Mudpie is FAT.
I rescued Mudpie at about 200 pounds underweight, and two years later, for the first time ever... he is FAT!
Mudpie sustained a suspensory injury, and now has to stand around in his stall all day. I've cut back his feed significantly, but for about a month before the injury, he wasn't in full work, and started gaining weight.
This is sort of difficult for me to deal with right now, because he can't do anything but stand still all day, and I know that his feed being cut back isn't going to do anything straight away.
He's being switched off of alfalfa to a grass/alfalfa mix.
The dilemma that I'm contemplating is that I know that Mudpie still needs to be receiving 2% of his body weight in forage (that's approx. 20 lbs). Will grass hay make it okay for me to be feeding him that weight of forage?
Mudpie's current diet is:
1 flake (approx. 6 lbs) alfalfa
1/2 scoop (approx. 1.5 lbs) Equus Fiber Max Omega, soaked
15 mL Rest Easy Gold
1 flake (approx. 6 lbs) alfalfa
1 scoop (approx. 3 lbs) Fiber Max Omega, soaked
15 mL Rest Easy Gold
1 scoop Farrier's Formula Double Strength
1 scoop SmartOmega 3
1.5 scoop SmartFlex I Maintenance
1 scoop U-Gard
Also, would it be okay for me to feed him less than 2% of his body weight, in the interest of him losing weight, or would that be too hard on his gastro-intestinal system? I know that obesity is a HUGE health risk in horses, and he's not obese yet, but I'm trying to make sure that that doesn't happen in the best way possible.
Thoughts? Insights? :)
The majority if not all of his feed should be hay/grass. try slow feed nets to slow him down and keep him occupied.
I had a horse that was on stall rest for about a month. I put his hay in a net & I also bought him something similiar to this to keep him from gaining anymore weight, http://www.doversaddlery.com/boredom...re=viewbuyrec/ & it helped him a lot. Instead of being bored & eating all day, he was playing around with it.
The problem with slow-feed nets is that there's not really a good place for me to hang it up in his stall. Mudpie is currently in a 24 x 30 outdoor stall. Personally, the only experience I've had with hay nets/bags has been in the trailer and in a small stall at a horse show. Would it be okay to tie it to the fence at chest level? I'll attach a picture of him in his stall, so you will be able to see the fencing situation.
I bought a slow-feed net for my horse and hung it on the fence. Had never used one before and so I watched her at first to see how she did and of course she's the horse the somehow manages to get it stuck in her mouth. So now I throw it in a ground feeder and don't have to worry about her hurting herself. Slows down her eating quite a bit which is great since she doesn't have 24/7 access to hay. Hope this helped! :-)
A slow-feed hay net is iffy right now, and sort of on the downhill side of the decision, currently.
Remove the concentrates. He's not in work, he doesn't need them.
Put him on a basic grass hay, and just to keep him thinking he's getting a hard feed, give him a little white chaff with a pelleted or powdered supplement (in Australia we have Khonkes Own products - you might have a similar one in the US) to keep him on top of his vitamin/mineral needs.
With a suspensory injury, you do NOT want him fat. In fact it's better to have him a bit ribby than a bit too fat. Any excess weight, is extra weight those remaining 3 legs need to hold up. The more they have the carry, the more chance there is of injury to those legs.
If you meant your are now feeding 12 lbs of grass in place of 12 lbs of alfalfa, he should start losing or stablizing pdq.
If this was my horse, he would be switched to 100 % grass hay all he can eat from a nibble net and a quality ration balancer. Idk about your guy but my horses eat a 5 lb flake of alfalfa in less than an hour. You horse needs more chew time than 2 hours a day and more going in his gut, both for his for his mental health and to prevent ulcers while he is stall bound.
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Now for the possibly stupid statement: I honestly don't know what white chaff is. It's possible that we don't have it here in California, or, more likely, I am just a complete idiot and don't know about it. Would switching him to pelleted rice bran be a good idea? What I like about Fiber Max Omega is that I feed very little of it, soak it, and it gains a lot in volume, so all the supplements mix in nicely. I feed a mere fraction of the actual, recommended serving of the feed, and, as I said before, just so that I can mix his supplements in. :)
I definitely understand the urgency of the situation, and I'm acting on it as quickly as I can. The grass hay should be delivered tomorrow, so I can start the transition immediately.
I also was wondering how much grass hay I should be feeding. Would it be detrimental to his gut health for me to cut him back to 1.5%, or even 1% of his body weight? Would this be a warranted move, in the interest of him losing weight more quickly?
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