What should I do to get this horse in riding shape? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 38 Old 08-11-2018, 01:05 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Dehda01 View Post
What are you feeding him now-in lbs. and how often?
He was giving him 5lbs once in the evening with bales of hay as much as he wants with grass grazing in the evenings most days. But we got him moved to my house today so he will have grass grazing 24/7 with freshly cut bales of hay. 6lbs of complete feed with weight gainer in the evenings. We also wormed him again today. Should he get more feed or is that good since he has grass and hay 24/7?
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post #12 of 38 Old 08-11-2018, 08:53 AM
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Next time have a fecal done. Randomly throwing wormer at a horse is not recommended. Wormers each treat different types of worms so what you gave may not be effective for what he may be carrying. Some worms are resistant to some wormers. Wormers depending on your area and the stage the parasite may be in also needs to be considered.



This makes a good read. https://www.vet.k-state.edu/docs/tim...mendations.pdf
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post #13 of 38 Old 08-11-2018, 09:57 AM
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Re his diet, it's not a huge amount of hard feed but may well be enough quantity. But what's in it & how it's fed really does matter. You mentioned I think, your bro was feeding sweet feed? Not great as a rule, like living on junk food. Depends what the 'complete feed' is as to how much better that may or may not be.

Esp(but not only) if grainy or otherwise high sugar, difficult to digest feed, little & often - say at least 3 small meals daily will enable the horse to get more from it, and less likely to cause/exacerbate gut issues such as acidosis & ulcers.
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post #14 of 38 Old 08-11-2018, 07:37 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by loosie View Post
Re his diet, it's not a huge amount of hard feed but may well be enough quantity. But what's in it & how it's fed really does matter. You mentioned I think, your bro was feeding sweet feed? Not great as a rule, like living on junk food. Depends what the 'complete feed' is as to how much better that may or may not be.

Esp(but not only) if grainy or otherwise high sugar, difficult to digest feed, little & often - say at least 3 small meals daily will enable the horse to get more from it, and less likely to cause/exacerbate gut issues such as acidosis & ulcers.
So would breaking it up into 2 smaller feedings be better for him then? I just got married and bought a house and me and my wife are school teachers, so we don't have a whole lot of excess money to go all out on top of the line stuff. But I do want to get him healthy, so I'm looking for more budget friendly ways to do so.
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post #15 of 38 Old 08-11-2018, 08:34 PM
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What general area are you in? Purina, Nutrena and Triple Crown all have feeds that would work. Purina Senior Active. Nutrena Safe Choice Senior or Triple Crown Complete. You may prefer their Senior. I like Manna Pro Senior Weight Accelerator to add as a weight builder. It is 80% fat, doesn't take a lot has Omega 3, biotin and probiotics plus a few other things. I have a new one that it needs to go on a sticky feed or she won't eat it. I had mentioned the Pro Add Ultimate or Nutrena Empower Topline Balance which may be something to consider. You want a feed that lists Lysine, Methionine and Threonine. These are amino acids that build muscle that the horse can't manufacture. The ProAdd or Topline can be added if he isn't building well with the feed you choose.
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post #16 of 38 Old 08-11-2018, 08:50 PM
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Yes, absolutely at least 2 feeds, pref more, maybe necessarily more, depending on what you're feeding.
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post #17 of 38 Old 08-11-2018, 09:54 PM Thread Starter
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Yes, absolutely at least 2 feeds, pref more, maybe necessarily more, depending on what you're feeding.
Alright, I'll start feeding 2x a day tomorrow. I'm a teacher so 2x a day will work good for me.
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post #18 of 38 Old 08-11-2018, 10:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Edlera View Post
So would breaking it up into 2 smaller feedings be better for him then? I just got married and bought a house and me and my wife are school teachers, so we don't have a whole lot of excess money to go all out on top of the line stuff. But I do want to get him healthy, so I'm looking for more budget friendly ways to do so.
Congratulations on your marriage and life together....

So, simple answer is, "YES...smaller meals are easier on the horse to digest"
Fed more often but in smaller amounts the horse is able to digest and utilize the foods offered easier on their gut.
Horses by design are what they call a trickle feeder...means small amounts as near continuous through the digestive tract they can gain nutrients best from.

So you mention Rural King you shopped in..and then a complete feed.
They carry many brands, some better quality than others, some a denser calorie feed than others.
Sometimes buying the better quality is a savings when you don't need to feed as much to reach the same results...

When you figure feeding amounts, you figure the amount needed to feed the fully weighted horse.
Needing to gain weight I would feed at the ratio of moderate work so you are feeding him more calories than he will consume just being a horse hanging out.
Based on his bone frame and guesstimating his height, he should weigh in between 1000 - 1200 pounds and I would guess he is around 900 pounds currently.
You should start to see a difference in appearance in about 7 - 10 days time feeding the amount you started at though too.
So, most feed is recommended to be fed at not more than 5 pounds per feeding...
It costs more to feed a underweight horse for them to gain than it does a properly weighted horse who just needs to then maintain.
Once the horse gains & fills in, "looks" like a healthy horse you then cut back amount fed so the animal maintains but no longer gains.
Now, when you look at the various bags of feeds in the store it can be so confusing.
I look for a protein level of 12 - 14%, fat level the higher the amount the better same as fiber.
Sometimes better quality allows less fed and actually saves you money.
Senior feeds are made to be easier for the horse to digest and get the nutrients absorbed into their body.
Complete feeds when fed enough mean a horse who can not eat hay can thrive and survive just eating that kind of feed. Many but not all senior feeds are also a complete feed.
Sweet feed is a feed with a sticky molasses content and many times real cereal grains are used but many horses have difficulty digesting those ingredients and molasses is known as a sugar rush and "candy" to the horse...
Feeds are also different in denseness of calories per pound and that amount fed to get the same results can be vastly different.
These are lists of food calorie charts for example so you can see how varied the numbers can be.
http://laminitishelp.org/CalorieFeed.pdf
So if you chose a feed that supplies 900 calories a pound, and I select a feed that supplies 1800 calories a pound I can feed 1/2 the amount and get the same result as yours....sometimes that is where the cost savings comes in.
You have to figure out what you are feeding, what is available and what you can afford and the horse will do best with...
I have a horse similar to yours now that I am feeding Safe-Choice Senior to as his top-line is very poor along with needing general weight gain overall too...
I see a difference in 10 days already...he is filling in. We have a long way to go but on the road to recovery he is.

So...
Hay fed, pasture while it is still growing and nutritious is good.
Again, hay at the amount of 2% of the full body weight for a horse like this or even more...so 20+ pounds a day.
Common bales of hay are 50 pounds so about 1/2 bale a day fed when the grazing goes dormant and figure you may need more in dead of winter cold to maintain weight.

So, other things that may affect weight gain is teeth.
Horses need a dentist just like people.
Teeth with sharp edges or not flat chewing surfaces can affect how well they grind and start the digestive process. They literally will cut apart the mouth insides sometimes.
Another thing many forget about is horses eat off the ground and that means they eat/ingest sand sometimes.
Sand can coat the intestinal tract and prevent nutrient absorption so we do a sand test to check this and treat as needed...
Simple test to do and then you have one more puzzle piece found to have a thriving horse...
Testing Your Horse for sand in its stomach
Add a block of salt, just plain white salt if you are feeding a feed with added vitamins and minerals so sweating loss can be replenished as needed.
My horses lick a plain salt block and ignore their mineral block...their choice as it is freely available for them. they know what they need better than I.
Fresh plentiful water...
And one more I know you already do is love, lots of love and attention given.

Oh...Tractor Supply usually has stores in close proximity to Rural King as they are competitors for a specific market and that means they price match and beat each others prices...you only need to ask and show proof and they will meet/beat the others.
Also if you have several Tractor Supply locations close by, each store may have slightly different prices so do check and use that as meet or beat the price on them or in Rural King...
They also carry the same and different varieties of horse feed/supplements too.
The savings is in your pocket this way.

That should get you started, now searching for more information, answers and clarifications.
....
jmo..

The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....
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post #19 of 38 Old 08-12-2018, 12:17 AM
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Last year I took in a starved horse. He gained weight on free choice coastal hay, and plain alfalfa pellets. I also added canola oil but it gave him a pot belly as it was too much fat too soon. In hindsight I should have added 1/4th cup oil twice daily, as he needed more time to rebuild protein and muscles. He looks great now.

So add protein. Alfalfa is cheap at Rural King. Add fat. Get him on a deworming program.
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post #20 of 38 Old 08-12-2018, 02:16 AM Thread Starter
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I think he's happy with the move. Caught him Sun bathing earlier and when I checked on him tonight he was already sleeping laying down. I barebacked him nice and slow around the fence 2 times and then led him at a quick pace/trot around the yard afterwards. He looked pretty good to me as he was trotting. Called the new farrier today and he will be out next Friday to take care of his hooves also! I'll try to get a video of him next time for you guys to look him over for me!
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