In equine nutrition solid feeds fall into three categories: forages (such as hay and grass), Concentrates (including grain or pelleted rations), and supplements (such as prepared vitamin or mineral pellets). Basically any whole grain, formulated feed (sweet or pellet) or other non-forage, non-vitamin/mineral supplement is referred to as a Concentrate.
The average horse should be able to get what it needs for maintenance from a diet of good quality forage. Therefore, Concentrates should be considered only if certain nutrients are missing from the forage to meet the needs of the horse.
In general, a mature horse does not require the energy that would be provided by Concentrate type feeds unless the horse is used for more than light work, in production such as a lactating mare or a breeding stallion, or if the horse is growing.
It’s important that horse owners understand the importance of a balanced the ration where the proper amount and ratios of minerals, vitamins, proteins, fats, carbohydrates, etc., are maintained for correct growth and maintenance. Too many times horses are over fed rather than underfed Concentrates.