I will be officially purchasing my boy when he returns from "winter pasture".. and i'll admit, I'm a little stumped over what kind of supplements/grain I should be feeding him come summer. He's generally a pretty easy keeper and during the summer months he's my guide horse at a horse back riding camp for kids, so he'll likely be doing 4-5 hours + days come June & July. In the meantime, mid April - May I'll begin building him up slowly on weekends and then by June hope to be focusing on longer trail rides again/more heavy arena work. During summer the horses get time in the pasture on nice grass, as well as hay twice a day. The ranch I work at feeds basic oats - and I garner from this forum that that's not exactly the healthiest way to go grain-wise?
Anyways, throughout winter they've been given round-bales, but I'm thinking those bales were few and far between, and they were probably left to scrounge. It's been a mild winter and he came home from a very cold winter last year in decent shape (obviously on the skinny side but not bad), so I don't expect him to be in terrible shape come the end of the month.
I guess i'm pretty uneducated when it comes to types of feed - the barn I used to work at was a show barn and fed Masterfeeds Equine Developer (which on the packaging stated from a weanling to 2 years.. but they fed it to all of the horses, but they were in regular work-out routines) and a scoop of Finishing Touch. The horse I lease now is given Senior feed 2 a day.. she's 3...
As you may be able to tell I'm very confused. Previous to this last year i've been raised on the hay twice a day, grass at night, and oats after rides mentality. So all these other feeds are foreign to me... especially since none of the barns seem to follow the recommended ages stated on the bags?
I'm looking for something that will help put a bit of weight on him initially when he comes home and then supplements/grain that will balance out the amount of workload he will be doing come summertime.
Sorry for rambling; any advice would be greatly appreciated.