I wasn't sure if this would go here or on the general thread, but since being overweight is kinda a health problem, I figured it would more than likely go here.
My horse, Sonny, though full of energy and loves to be ridden, is overweight. He's been like that before I bought him a month ago. Before I bought him, he was hardly ridden...he usually would just sit in the pasture and enjoy the "all you can eat buffet" hay.
I know it's not healthy for him to be overweight so I want to get him into shape.
I've talked to my trainer about it, and she said just constantly riding him, ride him until he is sweating a bit, then to do it each day I come up. Which is all fine, I can get him sweating pretty quickly due ot his endurance is horrible cause he's overweight.
I was thinking of maybe cutting back his food....he get's one bale of hay a day (the square bales)....half in the morning and half at night. But my horse, Sonny, is a weaver, and unless he has something to do he weaves :roll: .
He does get some grain, but only one handful and he only gets it maybe twice a week.
I go up to ride him usually Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday....the other days I work and don't have time. Weather permitting also...didn't go today because we are having a snow storm. Usually on Thursdays I'll go up from 12 noon to 4:30. 2 hours of that is helping the BO with riding lessons (she gives riding lessons to a particually disabled lady, so I help make sure the horse she rides doesn't act up), and the other hours I will ride (well take off an hour for lungeing, grooming, tacking up, drying off, untacking, putting blankets back on, and so on.
When I excersize him, I usually just have him to a collected trot and walk. I've been told that a trot, expecially a collected one burns off more calories than a canter would. Also I make him collect himself to build up muscles on his hind quarters and back legs (he needs more there).
Any ideas? Suggestions?
wow a whole bale of hay a day is a lot ... especially if he already has a little extra on him ... my tb mare gets 1.5-2 flakes in the am and pm ... and i am trying to put weight on her ... lol ... so maybe re evaluate his feed ... :)
That's how much all the horses get at the stables, and none of the others are fat...it's just him. I was thinking of cutting back on his hay, but like I said, he's a weaver and without the food he usually either weaves or rolls uphill :roll: haha
some big meals for your ponies! :) hehe ... rolling up hill is a talent ... what if you get him one of those rubber balls or something to play with while he isn't eating?
There is something in his pasture to play with, but he doesn't pay any attention to them. I've tried jolley balls...for the first maybe 10 minutes it's his favorite toy in the world...but after that it's old haha
You are way overfeeding him. No wonder he is a little blimp. I feed one bale per day "for two horses" and it keeps their weight good. And I too have read that about 20lbs per day for a horse and at least where I come from a square bale weighs between 40 and 50 lbs.
Cut back on his hay by half for his health sake. The weaving thing is not something I can give any advice on though as neither of my horses do that. Say does your horse like chewing on the barn by any chance. The reason I ask is that maybe you could install a "sacrifice board" for him to use as a chew toy instead of eating. I talked to my vet about it one time when he came to do teeth and his feeling was that the chewing (on my barn) was not a bad thing (for their teeth that is!) Their teeth normally wear as they are grazing in a natural world and so this chewing sort of approximates the same effect.
What I finally did to save my barn, was use creosote wherever I didn't want them to chew and then bolt into place a 2"x6"x8' board where they were allowed to chew. In my case, I put the chew board in an area where they were already in the habit of chewing. Then when they were getting close to destroying that one, I would unbolt it and replace it. It is a lot better than rebuilding the barn.
Just one more idea to think about.
Arent they all this time of year? :wink: Really if its too much of a health issue, I wouldnt worry about it too much, I usually work it off my horses in the spring, with nice long trail rides. If you get snow (I,m not sure where you live, but we sure get alot in MI) It is great excersize to long trot through deep snow. (Its hard enough just walking through it) Hope it helps.. BTW how much grain are you feeding?
I would cut back on the hay, and if he weaves he weaves.
I agree to cut back on the hay.... sorry I don't know whether you mentioned it was grass hay or alfalfa, but if it's alfalfa you'll have a pretty hyper horse :wink: anyway cut back, but make sure it is gradual.....don't feed him a whole bale today and then tomorrow only half a bale....
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