How is his weight? Opinions? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 13 Old 01-13-2011, 01:36 PM Thread Starter
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How is his weight? Opinions?

Would love honest opinions. History is 20 yr old Appy, hard keeper especially in winter. All pics are from today except last two pics are October 31 when I moved him to new barn - his first day there. He is not a stocky App typically - built more like a TB. He is ridden 3-4 times per week, light work, hacks and weekly lesson. When I palpate his sides, I cannot overtly feel ribs. When I touch his shoulder area, it jiggles a bit - good padding of fat there. His weight tape is slightly down. I have been supplementing his daily feed with "lunch" or snack of 1.5 lb. Soaked alf cubes with 1 lb. TC senior. It soaks up to a nice amount, filling his food pan. He also eats: 3 lbs senior feed a.m. & p.m., 1 lb. Legends Omega Plus a.m. And p.m. (1800 cals. Per pound, 25% fat) and he is on Plat. Performance CJ.

His back teeth are worn to gums. He can chew soft hays but isn't a big hay eater. He has free choice alfalfa mix in his stall - he eats maybe a flake or two....and he has free choice in field but prefers to graze on grass. Believe it or not, here in VA, we still have lots of grass - albeit brown, it's long and still out there and he chooses more to munch on that.

Anyway, would love opionions on his weight. Some angles he looks worse, some better. I am trying not to be paranoid when his weight tape measurement drops slightly, but if you saw what he looked like when I got him 4 years ago, he was emaciated and it took alot to get him healthy. His teeth were just done (not alot to do but I have dentist out every 6 mos. Regardless) and he had negative fecal end of Oct, and had Equimax Dec. 15. He never gets great winter coat - this is about the best. He is blanketed heavy below 35 degrees, and medium when it's a bit warmer.

Thoughts? Would you be concerned? Pics are at this link. Thanks!

http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=9QZs2zdm0ZiE

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post #2 of 13 Old 01-13-2011, 02:41 PM
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He's a good weight. He could use more muscle and at his age, I'd probably use a blanket on him for the winter so he doesn't loose any. You could give him 3-4 lbs of hay cubes for his lunch if you want him to gain a little.
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post #3 of 13 Old 01-13-2011, 03:14 PM
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I think you're doing a great job with him! My horse looks better at some angles and worse at others too. He's actually got a very similar build to your horse. I agree with L2R on muscling him up a little more. I need to work on this with my boy too.

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post #4 of 13 Old 01-13-2011, 06:03 PM
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He appears to be a good weight, but pictures can be deceiving. Only you can really tell if he is at a good weight. How easily can you feel ribs?

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post #5 of 13 Old 01-13-2011, 08:28 PM
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Yeah, his weight looks good from those pics, although if you can hardly feel his ribs, he's probably a bit on the heavy side. I would personally do a basic feed analysis(I use feedXL.com) & check out what he's getting from that combination of products. Eg. Especially for his age, you might be better feeding him more hay - or beet pulp or such if he has probs with hay - & less lucerne/alfalfa, as it may be too high in protein etc for him. I would also personally replace the feeds with molasses & grain in them too, for low starch/sugar alternatives. I would also, particularly with starchy feeds, split them up into more/smaller feeds.
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post #6 of 13 Old 01-13-2011, 08:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie View Post
Yeah, his weight looks good from those pics, although if you can hardly feel his ribs, he's probably a bit on the heavy side. I would personally do a basic feed analysis(I use feedXL.com) & check out what he's getting from that combination of products. Eg. Especially for his age, you might be better feeding him more hay - or beet pulp or such if he has probs with hay - & less lucerne/alfalfa, as it may be too high in protein etc for him. I would also personally replace the feeds with molasses & grain in them too, for low starch/sugar alternatives. I would also, particularly with starchy feeds, split them up into more/smaller feeds.
Feed XL can be a decent tool to use, but unless you have your hay and pastures analyzed and enter that into the system it is not 100% accurate.

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post #7 of 13 Old 01-13-2011, 09:05 PM
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I think he looks great now, but if he lost more I think he would look thin. I'm mainly judging by his topline and the top of his hips.

Me being me, I would probably increase his feed just a tad just to make sure he doesn't keep dropping. But if he stayed where he is at right now, he is probably close to perfect.
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post #8 of 13 Old 01-13-2011, 09:17 PM
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His weight looks very normal to me. My appy is a friggin' sausage of fat right now, at nearly 18!
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post #9 of 13 Old 01-14-2011, 12:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OneFastHorse View Post
Feed XL can be a decent tool to use, but unless you have your hay and pastures analyzed and enter that into the system it is not 100% accurate.
Yep, agreed. But how many people actually get around to getting proper analyses done? For most, it's a question of guesswork, so 'not 100% accurate' is far & away better. They also have a pretty good range & knowledge of different pasture types & conditions to choose from, to make it reasonably accurate.
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post #10 of 13 Old 01-14-2011, 12:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loosie View Post
Yep, agreed. But how many people actually get around to getting proper analyses done? For most, it's a question of guesswork, so 'not 100% accurate' is far & away better. They also have a pretty good range & knowledge of different pasture types & conditions to choose from, to make it reasonably accurate.
If you have a basic knowledge of equine nutrition you don't have to guess and you can reach the same accuracy of FeedXL, like I did

I used FeedXL just to "see" and it didnt tell me anything I didnt already know. It's also hard for those of us who have our horses on freee choice hay to guess how much each one is actually eating.

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