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Skinny Nursing Mare

This is a discussion on Skinny Nursing Mare within the Horse Nutrition forums, part of the Horse Health category
  • How much stepright senior horse feed do i give my 1200 pound horses
  • I'd very pulp good for a skinny mare

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    07-19-2012, 04:51 PM
  #11
Trained
Don't beat yourself up, we all learn as we go. Working her up to double on the mare and foal is a good idea, just do it over a couple weeks and she'll be fine. I would put 1/2 bale of grass in with her and if you can put it in a 1/2 barrel or some other kind of feeder to keep her from bedding and peeing in it, it will save you money. I like to keep some kind of grass in front of my horses 24/7 whether small square or round bale, doesn't matter, forage is forage. If you soak the beet pulp over night, then put 1/2 in with her grain (start small and work up), she'll eat it. Horses are paranoid by nature and anything new is automatically suspect. The beet pulp will ensure she gets lots of water too and in the heat of summer that's excellent. You can make a little creep feeder for the baby if you want but at 6 weeks he's probably not really stealing enough from the mare to make a difference. I generally follow the 1 lb/month of age rule for my little ones until they are around 300 lbs or weaned. Then I start following the package directions.

Oh, I almost forgot. I put 1 oz of salt/feeding in the beet pulp, so if you soak enough for 2 feedings, 2 oz plain white salt, and that will also make sure she drinks lots of water.
     
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    07-20-2012, 12:52 PM
  #12
Foal
Hi, I have had the same problem with my mare. I have started her on soaked beet pulp with alfalfa pellets and scoop of rice bran in the am and pm After 2wks I can already see a big difference, it puts weight on their top line Good luck!
     
    07-20-2012, 03:25 PM
  #13
Started
You use Mare & Foal by Equi Pro, correct?

Like the other say.. More hay, beet pulp, rice bran, and some Alfalfa if she isn't already on it.
     
    07-20-2012, 04:29 PM
  #14
Yearling
Thank you all for your responses. I can definitely throw a half bale in with her, and we have plenty of half barrels laying around. The baby would end up sleeping on it and smooshing it into the dirt if I don't put it in something.
I'll start by giving her a couple handfulls. Of beet pulp mixed in with her feed and adding salt to the water to hopefully make it more appealing to her.
The tricky part is I don't live on the property and I pay my teenage neice to feed Sky twice a day. If Sky doesn't touch the beet pulp and then it spoils in the heat, how dangerous is that if her or the baby then decide to eat it? That's my biggest worry at the moment.

Again, Sky can not have alfalfa due to her photosensativity. The mare and foal has rice bran in it, so should she be getting more of just rice bran?
     
    07-20-2012, 04:48 PM
  #15
Weanling
We use Step Right level 8 -it is for mares nursing/in foal and senior horses. We mix that with sweet feed or calf manna and her weight looks really good.
     
    07-20-2012, 07:07 PM
  #16
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Whisper22    
Thank you all for your responses. I can definitely throw a half bale in with her, and we have plenty of half barrels laying around. The baby would end up sleeping on it and smooshing it into the dirt if I don't put it in something.
I'll start by giving her a couple handfulls. Of beet pulp mixed in with her feed and adding salt to the water to hopefully make it more appealing to her.
The tricky part is I don't live on the property and I pay my teenage neice to feed Sky twice a day. If Sky doesn't touch the beet pulp and then it spoils in the heat, how dangerous is that if her or the baby then decide to eat it? That's my biggest worry at the moment.

Again, Sky can not have alfalfa due to her photosensativity. The mare and foal has rice bran in it, so should she be getting more of just rice bran?

Over the years, I've learned that simple works best for me. Most feeds are designed to meet the horses nutritional needs based on the amount fed. Feeding extra ingredients has not worked real well for me, so I try to keep things super simple.

So, my advice is,

Feed the Mare and Foal Feed per instructions
Free Feed grass hay
Make sure they have lots and lots of fresh water.
If you add Beet Pulp, start with a small handful soaked, and put it in with the Mare & Foal, so she can get used to it. I feed about 1/2 lb (dry) to each horse morning and night. I set up their buckets with the 1/2 lb of beet pulp and 1 oz of salt, then I add 2X the amount of water and let it all soak til the next meal. It will swell up to about 2 or 3 times the size of the dry stuff and the pellets will fall apart into shreds. Pellets are generally cheaper to feed than the shreds but take longer to soak. I can buy a 40 lb bag of pellets for 11.99 and the 25 lb bag of shreds is 13.99

I don't use rice bran at all, I found it very expensive and not all that effective. What has worked for me is making sure I weigh the amounts I'm serving to make sure if they should get 6 lbs, they GET 6 lbs at a feeding. Once you have your mare used to getting 6 lbs at a feeding, then if you want her to gain a little faster, I'd just add an extra pound per serving (so in effect feeding for a 1200 lb horse rather than an 1000 horse) until she's not looking skinny anymore and then you can take away the extra couple of pounds of feed.

I feed beet pulp more to make sure they are getting their salt and some extra water during hot or really cold spells. If they are thirsty they'll drink and if they drink sufficiently they'll also eat. I don't know why but a dehydrated horse also seems to go off their feed. For me, beet pulp is the cheapest and easiest way to insure they get thirsty and they like it once they're used to it.

As for spoilage, if it smells sour I don't serve it, it's a sign to me that it's been sitting too long. If you start with just a little bit and mix it in with her Mare and Foal, she should eat it right up and not ignore it, so it won't spoil. When I'm serving up their breakfast buckets I just toss the Mare and Foal or Strategy or whatever I'm feeding, right on top of the soaked beet pulp and I don't even have to mix anymore, they just go for it. But in the beginning I tossed it all together.
     
    07-20-2012, 07:12 PM
  #17
Trained
Don't forget to keep free choice salt in front of them all the time. A salt block works well to keep them from running out in case you aren't putting enough in front of them.
     
    07-21-2012, 04:37 PM
  #18
Yearling
Ok, so I stuffed a half barrel full of hay and left it in her pen for her. Half the bale wouldn't fit, only about a quarter. Our grass hay just explodes when the baling twine is cut, so if it stayed in nice little packed flakes, I might have been able to fit half the bale lol. I decided to take some pictures to show that I do value this forum and the advice that I get.
Here's the barrel, looking a mess because Sky immediately stuck her face in it and pulled a whole bunch out. I read that she will probably eat it all pretty fast but the longer she's supplied with constant hay, she should slow down. That's the hope anyway, for the sake of my family being able to eat ourselves.

I keep forgetting to mention that Sky DOES have a mineral salt lick, as you can see in this picture.

And I thought I would throw in a picture of the awesome sunset yesterday as I fed all the horses. Stormy LOOKING but no actual storms.
Celeste likes this.
     
    07-21-2012, 04:48 PM
  #19
Green Broke
I have fed alfalfa all my life, and it can be free fed. In fact I have some senior horses and a Draft that eat free feed hay, no matter if it is oat hay or alfalfa hay. I don't use 'grains" barley oat etc, I use a senior feed as it does have grains in it, it has additional vitamins .My sr horses are in thier 30's and have had alfalfa for many years of thier lives.. I also feed alfalfa and molasses. FOr the beet pulp , add some Karo (corn ) syrup onto to it. Most horses LOVE corn syrup and will eat just about anything with the corn syrup on it. You might also try finding a pelleted feed liek an oat hay pellet or alfalfa grass mix pellet.
     
    07-21-2012, 04:57 PM
  #20
Green Broke
I just reread the post, you horse gets photosensitive to the alfalfa? I would look at that alfalfa hay and see what Weeds are in it! The paints I have owned got photosensitive from weeds and chemicals applied to the alfalfa. What type of grass hay are you feeding? She may be the type of mare that puts everything into the milk production, Corn oil should help also. It is basically a trial and error with each horse for what feed it needs. Having 20 horses here, of varied ages and breeds, I have a varied feed regimen. All get hay, free choice salt. Some get supplements. Some get only 3 quarts of sr feed and some get 6 or more quarts per feeding.
     

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