

Brief content of the article
The authors studied the effect of starch intake on growth and skeletal development in two experiments. In the experiment 1 weanling horses were fed either a grain-based, high starch concentrate or a by-product based (low starch) concentrate with coastal bermudagrass. Body weight gains were greater by the weanlings consuming the high starch concentrate. Other body measurements were not influenced by diet or gender. Postprandial blood glucose concentrations suggested that the horses on the low-starch diet were less efficient in metabolizing blood glucose than were those that had been consuming the high-starch diets.
In experiment 2, the weanlings were fed either a high-starch or medium starch concentrate plus coastal bermudagrass hay. The authors observed that animals on the medium starch diet tended to have blood glucose concentrations that peaked earlier and were lower at later times than those consuming the high starch concentrate. Skeletal development was not adversely affected in these experiments. A full abstract can be found on Pubmed or http://www.animal-science.org.
Keywords: Bone; growth; starch; osteochondrosis

Reference
Ott, E.A., Brown, M.P., Roberts, G.D., Kivipelto, J. 2005. Influence of starch intake on growth and skeletal development of weanling horses. J. Anim. Sci. 83: 1033-1043.

Website and publisher
http://www.animal-science.org