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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So my Sister owns a blind and def horse he is a QH paint horse he was used in cutting roping barrel racing ETC. when he got to be around 10-11 years of age he started to go blind and def..we took him in because he was going to be put down. (maybe we should have let him go but I do not regret this amazing journey with him) well this winter he is so skinny..we are trying to bring his health back. A friend recommended gro n win feed for him I am trying to do some research and be careful with what we give him so I know y'all are very educated on these things and thought I would ask :)

 

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Have you had his teeth looked at? Blood work drawn?

He may have an infection. May be anemic. There could be some underlying issue causing weight loss.

how is his personality? Lethargic? Acting different at all?

and most important, what is he eating right now. And how much of it is he getting?
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Agree with the teeth and blood work from above. But start experimenting with various grains to find out what will entice him to eat. At this point your not worried about controlling his weight, so try a couple of sweet feeds (Omolene 100 smells real good to most) to see which one he likes. You can then supliment with some weight building additives like Cool Calorie 100. Get some good quality alfalfa as well. Make sure there is food right in front of him wherever he's standing or laying.
Our older mare also got real thin due to some health issues, and we have successfully gotten her weight back to near normal over about 6-8 months by keeping food right by her 24/7. She's checked on every 2-4 hours during the day to make sure there is hay in reach, and fed again at 10p and 5a every day.
Also, does he have a pasture buddy ? - another horse could do wonders to prop him up mentally especially if it will eat with him.
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try a good senior feed , they are made to help the older horse nutrition needs, is he with another another horse or alone? if he is alone he may be needing another horse around.
He may just be at that point in his life and not be able to absorb the nutrients in the feed.
 

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You didn't mention his current age.

Is he happy? Honestly the thing I first thought of was "wow it must be miserable to be blind AND deaf, especially for a horse". Even if he seems content his system may be stressed. Make sure everything is as easy as possible for him (I'm sure you have) and that he has enough stimulation without over stimulation. A very very quiet gentle buddy would be good if he doesn't have one.

We need more info from you before we can really make suggestions. What is he eating? Does he eat it all? What have you tried to fatten him up? Has he been seen by a vet to rule out health concerns?

I would make a point of watching his weight carefully and jumping on it next winter, I would also probably blanket him too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
He is 15-17 we got him from a friend that was going to be put down and we never really got his actual age. His teeth are fine we haven't checked his blood and due to vet funds we cannot afford one ATM, his personality has been ok for being blind and def so no change he does have pasture pets two ponies right now we are giving him all the hay he can eat and which is what we bailed in July and it was in a field. Also he gets about 4-6 cups of corn then in his hay we put veggie oil (a friend recommended). We had him in another location and all the bigger horses wouldn't let him eat so we moved him with the ponies. Thank you all for your help!
 

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The 24/7 hay is great.

but corn is not a good grain for horses. I'd recommend Nutrena SafeSafeChoice Senior. Its high protein, high fat, has great ingredients in it and works extremely well for underweight horses.

unfortunately, not knowing if there is anything wrong internally could have a major impact. Buying all these supplements and different foods is going to be alot of money when perhaps he has an infection and just needs a round of antibiotics...

also, corn.oil isnt good for horses either. Id nix that and add Cocosoya Oil, or Wheat Germ oil which is much healthier.

ETA: I'm curious how you approach him. If he can't hear or see, how does he know you are there? Is he spooky?
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Thank you. So much for all the info..we approach him with treats or something in our hand and hold our hand out in front of his muzzle and he knows it is us :)
 

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He's really not that old. Especially if his teeth are good I would be skeptical as to the reason for weight loss. Id get rid of the corn yesterday. I would put him on a good senior feed and add beet pulp, see how he does on that and take it from there.

You said his personality is "ok" does that mean he's quiet? I'd be concerned if he is maybe a little depressed.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ok ill get him right on the senior fed and beet pulp asap.

He has always been very quiet I haven't heard him much... but if a pony gets close to him he will immediately try to bite him and drive him away..
 

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So my Sister owns a blind and def horse he is a QH paint horse he was used in cutting roping barrel racing ETC. when he got to be around 10-11 years of age he started to go blind and def..we took him in because he was going to be put down. (maybe we should have let him go but I do not regret this amazing journey with him) well this winter he is so skinny..we are trying to bring his health back. A friend recommended gro n win feed for him I am trying to do some research and be careful with what we give him so I know y'all are very educated on these things and thought I would ask :)

NO GRAINS. Bad for the hindgut. Their digestive system is not designed for it. Messes up the hindgut microbes (they lose the ones needed for dealing with the long fiber they need and get a build up of ones that don't do the job for digesting the long fiber). There are loads of healthier choices that provide even more energy and calories than they'd get from grain anyway.

For high calorie, low NSC, healthy for digestion (i.e. something that will help put on weight and still be healthy):
Beet pulp: (the leftovers over they've extracted all the sugar out of them). It's fiber. Very easily digested (they burn few calories digesting it). High in CA but almost no P (you need the higher CA, but you must have a healthy amount of P to keep the ratio in balance)
Copra: (the leftovers after they've removed 95% of the oil from coconut meat). Super easy to digest. Goes straight into their system from foregut and never reaches the hind gut (I wouldn't recommend it for easy keepers, because it does provide a lot of calories, but it is a cold feed with low NSC and good for them). High in P with low CA (so it balances well with beet pulp since you want more CA than P).

Also make sure you're providing all the other minerals and amino acids for maintaining the best health. Much of it may be present in the hay and what they are grazing on, but you'll need to check that. You can use supplements or add other items (e.g. kelp, etc....).
Ideally grazing and/or hay (if needed) is all they need and if the have a diverse enough selection of things to graze on during the year they'll generally get it naturally, but when they can't keep up their weight or are missing certain nutritional needs in their diet then we can add healthy items to provide more calories or supplements to maintain the correct balance.
 
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