Previously founded, Senior horse feeding and nutrition... - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 12:47 PM Thread Starter
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Question Previously founded, Senior horse feeding and nutrition...

Recently (as in yesterday) I adopted an older paint gelding. The previous owners needed to rehome him due to one of their other geldings bullying him. He is 24ish years old according to the previous owner and not in the best of shape. He is 15-15.1 (sticked him yesterday) and weighs 750-800 lbs. Looks to me that he could stand to gain another 100lbs at least.

The trouble is he has foundered in the past (10 or more years ago) so I am not totally sure how to go about putting more weight on him safely as I have zero experience with previously foundered horses. Right now he is in my roundpen which is dry with very little grass, (and what is there is very short and dry) mostly bare ground. I have been giving him free choice hay (takes him all day to eat 4 flakes and then another 2 at night) and he gets a 3QT scoop of Sentinel Senior Formula Sentinel™ — Senior Formula morning and night. At his former home he got the 3QT scoop Sentinel morning and night and 2 flakes of grass hay morning and night and was in a dry paddock all day with several other horses that bullied him. He is also now on a hoof supplement that was recomended by my feed store owner that I forget the name of as well as MSM.

I would like to keep him on the Sentinel as he eats it well and it seems to be a quality feed for senior horses but would like to add something to change it up as well as bulk him up. What can I give him and what ammount that is not too rich for his digestive system? Or maybe just up the Sentinel? Im having the vet out in about a week and will ask (the earliest she can come) but was just interested in hearing a variety of opinions on what I can do for him and others experience with elderly/foundered horses. I also have the chance to buy oats in bulk for my other horses, could this work for him? I also always have a high quality 12% sweet feed and 12% pellets on hand as well.

Also as far as his feet go they look pretty good, they were kept up at his previous owners and were trimmed the day before he came to me. Luckily I have a great Natural Trimmer who comes and does my horses and he has experience with foundered horses. He is coming out next Sunday to trim my horses and I will have him take a look at this new guy and get his opinion.

So nutrition and feed gurus, what can I do for my new guy?
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post #2 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 01:25 PM
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Try -
High fat feeds,..., Triple Crown Senior feed ('fixed formula' feed with 10% fat)
soaked hay cubes
soaked beet pulp
rice bran
Purina Amplify (supplement), or Farnum Weight Gain (supplement)
Teeth checked annually, or even 2x per year
Definitely soak his feed (if he'll eat it that way)
Plenty of turn out time
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post #3 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 02:26 PM
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Please don't feed him sweet feed -- he is at a prime age for cushings and/or insulin resistance; a horse can have one or the other, or both.

Can you get a vet out to check his teeth? He should not be taking all day (if you mean that literally) to eat four flakes of hay. That's part of why he so thin - he's not getting enough forage.

Really agree with pre-probiotics and high fat feed such as rice bran<---equine pelleted rice bran but it needs supplemented with a complete feed or a vit/min supplement.

Triple Crown feeds are the best if you can get them.

It would really be best if you can get a vet to go over the fella so you know everything you're dealing with. He is not feeling all that good, elst he would be eating his hay a whole lot better now that he is away from the other horses.

Hope this helps
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post #4 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 04:40 PM Thread Starter
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The vet is coming out in a week to give him a looking over as stated in my original post and will float his teeth then. He is not "not feeling good" I just dont think that he is used to having all the hay he can eat. And its usually more like 4-6 large flakes (1/2 bale) that takes him so long to clean up. He is bright eyed, alert and perky, if he wasnt thin he would be a picture of health (will add pics tomorrow) and actually seems to be more energetic then my lazy 16y/o QH gelding.

Triple Crown feeds are not available in my area, I asked my feed store owner and there is not enough of a demand for her to stock it and she won't special order it as I would be the only one buying it....Any other brands he may do better on?

Someone suggested I add Calf-Manna to his feed, any thoughts?
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post #5 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 04:54 PM
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Purina or Blue Seal feeds are also pretty good.
I'm just a HUGE fan of Triple Crown, especially their Senior feed.
High fat diets are good for older horses, as well, IR horses.

Calf Manna is 'old school' thinking to me???.
I used it YEARS ago, and could not say, today, whether it was that good or not.
I'd have to do some research.

Why don't you post the available feeds that could use, and let HF members give you their opinions, as well, real life experiences with those different feeds.

Just a suggestion
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post #6 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 05:11 PM Thread Starter
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Purina, Blue Seal and any feeds they sell at Tractor Supply are available to me. My feedstore that I shop at has Sentinel and Blue Seal but not much else as far as senior feeds go.

I like the idea of soaked hay cubes as TS has a large selection of them as well as Beet Pulp. May try him on Sentinel in the AM, soaked hay cubes/beet pulp in the afternoon and Sentinel in the PM as well as all the hay he can eat unless the vet gives me a better suggestion.

Im not sure about the Calf-Manna either...but the woman who works at my feed store swears by it and uses it religiously as a supplement for her 34 y/o arabian mare....Seemed encouraging lol
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post #7 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 05:58 PM
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I have an older gelding that is prone to laminitis and he seems to be doing well on Purina's Wellsolve L/S pellets. I am thinking about switching him to Life Data Inc's Barn Bag and supplement with beet pulp. I would like to try Triple Crown but an't find it around here.
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post #8 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 06:09 PM
Green Broke
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Originally Posted by Cocoa View Post
Im not sure about the Calf-Manna either...but the woman who works at my feed store swears by it and uses it religiously as a supplement for her 34 y/o arabian mare....Seemed encouraging lol
I've used Calf Manna in the past as well and had good results adding some weight to my harder keepers. I would not hesitate to use it again if I needed to. A little goes a long way and one bag will last you quite a long time.

"Keep a leg on each side and your mind in the middle"
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post #9 of 9 Old 08-14-2011, 06:11 PM
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You need to weigh your feed, not go by scoops as various feed companies process their feeds differently. One stoop could hold two lbs of one brand and only 3/4 lb of another brand. If you can scatter his pellets over a large surface, like a sheet of plywood with small sides, he will nibble at that and will digest it better. Don't be in a hurry to get weight on him as it takes time. You will notice a difference in about 6 weeks. The feed companies are so competitive that one is not really better than the other.
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