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Stupid question on feeding warm mash

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    10-28-2013, 07:44 PM
My 2 get a mix of fibre beet, calm and condition and alfalfa with oil and a multi vit and mineral. All mixed together with warm water - quite sloppy - and they love it!
Whether they need it warm or not, it makes me feel good seeing them tuck in especially now the weathers cold. That's morning and night xx
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    10-28-2013, 08:45 PM
Hehe! Sue, I said "may not be any nutritional/health reason for it" but that's not to say there aren't other good reasons for feeding... or soaking in it!
    10-28-2013, 11:57 PM
All summer long my horses get a dash of regular temperature water in their "treats." The treat bucket usually consists of senior feed, Strategy or SafeChoice or similar. Maybe with some carrots chopped in there too. So they have a slightly wet mash in summer.

In winter, I take a bucket of warm water with me and pour some in their regular treats. All of those things....senior feed, Strategy, SafeChoice, etc, makes a wonderful mash with a little warm water. And I feel like it helps get some water in them too, since in winter I worry about impactions and such.

So my guys get a wet mash year round, every evening. The only difference is the amount and temperature of the water. I make things more sloppy in winter because the extra water is good for them. In summer, I basically just get it a little wet and crumbly.

Yes, I enjoy spoiling my horses!

PS. I DO feed pretty much 100% alfalfa hay, but I am unsure how much bran would be safe to add to their diet to balance the calcium/phos ratio. Does anyone know what a safe amount would be to feed daily in an alfalfa diet?
    10-29-2013, 12:10 AM
So far, he's been loving it. I've been using the timothy hay pellets, toss in a horse cookie or two, his ration balancer, electrolyte and MSM, then I add some mashed peppermints, or chopped apple or chopped carrot on top. He gets so into his bucket he's closing his eyes while he eats and is oblivious to everything else, LOL. I have some quick oats at home I will try tomorrow.

I swear if he could go NOM NOM NOM NOM NOM, he would.
    10-29-2013, 01:59 AM
Warm mashes mostly make us feel good and will not add warmth to the horse. Of course if you are adding delicious things the horses will like it more!! But health wise there are no benefits to a warm mash (besides the actual feed and qualities of the feed). My horses get their food wetted down to soak in the supplements, but that's it. How you can keep a horse warm in winter is to provide more roughage (aka hay). As they digest the hay, it produces heat and they will stay nice and toasty! Now to convince my horse to let me snuggle under his blankies as I am always cold and eating hot mashes and tea in the winter!!
    10-29-2013, 10:15 AM
The main benefit I see to hot mashes in winter is to get water and salt, which will get them to drink more water, into them. I had a mare who was such a Princess that if the water got too cold, she would refuse to drink. She also got impacted and lost a foal as a result of that, so I'm very careful to use tank heaters outside and heated buckets inside the barn. To make sure they drink enough, they get a little soaked beet pulp with salt added to their nightly feed and in winter I make it with hot, steaming water. By the time I get it out to the feed barn and into their feed it's cool enough to eat. They seem to really relish it at dinner time. So while I don't think it warms them, I think it does "go down easy" because it's warm and it gets water into them. Same thing with any other mash in winter, it gets water into them which will help keep their guts moving.

When I fed Alfalfa, in CA & AZ can't use local alfalfa here, I would make a bran mash a couple times a week and put a little vegetable oil and carrots & apples in it. I was feeding 10 horses at a time on it, so I'd put a couple of pounds of the bran and soak it down until it was oatmeal consistency and feed a little to every one. If I didn't think it was enough I added more to make the amount I wanted to feed.

It wasn't a real scientific process, and we didn't give a lot to any one horse. The only way you can be real precise is if you, 1 test every batch of alfalfa for its CA:P ratio, 2 weigh the alfalfa precisely each time and then figure out how much P is in each bag of bran. The idea is to not overload them with bran, but most alfalfa is pretty high in CA so, you bring in some bran to even things out. You know that ideally you want 2:1 CA:P, so just eyeball it and give a reasonable amount. Horsemen have been feeding bran for years with no ill effects, it just has to be in moderation.

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