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Homemade Horse Treats

July 15, 2023

Today is I Love Horses Day! Horses are truly amazing animals. If you look at what the horse has done for civilization and humanity, it’s truly staggering. Silver of course isn’t interested in awards or statues in his honor: he’d much rather have a treat. We’re happy to help with that! Read on as a local Wickenburg, AZ vet lists a few snacks that will have your equine pal in hayven.

Whip-less Neigh Neighs

This recipe is from the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame and Museum, so it’s pretty safe to say it’s been tried and tested on several prized horses. You’ll combine a half cup of peanut butter with two-thirds of a cup of milk and three-quarters a cup of brown sugar. Add a cup of raw oats, a cup of chopped apple, and a cup of granola or puffed wheat. Roll into small portions, and bake on parchment paper for about a half hour at 350F.

Popcorn Balls

Combine a cup of dry molasses with a cup of water. Add a half cup of honey. Cook on a baking rack until you hear the batter start to ‘crackle.’ Then, add a quarter teaspoon of salt, a teaspoon of vanilla, and some sweet feed or kettle corn. Mix into balls, and let dry.

Giddy Yup Yums

Mix a cup of flour with two cups of molasses, and a half cup of beer, then add a pound of grain and a half cup of raisins. Cook for about 60 minutes at 250. Take it out halfway, and divide into small portions.

The Mane Event

Want a snack that will get every horse in the barn excited? Mix two cups of oats with grated carrots, a chopped apple, a half cup of molasses, a half cup of flour, and a tablespoon of coconut oil. Then add honey and brown sugar to taste. Some oats will make for a thicker batter than others, so you may need to add water. Roll the mixture into balls, and cook for 30 minutes at 325F.


You may have noticed that many of these treats are rather sugary. Don’t go overboard! Silver definitely has a sweet tooth, but too much sugar isn’t good for him. Plus, every horse is different. Ask your vet for specific recommendations.

Our Advice on Homemade Horse Treats in 2024

Should you give your horse a lot of sugary treats?

No, you should not give your horse a lot of sugary treats. While horses do enjoy the taste of sweet snacks, excessive sugar can lead to health issues, such as obesity, dental problems, and metabolic disorders. It’s essential to treat sugary snacks as occasional indulgences rather than regular parts of your horse’s diet. Always prioritize a balanced diet based on quality forage, and consult with your vet for specific dietary recommendations tailored to your horse’s health, age, and activity level. Moderation is key when it comes to treats.

Are there any ingredients you should avoid giving your horse?

Yes, there are ingredients you should avoid giving your horse. Chocolate, caffeine, and theobromine found in coffee and certain teas are toxic to horses. Also, avoid feeding anything containing alcohol, avocado, onions, garlic, and anything moldy or spoiled. Certain plants like foxglove, nightshade, and yew are poisonous if ingested. Always steer clear of pits and seeds from fruits such as cherries and apples, as they can cause blockages or contain harmful substances. When in doubt, consult with your veterinarian to ensure the safety of any treats or foods you offer your horse.

How much of a homemade treat can you safely give your horse?

The amount of homemade treat you can safely give your horse depends on the treat’s ingredients and your horse’s overall diet, size, and health. As a general guideline, treats should not make up more than 10% of your horse’s daily food intake. Small treats, a few times a day, are preferable to large quantities at once. Always introduce any new treat in small amounts to monitor for any adverse reactions. For specific advice tailored to your horse, consult with your veterinarian to ensure treats complement your horse’s nutritional needs without causing harm.

Are these treats a good replacement for a horse’s regular diet?

No, these treats are not a replacement for a horse’s regular diet. Treats, including homemade ones, should only be given as a supplement to the horse’s primary diet of quality forage, grains, and any specialized feed recommended by your veterinarian. Treats are meant to serve as occasional rewards or enrichment rather than nutritional staples. A horse’s diet must be carefully balanced to meet its nutritional requirements, support overall health, and prevent dietary imbalances or deficiencies. Always prioritize a proper diet over treats for your horse’s well-being.

Can you freeze leftover homemade horse treats?

Yes, you can freeze leftover homemade horse treats. Freezing is a great way to extend their shelf life and ensure they don’t spoil, especially if you’ve made a large batch. Before freezing, ensure the treats are cooled down to room temperature. Place them in an airtight container or a resealable freezer bag to prevent freezer burn. Label the container with the date so you know how long they’ve been stored. When ready to use, simply thaw the treats at room temperature before giving them to your horse.

Do you have questions about horse care? Contact us, your Wickenburg, AZ veterinary hospital, today!

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