HOW MUCH GRAIN?? - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 11-23-2007, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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HOW MUCH GRAIN??

HOW MUCH GRAIN SHOULD I BE FEEDING MY 6 YEAR OLD GELDING WHO WIEGHS ABOUT 1100 POUNDS, I FEED HIM THREE TIMES A DAY IN SMALL PORTIONS BUT NOW IT IS GETTING COLD IN WISCONSIN I THINK I SHOULD UP HIS GRAIN INTAKE. ALSO HAVE A 1 1/2 FILLY HOW MUCH SHOULD I BE FEEDING HER? THANK YOU .
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post #2 of 10 Old 11-23-2007, 09:29 PM
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Ok, there is alot more to deciding how much to feed than a horse's age. What is he currently being fed (including hay, by weight)? How much work does he do? What is his current body condition? Same questions for the filly.

Forage is the first thing you should increase when the weather turns cold because digesting forage provides more heat. Besides, forage should be the mainstay of the diet and providing plenty of forage and limiting the amount of concentrate feed you give will decrease your risk of colic and gastric ulcers.

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post #3 of 10 Old 11-24-2007, 12:39 AM Thread Starter
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I GIVE BOTH MY HORSE HAY ALL DAY I NEVER LET THEM RUN OUT. I THINK THE HAY IS MARSH WITH A LILTTLE ALPHA . NOW THAT IT IS GETTING COLD THEY DONT DO MUCH, WELL I DONT DO MUCH RIDING OR WORKING WITH THEM AS I DID LAST MONTH. THEY ARE IN OVER ALL GOOD HEALTH. THEY ARE NOT OVER WEIGHT OR UNDER WEIGHT. I GIVE THEN NOW ABOUT FOUR CUPS OF 12 SWEET GRAIN. BUT HAVE THOUGHT I SHOULD SWITCH TO A PELLET. THIS IS MY FIRST WINTER WITH THE HORSES AT MY OWN HOME AND I AM STILL LEARNING THINGS BUT I DONT WANT TO JEPORDIZE THERE HEALTH FOR MY STUPIDITY SO ANY INFO WILL BE GREATLY APPRIEATED.
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post #4 of 10 Old 11-24-2007, 06:09 AM
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hey um is there any reason ur righting in UPPER CASE cory-boy? sorry but um :roll:

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post #5 of 10 Old 11-24-2007, 10:41 AM
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Ok, so don't need to gain or loose weight--just maintain. Plenty of forage---really good. As for the feed, you need to look at the bag to determine what is an appropriate amount to start with because all feeds aren't made the same. The bag will give you a general recommendation based upon size, age and work done and start there. Once you've fed that for a couple of weeks then you can assess by their weight whether you are feeding too much, too little or not enough.

I would be more specific, but I can't without knowing exactly which feed you are using.

For good information on feeding, go to The Horse Magazine's website and check out their nutrition articles. They are a great resource for horse owners.

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post #6 of 10 Old 11-26-2007, 07:06 AM
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I did try to follow the instructions on sweet feed (how much I have to give), and my horses run fat in couple months. I think it was way too much for them (they also had hay 24/7). So I do mix myself mostly for vitamins/minerals. I give couple little plastic cans of oats twice a day and add there vitamin/mineral pellets and corn oil (I have 3 and 3.5 yo). If you have good hay 24/7 even that should be already enough for your gelding. However I'd give some grain for that mineral/vitamin need. And your baby certainly should get the grain while she's growing.
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post #7 of 10 Old 11-26-2007, 09:54 AM
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Kitten_val, were you adding corn oil to the sweet feed? And which type of sweet feed were you using. (There are differences among sweet feeds in how many calories they suppy. For example, a sweet feed designed for maintenance is very different from the sweet feeds that are designed for pregnant horses or for those who are performance horses. ) For horses that are easy keepers, I would go with a ration balancer because they aren't designed to provide extra energy, just to balance the nutrient content of the overall diet.

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post #8 of 10 Old 11-26-2007, 10:49 AM
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I didn't add the oil. I do now (but it's just 1 tbs twice a day). But I don't use sweet feed anymore, but do the mix myself. Somehow whatever I tried (5 different brands) had SO much molasses. So they go with no molasses and just little bit of honey/water mix (couple tbs/portion) for hint of sweetness. I did try molasses on bit when I was putting them on bit, and my paint didn't like it at all. So I assume they are not big fans of molasses (despite what books are saying lol!).
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post #9 of 10 Old 11-26-2007, 11:31 PM Thread Starter
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Hi ryle, i am working on switching them from 12% sweet feed to a 12% complete horse feed pelleted and giving them vita pluss nutritional feed supplement. with all they can eat hay. i just found out last week there hay is marsh grass with a little alpha in it. after this winter i think i'll find a supplier that has the timothy grass with alpha. the bag says i can feed alot of this like in pounds. but i just give them one scoop a day and divide into three meals with the vita pluss twice a day. any suggestions on what everyone feeds there horses?
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post #10 of 10 Old 11-27-2007, 09:36 AM
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Feeds are designed to meet the nutritional needs of your animal when fed according to the label. When you feed alot less than the label says you end up not supplying sufficient amounts of the nutrients. While the best cuttings of grass hays have sufficient protein or close to it to meet a horse's requirements, most of the time hay is too low in protein and that is something that we need to be correcting with supplemental feeding.

Rather than feeding just a couple of pounds of the sweet feed and then adding a vitamin/mineral supplement, you would be better off (pocket book wise) to go ahead and switch to a ration balancer which meets there nutritional needs at 1-2 lbs of feed a day. Then you wouldn't need the vitamin supplement.

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