Nutrition Requirements

Get animal nutrition & feeding right, and you will have a healthy and productive herd. Understanding the basics of animal nutrition and feeding will help you towards achieving this.

Read on to know more about livestock nutrient requirements and how you can supplement their diet to meet this goal.

What is animal nutrition?

Animal nutrition looks at what animals need in their diets for good health and growth. Knowing the nutrient content of what you are feeding your animals and how each nutrient benefits them is essential.

Why is it so important to understand?

One of the main reasons why having a grasp of animal nutrition is vital is that animals instinctively stop eating when they are full. This presents no problem as long as their feed is nutritionally balanced. But if it is low in nutrients, there is the risk that they won’t get what they need to stay healthy.

If you’re supplying your animals with in-farm feed, you will need to send samples to a lab to ensure it has the correct livestock nutrient requirements. It’s particularly important in the dry season when the protein and energy content may be depleted.

If you’re using commercial products, you’ll find the nutrition content on the packaging.

Which nutrients are required for animal health?

Nutrition requirements will differ according to species and status, and environmental factors play a part in livestock nutrition requirements too.

Here, we’ll take a look at the basic nutritional requirements and give some tips on how to achieve a balanced diet for animal health.


Cobalt is essential in the diet so that vitamin B12 can be processed. This vital vitamin helps create red blood cells and aids the metabolism of energy.

Newborn animals will have a special need to build up their cobalt levels.

ProviCo Rural’s OrganoTrace®-G Infant-6 WS is a feed ingredient containing cobalt designed for young animals which is ideal in these circumstances.


Copper is vital for animal health as it helps bone growth and white blood function, as well as iron metabolism and the maintenance of healthy connective tissue.

It’s worth noting that animals given only green feed may be deficient in copper compared to dry feed, which has naturally higher levels of this important mineral. Breeding animals are also more likely to need a copper boost.

You can achieve this by offering OrganoTrace®-P TOP-5, which contains copper along with zinc, manganese, cobalt, and selenium to promote the healthy function of all biochemical processes.


This mineral plays many roles in keeping animals healthy. It is of special value to breeding animals as it aids fertility and helps to prevent conditions associated with this phase of an animal’s life, including mastitis.

Selenium deficiency can result in serious consequences, including nutritional muscular dystrophy, otherwise known as white muscle disease, which can cause difficulty breathing when the muscles around the heart have been damaged.

Ensure your livestock are topped up with selenium with OrganoTrace®-P SELENIUM, ideal for boosting levels for healthy animals.


Zinc is essential for healthy growth and metabolism, building a robust immune system, and wound healing, to name but a few functions.

Animals that graze in areas of sandy, acidic soils and soils with high levels of organic matter are more susceptible to zinc deficiency.

Our OrganoTrace®-P ZINC boosts zinc levels across species, ensuring they receive adequate levels of this essential element.

Getting the balance just right

This is just a summary of some of the key nutrition requirements for animals.

With a little planning and using targeted feeds and supplements, it’s not hard to get the balance just right for happy, healthy, and productive animals.

Know more about the full range of ProviCo Rural’s supplements, feeds, and milk replacers that cater to animals at every stage of their lives by contacting our knowledgeable team.