What to look for in feed - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 12 Old 09-02-2010, 12:57 PM Thread Starter
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What to look for in feed

I have been thinking about changing my horses' feed before winter, because I just don't like the food they have now, it smells, and it is like powdery. I want to know what type of food is good for horses.
I want to keep weight on them in the winter, but I don't want them to get too "hot". So I need opinions.
Here is my gelding's info:
He is 14, easy keeper, I ride him about 3 times a week for atleast 30 minutes. Right now he is in the pasture all day, but in the winter he might need to be in a stall since it gets nasty here.
My mare:
She is 8 years old, easy keeper, never ridden, she is lame (Arthritic). She is in the same boat as Romeo for winter, stall if it gets nasty out.
I am kind of limited in my food choices. But what are some ingrediants that I should look for, or look out for.

RIP Minnie, 1981-January 15, 2010
RIP Maggie Mae I miss you
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post #2 of 12 Old 09-04-2010, 09:53 AM
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sounds like both of them will do fine on a ration balancer which is high nutrition, low feeding amount (1lb per day) with free choice hay or pasture.

What I look for is High Nutrition, Low/NO grain, fixed formula in a feed.

I have been called the NSC Nazi more then once ... I hate traditional feed methods of loading our horses up on grains and junk food :)
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post #3 of 12 Old 09-06-2010, 11:44 PM
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Since we're talking about feed, I was wondering if the southern states economy feed is fairly decent? I just got my horse so I feel like I'm trying to learn things quickly. (wishing now that I knew all this before hand but I guess i'll learn as I go) I'll find out from the barn manager how much my horse is getting but in the meantime, I have a few questions. My horse is between 12 and 14 yrs old. He lived a hard life as a trail horse and is now very thin. I'm trying to get his weight back up. My barn manager is feeding him the economy feed from s.s. along with beet pulp, electrolytes, and biotin. Does this sound good? They only feed alfalfa at the barn but I want to supplement him with grass hay. I've heard that the barn manager won't switch foods for individual horses. I'm just concerned because I really like the barn I'm at but I want my horse to have the best nutrition. I don't want him eating the "beneful" of horse food.
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post #4 of 12 Old 09-07-2010, 10:23 AM
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it's called an ecomney feed for a reason ... think bottom of that line of feeds.

I wouldn NOT board someplace where they won't feed what the owner wants... guess that is why I keep mine at home.

He needs lots of nutrition and low NSC to stay healthy

I have been called the NSC Nazi more then once ... I hate traditional feed methods of loading our horses up on grains and junk food :)
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post #5 of 12 Old 09-07-2010, 10:49 PM
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I understand what you mean, Peggysue. Unfortunately in my situation I am unable to keep my horse at home. I'm in a bit of a bind, too, because I really like this barn and want to keep him there so I'm figuring out what I can do to help him out. I found out that he is eating Southern States and he is getting a 1/2 coffee can of 12% sweet feed and 1/2 coffee can of 12% pellets.
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post #6 of 12 Old 09-08-2010, 09:16 PM
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is either feed on their website?? I am betting she is getting way below recommended amount which means you could supplement her with 1/2 lb daily of the TC30%

I have been called the NSC Nazi more then once ... I hate traditional feed methods of loading our horses up on grains and junk food :)
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post #7 of 12 Old 09-08-2010, 11:40 PM
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Well, I'm seriously thinking about moving my horse to another barn. It really sux because I like the people and they've been good to me. They even went to pick up my horse for me at no charge. I just want what's best for Dancer. If I move him to this new place im looking at i can feed him whatever i choose.
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post #8 of 12 Old 09-08-2010, 11:47 PM
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Why not pose that to them? Say that while you find everything else to be tip-top...you really feel that she needs a better feed source. Be careful not to put them down about their choice...some people are just now realizing that sweetfeed isnt the cure-all for every horse. Tell them that you would provide the feed and all they would have to do is scoop it out. In the case of supplements, I always measured mine out in little containers and had them ready to go. That way the barn manager or stable hand can just scoop and dump. The end.

Peggy-Sue is the best at this nutrition stuff. My little trick to finding the best bang that you can for your buck...read the labels. Corn and molasses shouldn't be in the first 5 ingredients. I believe they both equate pound for pound into straight up sugar. The problem with sugars on a horse needing weight is...they may gain the weight but will probably sweat it right back off as soon as you return to work. It has lots of other disadvantages like being linked to Insulin resistance and hyperactivity.

For me, in my area, our choices are limited. Any kind of feed I would need is going to be at your 'big box' feed stores like Tractor Supply. Read labels and educate yourself onto whats best for your horse.
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post #9 of 12 Old 09-09-2010, 10:08 AM
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Actually molasses is about 50% sugar and doesn't bother me "as bad" as corn which is 76% sugars and starches

Molasses is used as a binder and you will find it in even truely low NSC feeds.

I also like to look at the supplemental profile... is the nutrition in a form the horses can use

I have been called the NSC Nazi more then once ... I hate traditional feed methods of loading our horses up on grains and junk food :)
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post #10 of 12 Old 09-09-2010, 09:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by corinowalk View Post
Why not pose that to them? Say that while you find everything else to be tip-top...you really feel that she needs a better feed source. Be careful not to put them down about their choice...some people are just now realizing that sweetfeed isnt the cure-all for every horse. Tell them that you would provide the feed and all they would have to do is scoop it out. In the case of supplements, I always measured mine out in little containers and had them ready to go. That way the barn manager or stable hand can just scoop and dump. The end.

Peggy-Sue is the best at this nutrition stuff. My little trick to finding the best bang that you can for your buck...read the labels. Corn and molasses shouldn't be in the first 5 ingredients. I believe they both equate pound for pound into straight up sugar. The problem with sugars on a horse needing weight is...they may gain the weight but will probably sweat it right back off as soon as you return to work. It has lots of other disadvantages like being linked to Insulin resistance and hyperactivity.

For me, in my area, our choices are limited. Any kind of feed I would need is going to be at your 'big box' feed stores like Tractor Supply. Read labels and educate yourself onto whats best for your horse.
I think tomorrow I will talk to the barn manager. I'm at a point where I don't really know what or who to believe. I understand that there is better feed that my Dancer could be getting and that's what I want. I will ask if they are willing to let me buy his feed. I've just heard stories of how another girl tried that and they didn't feed her horse the way she wanted, etc. Also, I'm not too thrilled that they are only offered alfalfa and I don't even think its the best alfalfa there is. I'm hoping that if I can supplement him with grass hay that he will do fine. I just feel like I'm in a bind because I've been leasing at this barn since December and for some reason never seen or heard problems. Maybe I was naive because I didn't own a horse yet. But now that I've got my own horse things have changed. I would just hate to leave bc the people are great to me and have helped me out a lot. The barn owner helped me find a horse and drove 4 hours to get him for me and didn't charge me to do that. Also, i'm not even sure he needs to have beet pulp, biotin, and oil added to his food. I'm really lost. The hard part is that so far Dancer is doing great since I got him. He has put on weight and looks great so maybe I should give this barn a few months and see what will happen. I just keep hearing horror stories and don't know what to do.
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