He just does not gain weight! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
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He just does not gain weight!

Sorry for the long story but I feel I need to explain everything.

I got this horse back in October and he was fed free choice grass hay, and 2 cups beet pulp 2xday. He is a registered QH but definitely looks more Thoroughbred w/an Arabian head. He was in shape looking but his ribs showed when he moved. He's always had boney withers/back.
I moved him to a boarding stable that was NOT feeding him enough plus I switched him to Safechoice and he ended up losing weight from that. His ribs were now visable and developed an even more boney topline.

I moved him to a different stable after a couple months and they understood my concerns and we worked on putting on weight all winter. He was put on a cup of Veg. oil and 4 scoops Purina Ultium with some beet pulp thrown in. He was also getting grass/alfalfa mix hay. It seemed he put a little bit of a fat layer over his ribs but you can still see them when he moves and obviously still feel them. He still has very boney withers and when I ride bareback, his spine is extremely uncomfortable. I only ride maybe twice a week just walk/trot.

He is now on pasture for a couple hours/day and gets 3rd cut hay at night along with the grain/veg oil mix. Some days I can feel his ribs very well and other days there is a good layer of fat over them. I can't tell if he's sucking it in or what. Some days he looks like a beef cow other days he looks like a lanky rescue horse!

He is in good weight/muscle everywhere but his topline/withers, and rib area. He has been vet checked, dewormed, etc. Is it possible some horses just do not gain weight in those areas? Or does he need to be worked more?

***I have no idea if this matters but his front end looks very good but his back end looks scrawny. And the other day when I was lunging him at a trot he tripped (like he always does) but he just kinda pulled his back end along for a couple strides (his back feet were LITERALLY dragging)...it seems he doesn't pay attention to his feet. Could it just be the muscling that he needs and not fat? I'm so frustrated with it!!!

Last edited by Blondehorselover; 05-22-2012 at 01:03 PM.
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post #2 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 01:13 PM Thread Starter
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Here are some pics of him (he still had his winter coat on but you can kinda see his topline then you can see he ribs in the one he's running in. But he looks like a beef cow in the other one...
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post #3 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 01:45 PM
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How old is this horse?
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post #4 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 01:48 PM
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I had a horse like that and I FINALLY got results when I started feeding her Omolene 400, I fed the amount for a horse that should weigh 1200 lbs, PLUS about 3 lbs of Ultium morning and night. I also let her have free choice grass hay, even though 400 is a complete feed. She went from very skinny to nice a plump and HELD the weight through the winter, something she hadn't done in years.

I also did a PowerPac deworming on her, and after that plus the feed, she started to pick up the weight.

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post #5 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 02:13 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mls View Post
How old is this horse?

He is 12
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post #6 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 02:16 PM
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I have had TBs Standardbreds and many other breeds that had weight issues. I would feed a cup of CALF MANA in with their feed, and placed them on Wheat Bran Oil. CALF MANA has not failed me yet. and helps with the coat as well.
Also I heard of Nutrena having a product called XTN Its a feed that helps
in the areas your seeking. I am looking into it as well for a friend of mines race horses.

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post #7 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 05:47 PM
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i have a 10 year old and 15 year old thoroughbred who are both very hard keepers. The only thing i have found to work on keeping weight in the winter and gain in the summer/spring is the following split intot two or more feedings

all you can eat grass hay (or nice pasture in the spring/summer)
15lbs alfalfa
4 lbs strategy gx
cool calories 100

I am going to try smartgain 4 by smart pak to see if it works as it has a 26% protein so maybe i can get rid of the alfalfa and he cool calories.
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post #8 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 05:47 PM
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oh and 3-4 lbs of soaked beet pulp too.
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post #9 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 09:56 PM
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Ugh I feel for you...I have a Paint gelding with this same issue. I have tried and tried things :( Some with better luck than others. Right now I have been taping him and he has been gaining a considerable amount and I am THRILLED to say the least! :) what is working for him right now is free choice Timothy Grass hay with Timothy pellets twice a day (enough for a 1000 lb horse) with Weight Booster and a cup of canola oil added to the pellets. It is definetely a trial and error thing and seems what works for some wont work on all but just keep after it. I know how frustrating it is...and my boy looks worse in the hind end than front too (those darn hipbones!) Good Luck!
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post #10 of 12 Old 05-22-2012, 10:17 PM
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I've had great results with Nutrena SafeDesign Senior.

NutrenaŽ Life DesignŽ Senior Horse Feed, 50 lb. - 2802301 | Tractor Supply Company

Just look at the reviews that's it's been getting!

He should always have hay infront of him, grass had or grass/alfalfa mix, and then maybe some 2nd or 3rd cutting alfalfa as well. Access to good grazing would be great for him too.

"The greatest pleasure of a dog is that you may make a fool of yourself with
him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself too."

-Samuel Butler
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