IR Horse, safe feed....

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IR Horse, safe feed....

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  • Empower for ir horses
  • Purina horse feeds for IR horses

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    04-08-2014, 10:19 AM
Question IR Horse, safe feed....

Suzie has had the fatty deposits and a cresty neck since last fall. I let it go, thinking that other than cutting her grain back(which I did) she just need a lot more exercise. But the last trim the farrier pointed out that it looked like she'd had a mild found episode. She never appeared lame. And I don't know if it could have been stress instead of health. She had two injuries in a row this winter that led to 3months stall rest away from the herd. Execept for when she could see them from her little turn out field away from them, and when I was walking her. But I decided to go ahead and switch her to a feed that would be acceptable for an IR horse. My vet comes out this sunday. And I'll also of course discuss this with him. I'm not sure if he's ever delt with a horse with this problem however. And assume at least two or three people on here own IR horses. Or know something on the subject.

I was going to go with Safe Choice, Special Care

Guaranteed Analysis:
Crude Protein: 14.0%
Lysine: 0.80%
Methionine: 0.30%
Threonine: 0.50%
Crude Fat: 7.0%
Crude Fiber: (max.) 15.0%
Dietary Starch: (max.) 11.0%
Sugar: (max.) 4.0%
Calcium: 0.90 - 1.20%
Phosphorus: 0.70%
Copper: 50 ppm
Zinc: 160 ppm
Selenium: 0.60 ppm
Vitamin A: 3,000 IU/lb
Vitamin D: 350 IU/lb
Vitamin E: 100 IU/lb
Biotin: 0.45 mg/lb

Or Purina Strategy

Crude Protein (min.) 14.00%, Crude Fat (min.) 6.00%, Calcium (Ca) (min.) 1.00%, Phosphorus (P) (min.) 0.60%, Crude Fiber (max.) 12.50%, Calcium (Ca) (max.) 1.30%, Zinc (Zn) (min.) 280.00 ppm, Copper (Cu) (min.) 80.00 ppm, Selenium (Se) (min.) 0.60 ppm, Vitamin A (min.) 3,000.00 IU/lb.

Both of which sites I've looked up on google mention. The problem is some say yes, others say no ;) So would anyone out there know if either of these are acceptable? Why or why not? And if not, would it be better to just put her on plain oats, beet pulp, and maybe some type of grass pellet?
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    04-08-2014, 10:20 AM
Founder* not found ;)
    04-08-2014, 10:52 AM
My suggestion is to try to familiarize yourself with Non-Structrual Carbohydrates (NSCs), starch, sugar, and how they all pertain to a horse's diet.

See the asterisk on this page where Nutrena lists the starch and sugar in their Special Care feed? SafeChoice Special Care Horse Feed by Nutrena

The asterisk indicates that the NSC value is the starch and sugar values added together. This means that the NSC is about 15%... which isn't actually that low at all. Compare it to the NSC values that Triple Crown lists for its different feeds (I love how transparent Triple Crown is with its nutritional info -- no asterisks to hide the actual facts!!) Triple Crown Horse Feed Carbohydrate Values With Fixed Formulas | Triple Crown Nutrition

Since IR horses do better with the lowest NSCs possible, I don't think that Safe Choice Special Care is your best option. Look at how low some of the Triple Crown NSC values are in comparison (even their Senior Feed is lower NSC!). In your case, I think Triple Crown 30% or Triple Crown Lite would be the best option for your horse. Their NSC values are way lower (around 9%) and they both give you much more "bang for your buck". Pound for pound, the Triple Crown products are packed with far, far more vitamins and minerals, which means you have to feed less of them to achieve the optimal nutrition for your horse.

If we were feeding a 1000 lb horse based on the recommendations for each of these feeds, this is how much they would need to receive:

Safe Choice Special Care: 5-7.5 lbs
Triple Crown Lite: 2-4 lbs
Triple Crown 30%: 1-1.5 lbs

As you may have noticed, I'm a bit biased towards Triple Crown feed products (I've been very pleased with how my horses have done on them)... but they aren't the only feed company that has higher quality, lower NSC, and more nutritious feed.
nikelodeon79 and verona1016 like this.
    04-08-2014, 10:56 AM
Oh boy! I don't know anything about your first feed. I would suggest you do a couple of things. First, actually call Purina Mills. Ask for a nutritionist. 800-227-8941 is their general number. I called them and discussed a similar situation with them and they are very happy to discuss your options.

Second, take a look at this product: Heiro. website I use this product for an IR horse. This is expensive, but it really does work! Again, call them and talk to their veterinarian. I think you will be impressed with their understanding of your situation, even if you don't buy their product. In fact, they will want to talk with you before suggesting you buy anything from them.

So, I have done what I recommend you do. What I have concluded is best for my IR horse is to feed low-carbohydrate hay (need to have it tested), Enrich Plus from Purina Mills and daily dose of Heiro. This has been very effective for our horse. But, you need to do your own research and do what you think is best.
Eolith likes this.
    04-08-2014, 11:11 AM
While I'm disappointed that they don't seem to provide any info on the actual NSC values in their feed, Enrich Plus looks pretty good overall! I like it much better than the Special Care. It's another that you only need to feed up to 2.5 lbs or so to achieve the correct nutrition level. Less feed overall is good. Here's why:

Special Care has 15% NSCs per pound, while the Triple Crown products have 9% per pound. For ease of comparison, let's just say that this equates to 15 g of sugar/starch per pound of the Special Care, and 9 g of sugar/starch per pound of Triple Crown (this isn't the actual scientific value, just a simplified way to think about it).

If you feed the recommended minimum of 5 lbs of Special Care, then your horse is getting 75 grams of sugar/starch. If you feed the maximum 4 lbs of Triple Crown Lite, your horse gets 36 grams of sugar/starch (less than half the amount of Special Care!). You could take it even further with the Triple Crown 30%. By giving your horse the maximum 1.5 lbs, she would only be receiving 13.5 grams of sugar/starch!
    04-08-2014, 11:28 AM
I know you've probably heard about enough from me by now, but I wanted to add that if you'd like to stick with a Nutrena product, I would suggest Empower Balance. It's another feed that only needs to be given about 2 lbs. The NSC for Empower is about 14%... so if we use the same comparison in my last post, 28 grams of sugar/starch.
    04-08-2014, 11:41 AM
Green Broke
Enrich Plus does list their NSC, but in the same way Nutrena does (broken out in to Starch and Sugars) and they're also inconsistent with themselves Purina Horse Feeds - NATURE'S ESSENTIALS In the larger box (under the Guaranteed Analysis tab) they list Starch max 10%, but in the list at the bottom they list Starch (max) 5%, Sugars (max) 10%. So the NSC is somewhere between 15-20%. Not great, but since it is fed in smaller amounts than Safe Choice Special Care, I'd still lean more towards that one.

I second Triple Crown products. My horse gets their 30% Supplement (1 lb daily) and does very well on it. I tried Nutrena Empower Balance for a while, and my horse liked it more (no guessing why... it smells much sweeter!) but I had to feed more of it to get the same nutrition (1.5 lbs) and I also had to add in a magnesium supplement, so it ended up being quite a bit more expensive overall.
    04-08-2014, 04:38 PM
Going with TC Lite formula. For now
Eolith and verona1016 like this.
    04-08-2014, 10:20 PM
Great! I hope that it works out well for you and your mare. ^_^
    04-08-2014, 10:58 PM
Was going to come on here and suggest Triple Crown. I see Eolith said it better than I could!

health concernes, healthyfeed, irh

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