Originally Posted by EternalSun
My gelding gets the LS Performance because he is a picky spoiled brat and refuses to eat any of the "diet" food I buy for him. I figure it doesn't make a difference anyway, he's only getting a cup a day.
Can someone explain to me exactly what a ration balancer is? I hear about them all the time on this forum but don't personally know of anyone who uses them.
Yeah, generally speaking, 1 cup per day of anything shouldn't make much of a dent, BUT it does depend whether he's IR or anything, as many IR horses can't tolerate ANY sugar spikes without adverse effects. IR is also a very common issue, especially among overweight horses, so I would be wary of this at least. If he's got any 'growth' rings on his feet or any 'fat pads' I would take this as an indication his diet needs to be more carefully managed.
Ration balancers are the popular name for 'complete' feed supplements that are generally pelleted feed. They are also usually grain based, so again, not necessarily the best choice for fatties & depends if the horse is IR or such whether they are appropriate. But they are far higher in nutrients & better balanced(tho they all different & tend to get what you pay for) than 'complete' horse feed and therefore you generally feed way less of them than you'd have to to get a decent amount of nutrition into a horse with a 'feed'.
I personally have a couple of rather round(not obese, but certainly not fading away) horses, of whom one is also incredibly fussy, and I've chosen to feed a 'ration balancer' to them, to get the best nutrition into them without adding too much in the way of calories & carbs. After diet & feed analysis(thru FeedXL.com) I chose KER Gold Pellet because it seemed the best by far and palatable to my fuss pot and he only needs 60g(1/2 teacup) per day. It is expensive per 20kg bag, but at that rate, it's actually quite economical compared to cheaper bags, and after analysis, discovered I only have to feed bit more than half what it says on the pack too.