Ration Balancer???

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Ration Balancer???

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    10-31-2013, 04:53 AM
Post Ration Balancer???

So. In my last post I was informed by many people that any cereal grain is bad for horses.... While my horses do look better then ever since being switched to this diet I'm willing to learn more. However while everyone was willing to tell me I was feeding a poor diet, no one seemed to have any names of anything else to try. I've fed comercial feeds. But I now assume that those where just that, feeds. Brands: Triple Crown, Senior, and Performance. Legends, Rice bran, Performance, and Growth. Safe Choice: I do forget which one that was. A few sweet feeds which in my opinion are all junk and pretty much the same. I've learned through research that Triple Crown is sappoused to carry a ration balancer called 30 percent supplement. And 12 percent supplement. Problem? We have three feed stores. None have heard of this. Or ration balancers in general. Do any other "big name" feeds carry a ration balancer. If so whats it called, actual name so it can be looked up on their computers. Are some of what I've be told and taught are feeds in the Triple Crown, Legends, Safe Choice, and Purina actually ration balancers instead? And again the question I asked in the last post that wasn't awnsered. If the cereal grains are no good, and everything else I've tried falls short of the cereal grains. What else can I try? The gelding was on over 6lbs of almost all comercial feeds, to get the same results that 4 lbs get in this feed. All in smaller feedings of course. Vet checked many times. No ulcers or gut problems. Tried all gut supplments out there, then treated him for ulcers anyways, and on an ulcer preventitive. On a supplment the vet ordered to help him digest. And on 3 2 lb feedings of alfalfa cubes soaked. Still looked kinda thin all the time, Even when not worked at all for months. Dull coat. And irritable all the time. After a summer on the cereal grains he's back to acting like he did in the past.
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    10-31-2013, 05:07 AM
Also worms are not an issue
    10-31-2013, 05:52 AM
You seem to be doing the right things by your horse. You have found a feed routine that suits him and he's doing well. Whatever other people opinions of your feed does not matter.
With your vet you have found what suits that horse. It might not suit mine or anyone elses.
I think you are talking about feed balancer.. I dont' use it.. but the ones that I have know friends to use are: Equilibra 500, used for two older horses who don't do so well with feed, and Spillars Lite Balancer used for horses that hardly need any feed because they do so well...just to make sure they are getting all vits etc.
My pony does very well with feed so only gets a little handful of Simple Systems Pura Beet, two handfuls of Dodson and Horrel Safe and Sound -- supplements at the moment are Dodson and Horrel Breath Easy Herbs and Super Codlivine multivitamin.
My favourite supplements to use are Silver Lining Herbs but I cannot afford them right now. I would change vitamin supplement if I think I need to .. I used to use Equivite. I read the contents carfully and its very similar to the one I use now. But I wanted the addition of the cod liver oil.
My pony is 13 and I think its time to start protecting joints and help movement.
People should not be rude to you or to me about what we feed. Everyone has their own opinion and has to find whats right for their own horse and there is no one thing will fit all.
    10-31-2013, 06:07 AM
A feed I know people have used to put weight on with good success is called Bailey's Topline No 4 Conditioning Cubes.

I can find all these things on the internet but we are not allowed to put links into posts on the forum I believe. If it will help I can pm you with all the links I have.
    10-31-2013, 06:12 AM
Super Moderator
Balancers are designed to balance what is missing in the feed, so in a perfect world I would have my forage and hay tested and see what was lacking or what needed balancing as such things as high iron content can block the uptake of copper and zinc. There is no point adding supplements if you do not no know you are trying to balance.

I would always keep things simple with high fibre basic feeds (free choice hay and high fibre hard food such as unmolassed sugarbeet). A supplement such as brewers yeast or yea sacc can greatly help the digestion of the fibre and help weight gain and linseed (flaxseed) is full of very good oils.

So if you strip things down, analyse what you horse should have in terms of vitamins and minerals then you can build up a correctly balanced diet. After that you can see if there are other problems which might need addressing.

I don't think there is anything wrong in feeding grains or straights, but it does seem that often horses don't get on well with them if fed in bulk. Many companies do add balancing vitamins and minerals to feeds so it can be very complicated, iron is often added which causes problems in itself.
clairegillies likes this.
    10-31-2013, 09:12 AM
My horses wont touch any brand of ration balancers iv tryed them all. The one horse who can't have grain gets alfalfa pellets that's the only pellet he will eat. All my horses hate pelleted feed.

That's why iv always fed oats that's one thing they will eat.
    10-31-2013, 09:26 AM
Green Broke
Equine Ration Balancer Pellets Explained | TheHorse.com

Ration Balancers - The Horse Health Zone

All the big feed companies carry them now. If you go to their individual web pages you can read about them. Most aren't labeled ration balancer by their manufacturers. You have to look for a protein range somewhere around 30% in their descriptions. Some companies are a little more protein, some a little less.

I have 2 privately owned feed stores in town and a tractor supply. Tractor Supply carried Nutrena Empower Balance for me for a while but the new manager dropped it. So I've dropped them. I hear some other stores still carry it.
The vast majority of my feed comes from Poulin now but that's probably not available to you being more New England regional. I'm almost willing to bet some family member of this company has a chronic fatty. The starch/carb counts are really low on several of their feedstuffs.

When my horses were young they did fine on just about any feed. As they aged I couldn't give them little enough to keep their nutrition at a point they needed. My old pony is the worst air fern I've ever seen. I was feeding Blue Seals Trotter which is actually a nice mostly forage based feed. Low carb compared to a lot of the other old standbys but she was still blimping out and her coat looked like crap on just a handful. I had to start reading and was kind of amazed at all the changes in feed since the 1970's when I first started keeping horses.

If your horses are doing fine on what you are giving them then there is no worries. You could just top dress with a multi-vitamin and mineral supplement if you aren't sure they are getting all they need. Thing is their systems will eventually age. It is easier to prevent things like insulin resistance and metabolic syndrome than to deal with it after it's developed. I can't just grab another bag of feed if my store is out. My pony would probably either blimp out or have a laminitis attack.

No way around it. You are going to have to break out the reading materials and read the feed tags and figure out what is best for you. I had to work out how to cut the two old mares down on starches and not short them on other needed nutrition. I also had to figure out how to get a bit more calories into my one that needs it but not so much that she will go IR as she ages. Gets complicated at times and I had to figure out how to make it work for 3 slightly different needs and still keep it simple.
    10-31-2013, 10:00 AM
I would just like to thank honestly every single person that's replied to this for your really helpful awnsers =) Instead of feeling chewed out and kinda useless because I honestly don't even know whats being talked about. I've come out of reading these with gained knowledge (which won't improve my spelling lol ) and being able to pick out that there is in fact a ration balancer at my local tractor supply. Nutrena empower, boost and a balance one. Which I think may actually be something to try on my horses and lil man. Because its a grass formula, as in its sappoused to be fed to horses that are on a grass forage, either grazing or just grass hay. I think a bit in their feed ( 1/2 a pound for the horses, and a handfull for the pony) would be great
clairegillies likes this.
    10-31-2013, 10:12 AM
Green Broke
I really liked the Empower Balance. My problem was I couldn't rely on Tractor Supply to keep it in stock. Had to go to plan B and have a plan C just in case.
    10-31-2013, 10:51 AM
Surprise, my horses eat oats and hay. Every horse I've owned has been fed this and never been a problem. Most of the time our horses don't need what the feed companies promote. Oats are the only feed/medication that will help heal hind gut ulcers so they aren't all bad. Many horse owner have become paranoid over what is good to feed and over do it. Horses need good quality roughage first, then additional protein if being worked. Over do it and the horse creates expensive manure.

feeds, questions, ration balancer

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