How do you keep your mini?
I am curious to hear how other people keep their minis given that they are so prone to being too fat. My mini is in a taped off area with virtually no grass at night and until early afternoon, then I let her out with my gelding for the rest of the day with her grazing muzzle on. She is overweight but not too bad according to my vet.
I have a mini donkey. He's on a round bale right now with 4 other 'big' horses. Surprisingly he isn't even fat. I mean alittle hay belly but he isn't overweight at all. He was supposed to be in with my friends mini but he was petrified of him. ...figures. But he'd much rather kick butt in with the "big boys" then in with another mini.
I plan to muzzle him 24/7 come springtime, though.
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My mini is on a dry lot with free choice hay. On nice days he may get a couple hours of grazing time. He self regulates fairly well. No hay belly =)
My mini is in with my two big horses. they each get 2 flakes in the am and 3 at night. and maybe a bit more if its cold out. they were all on a round bale before i got squares. my mini is at a nice weight.
My mini is just a TEENSY BIT on the pudgey side right now with a hay belly (:oops:) but we're working on that ;) its mostly muscle loss that is noticable, because she just came off of a 'maternity leave.' She's also mid-shedding and looks rather aweful.
She has a 25 x 25 dry lot pen with a three sided shed, and gets 1 flake of alfalfa, 2 flakes of Jiggs Costal Hay daily. No grazing whatsoever, unless its a few quick bites when I have her out on a leadrope. She also gets 1 cup of Purina Miniature Horse and Pony feed twice a day just to mix her probiotics and RB in, but thats about it.
She is worked daily though, so she may eat differently than your average mini. She is driven 3-4 hours every week and lunged or walked on the trails nearly every day.
I am curious about dry lots because I've never really seen them here in NZ. Do people spray off the grass to create these and do they turn into mud pools over winter? I would love to create a larger area for my mini as the taped off area she is in most of the time is quite small and I feel bad that she must get bored in there. We only have about 2.5 acres of grazing for her and my gelding so dont have that much room. Also I move her with my gelding as he gets rotated through our 3 paddocks so have to keep setting up a new pen so they can be together.
We just turned a few of our larger horses out in our larger (2.2 acre?) dry lot when we first made it, and since it was so small- they turned it into a dry lot within a few weeks. LOL. I'm sure theres better way to do it though.
It does get muddy though, which is a down side to dry lots. We put down rubber tyre shavings by the gate and the water troughs to advoid mud as much as possible, but it still turns into a swamp if we have more than a shower or two.
All our mini's are stalled and have daily turnout on dry lots. They never go out on the grass.
My mini is also on a dry lot. No grazing unless it is hand grazing in the yard for short periods of time. Especially this time of year, new green grass will cause a mini to founder fast. She also gets timothy hay (about a flake 2 x a day) and she looks great.
Right now my mini is in a dirt paddock with a herd comprised of himself and 3 large horses. Because the horses all get fat on sunshine and water they all get basic grass hay with mineral/salt blocks. The mini is doing well weight wise with this situation--not too fat or skinny. Come grazing/pasture time, as someone else already mentioned, he will be muzzled to prevent founder and excessive weight gain.
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