Putting weight on foundered pony..
A few weeks ago, I posted about Donovan- 12 yr pony, auction rescue, obviously has/had issues with foundering. He is now out of QT, and joined a few buddies in a paddock that is just starting to show signs of growth (Eastern NJ) Since his first vet visit, he has been on hay only. Twice a day. Since he has been shedding out, you can see he needs to put on weight. Advice from the barn owner- get him on a small amount of Safe Choice (I believe thats the correct name) for metabolic issues, and keep him on the twice a day hay feedings. Another friend suggested 3 times a day hay, no Safe Choice. And pull him out of the paddock because of the grass. I suggested my friends advice first to the owner, and she came back with her thoughts and reasoning being we would have to do a paddock change, so he could actually eat the extra hay without his pals stealing it. She feels he would be stressed not being in with his pals, but in a paddock across where he would have eye shot of them is an option. I cant say if its truly the fact of concern for causing him stress, or not wanting to give the extra hay feeding?
This was only discussed about on Monday. The vet will be coming out for his teeth and farrier work. Between the weather, him being in QT, and just giving him a while to settle in.. we are now ready to move onto the next step. Of course I will be discussing this with his vet, but I love to hear what others have to say, and what others have dealt with personally. Of course I want to keep him healthy with minimal risk of a flare up. But this little guy could use some pounds.
Can't recall if I replied to you last time - it rings a bell - but if you haven't already, I reckon about the best online sites to learn more about diet as it relates to metabolic/laminitic health are; Home & Katy Watts | Safergrass.org
I would be including a good quality nutritional supp that will balance his diet. Be careful though, as 'ration balancers' & such can sometimes be grain based &/or sweetened. I'd also look into extra magnesium in the diet - google 'Magnesium For Horses' to learn more about that.
I wouldn't be inclined to choose 'safe choice' if you decide that he does need extra calories. Beet pulp, rice bran, copra meal & suchlike are the types of feeds I prefer for 'conditioning', because they're high in energy, low in sugar & high in fibre.
Oh and yes, stress is a big factor in laminitis & metabolic problems, so that shouldn't be discounted either.
I would pick a feed much lower in NSC for a pony with metabolic issues than Safe Choice. I would go with TC Lite (NSC 9.3%) and add cocosoya oil for added fat. You can also soak his hay to get rid of sugar. Keep him off grass.
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