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Picky senior horse needs weight.

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    05-15-2014, 12:51 AM
I would try Chaffhaye and adding calf manna as a top dress to his feed. Though honestly he looks quite bad, I would definitely not be riding him. I had a horse that was like he was, even once he was retired he had to have a job, so I would occasionally take him on walks around the barn and this seemed to make him feel better.

Though, in all honesty, if he's not eating like he should and has turned his nose at so many foods, perhaps it is time to let him go. I know you probably don't want to hear that, but look at him. And I mean honestly look at him. That is not a quality life.
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    05-15-2014, 01:02 AM
Walkinthewalk: Where do you find those feeds? My local TSC or Feed store don't sell them. And how much do you give?

He won't eat chaff and its a fight to get him to eat his hay pellets. I feed them first thing in the morning so he's "starving" And he still leaves them behind a lot.

How much cocount oil would you feed? He's 15 hands and about 950lbs.

Waresbear: LOL. Dr Doug is the best vet ever. Ty was my very first horse and about 8 months into owning him he coliced really bad. Our first vet saw a 25 year old horse with bad back legs and said to put him down. In a last ditch effort we called our Dr. Doug who came out, walked over to Ty and held his head (he couldn't even stand at that point) and said "He wants to live. I'll give him a hand". And spent most of the night with Ty and I helping to walk him and everything. Ty pulled through and three weeks later when Dr. Doug was out to do shots Ty actually put his head down and nuzzled Dr. Doug's face. The two have been best buds since. Dr. Doug is Ty's personal cheerleader. He says Ty's an old timer like him and that old men need to stick together.

I've come close to putting Ty down a few times. In 2012 Ty had a bump on his nose that turned into sore. It turned out to be skin cancer. I had a specialist out and they said that surgery would be difficult and Ty probably wouldn't survive it do to his age. I called Dr. Doug to put him down as they advised and he asked to talk to the specialist. The cancer was slow growing and Doug decided it wasn't going to be a problem for years. The main thing was that Ty was rubbing and bleeding from the sore. Dr. Doug asked if he could have a month to treat the symptoms and see if they would go away. Sure enough two weeks later the sore was closed and Ty was happy again. He still has cancer but the mass hasn't grown at all in 2 years so we are leaving it be.

This winter with the ulcers I was close to doing it again. But Doug kept promising me that he'd pull Ty through and he did.

Dr. Doug is one of the vets that's really in it for the animals. He doesn't care if I call him a 3am because one of my horses has a small cough or whatever. He wants to help. If that means jumping on the back of Ty and suffering through his bouncy trot to make sure Ty is still sound for trail riding he'll do it.
    05-15-2014, 01:07 AM
Originally Posted by SullysRider    
I would try Chaffhaye and adding calf manna as a top dress to his feed. Though honestly he looks quite bad, I would definitely not be riding him. I had a horse that was like he was, even once he was retired he had to have a job, so I would occasionally take him on walks around the barn and this seemed to make him feel better.

Though, in all honesty, if he's not eating like he should and has turned his nose at so many foods, perhaps it is time to let him go. I know you probably don't want to hear that, but look at him. And I mean honestly look at him. That is not a quality life.
I HATE Chaffhaye. I've know two horses that were put on it and both coliced very badly and had to be put down. Three vets all blamed the Chaffhaye and my own vet wishes it wasn't marketed for horses.

And don't say he doesn't have a quality of life. You don't know Ty. This horse LOVES life. I have 4 other horses and Ty is the happiest, most active, playful one of them.

I've owned Ty since he was 25 and I know the rescue who had him for two years before that. And he's always been a picky eater. That is nothing new. He's a junk food addict. Only wants his sweet feed which isn't giving him the calories he needs to keep weight on. I made this thread to find food that would give him the calories he needs that he actually likes. Not to be told that my horse isn't having a quality of life. He was SICK for over a month. Any horse would lose a ton of weight being ill like that. If you look at the pictures from November before he got ill you see a horse with plenty of quality of life.
    05-15-2014, 01:14 AM
Okay then. I know a few tricks to get horses to eat things they don't usually like. There is a lady with a horse with NO teeth, and she grows alfalfa sprouts for him in the winter, lol. However this horse does graze, she has tough gums, like someone with no teeth that can chew steak, seen that a few times. Pour warmed up molasses on feed he doesn't like, at this point, with him that underweight, give him what he likes. Also apple cider vinegar works. Put a bit on his feed that he likes, make sure you let the fumes dissipate before you feed him it. Add a little more each time until he develops a taste for it, not many horses, if introduced this way, will not like it after awhile. Then when he likes it, pour it on something he doesn't like. Good luck.
Endiku likes this.
    05-15-2014, 01:21 AM
Sorry for the rant. I have issues with people who don't know my horse telling me to kill him.

Ty can graze and is on pasture all day, coming in every 3 for his grain and then going back out. He goes out about 7am and comes in about 9pm. Florida grass just isn't very nutritious.

He does actually like ACV. He will lick it out of my hand.

What feed would you suggest for the molasses trick? I'm leaning towards the Safe Choice Performance since its so high in fat.
    05-15-2014, 01:31 AM
He needs fiber and roughage, lots of it. Try the soaked beet pulp with drizzled molasses, worked for an older arab I had. He wouldn't touch the stuff, after I drizzled the molasses, he ate it, keep that up for a week or so, then he would eat the beet pulp sludge (that's how wet I made it, paranoid about choke) sans the molasses. As for grain, I am in Canada and we have totally different brands than where you are, however, chose a grain high in fiber. Hope he starts eating to put on some pounds, he should leave this world with his dignity when his time comes.
    05-15-2014, 02:07 AM
Green Broke
Try the perform with some coco soya on it. I'd also see if you can get him to eat some fast track, it contains pre and probiotic and I find it really helps these guys. He's old- let him have his junk food.
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    05-15-2014, 03:54 AM
I second total equine. Absolutely LOVE it, and so do horses. I had a very picky senior mare that wouldn't eat just about the same thing your guy wouldn't: beet pulp, triple crown senior, alfalfa cubes and she absolutely loved total! She would get tired of her senior feed quickly so I'd mix about 8 lbs of total and 6lbs senior with 1 cup canola oil spread over 2x feedings. She gained weight nicely and had a very nice coat. Again, highly recommend total equine, I've never seen a horse not automatically take to it.
    05-15-2014, 09:05 AM
Green Broke
Rain Shadow, I buy the Horse Lix and Total Equine at my local feed store.

That's why I posted the 800 number for Total Equine.

The Horse Lix does not have a phone number on the tag but it's made by "Ridley Block Operations" in Mankato, MN.

You could always call both of them to see if they have dealers close to you.

As far as a Horse Lick tub is concerned, there are a lot of companies that make them. Google "horse lick tubs" and the first two that come up are EquiLix and EquiPro, both of which are very good but I can't get either one of them unless I drive a long way.

My Arab is only 13.3H and has gained enough weight back to probably weigh in at 845 -850. He never got as thin as your fella but on the Henneke Body Scoring Scale, he was around 3.5. The vet just said "feed him more" as she had done a full CBC, checked his insulin & cortisol levels, teeth, and gave him a thorough hands-on for tumors.

I did feed him 3X/day over the winter but once the grass came on, he would look at me as if to say "AGAIN?!?!" and he got to where he wouldn't finish his feed.

IMHO, your fella doesn't look anywhere near ready to say "I can't do this anymore". He will tell you when it's time for him to go on to meet his ancestors. The light will go out of his eyes and it will be something that you will just know, perhaps not even being able to put your finger on it, so keep going. It's Spring and you've got the advantage of Spring grass as long as he doesn't have insulin issues or cortisol issues to where Cushings would develop.

His coat is still shiny and his ears are still forward. You are set with the difficult task of figuring out what he will eat that is healthy for him.

I know you said he doesn't like alfalfa. My Arab went thru a phase where he would not eat soaked timothy/alfalfa cubes and I had to put him on alfalfa pellets.

He is back to eating Standlee's brand of timothy/alfalfa cubes. I buy them at Tractor Supply.

I soak them to the point I can hand mush them into wet grass, then mix his other stuff into them. I weigh out one pound of DRY cubes and soak them in the refrigerator so they don't get sour before feed time.

At feed time, I break them down by hand until they become wet grass and he loves that.

All four of my horses are now in their 20's. Mr. WTW gives everyone hay on his way out the drive to work to "wake their tummies up". When I go down to feed their supplements and turn them out, I'll get pictures of Streeter so you can see his before and afters.

IMHO, although everything I feed is helping, I think it's the Lick tub being kept in Streeter's stall that is making such a huge difference. Check with your nearby feed stores and see whose vitamin/mineral lick tubs they have on hand. You could always Google them to see if they contain all the vit/mins a horse needs.

Never in my wildest would I have thought a vit/min tub would make this much difference, as I have always fed feeds or ration balancers that are SUPPOSED to have what a horse needs. Evidently that is not the case with some horses and how ironic we are discussing two very senior Arabs. Arabs must have crazy metabolisms.

Hang in there and evaluate everything we have all offered. Maybe even bookmark this thread as it may take a lot of experimenting before you hit on the right combination of things.

As I said in my other post, it has taken me 2 or 3 three years and I had run out of options. It's pretty difficult to drive my old self to tears but this Arab had put a pretty big lump in my throat by the time I was done explaining my dilemma to the new lady at the feed store.
    05-15-2014, 09:13 AM
Green Broke
Total equine is alfalfa based so I wonder if he would eat it. There's another like it with rice bran in it- I'll try to remember the name of it.
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