Originally Posted by IrishHunter
That does definitely give me a lot of good points to think on before I go ahead and breed next year. I am by no means a conformation expert and your views are definitely helpful. If I did breed her it wouldn't be for a super top level horse and I wouldn't even sell it, it would just be for me. I'll try posting a picture later when she has put on the proper weight to see if it smooths out some of her issues? She doesn't have any cribbing/weaving stall habits to pass on, it's really more her metabolism.
Her weight is definitely priority one on the list right now. I have heard really good reviews about the maxiglo stabilized rice bran so she is on a performance dose of that on top of her regular grain now to try and build her up. Her problem was being on a 10% fat food before and after moving her to a different barn that gives 3% fat feed... Her body didn't like that and we thought just feeding more of it would be okay but that didn't help... So now it's just trying to get it back. Hopefully this stuff does something to help her get to where she should be.
"I actually think she's got something odd going on in the very long pronounced wither line of her back - does it make saddle fitting difficult?"
That is an old injury that she acquired in the starting gate during her short racing career. The vet checked it and it doesn't cause her any pain or discomfort it's just left from when it healed but it did make finding a saddle that fit slightly difficult. I did have to buy a different size gullet so it would fit better.
Thanks for explaining that - it was the only real fault in her that concerned me
Ad lib hay with daily turnout on decent grazing if possible are always the best ways to put weight on a horse without causing digestive upsets. I avoid the 'complete feeds' that are high in sugar but there are some good ones now that have addressed this issue and are balanced with all the minerals & vitamins she needs. Rice bran is good for weight gain but stick to the recommended amounts and sugar beet (no added mollasses) is also good for safe weigh gain and very high in fibre and calcium
If you do decide to breed I am also very much in favour of the Irish Draft - well I am British - the man I worked for for many years produced some great horses using the TB/ Irish Draft they were so versatile and had wonderful temperaments. He also had good results with the Hanoverian x TB though they don't often have such good quarters and that's something your mare is lacking in
My husband and I used a Section D welsh cob on our 2 TB mares one year - and they were really nice horses though the stallion was 14.3 and both mares only 15.2 the gelding grew to 16.2 - evidence of how horses can 'throw back' in their genes
It will be interesting to see how she looks as she gains weight