Can Horses Eat Oranges? Is it Poisonous?

Horses are magnificent, athletic, and immensely interesting animals, as anyone who loves them knows. Horses are very intelligent, which should come as no surprise. Horses, in particular, have been shown in experiments to interpret variations in human facial expressions, be capable of signaling desires, and possess at least some degree of empathy. 

Oranges are considered a staple in our diet. They’re sweet, filled with juice, and are nutritionally beneficial. However, we’re human. Our digestive system is not equivalent to that of a horse. Similarly, with various distinctive food sources, we need to stop and ask if what is alright for us is also alright to offer our ponies. Can horses eat oranges? Is it okay for them to do so?

When it comes to fruit, horse enthusiasts must be extra cautious; not all fruit is safe for horses. A few fruits are actually nutritious for them, but only in small amounts, as they can be unhealthy if consumed in large quantities. 

So, can you feed oranges to your horse?

Can Horses Eat Oranges?

The answer, without any hesitation, is yes; horses can surely eat oranges. Oranges are one of the many fresh foods produced from protected land that we can provide to our horses as a special treat. Oranges are an excellent way for a horse with a sweet tooth to satisfy their appetite with a full natural meal. There is no need to peel off the orange peel before serving it either. Also, there is no compelling reason to search for seedless oranges. While some horses do not consume the peel out of distaste, other horses will eat every part of the orange. Some research suggests that the oils in the peel can help horses recover after working out!

Can Horses Eat Orange Peels?

Most horses like eating orange peels, but some do not. Orange peels and orange seeds are completely safe for horses to eat. A few horses can be discouraged from eating oranges due to the strong odor of the orange peel. However, orange peels are safe for horses, which is why some horse breeders choose to grow oranges. In any case, if the horse is uninterested, you should remove the skin of the orange.

The seeds of oranges are also alright for horses to consume and they’re tiny enough not to create any hazards as far as choking. Orange seeds don’t contain any harmful substances and are brimming with cell reinforcements. This means that they’re protected and sound for your horse to eat and are a great nutritional snack.

Oranges Must Be Fed To A Horse In An Appropriate Quantity

Consuming oranges in a high amount can be problematic for horses. Horses have a delicate stomach-related framework; eating anything in enormous quantities that aren’t a piece of their regular eating routine can cause digestive issues. Moreover, oranges contain practically 10g of sugar per 100g. Sugar is acceptable, yet only in a limited amount, which is why veterinarians suggest only providing your horse with a limit of 1-2 oranges for every treat. Oranges are safe for horses, but only sparingly. Horse breeders often suggest using oranges as treats 1-2 times a week and not much more.

A few horses have problems with insulin. This means that organic products, like oranges, that are wealthy in sugar can be unsafe to their well-being. Oranges can agitate the sugar balance in the horse diet. In the event that your horse has issues with insulin production, it is best for you to examine them with a veterinarian prior to giving them any oranges. If you do choose to give your horse an orange, it is essential to cut it into pieces first. Whole oranges can cause choking problems. Be that as it may, your horse could also be a bit picky and like their oranges with the peels taken off. Each animal is different in their preferences.

Any horse owner will advise you that a horse’s stomach is sensitive, which is why you must always be careful when giving them new treats. Below are some precautions to take when feeding oranges to horses and potential problems that horses may encounter if they consume them.

Some Things To Keep In Mind

  1. Oranges should only be given to horses sparingly. 
  1. Never feed an entire orange to a horse. It should consistently be separated or cut to prevent choking.
  1. Ensure your horse continues eating its ordinary food with oranges and other treats to be given only 1-2 times per week.
  1. Contact a vet immediately if your horse starts acting unusual after consuming oranges. 
  1. Try to keep oranges away from horses with an insulin-obstruction infection or HYPP.

Common FAQs

Can horses have orange peels?

Some horses like eating the orange peel, although others find it annoying. There is no risk in eating both oranges and the orange peel. The peel is easy to digest and is high in vitamin C. However, the powerful scent of the orange peel can discourage some horses from eating them.

Are oranges dangerous for horses?

Oranges are not harmful to horses, according to multiple scientific studies and the experiences of animal owners and breeders. However, certain irritants have been found in citrus peels and leaves, which can cause skin issues in horses. Overall, research reveals that there is no risk in consuming oranges.


When a horse is not fed responsibly, any treat given to them may have the ability to cause health complications. Yes, horses can eat oranges as long as you meet the guidelines in this article while feeding them. Cut them up into pieces and figure out whether or not your horse likes orange peels. Oranges are a good source of vitamin C, so they do contain some nutritional value. Many horses like the sweet flavor of fresh fruit too and an orange can be a very safe, nutritious, and rewarding addition to your horse’s diet if fed in moderation. Hopefully, this article has answered all of your questions regarding feeding oranges to horses and you’ve learned how to do so properly and safely.