What should i feed my horse? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 02-05-2011, 09:24 PM Thread Starter
Foal
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Mount Compass, South Australia
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Question What should i feed my horse?

Hi everyone,
I may have a new horse coming soon, I am a new horse owner so i'm asking for advice.

What would be the best type of food to feed a horse that will only be used for general riding, and in what quantities?

I have heard that some people use two parts chaff and one cool, or two parts chaff 1/4 bran half cool.

i know it depends on the horse but is there a general rule?

thanks
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post #2 of 11 Old 02-05-2011, 09:59 PM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: North Dakota, USA
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Is the horse under or over weight? Otherwise, the best for them is grass. Next would be a good quality hay. If they have either and have it freechoice 24/7, they really don't need anything else. They really shouldn't need any supplements unless they have hoof, joint or tendon problems. We only give ours a low protein sweet feed as a treat during the summer and sweet feed mixed with soaked beet pulp in the colder months about 4 times a week. Their treat is between 1/2 and a full scoop and winter feeding is about 1 scoop of each.

I don't know what chaff or cool is, so I can't help with that. Where our horses are boarded, not being biased, out of about 20 horses, our horses look the best. Most of the rest look thin and the vet always rates ours at a 5 or maybe a 6 on the BSI(Body Score Index). We've noticed that the stable has started to feed the other horses the same way that we have fed ours.
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post #3 of 11 Old 02-06-2011, 01:05 AM Thread Starter
Foal
 
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Ok thakyou :) Chaff is a type of grass which is chopped up finely to feed to horses and cows here in Australia as a roughage. Cool is a type of grain food which most people use for horses that are in any sort of work.

Thaks for the advice ill keep that in mind :)
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post #4 of 11 Old 02-06-2011, 08:27 PM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
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If you're feeding grass hay, you could go with just a lurcerne chaff with a vit/min supplement mixed in. I would only add "feed" if your horse seems to need it.

If you're not feeding any hay, only chaff, then I would go with a mixed blend of lucerne/grass or lucerne/timothy, about 40% lucerne (alfalfa). Your horse should be getting 1.5-3% of their body weight in hay/grass every day. Most horses in light to moderate work won't need much, if any, "feed" if your hay/pasture is good enough quality.
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post #5 of 11 Old 02-07-2011, 07:15 PM
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I usually use a general rule that somebody said on this forum before- one pound of hay to every hundred pounds of horse. My boy is 900 pounds and gets roughly nine pounds of hay a day- about nine and a half or ten since its quite a cold winter out here in the Northwest states. That tidbit about the 1 to 100 really helped me out when I first got my horse, since I was very convinced I was going to underfeed him and kill him overnight ;) New owner worries.

Step one: Mount horse. Step two: Stay mounted.
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post #6 of 11 Old 02-07-2011, 09:31 PM
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free choice hay if possible if not then aim for 1 to 2% of his ideal body weight in hay a day

Add a good solid vitamin/mineral supplement designed to balance the type of hay you will be feeding

Avoid grains (corn, oats and barley) at all cost

I have been called the NSC Nazi more then once ... I hate traditional feed methods of loading our horses up on grains and junk food :)
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post #7 of 11 Old 02-07-2011, 10:22 PM
Green Broke
 
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1% of body weight a day would only work for a VERY easy keeper horse, in no work to very light work. I feed my horses, even the easy keepers, 2.5-3% of their body weight a day in mixed grass hay (bermuda/bahai mix), or about 25-30 lbs a day. When it's very cold like it has been, I increase it to 30-40 lbs a day.

Most horses with free choice hay will consume 3-4% of their body weight in forage daily.
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post #8 of 11 Old 02-08-2011, 01:23 AM Thread Starter
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Thaks so much guys its been really helpful :)
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post #9 of 11 Old 02-08-2011, 02:21 AM
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An Aussie perspective. My horses are all fat as mud at the moment in Canberra.

One is muzzled 24/7 and they are both in light work.

I'm giving them two small handfuls of Hygain Showtorque to supply some protein, oils, and some energy along with making them nice and shiny. Small handful of soaked lucerne cubes to add some forage, stick it together and it is good for their gut. I top dress it with konkhes own cell vital as I'm not feeding the reccomended amount of the showtorque.

I can recommend feedxl - a program that balances feeds for you. It has most Australian feeds and I use it a lot.
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post #10 of 11 Old 02-13-2011, 03:17 AM Thread Starter
Foal
 
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thanks! An aussie reply is always good :)
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