Protein requirements - Milk production

The protein content of milk is highest just after parturition, and declines gradually as lactation proceeds. The composition of the milk is not greatly affected by diet composition, but milk production (kg/d) depends on both protein and energy intake. Horse milk contains on the average between 2.1 and 1.8 percent protein in early and late lactation respectively.

Protein requirement for lactation is calculated as digestible crude protein per kg of milk produced, and the total requirement is determined as the product of this value and the rate of milk production.

Digestible crude protein (DCP) per kg of milk production in different stages of lactation

Month of lactation DCP, g/kg milk
1 50
2 44
3 44
4 40
5 40


Note! The mare´s requirement for maintenance must be added to above requirement for milk production.