Riding a skinny horse?
This potential buy I'm going to see this weekend is a 16 yr. old thoroughbred mare. Her owner told me that she is thin but is steadily putting on weight, although I know that the horse is currently not being ridden. I was wondering, because I've only ever owned an easy keeper, is it okay to ride a horse that is trying to put on weight? I imagine the extra exercise would burn calories, so would I have to feed more then? Thanks!
Do you have any pictures of her? I would think if you kept the excerise to a minimal that it would be ok. As long as the animal has a decent back (muscles) for the saddle. But yes, feed more if you work her.
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Here's her ad... I'm not sure how current the pictures are, though. The owner said her mane is roached now.
Venus - CrossOver Stable
Some horses appear thin over the top line but truly need condition to form and keep the muscling.
A good diet with perhaps a bit more fat on the days worked will help. Don't ONLY feed on the days the horse is work. A balanced diet goes a lot further than a hit and miss!
The owner said she's on Triple Crown Senior, although I don't know how much... I will ask when I go see her. So you're saying I should feed slightly more on the days we work?
Seniors contains extra fats. It can fed at a rate of up to 5lbs per feeding.
Triple crown senior is an excellent feed for hard keepers. It may just be that she is not feeding enough (the lady that owned my new horse had him on only 2 lbs of sweet feed per day despite him being skinny- that's not even enough to meet daily vitamin/mineral contents for the feed she was using). I use the TC senior (or blue seal SBP 14-10 which is the same thing) for both my 26 yr old arab and my 7 yr old arab. Both were considered "hard keepers" when I got them, and they are both now in great weight being fed the minimum recommended lbs per day. If you find yourself having to feed more than a few lbs per meal, I would recommend breaking it up over 3 meals instead of 2.
The specs for TC senior are:
11.7% sugar and starch content (low)
Read the ingredients too, they are very good. However, you may want to check for ulcers for the horse that has trouble maintaining weight and seems to have a sensitive digestive tract. My new horse had ulcers and after treating I now have him on a digestive support supplement by smartpak and he is doing great and eating better than ever :) Doing a fecal count may not be a bad idea either. Hope this helps.
Small amounts of exercise wouldn't hurt but seriously 15-20 mins tops
Lots of experiance with under weight horses- If it obvious she can't handle it stop- But from her ad she looks like she could handle a small work out no problem.
i helped retrain a TB once, and it was super skinny. The thing is, it would only gain weight when exercised and had been off due to an injury. I felt bad about riding such a skinny horse, but it gained weight fast after i started riding it more often. Horses are very strong, and as long as you keep it short (if the horse is truly skinny) there should be no problems. You can condition up to whatever time you want to ride. Hope this helps =)
Those pics look like they were taken back in colder months. The grass is dead and the lighting is softer. I would request dated, recent photos. Nutrena Empower Boost is a great way to add calories to her diet but not make her hot and energetic. If she has enough padding over her back and whithers (both fat and soft saddle pads) then ride her but minimally and as long as you're not too much weight for her to handle in her skinny state. Good luck with her if you decide to purchase her! :)
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