Hello! I’m here again. This time to talk treats and horses.
First of all a treat is just that, a “treat” — and meant to be given occasionally and in small amounts to your horse.
Horses are individuals just like us with individual tastes. Some love super sweet treats; others are not so crazy about sugary snacks and prefer something like apples (quartered) and of course carrots. We don’t give our horses loads of treats because they mainly hang out at home, and make a little sprint here or a jog over there when they are turned out — going for long, leisurely strolls for a mile or two with us on the weekend.
My daughter and her friends got the idea at the beginning of the summer that they wanted to do something nice for the local horse rescue this Fall. So they made loads of cookies and fudge over two nights (vegan of course) and are selling them tomorrow to raise the final bit of money they need to buy a bunch of hay to help throughout the winter.
They’ve been doing little fundraisers since school got out, doing odd jobs, a bit of mowing, running errands for folks and all sorts, and tomorrow is their final one.
In the meantime, they decided they want to take the horses some homemade treats too when we deliver the hay. Actually, they decided they wanted me to make some homemade treats to take to the horses.
I got this recipe off The Horse magazine online, Christmas 2013 and all our horses — even the one who usually gives a sideways look of disapproval when offered a treat before he walks away — eats these.
1 cup flour
3/4 cup beer
2 cups molasses
1 pound grain
1/2 cup raisins
• Mix the flour, beer, and molasses thoroughly. Add grain to mixture slowly and mix well. Finally, mix in raisins.
• Pour this mixture into an oiled 12-by-15-inch pan, and place in a 250°F oven.
• When the mixture starts to firm up (about 25 minutes), remove the pan and cut the contents into bite-sized pieces. Then, return the pan to the oven and bake until the treats are mostly dry and fairly firm (roughly 40 minutes*).
• After removing the pan from the oven, let it cool before removing the treats.
• Place the treats on cooling racks overnight.
* I don’t know if it’s my oven or what but on the second trip to the oven I leave them in 30-35 minutes or so. Not a full 40 minutes.
Here’s a handy link to SaddleBox.net where they have a list of foods your horses should and should not eat. I find it a pretty reliable guideline. BUT I urge you to give horses small quantities of anything new and untested to see how they react to it. The Horse also has some excellent info here in an article called Safety and Horse Snacks.