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This is a discussion on feeding within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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        10-12-2012, 06:47 PM

    Hi all,
    I just got my mares in July and this the first time I have had them on my own land (not boarding). They have 10 acres of pasture for two mares. I have been giving sweet feed or grain in the evenings as it turns colder. I usually just leave a large round bale in the field but I will be switching to small squares for the winter. How many flakes should they get per day? They are in good condition, the could gain a bit, one is 2, the other 3. I know there are many factors, but if someone could ballpark this for me it would be appreciated. Thanks!!
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        10-12-2012, 06:50 PM
    If you want them to gain, get them off the sweet feed and onto something with more nutritional value.

    Also, if the majority of their calories will be coming from hay, I'd think a bale a day for each of them would be sufficient. Depending of course, on their breeds and builds. Some horses will need more.
        10-12-2012, 06:57 PM
    Green Broke
    Please don't be offended but PLEASE ditch the sweet feed - especially for youngsters.

    In this day and age of "everything-in-life-is-vitamin-mineral-deficient, they do need something of quality that is suitable for their age, so they develop properly; sweet feed isn't it:(

    Ten acres is a nice amount of land for two horses to play and be horses

    I know rounds make life a lot more simple for the human but, I am not a roundbale fan either.

    First, two horses can't get a small round eaten fast enough before much of it rots and molds. Sometimes rodents decide to "winter" in a roundbale if there's nothing else available.

    Second, you can't control how much they each eat.

    We are living in an age where equine metabolic issues have exploded on the scene. These youngsters need their feed pan and their hay controlled to reduce that risk.

    If either of them happen to be predisposed to metabolic issues, they may even need pasture time controlled before they're five years old

    I hope this helps
        10-12-2012, 08:19 PM
    Could I switch the sweet feed for Structure? And I think my bales might be a different size... I can't see feeding two square bales a day. My last mare was getting 6 flakes a day, structure and limited pasture turnout where I boarded her and she was a perfect weight. She was also the same breed and build as my current mares. Something to think on tho...
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