What do you do when horses come in thin? - Page 2
 
 

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What do you do when horses come in thin?

This is a discussion on What do you do when horses come in thin? within the Horse Boarding forums, part of the Barns, Boarding, and Farms category
  • Horse neglect
  • Horse head skinny

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    06-15-2012, 03:12 PM
  #11
Foal
Like one of the other posters said, my barn also charges extra (per flake of hay, per lb of grain) if your horse eats more than what is standard.

The amount they have set as standard is a good amount, covers the vast majority of horses. The only two we have who get charged extra are these two enormous warmbloods.

I'd say you're perfectly justified in charging extra for a horse who needs a large amount of food, then reducing their board back to normal once the horse can eat the standard amount again.
     
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    06-16-2012, 03:51 PM
  #12
Weanling
We have had the same experience. Our board rates include a set amount of grain/hay ("up to x lbs sweet feed, x lbs hay, divided between 2 feeds daily"). Good business practice; make/keep a per horse budget. If horses come in thin because they have been fed inadequately at the previous facility, all it takes is feeding what is included for our board and some time. Horses should start putting on weight immediately, but slowly. This is typically the case...

However, if the horse is thin because it is a hard keeper, then the owner pays the difference between what is included in board and any additional or alternate feeds. We sit down, discuss our suggestions, weigh that against the owners knowledge/experience/suggestions, and go from there. Occasionally, we get the awesome boarder who thinks that just giving their horse 10lbs sweet feed per feeding is a great idea, at which point we request a veterinary approved diet plan (either signed by the vet or suggested in our presence). Rarely, that does become an issue, haha. Unfortunately, in our business there are lots of horse owners who don't know the first thing about actually caring for their horses, and out of this ignorance suggest things that could put their horse's life in jeopardy...

We also have a clause in our contract that says horses are required to be maintained at a 4-7 on the Henneke scale. This way, if a horse's owner doesn't care if their horse is thin (but WE DO!!!!), we can point that clause out and say "something needs to be done..."
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    06-17-2012, 01:06 AM
  #13
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by sillyhorses    
We have had the same experience. Our board rates include a set amount of grain/hay ("up to x lbs sweet feed, x lbs hay, divided between 2 feeds daily"). Good business practice; make/keep a per horse budget. If horses come in thin because they have been fed inadequately at the previous facility, all it takes is feeding what is included for our board and some time. Horses should start putting on weight immediately, but slowly. This is typically the case...

However, if the horse is thin because it is a hard keeper, then the owner pays the difference between what is included in board and any additional or alternate feeds. We sit down, discuss our suggestions, weigh that against the owners knowledge/experience/suggestions, and go from there. Occasionally, we get the awesome boarder who thinks that just giving their horse 10lbs sweet feed per feeding is a great idea, at which point we request a veterinary approved diet plan (either signed by the vet or suggested in our presence). Rarely, that does become an issue, haha. Unfortunately, in our business there are lots of horse owners who don't know the first thing about actually caring for their horses, and out of this ignorance suggest things that could put their horse's life in jeopardy...

We also have a clause in our contract that says horses are required to be maintained at a 4-7 on the Henneke scale. This way, if a horse's owner doesn't care if their horse is thin (but WE DO!!!!), we can point that clause out and say "something needs to be done..."
Yes good point. I might have to add that clause into ours.

I know several have mentioned that their or others provide whatever feed a horse needs. Im wondering what the cost per month at those facilities are?

An average 1000 lb horse in light work (which pretty much every horse in my barn is.. and none are 1000 lb horses.. more like 850-900... 6 lbs grain and 15 lbs hay is pretty standard rations for them. I fed a body condition score 2-3 20 lbs a day in a slow feed net and two scoops of food and in 6 weeks she is up 150 lbs.

Obviously some horses are hard keepers and fast burners.. but like some have said that is not my problem. THe problem comes in when a horse needs more food and owners don't want to pay the measly 20 bucks extra a month and feel I should provide it.. so wont authorize the change.
     
    06-17-2012, 01:41 AM
  #14
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by GhostwindAppaloosa    
Yes good point. I might have to add that clause into ours.

I know several have mentioned that their or others provide whatever feed a horse needs. Im wondering what the cost per month at those facilities are?

............... THe problem comes in when a horse needs more food and owners don't want to pay the measly 20 bucks extra a month and feel I should provide it.. so wont authorize the change.

I charge $350/mo pasture board. They have 24/7 access to a round bale and I feed 3-4 lbs of Strategy 2X/day along with salt, and fresh water. If they want a stall it's $550/month, same feed plus flakes of hay when they come in at night. All my horses go out in turnout paddocks during the day and have round bales to munch on. My contract says I shall provide what is needed to keep the horse in good shape. Notice it says KEEP not BRING the horse to good shape. I have no problem tossing in some Ultium if someone needs it to gain some weight. That's for a horse that's just down a little bit in weight.

The day I get a boarder wanting to bring me a BCS 1-2-3, I will toss in a paragraph about how they need to provide extra feed for their horse until he/she reaches a minimum BCS 5 or they can pay an extra $100/month and I'll provide the extra feed. I've been lucky so far and not gotten in any really thin horses (except for one I repo'd but that was MY problem) but that day is coming I'm sure.
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    06-17-2012, 10:16 AM
  #15
Weanling
I'm glad I don't board my horse! I would feel very uncomfortable having someone else tell me how fat my horse needed to be. With that said, I think the clause requiring at least a 4 on the Henneke scale is a good one, it allows the owner some freedom of choice while ensuring the horse is not dangerously thin. I keep my horses lean and fit, I feel many people keep their horses grossly overweight. I see way too many horses laboring along toting an extra 200-300 lbs (and often an overweight rider as well). At the end of a 4-5 hr ride my "skinny" horse has barely broken a good sweat, while Susie Q's "healthy" horse is drenched and exhausted.
     
    06-18-2012, 10:03 AM
  #16
Showing
Bellasmom, I think OP was talking about clearly underweight horses - those that are all bones. You simply can't miss that one and they don't look healthy at all. Usually such horses need a different approach till they pick all the weight on (like different grain, beet pulp, oil, weight builder, etc.), and I can see either charging more for that or asking the owner to provide it all.
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    06-18-2012, 10:10 AM
  #17
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bellasmom    
I'm glad I don't board my horse! I would feel very uncomfortable having someone else tell me how fat my horse needed to be. With that said, I think the clause requiring at least a 4 on the Henneke scale is a good one, it allows the owner some freedom of choice while ensuring the horse is not dangerously thin. I keep my horses lean and fit, I feel many people keep their horses grossly overweight. I see way too many horses laboring along toting an extra 200-300 lbs (and often an overweight rider as well). At the end of a 4-5 hr ride my "skinny" horse has barely broken a good sweat, while Susie Q's "healthy" horse is drenched and exhausted.
I don't think anyone is talking about feeding up a lean and fit horse. I know I like my horses a little more filled out than an endurance rider, but it's my personal preference and wouldn't dream of trying to fatten up one of those horses. I'm talking pure D neglect and hip bones, ribs and spinous processes all sticking out type of thin, not lean and trim because of a good feed & exercise program.


This kind of skinny. Somebody brings a horse in looking like that, you are dayum skippy straight I'm going to tell them how to feed and care for their horse and I am going to feed it up if it's at all humanly possible.
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    06-18-2012, 03:28 PM
  #18
Weanling
I'd like to give an example. This is a horse I personally purchased this spring and it is a photo of it when it came in. This is about the same condition I've had horses coming in at. And IMO this is TOOO skinny. I personally like my horses fit and not fat. Im not expecting people to want their horses fat. Just at a healthy weight so I don't have issues with humane society etc. because I would be the one that would be in legal trouble because I am in charge of a horses care.



     
    06-18-2012, 03:30 PM
  #19
Weanling
And for those interested.. this is after 6 weeks of regular food.... nothing extreme...
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    06-18-2012, 03:40 PM
  #20
Started
Ghostwind- I feel the same way, that horse you just posted looks toooo skinny in my books. No I don't want an obese horse but they need to be at a healthy weight! I like a little meat on my horses bones lol. And I can already see a huge difference in the way he looked only after 6 weeks! It kind of makes me sad that all it took was a little food to make him gain weight so fast...
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