Managing a large horse farm - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 23 Old 09-26-2013, 05:26 PM
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I think switching to grass hay with slow feeder (nibble) nets is a good idea. If that's what their pasture looks like everywhere, its giving them little to no nutritional/caloric value and I wouldn't worry too much about making dry lots for the fattest ones to stay in. That grass is nearly all dead and has very little to do with their weight I would imagine.

They aren't on any grain are they?
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post #12 of 23 Old 09-26-2013, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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The mares are not on grain. And actually this is the only pasture that looks this "good." I'll take pictures tomorrow of our regularly used pastures. The mares that are fat are on these regularly used ones. I will also post a few pictures of these mares so you can all see how bad they are. Hopefully I can get them in all their glory lol. I just don't how anyone can look at them and think they are healthy. Maybe I could move these fat mares down the road to these pastures (the pictures I already posted) since there isn't any short grass for them to pig out on!
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post #13 of 23 Old 09-27-2013, 07:21 PM Thread Starter
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Ok there are going to be a lot of pictures... bear with me!
P1100225.jpg This is one of our stallions. He is overweight for sure.

P1100249.jpgThis is one of our non-pregnant mares. Obese.

P1100259.jpgAnother non-pregnant mare. (left, right one IS prego) She looks like a grape.

P1100260.jpgYet another non-pregnant mare. Morbidly obese.

P1100268.jpgSame mare
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post #14 of 23 Old 09-27-2013, 07:24 PM Thread Starter
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And the last one I will post and probably almost the worst, our embryo donor mare.
P1100270.jpg

P1100274.jpg
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post #15 of 23 Old 09-27-2013, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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So we go from these fat mares, to our poor weanlings that look like this...
P1100233.jpg

P1100242.jpg

P1100243.jpg

P1100244.jpg
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post #16 of 23 Old 09-27-2013, 07:28 PM Thread Starter
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that last picture is our large "pasture". the green you see is mostly weeds and extremely short lawn grass. Oh and the huge pile to the right?? That's wasted hay we piled up today.
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post #17 of 23 Old 09-27-2013, 09:03 PM
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WOW. Yep, you were right when you said they were obese; especially the second to last and last mares. I can't believe how fat they are on just alfalfa though! I think my filly needs to come live at your farm for a while...LOL.

Are you able to switch to just grass hay for the open mares and stallions? I'd say the weanlings, yearlings, and possibly the pregnant mares who are in their 2nd-3rd trimester could use the alfalfa, but obviously those girls are quite easy keepers and do NOT need all they can eat buffets of alfalfa hay otherwise.

The weanlings look like they need a good worming and a ration balancer or something.

No wonder the farm is losing money, with mares and stallions that fat and that many hooves to be trimmed. They probably don't really get good vet care either, with 100 head on the farm? Its a shame the farm owner doesn't realize what a pit he's dug himself into...
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post #18 of 23 Old 09-27-2013, 09:53 PM
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Please remove the halters of all horses for when they're at pasture or paddock at liberty, as halters are dangerous. There was a recent thread here where the horse at pasture got her FRONT hoof caught in halter (seems impossible, right?), so now we know that not only can they get a hind foot caught, when scratching their faces with one, but a front as well. They can catch a halter on an object & get pinned to it, & another horse can grab a halter with its teeth & be annoying/bullying/damaging.
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post #19 of 23 Old 09-28-2013, 08:38 PM Thread Starter
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YES!!! Ration balancer definitely. They have actually been dewormed...by her standards. Which is no testing, just mass dosing all of them with the same chemical. I know the qualms with this. My manager now thinks it's fine to just pour the weanlings 3 gallon buckets of grain since they are skinny and need to put weight on.... they also have no access to mineral blocks. Ugh. I could go on and on about the things that are done wrong here.
And Northern when I take over, their halters will come off. For now I will start sneaking them off of the good ones. If we take them off our manager yells at us because a few of these mares are really hard to catch so she leaves the halters on them, and then it turns into everyone keeps a halter on. I always feel bad when it rubs bare spots or sores into their faces too. But I had no clue they could get their foot stuck in them!!! That's crazy!! I always say you could put a horse in a padded room and they would still find a way to hurt themselves.
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post #20 of 23 Old 09-28-2013, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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Oh and we actually are located right next to a vet school, so they have constant attention from vets and vet students.... although it isn't always the best. Our farrier is pretty consistent with the stallions, but mares go 2 and 3 months in between trimmings and it shows. Even when problems are identified..... like say a certain stallion that has been lame since we got him, kept in a concrete stall for 2 years, had his shoes kept on the whole time AND instead of taking him in to have xrays done so the ferrier can see what's going on, sand was put in his stall to "soften" the footing.... nothing is really done about them. I will change that immediately. My first concern is the horses' well being. And that poor stallion will be my project horse... and top of the big girls... and thin weanlings... yikes I have a lot to do!
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