Is this enough??? - Page 3

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Is this enough???

This is a discussion on Is this enough??? within the Horse Nutrition forums, part of the Horse Health category

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    12-11-2010, 12:23 AM
As I've mentioned on other threads, I am not a fan of alfalfa, ESPECIALLY for a hot horse. Very high protein feeds mean more "hot energy". You want to find low protein and feed more of it-grass hay, beet pulp (you can feed up to 40% of your horses ration-it's cheaper than hay and a good source of calcium and fiber), rice bran for "cool" calories if you think she needs some fat. I feed a textured feed called Integrity Lite with no molasses for my hot horse, it's available in CA and is one of the few feeds that has no alfalfa or grain in it-it is beet pulp, rice bran, oat hay pellets, soy meal, wheat bran, etc. I like it, but it is just a supplemental feed, my boy only gets a few scoops a day. Mostly he gets hay (timothy and bermuda or orchard), and he's a hard keeper so he has to eat a lot of hay, 6-7 flakes a day. But he's also 17.2 hh and about 1400 lbs. Any feed that is around 12% protein or less is good, in my experience for a hot horse.
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    12-11-2010, 08:17 AM
Protein has NOTHING to do wtih "hotness" it is the sugars and starches...

In most feeds the molasses level is super low think 3 - 7% of a ton of feed just enough to make the vitamin/minerals stick.
    12-11-2010, 08:30 AM
YEP! Protein is not an indicator of "Hotness"! Many hays that are high in protein can have a lot of energy! But many high protein hays don't have much energy! Small grain hay - ie. Oat hay pellets, can be very high in energy. Wheat hay and oat hay both generally are very high in digestible energy.

I love how "expert" horseman educate the rest of the world by telling them buy this untested hay and that untested species of hay because all of that species of hay will test 10% but when it comes to grain - they start quoting the feed bag labels and tell us what limits we should observe. They fully realize that corn will test differently from batch to batch and that their xyz feed brand comes in many different configurations, but they ignorantly assume their hay - even 3 different speices all comes in 1 grade! ABSURD!
    12-11-2010, 08:36 AM
PA it has nothing to do with being expert it has to do with KNOWING what is affordable and done in certain areas.... I have been trying to get my pasture tested for TWO years now and it still isn't done... the farmers around us don't evne test thier soil !!!!
    12-12-2010, 01:29 AM
From what I understand and have researched, alfalfa hay is fed to dairy cows because it is high in sugar and high-sugar hays mean more milk production. Also, alfalfa hay is high in soluble carbohydrates, which are sugar and starches. The soluble carbs and protein may be converted into glucose in the horse's body, which cause spikes in insulin. More glucose and insulin in the system may indeed cause "hyperactivity" or what I refer to as "hot energy". Horses are like people, some are more reactive to certain things than others. I don't believe that no horses can have alfalfa, I just would not feed it straight to my horses, because IMO it is meant for cows, and grass is more suitable for a horse's digestive system. I have seen the difference in my horses when taken off alfalfa, but they may indeed just be more sensitive to the high sugar/starch/protein content. I know that here in CA alfalfa is VERY popular, because it's cheap, palatable, and high energy. I just know that my horse was nutty on alfalfa and sweet feed, but has calmed down significantly with an all timothy diet and some rice bran and low protein feeds added in as supplements. I have tried many different diets-oat hay, alfalfa, three-way, senior feed, complete feeds, pellets, barely, oats, and all combinations of the above and that is what works best for my hard-keeping, high strung thoroughbred.
    12-12-2010, 01:49 AM
Oh, and here in CA the grass hay bales (orchard and bermuda) usually the flakes weigh about 3-4 lbs each, with timothy a little more, like 5-6lbs per flake. I have a scale at the barn and weigh them every once in awhile and they usually are pretty consistent. The usual feeding for horses in boarding here is 4 flakes a day, but I have to feed more because my horse is a big guy and needs a lot of hay! So he gets 7 a day-about 28-30 lbs of hay for a 1400 lb horse. That keeps him at a good weight, able to put on muscle but not ribby or fat. If your horse weighs 800-900 lbs, then 4 flakes of grass hay plus a pound or two of complete feed would most likely work to keep her weight. Our hay here tends to be pretty good, a vitamin E/selenium supplement is recommended for horses here. I also give my horse a yam sliced up in his feed every day-lots if vitamins and he loves them.
    12-12-2010, 07:51 AM
Horsemassage alfalfa is no higher in sugars andstarches then some grass hays... the proteins don't make a horse hot

Now some horses do have an allergic type reaction to it that causes them to be jittier and silly acting ( I own TWO) but it has NOTHING to do with the sugars and starchs

At 1 or 2 lbs of MOST complete feeds your horse will not be getting the needed nutrition.
    12-25-2010, 10:02 PM
2 flakes of hay a day is good for the grass kepy horse. If she isn't on grass at all she should really be eating 4 to 8 flakes (depending on how good she keeps on weight). I would just keep an eye on her and adjust hay accordingly.

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