Too Thin?

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Too Thin?

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  • Have older horses choaked on dampened alfalfa cubes
  • is my horse too skinny

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    12-20-2009, 06:39 PM
Too Thin?

Hey I was wondering if nyone knew any ways to help a horse gain weight without suppliments? Also does Phantom look too think he has gained a tad but he definitely needs more. He was fine then the dentist kept canceling on us and he dropped weight. So we hadto get the vet out but it's taking him forever to gaine weight. His teeth are fine now and the vet gave him a clean bill.also he's 21.

Here is is before his teeth were long

This is after his teeth were fixed but he dropped the weight(august)

And this was september (he gained alittle bit)

I don't really have any utd pics right now but it looks like he gained a tad more since sept.
Does anyone know any ways (again without suppliments) to nudge his weight gain along.
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    12-20-2009, 06:53 PM
1.) Beet pulp 2.) Equine Senior or any other good quality extruded senior feed 3.) Dampened high quality pelleted feed 4.) alflafa cubes and any mixture of any of the above.

Beet pulp and Equine Senior does an amazing job keeping weight on older horses with dental issues.
    12-20-2009, 06:55 PM
My 33 year old pony, who only had three molars at the time this photo was taken:
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    12-20-2009, 07:01 PM
High fat, high protein grain-such as Purina Ultimum-or any other performance feed (so you don't have to feed an extreme amount of grain)
Free feed hay (good quality)
Mineral block always available
Always have fresh water available (odv)

And regular riding, several times a week to help build muscle tone and mass.
Not intense riding, mainy walk-trot. Trotting helps build muscle.
    12-20-2009, 07:02 PM
My friend did an off the farm lease for a year and her horse came back pretty thin. She started soaking alfalfa cubes and giving that to him along with his feed and hay. He has been able to put on weight fast. He's an older horse also (24) and she lets them soak for about 15-20 minutes to make sure there broken up and easy to chew. Just be careful because the cubes make them have a lot more energy!! I have also heard of corn oil being used for horses that need to gain weight because fatty oils offers more than twice the calories per gram than do grains.
    12-20-2009, 07:03 PM
I agree with the dampened grain and alfalfa cubes.
But as always, youll want to soak both the alfalfa cubes and beet pulp for a long time before your horse eats it so he doesnt choke
    12-20-2009, 08:16 PM
Thanks so much im definitely going to try the alfalfa cubes and he's on senior feed mixed with pellets one scoop twice a day and in the morning he gets beet pulp and he gets hay all around. I've also heard of using corn oil or bran has anyone else heard of these? In the pics between august and september does it look like he gained a little? I see more butt muscle in sept.
    12-20-2009, 09:05 PM
Bran is an easy to digest food, with mild laxative properties. I don't think it has a lot of nutritive properties on its own. Corn oil is calorie dense and adds fat to the horse's diet, good for weight gain and performance horses that need lots of calories to do their jobs. It's also expensive in the quantities necessary to add weight.

Since your guy was keeping his weight well fairly recently and you mentioned dental issues, I'm going to assume that difficulty chewing thoroughly is his major problem. What he really needs replaced in his diet is adequate roughage; so I think the critical things are the alfalfa cubes or the beet pulp.

Do make sure to soak the beet pulp at least 12 hours, and dampen the alfalfa cubes so they expand.

With my old guys/hard keepers, I usually went on a progressaion, starting with a Senior food and/or damp pellets and progressing through adding the other elements.

At the end of his life, the pony pictured above sort of *drank* a slurry of beet pulp, pellets and Eq. Senior. His weight still looked good at 35, debilitating arthritis was what ended his life.
    12-20-2009, 10:25 PM
Aww im sorry where my horse is they have a blind appy mare whose turning 36!! They weren't expecting her to last, last years winter but she's of good weight and the only problem is she's blind and has a small bit of arthritis but even being blind she gallops around her field she's definitely loving life hahaha

Also about how much corn oil would need to be added at each feeding(morning and night) in order for weight gain? I've seen soo many different amounts......
    12-20-2009, 10:34 PM
I only soak my beet pulp for 15 minutes even in the cold. It dosent need to sit for hours, it just has to be wet enought not to cause choke.

I would say, give him alfalfa hay, or pellets (pellets don't need to be soaked.) Cubes are a pain for me. Unless they are swimming, you only get the ones really wet on the bottom of the bucket. Also make sure you are giving good qualily hay to begin with. If alfalfa hay can be avoided (say instead get better quality timothy, orchard grass... ect), do without, alfalfa hay is expensive (at least where I'm from.)

Corn oil is an inexpensive way to add good calories to a diet. Senior feed is great. But I opt for good hay, alfalfa pellets, beet pulp and corn oil before I try senior.

Let us know how it goes. Your best bet is to talk to the vet, since they know your horse better then we do.

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