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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I recently started giving my Appendix about four cups(three times a week) of Omolene 200. I have started noticing a dramatic change in his personality and attitude.

He is being very distant. He usually is very sweet, and he is now acting more distant...I'm not sure how to explain it.
Next, he has started this very naught habit of turning in circled when I try to mount. I get anywhere near the saddle and he will turn. He has never done this before. He usually is just a bit antsy but after a few times of asking him to stand still he will do so. Now, I have to have someone hold him because no matter how many corrections I make (I did it for about thirty minutes one time) he won't stand still.
Lastly, he has started chewing a lot and bobbing his head. If I'm asking him to move out when lunging, he will turn towards me and bobb his head up and down sometimes with ears back. Today he even went so far as to do it while I was on him. I had to get off because he was being uncontrollable. After trying to lunge tonight I just had him standing facing me for a head scratch and he started doing he head bobbing again!

The only thing I can think of is that it may be the food

Can anyone tell me if my thoughts are correct? Even though it's only a small amount, could it change him this much? He naturally has a very thoroughbred attitude and was previously raced.
 

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IMO, he's challenging you and it's not the food. Whenever he gets difficult, you give in. Instead of giving him a CTJ meeting when he gets antsy when you mount, you let it get to where he's spinning in circles. Instead of giving him the well earned CTJ then, you get someone to hold him. You lunge him and he shakes his head at you with his ears back? He'd think he was going to die if he was mine. He's being disrespectful and you're not putting the blame where it belongs, on him for being that way and you for allowing it.
 

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Even IF the food was causing changes it would not cause very specific behavioral changes. That would be training. It MIGHT be making him "hotter" and more eager to challenge you, but again, training would take care of this.

To even think of the food sounds like an excuse, imo. It doesn't seem practical.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Not to shove away advice but it's not a training issue. I free lunge him in the arena with no equipment; i have gotten him to the point where he will lunge around me, or in whatever shape I choose at whatever speed I ask and as the slight shift of my body or my eyes have him change directions, tighten the circle, stop, lead change, and come back to me. He is a very sweet, smart, and willing horse who has never, ever had an issue with what I ask. I have never even had so much as asking for a great or pulling on the lead from this guy. The not standing still is a working progress, he is off the track, and he use to be to the point where it would take me five minutes to get him to stop dancing when I mounted, and after a while he was to the point where it took maybe a minute. Huge improvement.

It is not a training issue. Lol...it's something beyond that seeing as I have not changed out schedule or my methods. He is not the type of horse to "challenge" anyone especially on the ground. If he is challenging me, there's an outside cause.

I just don't see his training being a reasonable cause for this sudden and overly dramatic change.

I do appreciate the advice though. If I can't end up finding what it is, I will re-assess my methods.
 

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These are only the main things I have noticed. All together he has been very high strung and almost a bit aggressive especially towards heard members. I have heard its possible for high fat food to make a horses temperament a bit higher, and I thought it was a pretty good sign as these things started happening a week after I started the new feed.

To note, I have never had any of my horses on anything but hay and pasture. but he needs to gain a bit of weight so I was trying adding feed.
 

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Well I don't know what other issues there may be, or what CTJ means, so I'll leave that possibility out of it & just say that Omolene is a high energy, (very) high NSC sweetfeed. Effectively junk food. So yes, the feed could be affecting behaviour. Also not feeding little & often, starting with 4 cups per feed rather than one & building up to it, especially with high starch stuff can cause gut problems & discomfort which can cause behavioural probs/changes.

If you need to hardfeed your horse for added calories or such, you need to feed over at least a couple of small feeds daily, and if you're feeding only for nutritional balance, you're better off feeding a quality low dose, low NSC 'ration balancer' type product appropriate for your horse's diet. Oh & still feed it daily at least, if at all possible.
 

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how long have you had him?
I , too, wondered if he was just seeing that he could buffalo you with some behavior, but some of what you describe could be him in pain. does he react to being cinched up, or get a sour look when the blanket or saddle come toward him? pain could be making him grumpy about being lunged at any speed, and reactive under saddle, too.

is he at all sensitive to any pressure on his flanks, or belly? poops are normal?
 

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IF you are sure it's not a training issue, I will repeat what I said earlier. The only behavioral issue (generally speaking) that a feed will cause is making the horse hotter.

Making him "hotter" can exacerbate something that is already a problem and the head tossing could be impatience, etc. I still think training would be an issue here (If he is hotter he may challenge you more, but in turn you should be able to handle it and react accordingly, so that he doesn't challenge you, that is what I was trying to say), but if his personality is changing because the feed is making him hot and you don't like it just change the feed. I HATE when people don't feed their horses what they need because they can't handle them, but if he can be healthy and a good weight and himself on something else, go for it. If it doesn't make a difference, change back and work on training.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well I don't know what other issues there may be, or what CTJ means, so I'll leave that possibility out of it & just say that Omolene is a high energy, (very) high NSC sweetfeed. Effectively junk food. So yes, the feed could be affecting behaviour. Also not feeding little & often, starting with 4 cups per feed rather than one & building up to it, especially with high starch stuff can cause gut problems & discomfort which can cause behavioural probs/changes.

If you need to hardfeed your horse for added calories or such, you need to feed over at least a couple of small feeds daily, and if you're feeding only for nutritional balance, you're better off feeding a quality low dose, low NSC 'ration balancer' type product appropriate for your horse's diet. Oh & still feed it daily at least, if at all possible.
Hmm...that would make sense. The only reason I threw out the bad training is the fact I know him too well for it to just be a training problem.

I feel like such a feed-idiot hehe. The store I got the food from said start at four. I guess I should've done a bit more research.

If I where to switch to ration balancer, what would you suggest?
 

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Well I don't know what other issues there may be, or what CTJ means, so I'll leave that possibility out of it & just say that Omolene is a high energy, (very) high NSC sweetfeed. Effectively junk food. So yes, the feed could be affecting behaviour. Also not feeding little & often, starting with 4 cups per feed rather than one & building up to it, especially with high starch stuff can cause gut problems & discomfort which can cause behavioural probs/changes.

If you need to hardfeed your horse for added calories or such, you need to feed over at least a couple of small feeds daily, and if you're feeding only for nutritional balance, you're better off feeding a quality low dose, low NSC 'ration balancer' type product appropriate for your horse's diet. Oh & still feed it daily at least, if at all possible.
I think it's Come To Jesus (meeting)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
how long have you had him?
I , too, wondered if he was just seeing that he could buffalo you with some behavior, but some of what you describe could be him in pain. does he react to being cinched up, or get a sour look when the blanket or saddle come toward him? pain could be making him grumpy about being lunged at any speed, and reactive under saddle, too.

is he at all sensitive to any pressure on his flanks, or belly? poops are normal?
His poop was a little more runny that normal (a slightly less than circle-filled piles) but he was just wormed and I've noticed they tend to have interesting stool after worming.

He did not seem in pain at all. Didn't mind the saddle or cinch. I've had him four months now.
 

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Honestly, I don't think you can know any horse "too well" in 4 months. To me, that is a "new horse" and you are still figuring each other out and training methods too.

I think the issue isn't 4 cups. The issue is feeding once three times a week. You should feed 2+ times per day, every day.
 

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Hmm...that would make sense. The only reason I threw out the bad training is the fact I know him too well for it to just be a training problem.

I feel like such a feed-idiot hehe. The store I got the food from said start at four. I guess I should've done a bit more research.

If I where to switch to ration balancer, what would you suggest?
No one said you had "bad training", no training technique is perfect, we were just suggesting maybe there were some holes, and that he is getting away with things. Not trying to put down your skills or methods, just make sure all the bases are covered.

These are only the main things I have noticed. All together he has been very high strung and almost a bit aggressive especially towards heard members. I have heard its possible for high fat food to make a horses temperament a bit higher, and I thought it was a pretty good sign as these things started happening a week after I started the new feed.

To note, I have never had any of my horses on anything but hay and pasture. but he needs to gain a bit of weight so I was trying adding feed.
What do you mean by this?

ETA- if you want him on feed to gain weight I would not swap to a ration balancer, that is for nutrients without gaining weight.
 

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IMO, he is challenging you( and obviously his herd mates), because he's feeling his oats, so to speak. I've had TB's who couldn't as much as see oats and they would go bonkers.
Ditch the Omolene, get him some alfalfa or timothy pellets, soak them, add a vit/ min supplement or ration balancer, and add some rice bran if he needs to gain weight. Give him a week, maybe 10 days, to come to his senses. If you don't see a change, it is a training issue and needs to be addressed.
 

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I'd agree with a lot of what has already been said here. Especially that no one really "knows" a horse in 4 months. In four months what you know is the old owner and training, eventually you come to find the horse YOU own. The feed may have only helped to juice up what was already coming. He sounds like a really great horse and that he's had some nice training but, he's testing you. He's no doubt feeling more comfortable in his new digs and if you've been "fattening" him up then he's going to be feeling more confident as well.

We had a new horse join our herd in October. He was a nervous and timid little thing, did nothing but pace up and down the whole time he was in quarentine. When he finally got with the herd he was shunned and kicked out like trash. Now just a few months later, after a thorough worming, a healthy diet and learning he's safe to be himself, he's got the whole herd following his orders like a **** drill seargent! That doesn't look anything like the horse I started with but that IS the horse I own.
Do consider the feed and any possible pain/health issues but, for the love of Pete, forget about the horse you bought and look at the horse you actually own, because that's the one that's pinning his ears and giving you the butt spin move.
 

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IF you are sure it's not a training issue, I will repeat what I said earlier. The only behavioral issue (generally speaking) that a feed will cause is making the horse hotter.
While that's possibly the most common, disagree thoroughly that it's the only, by far. Magnesium deficiency/imbalance is commonly noticed to affect behaviour - why it's a common ingredient in 'calming supps' - and excess potassium can make them hyper (just realised pun on HYPP:lol: Funny funny!), for 2 egs.
 
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