!!gelatin, hoary alyssum, flies, and corn oil!!
Hello there everyone! I have a few quick questions and would really appreciate any and all feedback from you all. :wink:
First off, I recently purchased a 4 year old Quarter Horse mare. She is fabulous...we are coming along wonderfully in our training and I am very happy with her so far! One thing I have noticed though is that she is very "ouchy" when I take her out on the gravel roads. We are only walking, but the rocks seem to really bother her. She was trimmed a little too short IMO when I bought her a couple of weeks back and she looks to have kind of small, although healthy looking, hooves. I try to keep her off the rocks/gravel as much as I can, but does anyone have any other suggestions? I have been told to feed her gelatin to help grow out and strengthen her hooves. I really don't want to have to shoe her if I don't have to, so am thinking about purchasing some easy boots. Any advice on feeding supplements/hoof strengthening products for her? Also, any recommendations on trail boots for her?
Next, we rotate our horses out on several acres of pasture. Live in Northern MN and with the sunshine and rain we have had some pretty decent growth, but am now noticing lots of the toxic weed Hoary Alyssum invading the pastures. They won't touch it unless the grass is nowhere to be found, but does anyone have any tricks to get rid of the nasty weed??
I have been looking for natural fly spray recipes...any good ones out there?
And FINALLY...do you feed your horses corn oil? If so, what is your reasoning behind it AND how much do you feed??
much love and peace to you all and your horses.
Robin (Opichi) and Deva :D
I wouldn't feed my horse gelatin. It comes from horse hooves, and a bunch of other processed crap. o_O A good hoof strengthener/supplement is Horseshoer's Secret. But really, if you look for something with a lot of Biotin in it, you're good to go.
If you don't want to shoe her, perhaps look into a barefoot trimmer who will work with you to strengthen her hooves and provide her with the best and quickest way to good healthy bare feet.
I have no idea about the weeds, perhaps just pull them out from the roots? I'd be leery of weedkillers and things of that nature, you don't want your horse eating it. But if you pull it out from the roots, it shouldn't be able to grow back.
I don't know of any fly spray recipes, but I've heard of feeding apple cider vinegar as a feed-through fly repellent. I've also heard of feeding garlic, but I'd advise doing a bit of research before going that route. There are some unofficial "studies" that garlic will make a horse anemic if it's fed over a long period of time. It's never been proven, it's only been proven with certain types of onions, but since onions and garlic are related, they kind of assumed garlic would do the same thing. However, my vet has never heard of garlic causing problems or anemia, and there are still no "official" studies. He just said some people think it works and others don't.
I do feed corn oil, but just a little bit. It helps keep the skin and coat healthy and shiny. You can also add a cup or so to assist in weight gain.
Thanks very much for your reply!
Ugh...gelatin=horse hooves!? no thanks. I don't really like that idea!
I have a good trimmer for Deva so I guess I will just wait and see how she does after her hooves grow out some more. I really hope she does not continue to be so tender-footed on the roads. If so, I will have to get her some of those 'easyboots' for our rides.
About the hoary alyssum...we have been mowing it down as we rotate the horses out on the pasture sections. Seems to slow down the weeds regrowth, but it is STILL there. I don't want to use a weedkiller either, but might be something to think about when we plan on totally reseeding and plowing up those sections.
I have never tried feeding apple cider vinegar/garlic for flies. I might try something like that. I've been dreaming about making my own CHEAP all-natural fly spray for the horses, but haven't found anything that really works well yet. One trick I like - dryer sheets! They help keep the flies away on our rides.
I think I am going to start feeding Deva and one of our other 'skinnier' horses on corn oil. Used to feed it to some horses a while back and I remember it really did help them stay plump and put a nice sheen on their coats!
Thanks again for the reply. Keep them coming everybody!!
Peace and love to you all AND all your horses out there.
Robin and Deva
Instead of corn oil, try beet pulp. That stuff is magic when it comes to putting weight on horses.
Just keep the hoary alyssum mowed down, and make sure your horses have plenty of edible pasture or hay. I have bull thistles. Nasty, nasty weeds and prickly to boot! I just keep 'em cut down.
As far as everything else, I have no advice. I have opinions, but no real advice. :wink:
And SR, keeping your opinions to yourself? Wow. Has hell frozen over? =D Haha.
I really do suggest Horseshoer's Secret. It's made a heap of progress with my mare. It's a touch costly, but in the long run, it's really not that bad. I usually buy the 22lb tub for $50 to $60 [if I remember right] and it lasts me about three months I think.
Hi, thanks for responding!
Beet pulp, huh? Haven't tried that before...where can I pick that up at, just the regular feed store? Is beet pulp that stuff you have to be careful with because it can expand in the horses belly so it needs to be soaked first...or am I thinking of something else entirely?
The horses have no interest (thank goodness) in the toxic weed invading their pastures as of now because of the abundant amount of delicious grass they haven't yet mowed down haha!! I just really wish there was a way to safely and easily eradicate the stuff. we have those thistles too and they are terrible - ouch!!
I will take it all...opinions, advice, suggestions, recommendations, stories, anything....thanks!
peace and love
Robin and Deva
Yes, it's best to soak beet pulp, and yes, you're local feed store should carry it. If you are trying to stick weight on, my friend feeds her OTTB mare beet pulp, rice bran, oats, and corn oil. If you do feed rice bran, it's best to also feed a SandClear product because it can build up in their gut. I only know of one horse who was affected from the rice bran build up, but I'd much rather be safe than sorry. But if the horse(s) in question aren't hard keepers or severely underweight, beet pulp alone should get the job done.
As a side note, my friend [same one] likes to get some good beet pulp, mix it with honey and brown sugar [I think], and eats it like oatmeal. I'm waiting for her to get what she says is the "good stuff" but I'm anxious to try it. =]
Hi - me again!
The girls (our horses) are in really good condition as of now, none of them really need to put on weight yet. Two are really easy keepers, one is more difficult to keep weight on in the winter, and my new one, well I've been told she is an easy keeper but I guess we will see!
If anything, I just want to feed a very small amount of maybe just corn oil right now to the two of them to help maintain weight and give them nice healthy coats.
I will look for that Horseshoer's Secret stuff. Sounds like it could really help out Deva's hooves!
Thanks a bunch!!
Robin and Deva
Instead of Sand Clear, I use generic Metamucil. It's cheap, readily available, and costs a lot less than Sand Clear.
I also don't buy premade electrolytes. If you want to make sure your horses drink enough, I mix a box of iodized salt and baking powder together, and give them a scoop of that over their feed.
Yes, beet pulp is generally recommended to be soaked. I don't always soak mine, but then, none of my horses are prone to choke. I also use beet pulp pellets, as opposed to shredded beet pulp. Some horses find the pellets more palatable than the shreds.
Ricci, see what I mean by only sometimes?!
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