08-04-2011, 11:56 AM
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You're asking about hard keepers, correct?
IMO, the best thing for a hard keeper is to make sure they have free choice hay in front of them at all times, free access to a mineral/salt block, and if you want to add more calories feed them beet pulp at least twice a day. More frequently would be better, but twice a day is okay.
As far as 'studies' to back me up, the only thing I have to go on are my 33 years of experience in owning horses. If you're looking for actual, published, verifiable data, you'll need to check professional and scientific publications.