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michi292 11-13-2006 12:53 AM

1st ride great,2days later,completely different horse???
Hi, I just traded horses. I had a +16hh breed stock paint, intimidated by her height, traded for 14.2 hh QH/cross. Talked over the internet about the mares for a few days, she made the trip to me with trailer and horse so we could ride eachothers horses, my horse (Arizbah) did great, she wants her, I ride the Libby (hers) and she is so good, I knew I wanted her. Well, 2 days later she is jumping at the wind blowing!! Libby was trail ridden many,many times, was a 4-H show horse, but for me she is flipping over a snapped twig. OK, this is what I think the issue is, and I would love some feedback, either way. I told her what I fed Arizbah and she the same. She fed corn,oats,beet pulp (no molasses) 2 lbs/day. I feed cracked corn,molasses,minerals,soy 12% sweet. I always fed 2lbs in am/2lbs pm, 1/2 bale hay/day. Well , figured I should only grain her once (1/2 lb) so I was, but my husband was giving her another 2lbs at night. So....never any molasses to 12%sweet, 4lbs day-would that be good enough reason for her to be so psycho skiddish??????? She was so the opposite when I first rode her, here in my yard. She has also had looser stools since she has been here too, diet change as well??? Any input appreciated.

~* Rider in the Mist *~ 11-13-2006 09:47 AM

Congratulations on your new horse. There a few things going on with your her that I have picked up on.

First, she is in a brand new place. She is away from her old home, her security. She is with new horse buddies, new people, and a new routine all together. She is not only missing what she has been accustomed to, but she now has new insecurities that you can see are showing through her actions.

The first day or two may not have been so bad because she was in a new place, and things were interesting. Now after a few days, she is unsure of what is going on and why she isn't home yet. When I have new horses come into my barn, I give them a few days to settle in and realize they are in a new place and allow some grieving time (I know that sounds silly but it does happen). Some horses go through a phase of stress and anxiety and need a whole week or longer of getting upset until they finally "get over it" and settle in. Some horses couldn't care less, and the same day they get to a new barn they are fine and never need to adjust. They can be ridden and put into a program right away.

I would NOT recommend feeding your horse once a day. If anything, horses should be feed more often then less. Their digestive systems are sensitive, so feeding her only once a day could cause future problems. I also would not have changed her feed, at least until she settled in at your barn. Make sure you are communicating well with whoever else is taking care of your horse and work together on this.

We feed our performance horses differently than our pleasure horses. For example, the hunters/jumpers, reining horses, etc. are on a combination of sweet feed, oats, and supplements along with alfalfa hay or a mixture of timothy and alfalfa (T&A) which is all high energy fuel. Our western pleasure, trail, and other horses are on oats, a very limited to NO sweet feed, and supplements with either T&A hay, or just timothy, and sometimes just a grass or oat hay depending on the horse for less energy fuel. We always feed vitamin/mineral supplements and coat conditioners as well.

It is ok for you to feed a smaller amount of your horses old formula, but just keep it to twice a day, and keep the hay coming, they need to be digesting often. Keep a watchful eye on her weight during the next few weeks in case she either gains or loses too much weight, and adjust her feed accordingly.

I would also recommend that for the first week or so, you do a lot of ground work with your horse around your barn. Work on grooming, hand walking (even on the trails at first), and take your horse on a tour around your barn and surrounding properties. Give her plenty of turnout time, a nice long bath, get the idea. Then before riding, try lungeing her a little and then take short but positive rides. Eventually, she will get used to her new home, but keep in mind she may be missing her former home....Hope that helps

michi292 11-13-2006 08:41 PM

Thank you
Thank you so much rider, for all of your advice. I am still wondering about the beet pulp which was one of the things the previous owner gave, what do you think of that? She thinks I could or should just give her beet pulp (like 1/2 c. 2x day)?? I want to do what is best for Libby. And of course, the hay.

I will be doing a lot of ground work with her. I know that is important. I feel horrible about messing up her diet, like slamming her into something new. Lesson learned.

I got a lot of great info/advice from you and I will keep posting to let you know how this goes.

Thanks again,

~* Rider in the Mist *~ 11-13-2006 10:31 PM

I would not recommend feeding her only beet pulp alone without anything else to accompany that.

You can however replace a portion of her normal grain amount with beet pulp as a replacement. She will then get the benefits of the other ingredients in combination.

Feeding corn can be contributing to her energy level. I think you should keep things simple and look into feed distributors in your local area and see what is available for you to feed. For example, instead of feeding corn, oats, beet pulp, etc. all seperately, there are formulas out there that contain balanced proportions. A low energy all-purpose grain, along with some beet pulp if you still feel that is necessary, is probably your best plan to look into.

Mercury 11-24-2006 11:02 PM

Beet pulp is mainly used for weight gain w/o adding extra energy. The main ingredient I'm seeing that would add energy is the corn. My TB will go absolutely psycho if i give him ANY corn. Most of the time he's extremely laid back and I let kids ride him all the time. But I can tell when he's gotten some corn because he acts like an absolute air head.

I agree with the other posters that more feedings is better than 1 feeding and that this is a new place for this horse. Is the mare used to other horses being around and do you have other horses? Give the mare a couple more days, but start the mare thinking right away. Spend some time doing ground work and starting to bond with your horse.

Congrats on the new horse!

Desert Rat 11-27-2006 04:50 PM

Could it be that the trankwilizer wore off?

michi292 12-01-2006 12:53 PM

moving forward.....slowly
Libby, the new mare and I are progressing, slowly. But I think when she first acted a little crazy, she scared me and I scared myself, so that caused quite a problem. It took me two weeeks to even get on her back again, she was still pinning her ears and kicking, walking off. Finally after 3 weeks here, and being brushed, walked everyday, I mounted and she stood quietly while I sat there for about 15 minutes. So, we have done a lot of mounting and I still haven't gone off with her. I want my husband to lead me on her first (so silly because when she first got her, I rode her by myself just fine)(it is like I am reassuring me, not her reassuring me).

She did come from a pasture full of horses, now she is in with a calf. Has been for about 3 weeks now. I do feed twice a day, I always have, but the previous owner had said once a day with her would be fine. But, I stuck with my 2 X day.

For the previous poster, sorry, I forgot your screen name, you think she was tranquilized? The lady that I traded with did give my (the one I traded) horse something before loading her. That was my first thought right away, I thought "if she is gonna give my horse something, why shouldn't I think she would do that with hers?" And, obviously she uses it or she wouldn't carry it in her trailer. But, from all of the emails from her trainer and the previous, before her, owners, it really sounds like Libby was a sweet mare, and maybe this is more my fear than anything. I know there are people like that out there, "oh, I have this calm horse, you ride, you buy, you get home, next day, drugs wore off, where is the horse I bought???" I have seen that at the auctions, sadly. But I really don't think that is the case here.

Thanks again to everyone!!

kat 01-15-2007 06:01 PM

My horse came from auction, she was quite quiet when we got her but a couple of days later jumped out of her stable and was really skitty. Its took a couple of months but she calmed right down and I've just moved her to another yard and she so far is ok. I think feeding mix with added magnesium has helped. Don't know if that sort of feed is available to you but all the supplements i tried were useless.

Bentley 03-06-2007 05:44 PM

1st day great, 2 days later, completely different horse!
In my opinion, you are feeding a LOT of grain your horse just doesn't need. Horses in light work do fine on hay only. I have a 15.2 hand 1200 lb QH who gets oat/alfalfa hay cubes in the morning, and oat hay, carrots, and rice bran pellets at night--no grain, and his weight and energy levels are perfect.

CowgirlKate004 03-07-2007 12:14 PM

It can take horses months to adjust to a new living space. Also, are you sure the horse wasnt on something like 'calm and cool' or a calming agent when you first rode her? Also, if she was used to being ridden every day, and you gave her 2 days of rest, she might be like, 'hey! get me outta here i have a ton of energy and you made me wait this long!" I really dont believe feed can effect a horse that much- a little extra energy, ok, but going from sweet to psycho in two days? A horse would need to eat a LOT of corn to be THAT crazy from food alone. Also, dont feed once a day, or you are asking for problems, like colic! Horses are grazers and are better off being fed small amounts 2-3 times a day, rather than one large amount at once. They will only poop out what they didn't absorb, and then you are throwing your money into the manure pile.

Suggestions? give your horse time. Try lunging your horse before every ride to get the "spooks" out of her. Try riding on a regular schedule, and sticking to that. Horses are creatures of habit, and they dont like changes.

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