During a rest stop of 7 weeks a couple of months ago, he dropped weight despite free choice grass and/or alfa hay plus a grain ration. This weight loss takes the form of muscle loss - he has never been a fat horse or an easy keeper. It's particularly noticeable along his topline and rump. Since then, I just can't get any weight on him.
I have wavered over whether he might be a Cushing's candidate. He is a hairy boy but we're coming out of winter here and he has always grown a polar-bear coat : he has zero laminitic issues : he seems to be slower to heal up his scrapes : water intake hasn't changed. Inconclusive...
I would put him somewhere between 2 and 3 on a condition score :( he has kept a round belly. However, he has plenty of energy and is bright and alert. He has plenty of appetite. Poop is normal and doesn't show excessive unchewed grain. He was on a multivitamin supplement for two months without me seeing any difference.
I have 3 weeks to rest up my horses and try and get some weight onto him. He is currently on 24/7 turnout on green pasture with 24hr round bale access as the basis for everything. His grain ration is between 2 and 4lb dry weight per day.
Tomorrow I go feed shopping. Being in Bolivia, I simply don't have access to 'prepared' feeds or supplements. I have access to the basic grains (corn, oats) plus sorghum, oil, sugar, maybe some flax seed if I'm lucky. I hope to find some alfalfa hay, too.
What am I not thinking of or not seeing? How can I get some weight onto him and keep it there?