Originally Posted by SlideStop
Also, you might not want to stay on such a set routine. I watched a woman's horses once and by 7am they are screaming their heads off and by 7:15 they are breaking things. You feed when its convenient for you, within reason. If they eat at 6:30, fine. If you want to sleep til 9:30 that should be fine with them too.
I am sorry but I don't believe in this. Some horses may be able to cope without a routine, but in my experience the majority of horses cannot cope.
They need to be fed at a certain time (if not bang on, then around that time) and if they are not fed then they need access to add lib hay or they need to be grazing.
Not sticking to a routine (especially if the horse is used to a routine) can cause stress which can lead to vices (fence walking, weaving, etc) in horses with certain temperments.
My two are in a paddock 24/7 with a 5x4' roll of hay. They get hard fed at about 6-6.30pm every day. It is especially important for once of my horses as he is a windsucker and is prone to ulcers, the fact that he is a chestnut TB and a stress head doesn't help... but doing all I can to reduce his stress levels helps to keep his ulcers and windsucking under control. As soon as they hear feeds going out, they will start fence walking and if they are not close enough to hear the feeds going out, they normally start to fence walk about 5.45pm.