Nikita Stowers

Nikita Stowers

Horse Health

Growing up with horses, Nikita knew they were something she wanted to take further and make into a career, from a young age. From the moment she took her first Equine paper at Massey University she was sure that Equine Nutrition was something she wanted to pursue.

Nikita has been working full time in the Equine Industry since 2008 when she commenced my post-gradulate studies and research in Equine Nutrition. Nikita’s research at Massey University included investigations into feeding practices on major Thoroughbred and Standardbred Stud farms throughout New Zealand and she have a specific interest in the growth and development of the equine athlete, spending several years of her research career in this area. Nikita has been fortunate enough to present research at conferences in New Zealand and around the world, including the World Equine Veterinary Association congress in India in 2011. She has a wealth of experience in putting together individualised feeding programmes for both race and performance horses and have worked with top trainers and riders in New Zealand, Australia, Hong Kong, Japan and Singapore.

In 2016, Nikita started an exciting amalgamation with Equine Veterinarian Petra Hazlitt to develop Veterinary and Nutritional Integration Ltd (VANI). VANI offer a complete and unique approach to optimising horse health and wellness from the inside out. They use integrative methods including feed analysis, blood profiling and consultation to arrive at the best outcome for horses and their owners. Nikita really enjoys working with all of her clients, whether they have one or one hundred horses. Every horse is different and that’s VANI we tailor everything they do to the individual. As an independent nutritional consultancy, you can be sure that the advice that Nikita and Petra give has your horses best interests at heart.

Education Sessions

The importance of minerals in the diet of horses in New Zealand

1.30pm - 2.15pm Thursday, 21st November | Classroom 2

This topic covers an area in Equine Nutrition that is poorly understood by many horse owners, however has a huge importance for many different classes of horses. In New Zealand we are lucky enough to have our horses outside at pasture almost year round in most situations. Whilst this means we can offer them a reasonably well balanced diet there are some challenges that are unique to New Zealand horses and as a result the feeding management of our horses needs to reflect this. This presentation will cover fundamental topics like the importance of correct mineral ratios in equine nutrition and different sources and forms of vitamins and minerals.

Gastrointestinal health, it's not just ulcers we have to worry about!

9.45am - 10.30am Saturday, 23rd November | Classroom 1

At the last Equitana in New Zealand, I gave a presentation on gastric ulceration which is a very common problem for many horse owners around the world. Since that presentation, we have carried out a wealth of field related research in this area and also around the greater topic of gastrointestinal health. We have found that many horses that have gastric ulcers or symptoms of this disease, also have gastrointestinal problems affecting the hindgut. We have used a number of field base tools including fecal pH measurement and field trials and believe this important information is best in the hands of horse owners so our horses can see the benefits we are seeing in the field.