Id still do a fecal count, grass hay and a decent feed is all he should need for food. Paste wormers don't always work. Seen more than one so called "hard keeper" suddenly fatten right up when given a RX level injected wormer and access to grass.
I feed alfalfa, but for a hard keeper the addition of senior feed works wonders, and Calf Manna (good stuff and economical) never fails. But, Moormans makes a lot of supplements, they are all super high quality and work - but a bit pricey. But, if time is of the essence for some reason...I would look at Moormans products, too.
This is just a word to the wise...when I initially got my mare as a filly, she was in need of worming and too thin. I layed feed to her - and she indeed gained weight. If I had known, I would have approached it a bit differently b/c it turned out that she has a seriouse "weight problem" - as in extremely easy keeper.
I meant "dewormed" in my first post...not wormed lol.
I'm still having trouble deciding on what to start him on...
Right now he is getting a scoop of oats in the morning and evening, hay all day (scattered throughout the paddock so they're "grazing" all day), and 2 more "flakes" of hay in the evening when stalled. This is more than DOUBLE what he was getting fed...he is slowly putting on the weight. I was thinking about asking for him to be fed a third flake in the evening, would that help?
If I feed alfalfa pellets how do I know how much to feed him? Will it make his tummy upset? I've never feed alfalfa before...I don't want it making him a nut job with all the extra colories either which is why I'm so undecided what supplement I want to do.
Here is a picture from the first day I got him (about a month ago)...his 1.5inch fuzzies disguise his protruding ribs, shoulders, spine and hip bones. He's so underweight by adayinmylife9, on Flickr
He's already looking a lot better and his bones aren't as prominent as they originally were, and he is gaining some muscle from being lunged multiple days a week. I can't wait for him to be at a healthy weight...I hate all the nasty looks I get from people seeing my skinny horse before hearing his story and thinking I'm not taking proper care of him.
He is quite handsome. It doesn't matter what you choose so long as it answers the mail....all you want is healthy calories and a good mineral mix for the purpose of ensuring two things: he is not deficient in anything AND he gets the most bang out of every calorie he consumes. There are many products on the market that will do - it just boils down to personal preference and the individual horse's needs. I personally like to keep it as simple as possible and focus on quality.
Agree with MyBoyPuck, have tried every supplement known to man kind, the only thing that really helps is putting my TB on a round bale. Rice bran helped some when a round bale wasn't an option, but he really gets and stays fat when he has all the hay he wants. Be careful with too much grain, especially cow feeds or mare supplements- one way ticket to ulcer-ville... population YOU
Don't worry about making him a "nut job" focus first on helping him gain weight. He will likely have more energy as his condition improves no matter what you are feeding him.
I've had good luck with putting weight on by using alfalfa, beet pulp and/or senior feeds as well as by adding fat supplements such as oils and rice bran. If you can, more frequent smaller meals will be more helpful than less frequent larger meals.
Rice Bran worked very well I also use amplify,
Using rice bran last summer my blck horses faded very little and their coats were smooth and very soft. My arabs did not become to hyper while feeding it either. Its about 8 dollars a 50 pound bag here. Shalom
I also recommend rice bran, which is the main ingredient in Empower, Ultra Bloom, and Amplify. I also grind my own flax seed fresh each week and that helps with weight by improving digestion and immunity, improves coat vibrance, and is an anti-inflammatory. Horse Flax Benefits || Flaxseed Omega-3 Benefits
And upping hay is also a good choice-- doesn't even have to be pure alfalfa-- just a good source of nutrients and roughage. Beet pulp is also very helpful.
People are used to seeing tubby overweight horses and equate that with good health. It's not. It takes time to get weight on a horse and if you add too much in the way of supplements you are just creating expensive manure. I'm going to suggest you continue with what you are feeding and maybe go easy on the lunging, hard on his joints. He needs a pasture where he can move freely 24/7. It's not necessary to stall him at night. With horses movement aids digestion so standing in a stall isn't helping him gain. He seems to have a good coat to withstand cold.