What To Feed A Lazy Horse

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What To Feed A Lazy Horse

This is a discussion on What To Feed A Lazy Horse within the Horse Nutrition forums, part of the Horse Health category
  • Feeding a lazy horse
  • What to feed lazy horses?

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  • 2 Post By bubba13

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    10-10-2011, 09:23 PM
What To Feed A Lazy Horse

We have a 5 year old QH gelding that tends to be on the lazy side. I know he's capable of being pretty fast because occasionally, when the herd is playing in the pasture, he's quite the athlete. Just when we ride him he's pretty slow and doesn't seem to have any desire to go any faster. His body condition looks good. I was thinking about whole oats. I know race horse stables feed oats and most performance horse farms that I know of do as well. I don't want to fatten him... just increase his energy level. What are the disadvantages of feeding oats and does anyone have any other suggestions? Thank You.
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    10-10-2011, 09:59 PM
Green Broke
Try finding some cool energy feeds? Do some research, go to feed stores and ask a shop assistant - I've found they are usually very informative about the feeds they stock. Where are you from - people in the same area as you will be able to help more.

Also, have you considered trying to solve this by training instead?
    10-10-2011, 10:00 PM
Whole oats are harder for the horse to digest, rather than extruded feeds. Yes, the whole oats would increase energy levels, but it's kind of like feeding kids candy, it makes us kind of grumpy ;)
    10-10-2011, 11:06 PM
If your horse is neither overweight or underweight......then I doubt it's a food issue.........but a training issue.........horses are generally pretty lazy creatures....maybe get some help with from a coach......I know that when mine get sluggish.....they get a tune up with some spurs and a crop.

Super Nova
    10-12-2011, 01:17 AM

Agree basically with the above(except I rarely find need for spurs & crop). If your horse is not underweight, then the problem is not likely to be fixed with more calories... although too many calories is a common problem that causes laziness!

I think whole oats are one of the safer grains for horses & apparently one of the few grains that can be fed whole & digested, but think there's generally better alternatives anyway. While racehorses may need a high octane boost, I don't think this kind of 'sugar rush' effect is good for horses generally... or their riders!

Other possibilities besides training; could be a nutritional deficiency or a physical problem. Its common for people to think a horse is lazy when they're a bit sore on their feet or have a bad back or some such.
    10-12-2011, 01:22 AM
Please don't try to jack your horse up with feed. If you sincerely believe there is a metabolic issue at play, have a vet check for anemia or related conditions. But more likely, well, this is your horse's nature. Enjoy him for who it is, or tackle it as a training problem as appropriate.
loosie and smrobs like this.
    10-12-2011, 01:44 AM
Originally Posted by bubba13    
Please don't try to jack your horse up with feed. If you sincerely believe there is a metabolic issue at play, have a vet check for anemia or related conditions. But more likely, well, this is your horse's nature. Enjoy him for who it is, or tackle it as a training problem as appropriate.
Ditto this. Trying to jack him up on sweet feed really isn't any different than using a bigger, badder bit for a horse that doesn't like to stop.
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    10-12-2011, 01:45 AM
Thank you Bubba. Those are my thoughts exactly. Packing feed into them in an attempt to give them more umph will generally cause more problems than it solves.

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