When we moved here mid-November, we began to realize the horses in our front yard were completely abandoned.
2 Saddlebreds; 1 QH and 2 young Saddlbred/QH mixes- old moldy hay; no grain; no water. (check my profile for the list of who we have right now)
QH mare severely emaciated; death imminent within weeks. She needed at least 500 lbs; nursing both new colt and nearly 2 year old filly.
We've had the vet come out and we've done the horse shuffle. We've changed out some horses and added to what we own; they've been in 2 different places.
Right now, we have our Saddlebreds at home while our others are down the road for training and rehab on the one. Where we have the 3 now are with the emaciated horse's original owner/trainer.
The feeding there is totally different from what we've been feeding.
Our other friend has all quarter horses (plus one Arabian/something mix) and he feeds one pint of grain x2 a day. We were feeding all but the one the same amount of a 14% protein.
All of the horses (less the one; so that's 10) were doing really well on this amount of feed (and hay, of course), including our Spotted Saddle horse.
New digs mean a totally different feeding arrangement- she does only 12% sweet feed with molasses (not the pellet) and feeds twice as much- 2 pints at each feeding, x2. Horses there are inside; turned out unless it's really really cold; and they get 2 pads of hay with meals; additional hay when turned out.
Magic (Spotted Saddle/Tennessee Walking) doesn't even like it and didn't eat anything but hay for 2 days, so we mixed it and now she's settled.
My concerns are sugar content, obviously, and then we're spending twice as much in feed a week on something I am not convinced is as good nutritionally. I have seen my other friend's horses doing just fine (and our Saddlebreds) on the other kind of feed and ratio with absolutely great results.
Opinions and reasoning, please.