Ok so my boy is an OTTB and he's underweight... he's already gained some (even though it doesn't look like it) but he def needs more. I want his withers and neck to fill out a little, if that's possible. Right now he's eating 1 flake of alfalfa with 3lbs lakin lites, 1.5lbs senior feed (until I buy him more food tonight) and maybe 2 handfuls of rice bran. morning and night. I'm looking for a better feed plan for him that will cover all of the nutrients he needs. Any ideas?
^^this picture makes him look like he has more weight than he really does.
Do you think it would be a good feed for him?
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How old is he? Has he had his teeth checked? Has he been wormed?
My mare is a hard keeper. She is also now 30 yrs old and almost no teeth left.
I feed her a large scoop of Triple Crown Senior, a small scoop of textured rice bran and a handful of alfalpha cubes. I soak it all in warm water and break the cubes up into mush. She gets this twice a day and it has packed the weight back on her.
She also gets 2 flakes of hay 2x's a day.
He's 3 years old, 17 hands. His teeth were floated about 5 months ago and I wormed him the day he came home... so about 1 month ago. He got all of his shots maybe a week ago. He's utd on everything, just not really putting on weight.
I don't know what lakin lites is, but I would give him all the hay (regular, not alfalfa) he wants, beet pulp and horse ration and continue with the rice bran. I don't think senior feed is appropriate since he is not a senior horse. At his age he is still growing too and will have times that he seems thinner than others, though I agree he is underweight regardless now. Also, multiple feedings are better than just one for the supplements. 2 - 3 x a day will do him more good than the same amount only once a day.[/quote]
Yeah... we were just giving it to him (for the fat) until I found something better.
Packing the weight on
Beet pulp definiatly. That is how we put weight on our boarded Arab who is twenty six with no teeth really that are useful to him. The beet pulp is terrific, because they can have as much as they want and they cant get sick from it. Just make sure to fully soak it. Feed it to him at least once aday plus hay and or grass(whatever you have avaliable) and plus extra grain. The beet pulp will do wonders.
1. If your horse is hot or nervous, don't feed senior feed, sweet feed, or alfalfa. He'll just burn off any potential calories.
2. He needs more grain, around 6-8 pounds a day, and he cannot be fed that all at once. You have to take into consideration that a horse's stomach can only hold 5-8 pounds, and if you give him over that, it will be pushed into the intestine and will not be absorbed.
3. Beat pulp. Not handfuls, quarts.
4. It honestly doesn't sound like he's getting a lot of food, but I'm not sure what lankin lights are.
5. If you need to put a lot of weight on in a short period of time (like for a show or something), feed him three times a day. I had to do this with my show gelding after he came out of the hospital, and he put on a phenomenal amount of weight.
6. Add oil to his feed. A lot of people will say corn oil is fine, but for putting on weight I like buying the oils specifically for horses, with Vit. and Min. added in them and stuff.
7. All the hay he wants.
It might cost a little bit more, but you'll find that once you get him to a healthy weight, it will be much easier to keep him there. When buying a feed, I like pelleted feed because it is easier for a horse to digest. Also, don't get anything too high in protein (12 is MORE then enough). Your horse isn't going to use it, he'll just waste all that extra money.
Feeding a horse aint rocket science but there's a couple of things to bear in mind......
They gots to have enough roughage.
Just looking at your guy, I'd guess about 15-20 pounds of grass (or hay) a day.
A "flake" a day aint going to do it.
Remember that protien builds muscle and fat builds...well, fat.
So, pick a feed that has a reasonable ratio of protien to fat content. And make certain that it has a good vitamin/mineral package blended-in.
Unless you are working him real hard, the feed that you linked to is probably wrong for your particular horse. It has way too much fat and not enough protien. Purina puts a lot of fat into their "performance" feed because horses that burn a lot of energy, need the extra fat.
I'd personaly look for something on the order of 12 or 14% Protien to 6% fat. I'd also use a pelleted feed and stay away from the sweet feeds or anything that you can see corn, oats or other grains in.
The reason for that is.....
To start with, the extra sugars in "sweet feed" aint a good thing. And secondly, unless they are ground up very fine and compressed into pellets, grains don't digest well. You'll see that for yourself if you ever get around a pasture that's used by horses on a grain diet because there'll be little oat-shoots growing-up, right out of their manure. In other words, it's going in one end and right out the other.
Other than that, just pick a good brand, follow the directions on the bag, WEIGH the amount you are giving, keep his water clean and put out a mineral block.
It realy is that simple.
I have an ottb here. Hes huge and we've had so much trouble getting weight on him. I was giving him barley oats and pellets and some hay. Ive now switched that for an ulcer treatment, the pellets and as much hay as he wil eat. Hay is a mix of grass,alfalfa and oaten.Now I feel like Im starting to win. Racehorses are fed horribly and their gut health needs to be taken into consideration. Being hard to put weight on is one of the signs of ulcers.
As DGW said most of that grain was going right through. :D
I was watching on horse health site a vet talking about floating teeth and he recommended seeing an actual vet or vet that specialized in mouth care because of his weight loss you might want to consider that. I'm glad he's put some of his weight back on. He's a beauty.
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