Many of us enjoy sharing our “people food” as snacks with our equine pals, especially fruits and vegetables. Pears are a popular fruit and easy to find in the grocery store, but can horses eat pears? As with any treats that we may want to offer our horses, it is important for us to do some careful investigation before we start sharing.
When it comes to foods we can safely offer our horses, most veterinarians and equine nutritionists will agree that pears are perfectly safe for us to offer as treats. Your horse will most likely enjoy the naturally sweet taste of the pear, as well as the crunch of the fruit’s flesh. Not only are pears a delicious treat for your horse, they are also very nutritious. Pears are naturally high in fiber and also low in protein, so they are fairly well balanced for a horse’s nutritional needs.
If you find that your horse likes pears and you want to offer them as an occasional treat, you may come across friends who have not offered such an “unusual” treat to their horses, and they may ask you, “Can horses eat pears?” In addition to sharing that pears are safe and nutritious for your horse to eat, you can also share the knowledge that pears are actually a very common treat for horses in other parts of the world. In fact, in some European countries, pears are as popular a treat for horses there as apples are for horses living in North America.
As with all treats that you can offer your horse, offering moderate amounts is key. While pears are fairly balanced in terms of nutrition for horses, eating too many pears can leave your horse feeling full and may keep them from eating their normal perfect and well-balanced diet. Generally speaking, if you do choose to offer pears as a snack, you should not offer more than 1-2 pounds of the fruit each day.
The next time you are looking for a safe, healthy treat to offer your horse, remember that you may not have to look much further than your counter top (or the produce section of the supermarket). Your horse CAN eat pears.