Opinions on his weight and some advice too please?

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Opinions on his weight and some advice too please?

This is a discussion on Opinions on his weight and some advice too please? within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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        07-14-2010, 08:19 AM
    Green Broke
    Opinions on his weight and some advice too please?

    Ok, so I'm looking for a little advice on my Shetland, Nippa. When I brought him home late last year he was quite the obese little thing.

    So after finally managing to catch him (long story), he was put up in a dry lot where the only food he got was what I gave him. Probably worked out to about 3 biscuits of grass hay a day. He did lose quite a bit of weight, but I think had a little way to go.

    So here we are 4 months later and I have a dilemma. I actually think he has started putting weight back on! He's only getting 2 biscuits of hay a day now, still on a dry lot and yet! I know it's hard to tell through his winter shetland fluff, but I was wondering what you guys thought as far as his weight? How much do you think he could stand to lose? Has he started putting it back on? This photo was taken yesterday.

    I just don't see how I can cut his feed down anymore safely. He could certainly use some more exercise, but the weather is making that a bit tough at the moment (winter here). So any suggestions as far as controlling his weight?
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        07-14-2010, 08:26 AM
    He looks fine to me maybe even a little thin (the winter coat is very decieving though) =]
        07-14-2010, 08:27 AM
    It is hard with the long hair. I have a mini who is very chubby and this will sound odd but when he has free access to grass hay he stays thinner. When I feed him 2 to 3 times only a day he eats all of it and gets chubbier. When its always there he eats when he's hungry. The first 3 days they never stop eating then they get used to it and eat when they want. The hay is only grass no alfalfa or legumes.
        07-14-2010, 09:27 AM
    I don't think he loos bad but shetlands are notoriously easy keepers and can practicaly gain weight off air! He looks well though
        07-14-2010, 10:31 AM
    Green Broke
    I think he looks to be a good weight. I don't see more being put on him. You might to adding a supplement with extra magnesium and chromium to help him metabolize the sugar/starch in his diet. In the US we have a decent supplement called Remission for horses that have "metabolic" issues and gain weight too easily. You might see if you can find something like it where you are. Check the "more information" tab for a guaranteed analysis and ingrediant list.
    Horse Vitamins & Minerals for Healthy Horse Feeding: Remission at Drs. Foster & Smith
        07-14-2010, 10:39 AM
    Green Broke
    Thanks for all the feedback. It's a relief to see that maybe I am just being a little paranoid!
    Nip gets his hay in a hay bag once a day (unfortunately that is as often as I can get out there, as I don't drive). However it does normally last him almost an entire 24 hours. There have been some days when I come out to feed the next day and he still has hay in the hay bag.
    I will look in to that, thanks luvs2ride. Somebody on another forum recommended soaking his hay to remove excess sugars? Anybody know anything about that?
        07-14-2010, 11:04 AM
    Soaking and rinsing hay does remove some of the sugars. It is very easily done using a hay bag or a laundry basket inside a muck bucket.

    I think he does not look half bad. Love his little mini draft butt and tail.

    Wow, he sure was fat when you got him. Wow.
        07-14-2010, 11:12 AM
    Green Broke
    I know right! That photo really shows off just how huge he was too, look at the wrinkles!

    I may start soaking his hay then, but keep him on the same ration and see how we go with that. By the sounds of it I actually don't want him losing much, if any, now.

    ETA: His little draft butt is a little bit cute isn't it. Of course I wish it had never happened, but now that he is all healed up and I'm over the shock of it all, it is kind of adorable! Haha
        07-14-2010, 11:14 AM
    If he is spending too much of the day with out food use one of those small hole hay nets. Great things to slow down the chow hounds. Though his little muzzle might not be slowed down too much by the small holes.
        07-14-2010, 11:27 AM
    Green Broke
    His hay usually lasts him most of the day. He doesn't tend to gorge himself on it, more picks at it. I wish I could find a decent quality small hole net, but they all fall apart very quickly here!

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