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Strange question here

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    11-08-2010, 10:37 PM
Strange question here

Ok still workin on that real skinny rescue horse and have actually taken another one. (from same owners so horses are happy to be back together) Any ways my question is we are topping the huge pile of feed they are getting with vegetable oil. I was wondering the local Burger King uses vegetable oil in their deep fryers. I know the person that works there and could pick it up for free, but is it still ok? I mean I know the oil is 100% fat I don't think that changes from being heated so high but does the particles that will be in it be ok for the horse. I'm sure it will have the black burnt junk from off the deepfried food. Any thoughts on this? We are feeding eight pounds of Purina senior feed, four pounds beet pulp, 2 pounds sweet feed(for taste reasons) and one cup oil all in a day multiplied by two horses. My wallet can use a break anyway it can think.
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    11-08-2010, 11:17 PM
I don't know about the burger king deal...I have never heard of anyone doing that. If you still need to put weight on, I would go for just some real store-bought corn or veggie oil. Have they been wormed and floated? Most rescue horses have a bellyful of worms and need a couple good shots of worming paste before they really start to put weight on...also teeth floating is very important as you will save money in the long run. When their teeth are digging into their sensitive cheeks they don't chew up their food very well, so it doesn't digest fully and therefore you don't get full nutrient value from it. Also how much hay are they getting?
    11-08-2010, 11:40 PM
Whats the hay situation. In my experience with the ultra skinny horses, the forage makes a bigger difference than the grains. If they aren't already keeping their faces in hay all day, that will make more of a difference than some oil.

Second...while it may save a few dollars, I am not sure that used veggie oil would be the same as uncooked. I used to buy mine at samsclub/walmart where you can buy the gallon of oil. Its much cheaper that way.
    11-09-2010, 12:37 AM
Green Broke
A horse should not get more than 2 cups of 100% fat a day, total. For that total you need to take into account the forage, hay, and feed. Generally, 1 cup of oil is the "norm" for weight gain, though I have had MUCH better luck using 1-2 cups of milled or ground flax instead. Horses seem to metabolize and digest flax better than oil or rice bran, IME. Flax is 40% fat.

I would not use oil that has been cooked with. It does change the mollecular composition, and it can go rancid (due to food particals in it).

IMO, the diet you have them on is much too much feed, and way too much junk (sweet feed and the senior). You are upsetting their digestive tract and metabolism with that much "hard feed" and sugar/starch.

The best way to get weight on thin horses is with hay, fat, and alfalfa. Alfalfa is high in digestible protein and amino acids, plus it is high in clacium which buffers the stomach from digestive upset.

1st: Offer free choice quality grass hay or timothy hay, along with a salt block. If you cannot provide free choice hay, then 3 meals a day totaling 30-35 lbs of hay per-horse per-day is bets. Make sure the horses are dewormed and their teeth properly floated.

For their "diet" I would mix up the following:

  • 4 lbs of alfalfa pellets
  • 1 cup of ground/milled flax
  • a digestive aid (like fastrack)
  • a good vit/min supplement (like GrandVite, High Point, EquiBase Grass, or SmartVite Grass)
  • 4 lbs of alfalfa pellets
  • 1 cup of ground/milled flax
  • 1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar
You can add water to the mix if the pellets are small or if you're worried about choke. Alfalfa pellets only need to soak about 10 minutes to start breaking up, and you only need a few cups of water for 4 lbs of pellets. Just stir well. The apple cider vinegar will encourage water comsumption and aid in digestion. Start with just 1/4 cup a day, then increase to 1/2 cup.

One 3qt feed scoop generally holds 1.5-2 lbs of alfalfa pellets, so you'd be feeding 2 sccops of alfalfa pellets per-horse, per-feeding.

Trust me, this diet will put weight on your horses and you will save money with it. It is a complete diet with all of the nutrients, protein, and fat they will need. Just try it for 30 days and see what kind of results you get. I have yet to have a horse that didn't put on good weight in a hurry!
    11-09-2010, 09:30 AM
Originally Posted by luvs2ride1979    

I would not use oil that has been cooked with. It does change the mollecular composition, and it can go rancid (due to food particals in it).

Exactly! It is never recommended to feed "used" oil. I was researching some of the powdered fats the other day and saw this exact question put to Dr. Beth Valentine and her answer was no.
    11-09-2010, 11:41 AM
I agree with a lot luvs2ride said except that Senior Feed is not junk. It is THE #1 veterinarian reccomended feed and can be fed as a complete feed because it is so well-balanced in nutrition. I use it with my ex-steeplechase TB who gets hot on very easily on the wrong feed but is also a hard keeper...Omelene makes him hot, alfalfa makes him hot, oats make him hot to a degree. Purina Senior Feed is the only thing that keeps him in shape for eventing and keeps him calm. Also Beet Pulp is really great for many horses, but it doesn't seem to affect mine. We also feed him this digestive supplement that really does help's called MannaPro OptiZyme, and has a mix of yeast and other benificial bacteria to help him digest his food better. I think the unanimous decision so far is to avoid going cheap with the used oil and just try some different things to see what works with your horses. If they have not been wormed and floated, though, you are throwing your money away with all the feed as all of it will go to worms or pass through because they cannot chew it well enough to digest it properly. Just play around with different feeds to see what works best to fill in their ribs...keep in mind that adding one feed isn't going to make them gain 10 pounds by the morning. It often takes malnourished horses many weeks to get their weight back.
    11-09-2010, 02:13 PM
Green Broke
True, some horses do have a sesnsitivity to alfalfa, which causes them to be hyper. I have only encountered two horses myself that were this way, one was a TB and one was an Arab x TB. I have had other TBs and various other breeds that showed no signs of becoming "hot" on alfalfa.

I am not a big fan of senior feed because it often contains molasses, ground corn, wheat middlings, grain sweepings, and other grain by-products, none of which are very healthy feed stuffs for horses.

Feeding a forage based diet with a good vit/min has improved all of my horses' health. I have been able to pull shoes off of horses that "must have" shoes even for arena riding (we jump and trail ride, all barefoot). My "hard keepers" now keep weight on with just 1.5-2 lbs of food a day and 1/2 cup of flax meal (with free choice hay), even in moderate training. All of this changed when I took grain, grain products, and molasses OUT of their diets.

If senior feed is working, of course you should stick with it. But when it's not, or supplements are required to keep healthy feet and coat, then the owner should consider removing senior feed or other "horse feed" from the horse's diet, IME/IMO.
    11-09-2010, 06:09 PM
Hmmm...very interesting, I've never heard of that. Maybe we can try it. Where do you get the flax? Also, I've never heard of anyone feeding horses vinegar...what exactly does it do for them?

Are you sure you are referring to the Purina senior feed and not Nutrena? Nutrena's Senior feed I do know has the grain by-products like you mentioned(it is very low-quality in my opintion), but I don't remember seeing them among the Purina ingredients. Purina does contain molasses, but nowhere near in the amounts commercial sweet feeds do. The horses love it and it keeps it more moist for them (no dust in the feed tub is always a plus). I also like to use warm water so soak it with oatmeal and bran and make a sort of bran mashes for my horses occasionally on cold days, as it soaks very well (another reason it is ideal for older horses, the ones who have dental trouble).
    11-09-2010, 08:17 PM

george.jpgWell thank you everyone for the input. I just thought I'd ask but now I know that isn't a good idea. I've been feeding the vegetable oil from the dollar store but Thursday I'm going to Sam's Club so I'll try buying there. The Purina senior feed at 8 lbs a day topped with the oil was the diet from the vet. Yes the first week he was here he went to the vet for a check up and had his teeth floated. He is somewhere in his early thirties and has teeth but they aren't the best. He has 24/7 access to hay but doens't ussually eat much of it. From peoples suggestions and the feed stores westarted him on the plain shredded beet pulp but he didn't seem to care for it even on is his senior feed. So I started adding a little sweet feed for flavor. Everything is soaked in warm water and he slurps it down to the last drop now. Yes he has been wormed twice, Once with Zimectrim Gold followed up the next week with Ivermectrim. He has been here almost a month give or take a day. Weight wise I might see a slight difference but behavior wise it is an about face. From a lethargic half dead skeleton slowly mozing around the yard loose to a head strong stubborn thing that trots out of the barn in the morning and back in the evening. And if you leave him loose before he gets in the gate he will make a beline and run full out like a 2 year old thoroughbred on race day out the hay field and to the apple tree. So he is definitely feeling better. The other rescue I just got has been wormed also. He isn't as bad and is only 19. But is still very lethargic after two weeks here. He does not care for the beet pulp either. I will have to try some experiments here to see what they do like. He also has 24/7 hay and eats but not a lot like I would expect. I've attached some pics the first one is about two weeks ago of the worst case and the other is the standarbred jsut yesterday.
    11-09-2010, 08:35 PM
Does he like rice bran? My horse wouldn't tough beet pulp until I added some rice bran to it. Now he eats it like a rabid dog.

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