The Horse Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Banned
Joined
·
104 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
How much Selenium does a horse *really* need? I know it depends on the horse's weight and activity level and blah blah. And how much max?

For an "average" 1,000-1,200 lb horse in light work:

Requirements: Some say about 1-3 mg. Some say about 3-5 mg. The 1-3 mg people say that 3-5 can be toxic. The 3-5 people say that 1-3 is too low.

Toxic: 2 mg/kg, 3.3 mg/kg, 6 mg, 20 mg.


Some Sources:
https://www.horseguard.com/nutritio...alculate-selenium-in-other-feeds-supplements/ ("3 mg; less than 20 mg")
https://ker.com/equinews/selenium-horses-how-important-it-0/ ("1 mg; toxic levels start at 2 mg/kg")
https://www.horsefeedblog.com/2014/06/selenium-levels-for-horses/ ("1-3 mg")
https://thehorse.com/19727/trace-mineral-basics-selenium/ ("2.5 mg; 3.3 mg/kg is toxic"")
https://thehorse.com/129317/selenium-a-balancing-act/ ("Many horses get enough selenium (or even too much) just from their regular diet; for these horses, adding even as little as 5 mg selenium per day via supplements can cause mild signs of toxicity. 5 mg selenium per day via supplements can cause mild signs of toxicity.")
https://madbarn.ca/selenium-benefits-for-horses/ (3 mg; 2 mg/kg is toxic")
https://horsesport.com/magazine/nutrition/could-selenium-deficiency-be-affecting-your-horse/ ("Keeping the horse’s total intake at under 6 mg per day is advisable in order to avoid toxicity issues.)
https://wagwalking.com/horse/condition/selenium-toxicosis ("20 mg")

I know that mg/kg is not the same thing as mg.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
14,771 Posts
If you are looking for technical data then you better get your soil tested first before you go looking to add anything since selenium is in the ground, naturally occurring.
Depending upon where you live the amounts can truly vary.
:runninghorse2:...
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
23,932 Posts
I think you're trying to work out objectively what sources to listen to & why the differences? I'd consult with a qualified equine nutritionist NOT affiliated with a feed co. Although so saying, KER is a very well researched feed co. You could get onto Elanor Kellon, online nutritionist, or FeedXL & ask them what the data is on recommended selenium rates. I haven't looked into that specific personally, and I use a supplement designed for this area, by a local equine nutritionist who has looked at many soil & pasture analyses in the surrounds, to come up with it.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
104 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I already know that I live in a low selenium area and have low selenium hay and grass, that's why I am asking.

Although so saying, KER is a very well researched feed co.
I referenced them. They said "1 mg; 2 mg/kg is toxic."
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,289 Posts
The National Research Counsel recommends 1mg per day for a 500kg/1000pound horse eating 2% of it's body weight in dry matter.


On the first link below, click on Other Nutrients to get to selenium. You can also designate the Animal Specification.


Now all you need to know is how much your horse is getting. The selenium forage test is more expensive than most and very specialized. Equi-anylitical actually has to send the sample off to another company for the results.


Selenium is hard to purchase in bulk and supplement yourself. It requires some precise measuring. So doing some calc's on the supplement of choice and matching it with the forage tests is the only way to go.


I'm lucky as all of Arizona is about the same and there is a special mix made for Arizona for all the trace minerals.





https://nrc88.nas.edu/nrh/



https://thehorse.com/19727/trace-mineral-basics-selenium/
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
36,149 Posts
It tends to be sold in a Vitamin E supplement like Elevate SE but I wouldn't add it if you're feeding anything else along with the hay and grass because a lot of the horse feeds on the market add selenium and by adding more you could go over the safe level.

You can get a blood test for selenium deficiency, I'd do that before adding it as a supplement.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
12,694 Posts
What everyone forgets is that soil levels do not translate into pasture or hay levels. Different plants will uptake differing amounts and availability changes depending on soil conditions and how the hay is produced(types of inputs) and exchange capacities. You can live in a high area and it be bound up or a low area where it is not. If you live in an area where it is relatively free then is your water level high? Or higher than it should be?

Find out either by testing a sample of water you purchase if it is from the same grower on the same lands and get and average for that hay. If you don't buy from same source then ask where it is from and talk to your county ag ext agent for averages for the type of hay you find based on where it comes from.

Yes there is some correlation between soil amount and hay but it is dependent on too many factors. If you look at the soils maps they are county to county and within a county you can have a wide range of min to max amount found. You are not going to end up with a deficiency in a soul with high levels nor should you have toxicity from soils with low but you may not be getting as much or as little as you think. You also have to consider other minerals as they can affect absorption. Feeds like beet pulp or those that contain distillers grain will negatively impact Se levels.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
12,694 Posts
Have your horse tested for a baseline if it really is something you feel you need to look into. Better is to be familiar with signs of toxicity or deficiency and realize there is a range not any one specific amount and that range changes based on your horses needs.


I am going to add here that I personally know more people that have screwed up their horses tampering with diet when there was no need than ever should happen. If your horse is in poor condition, not performing at it's best, has specific signs of poor nutrition then look into it but don't micromanage it. You can cause more problems than you think you might be solving.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top