Creating a newer, better diet - Page 2

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Creating a newer, better diet

This is a discussion on Creating a newer, better diet within the Horse Nutrition forums, part of the Horse Health category

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        05-15-2013, 09:48 PM
    OK, let's see: The brand of the grain & supplement is Sprout. It's a local store brand for Mills Fleet Farm (think Tractor Supply Store). I came to those numbers I listed by just adding them all together (not sure if that's how it should be done). I was mistaken about the 14% mix, it's actually 16%. Also I didn't list all the nutrients since some of the units of measurement weren't the same, and that was way to much math for me, lol. There is lysine, magnesium, manganese, and some others in there as well, I just didn't list them.

    Odie is kept outside, but brought into a stall in the evening for his grain. The hay is split up between morning & evening. He is pastured with one other horse, and there is little to no hay left. We have 6 acres fenced off into 3 seperate pastures, and a total of 4 horses. During the winter, we close off 4 acres, and divide the remaining 2 in half so that Odie & my mom's mare are seperate from the other 2 due to herd dynamic issues (mom's horse is an agressive alpha mare so when all 4 are together she gets a little out of hand). Right now the other 4 acres are still quite wet, so se haven't opened them up to start the rotation yet so that they don't get ripped up to much.

    The hay that is fed is a grass / alfalfa mix. Good quality (by visual inspection), green (not wet), very low weed content, no dust. I haven't had it analyzed but it looks textbook perfect and the vet agreed it's good hay.

    Ummm, what else was there??? I took pictures of the feed bags & supplement as best as I could without losing my balance or risking falling of my crutches.

    Like I said, I'm embarrased to admit that nutrition is a very week point for me:(
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        05-15-2013, 10:05 PM
    Okay, now we can do something

    For getting the protein content of the whole ration, you add: ( 1.5(lbs)x16)+(1.5x14)+(0.25x21)+(10x12(hay) : 13.25(lbs)= protein content of the whole ration

    Since I don't know how much grass they have, I can only guess. You say there's only little hay left, I'd up the hay first.

    The supplement is okay.

    The 16% mix is, sorry to say, junk. All " by-products".
    You're better off giving the senior only, 3 lbs, divided in at least 2, better three meals.
    You can then divide the supplement also, wet it down a bit and he can't pick out only the goodies.
    aforred likes this.
        05-15-2013, 10:10 PM
    I'm horrible at math, but here's how I figure it out.

    I'll use protein in an imaginary feed as an example, just to make it easy (for me, LOL).
    Feed A has 10% protein, and he gets 5 pounds per day. That would be .5 pounds of protein. Feed B has 30% protein, and he gets 1 pound per day. That would be .3 pounds of protein. So he gets 6 pounds of feed, and .8 pounds is protein. 0.8 divided by 6 is about 13%.

    I'm not quite sure if I did that right, either.
    deserthorsewoman likes this.
        05-15-2013, 10:15 PM
    Thanks guys!!

    I probably should've added his weight right now is ideal. You can just barely feel the ribs, and other than the "old man fugly's" he looks proportionate. **If that makes any sense at all, lol
        05-15-2013, 10:20 PM
    The feeds you have don't look bad at all... but he may be getting too much protein from all of those things plus the hay and limited pasture. FeedXL will be able to give you a much more on-point analysis.

    Nutrition is a bit of a confusing thing, especially once you focus on age requirements. The most simple question you can ask yourself is "How does he look" If his coat is shiny and he is at a good weight, then you know at least that he isn't struggling and from there you can decide what else he needs. Since he's older it's good to have him on a joint supplement but I've heard somewhere that MSM is the only oral joint supplement that is effective?

    It's good to have him on a supplement that supports hoof care, but again.. how do they look? Are they brittle, dry, cracking, or strong?

    The highest amount of his diet should be fresh grass and hay. The second largest is grain in multiple small meals, and then you have the supplements.

    How much work is he in? Again ask yourself how does he look. He is skinny, is he fat, is his coat lacking luster, does he have rainrot or dry skin, etc. And adjust his calorie intake accordingly.

    If he looks fantastic, and doesn't seem to have any problem.. and nothing seems off in his diet, then I believe you have his diet and exercise schedule worked out.

    It never hurts after you've got everything nailed down, to check with the vet about a blood panel to make sure he's not deficient or missing anything.
        05-16-2013, 02:18 AM
    Green Broke
    Wait... "animal protein products"? I'd dump that 16% all-stock sweet feed yesterday.

    Normally I'd be picking on the corn in the senior feed, but at least that one appears to be all vegetarian.
    aforred and deserthorsewoman like this.
        05-16-2013, 02:21 AM
    I didn't look at that before. When I see ingredients like that, I run as far as I can in the other direction. If they can't list exactly what goes into the feed, I'm not going to feed it.
        05-16-2013, 10:14 AM
    Originally Posted by verona1016    
    Wait... "animal protein products"? I'd dump that 16% all-stock sweet feed yesterday.

    Normally I'd be picking on the corn in the senior feed, but at least that one appears to be all vegetarian.
    Oh my, I didn't even notice that....I saw only "byproducts "
    To get an idea what all counts as "proteins", go to and click on Proteins dry......
        05-16-2013, 11:21 AM
    When I played around with feedxl and rearranging our horses diet the only logical, economical way that I could do it was go all roughage. It was cheaper and I could work it to where all of my horses could eat it. We have a 26 yo welsh that the only way we could get him even somewhat balanced was on aflaflfa/oat cubes, alfalfa pellets, beet pulp, source, flax seed, multi-vit/min and rice bran. After a good bit of trial and error we finally got him to where all his blood work is coming back almost perfect, his coat and hooves are in the best shape I have ever seen and he has completely shed out is winter coat already. I was very pleased to get off the grains. I actually took a few a our horses and switched them to seminole feeds a few months ago and didnt see anything but negative affects. So, I went back to my all forage routine.
        05-16-2013, 02:38 PM
    I just signed up for FeedXL, and just need to get back out to the barn & store to get all the info they want to add his feed to the list. Super excited to see what they say.

    Darn this stupid ankle, I have crap that needs to get done
    aforred and deserthorsewoman like this.

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