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Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition

   Welcome to my forum. 

Here you will find more than 6 years of questions and my answers. It is searchable and offers a great deal of information. 

Currently, I am discontinuing new questions. This may change in the future, but in the meantime, please know that It has been a true pleasure serving you. 

Take a look at my Nutrition Library and Tips of the Month for a variety of answers on selected topics. Be sure to sign up for my monthly e-newsletter, Forage for Thought

I also have a growing number of recordings on "Teleseminars on Nutrition Topics that Concern You" as well as the new, Spotlight on Equine Nutrition Series -- printed versions of favorite teleseminars.

And finally, look for my articles in a variety of local publications and online newsletters, as well as the Horse Journal, where I am the Contributing Nutrition Editor.  


All the best,

 Dr. Getty 


Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition
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Nitrate limit for horses

I would like to know the acceptable levels of Nitrates allowed in feed for a Horse without causing any harm.


Re: Nitrate limit for horses

Hi Lori,

Nitrates naturally exist in hay as a precursor to protein production. However, hay can have high levels of nitrates during prolonged cloudy weather and long periods without rain. And, of course, overuse of fertilizers can result in too much nitrates in the hay.

High nitrate levels in the blood can impair feed consumption. Pregnant mares may abort their fetuses or have very little milk production. The blood loses its ability to adequately transport oxygen and death can result.

To answer your question, horses can tolerate no more than .5% nitrate of the total dry matter in the diet.

All the best,

Dr. Getty