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Putting my Horse on a Diet

4794 Views 9 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  luvs2ride1979
My TB mare, Venus, is a very easy keeper. She is the horse I use for my jumping, but a lot of exercise doesn't seem enough to keep enough weight off of her (She tends to get a BIG pot-belly).

She is in a 12 acre pasture 24/7. She gets A LOT of forage everyday (green grass and has the option of eating from a round bale). I only feed her a pound of Golden Performer 14% a day (1/2 a pound twice a day) as well as one flake of coastal hay twice a day. I only ride her for about 1 hour and 30 minutes three times a week at the most, but her exercise will increase once I have more time.

I've read that forage is 70-80% of a horse's diet, and that green grass contains a lot of fat and sugar and can cause obesity in some horses.

Will keeping her in a stall at night help her to lose weight since she can't eat grass all night? If I take away the round bale, will that help by taking away another source of forage? Should I feed her even less feed, or does she need the extra calories since she's exercising?

I would love to get some advice because this is the first time of tried to diet a horse!

Thank you!
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Becareful with turning her in at night the grass has the most sugar in the morning. If you have an easy keeper definitely she does not need 14% feed. I would find a feed or vitamin made for easy keepers. I feed my horses M30 by McCauley Brothers feed based in KY but you should check out their website and look at that as a basis on what type of grain to feed your horse. It is a feed made to give essential nutrients but not pack on the pounds. Definitely remove either the round bale or extra flakes. Is she on a proper deworming schedule? Also you may want to check with your vet to make sure she doesn't have a thyroid or metabolic problem.
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