Like minerals, adequate vitamin intake is essential to a well-balanced diet, and again, like minerals, a horse’s daily requirement for vitamins can vary with age, level of exercise, reproductive status, health and stress.
A deficiency of Vitamin A can lead to night-vision blindness – interestingly, beta-carotene (which the body turns into Vitamin A) is readily found in carrots, so there is some truth to that old wives’ tale about carrots helping you see in the dark!
The B group vitamins (including B1 — thiamin, B2 – riboflavin, B3 – niacin, B5 pantothenic acid and B12) provide a range of health benefits, including the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins, fats and amino acids and blood cell formation.
Vitamin C is perhaps the best known of all vitamins, acting as an anti-oxidant, as well as assisting in iron take-up and the utilisation of folic acid. Vitamins tend to be destroyed by feed processing and storage, so levels may be low in modern horse diets and a balanced multivitamin supplement ( Horsepower Vitamin Supplement) makes sense.