ahearn, I have noticed that a lot of people are using safe choice. My vet, who is an actual horse owner, is quite fond of it, and recommends it.
I was talking to a friend about feeding habits the other day, and discovered what I think is half of my problem...there are a couple of types of feeders.. the religiously routined and exact type, and the less consistent type. I discovered that I was the latter. Not that I forget meals or anything, but rather than carefully measuring exact poundage and sticking with a feed choice long enough to see what effects it has, I get nervous when I don't see weight gain, so change feed types a lot (without giving time to see change the first feed might have been causing), or change multiple types at once thinking I have gone all wrong with my formula and must reformulate for the magic combo. Then, when my horses get the weight on, I stop graining...what an idiot I am... my horses must really hate me sometimes!
I just had this revelation, and though I should know better (having all of the background knowledge to know this is bad practice), I apparently lack common sense. The only reason I think my practices didn't have bigger impact in the past was because my horses were not nearly as active as they are now, so they were more resilient.
Well, I have made a resolution...I have marked weights and volumes on all of my feeders, I have made a feed chart for each horse, and I have developed a daily routine for prepping that. I will stick with it, I will, I will...though I will be slowly changing from the all breed as I have now paid closer attention to what is in it. I really enjoy prepping their grain.