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Hey everyone,

Is it okay to feed my horse oats only after working/riding her? Say, she gets worked 4x times a week, so she gets 0,5l oats on those days. And doesn't get oats on the other 3 days. Will this be OK for her?
So far, I havent given her oats because I didn't exercise her that much. But since I'm doing a bit more work with her now, than I was before, I think she'd really apprechiate them.

She is on 24/7 pasture board, has free access to hay and gets minerals daily.
 

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I feed oats to my horses when they are working hard,on days of no work i don't feed them oats. I would think its fine to feed your horse oats on the 4 days she's working.

To keep weight on my horses during riding season i feed half oats half beet pulp,works well and they love it. I do soak the beet pulp first then add the oats before i feed it.
 

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I feed oats to my horses when they are working hard,on days of no work i don't feed them oats. I would think its fine to feed your horse oats on the 4 days she's working.

To keep weight on my horses during riding season i feed half oats half beet pulp,works well and they love it. I do soak the beet pulp first then add the oats before i feed it.
Thanks! So all-in-all, they get 1l of feed after hard work (0,5oats and 0,5beet pulp)? Just trying to figure out if it would be enough to just feed 0,5l oats without any additional feed. I'm thinking that my horse probably isn't in such demanding work as yours ;)
 

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Thanks! So all-in-all, they get 1l of feed after hard work (0,5oats and 0,5beet pulp)? Just trying to figure out if it would be enough to just feed 0,5l oats without any additional feed. I'm thinking that my horse probably isn't in such demanding work as yours ;)

I feed 2 pounds of oats and 2 pounds of beet pulp that dry weight,not soaked weight. Never have had an issue feeding this, works good my horses look good and keep their weight.:wink:

In the past i'v have fed just oats also,sometimes if i don't want to mess with soaking beet pulp i just give oats.
 

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I never fed oats on their own, always with hay first. Hay goes in, I put tack away, oats go in so they have something in their belly.
 

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My horses don't NEED grain of any kind, so they just get it as a little treat after a ride.

I only give them just enough to mix I'm their health supplement.

I think you'd be fine.
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Feeding should be a consistent thing on a day to day basis - feeding something just on the days you work is more likely to cause digestive upsets. If you want to feed oats and work your horse 4 days a week then better to feed them every day
There's no advantage to feeding them after the horse has worked anyway - you feed to 'condition a horse' and that's something you do consistently and not just 'as and when'
 

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Thank you everyone for your advice. I like the idea of giving her oats after the ride (of course I wait +30mins before I let her eat anything), but it seems that many of you don't like it as much.. Perhaps if I give her even less, maybe 0,250 l of oats, it would be better? I have a feeling she doesn't 'need' the oats, but it would be a nice ending to a workout session. I will think about talking to the BO so she could get oats daily.

Why is it better for a horse to eat hay first and then oats? Are oats hard to digest?
 

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i'm in the 'feed only when worked with' camp.

but i don't feed pounds of feed/oats, etc and i don't work my mare daily. my mare gets a handful, literally, of horse treats mixed with a smidgen of oats or sweet feed (one small handful is not going to make her hot when she gets it once a week at most). i look at it as a reward for her working with me and learning what i want her to do. the tiny bit of hard feed she gets is not enough to be called a feeding, nor is it going to impact her weight/condition, etc.

by 0,5l you mean half a litre? that's very little, the same as filling your running shoe roughly, and sounds more in the 'handful for a treat' category to me.
 

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i'm in the 'feed only when worked with' camp.

but i don't feed pounds of feed/oats, etc and i don't work my mare daily. my mare gets a handful, literally, of horse treats mixed with a smidgen of oats or sweet feed (one small handful is not going to make her hot when she gets it once a week at most). i look at it as a reward for her working with me and learning what i want her to do. the tiny bit of hard feed she gets is not enough to be called a feeding, nor is it going to impact her weight/condition, etc.

by 0,5l you mean half a litre? that's very little, the same as filling your running shoe roughly, and sounds more in the 'handful for a treat' category to me.
It's great to hear positive answers :) Yeah, I mean half a litre. It is meant more as a 'treat', as I don't need her to put on more weight, etc. How long have you been feeding your horse like this? Has she had any problems with digestion or everything seems okay?
 

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I do this when I feel like my horse is needing a little extra. If she's starting to lose too much, I will come out on days I don't ride to give it to her. I'm in a semi to full board situation where my horse is turned out and fed hay with the rest, but if I want anything extra I do it myself. Of course when I feed after a ride I make sure she if completely cooled out before feeding, and it isn't a dramatic enough amount that skipping or adding a day will effect her digestion.
 

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You have to decide if you're feeding your horse to prepare it for a specific riding program in which case it should be consistent or if its just as a reward when it can be anything like sliced carrots, apples, even a small handful of sweet mix.
 

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It's great to hear positive answers :) Yeah, I mean half a litre. It is meant more as a 'treat', as I don't need her to put on more weight, etc. How long have you been feeding your horse like this? Has she had any problems with digestion or everything seems okay?
my mare has had this 'treat feeding' regime for nearly a year now, no problems whatsoever. i've always 'fed' my horses this way, as they have all been easy keepers that don't require hard feed on a daily basis and don't work hard enough to need any extra feed to keep condition up. mare is more a pasture pet this winter than anything, lol.
 

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As jaydee says, it depends what you're feeding for & how much. I don't believe big & rich irregular feeds are a good move, but a few handfuls as a treat, &/or some chaff, beet pulp, etc added is also fine. It is also no worries to feed immediately after exercise - so long as the horse isn't puffing straight from a gallop or some such.

Horses are built for little & often browsing of high fibre, low starch diets. One factor of that is, they dont digest well feeds - particularly starchy - that are fed infrequently. They then have a higher likelihood of causing digestive upsets. That's the reason it's also important to introduce/change feeds gradually too. So for arguments sake, want to start feeding 4lb oats & 4lb beet pulp; I'd start with 2 cups, pref over couple feeds, and raise it a cup every few days till you get to your goal.
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As jaydee says, it depends what you're feeding for & how much. I don't believe big & rich irregular feeds are a good move, but a few handfuls as a treat, &/or some chaff, beet pulp, etc added is also fine. It is also no worries to feed immediately after exercise - so long as the horse isn't puffing straight from a gallop or some such.

Horses are built for little & often browsing of high fibre, low starch diets. One factor of that is, they dont digest well feeds - particularly starchy - that are fed infrequently. They then have a higher likelihood of causing digestive upsets. That's the reason it's also important to introduce/change feeds gradually too. So for arguments sake, want to start feeding 4lb oats & 4lb beet pulp; I'd start with 2 cups, pref over couple feeds, and raise it a cup every few days till you get to your goal.
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Thank you for explaining! :) I'm actually taking a course in equine nutrition so I will (hopefully) get better at this as I advance there. With Aghata, I will start giving her two handfuls of oats after riding (should I start with one handful?), but I will take her tack off and let her eat hay in the pasture for a couple minutes (gives me time to get the oats and a bucket). And then she will get the 'treat' . Sounds like a plan :)
 

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A totally fine plan as the amount you are feeding is really a "treat" rather than a "meal". If you are feeding her to maintain her body condition that would need to be done everyday, but a small snack to make both her and you feel good after a job well done? That is no problem at all.

My horses are fed concentrates/grain in addition to their hay or pasture each day, but I will also give them a treat after working if I'm not feeding them breakfast or dinner at that time. My "treat" is usually a couple of carrots, horse cookies or just a handful or two of their usual grain. I've had no problems doing this.
 

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In the spring when we start riding again, we give our two horses a 2 quart scoop of oats after a ride,never has caused an issue. Thats hit and miss in the spring if they got too fat over winter.
 
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