I currently board my 4 year old Arabian at a farm approx. 25-30 minutes away. He's full care, so I'm not around for feeding times. He's been at this place since July 1. Previously, he was at the trainer's and was doing great as well as coat and hoof health, energy, stamina, etc. Since moving and switching feeds, he's lost a noticeable amount of energy and seems more lethargic than usual. He's still very curious and alert, but he peters out during our sessions after 15-20 minutes. Before, he'd go strong for a good hour and only get tired because his muscles were tired. I get tired of having to get after him and then he fights with me because he's tired and wants to stop. I like his weight right now and I'd like to maintain that.
I think the culprit is the feed, but the BM is convinced that the stuff she feeds is top notch. I don't mind telling her to switch his feed, but I want to do my research and get opinions. Unfortunately, I don't have a vet who I can consult because the vet that is local to this barn is a different vet from who I had when he was at the trainer (40 miles south). So, the vet that serves the barn where he is now knows nothing about him. The feed he's on now was recommended to the BM by her vet for her older (15+ years) QH contesting horses. She doesn't show much or ride much with them and only shows a handful of times each year. Otherwise, her horses go outside at night and come in during the hot day.
He gets 2flks of their grass hay 2x daily. The hay is okay, but there's really no amazing hay around my area because of shortages and drought. The feed is Buckley Brothers, 1406P. Here's the link for the feed tag http://www.buckleybrosinc.com/images...06P_IS_NEW.pdf He gets 1/2 scoop 2x daily of those cheap, plastic 3qt feeding scoops. I'm not sure on the exact weight. He has a salt block and plenty of water. He is worked 4 days/week. Since I brought him back from the trainer, I've only been long lining him - no riding yet. I've been working on the 3 (not much cantering, only when we're working on impulsion at all the gaits) gaits, flexing inside and out, and bringing his hind end up under him to help roll his back and set his head properly while building the correct musculature along his whole body. He does really well for that first 15-20 minutes and then he slows down dramatically. Then, I'm constantly having to get after him to keep a steady, rhythmic gait. I know he can do it because I've watched the trainer do it countless times. He was fine the first week he was there, but then he's gotten progressively worse with the pooping out. It's been very frustrating.
Now, I talked to the BM about it. Once again, she told me that she coordinated this Buckley Brothers feed with her vet for her horses and they do great on it. She used to have Arabs for years and even worked with the same trainer I used. I respect her opinions and she seems to be very knowledgeable. I think she knows what it takes to keep Arabs healthy, but I don't think she's familiar with what it takes for young Arabs, though. Their chiropractor came out shortly before I left. He breeds TBs (that's all I know about him). She told him about my horse and his first question was "Why is he on a low starch food? Is there a particular issue?" She said no and that it was just because that's what she has for her horses. He then recommended Red Cell as a feed additive.
So, I know that got long and wordy, and kudos to anyone who followed that whole thing. Personally, I really liked how he did on Strategy and I considered trying the Strategy Healthy Edge since I have coupons for it and I know he did well on it previously. I don't want to spend extra on supplements because he isn't getting what he needs from his feed if I don't have to. In the long run, it's cheaper to find a good feed and stick with that and not need the supplements, kwim. Does anyone have any recommendations? TIA!