ASC512 Equine Nutrition (8)


This Subject involves study of the feeding of all horse classes, including an examination of nutritional problems (from both a physiological and biochemical perspective) that may arise as a result of incorrect feeding practices.  The characteristics and usefulness (evidence based) of nutritional supplements and feed additives and evaluation  of commercial feedstuffs will be explored and least cost rations formulated. The incidences of, and modes of actions of feed-related toxins, including poisonous plants and myctotoxins will be examined.  The importance of dental health in the care, mangement and feeding of horses will also be discussed. Students will examine current research in the area of equine nutrition. This subject is clearly differentiated from the paired subject, ASC412, in that the learning objectives and assessment clearly reflect the higher level offering appropriate to Master level learning. There will be a residential school as part of this Subject.

+ Subject Availability Modes and Location

Session 1
InternalWagga Wagga Campus
Distance*Wagga Wagga Campus
*This subject offering contains a residential school. Please view following information for further details.
Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: ASC512
Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject information

Duration Grading System School:
One sessionHD/FLSchool of Animal and Veterinary Sciences

Assumed Knowledge

Animal Anatomy and Physiology, Animal Nutrition and Biochemistry

Enrolment restrictions

Postgraduate students only
Incompatible subject(s)

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
- be able to formulate rations, at least cost, and describe appropriate feeding programs for all classes of horses according to NRC (2007) nutrient requirements;
- be able to evaluate traditional and modern-day feeding practices and their impact on equine health and welfare; - be able to describe the consequences, from both a physiological and biochemical perspective, of inappropriate feeding practices
- be able to evaluate existing rations in terms of their ability to meet nutrient requirements (of horses) without negatively impacting of their health and well-being,  and implement improvements where appropriate;
- be able to devise feeding strategies that enhance equine health and welfare;
- be able to evaluate the quality of feedstuffs, nutritional supplements and feed additivies;
- be able to identify plants  that are toxic to horses, describe the mode of action of the toxins they contain and develop management strategies to avoid toxicity;
- be able to develop a feed year plan for  horses at pasture, including suitable grazing and pasture management strategies to maintain viable horse pastures; and
- be able to identify normal and abnormal dentition in a horse and explain the importance of maintaining good equine dental health.


The subject will cover the following topics:
- Feeding breeding mares, foals, stallions, growing horses and performance horses and formulating rations on the basis of least cost
- Feeding sick or geriatric horses
- Feeding facts, fallacies and strategies
- Nutritional supplements
- Evaluation of commercial feedstuffs
- Toxic plants and pasture care and management
- Nutritional disorders
- Dental health
- Present and future directions in equine nutrition

Residential School

This subject contains a compulsory 2 day residential school. The residential school will provide a hands-on approach to the theory taught in the subject.


The information contained in the 2016 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: 06 September 2016. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.