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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 12 year old TWH that is very tall and is a narrow build, he’s always been a bit harder to keep weight on. Currently he’s on Omolene 100 and beet pulp pellets, his weight looks good everywhere except in his back and his hind end. I’ve thought about switching to safe choice, anyone recommend it?
 

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Bad press aside, Purina and Nutrena are all that is available in vast swathes of the country. Having tried both, I can attest that Purina gets far better results on my horses.

Right now I have everything on Purina Enrich Ration Balancer. Everyone, from the easy-keeper Paint to the average keeper Paso Fino to the hard keeper old chestnut mare look great-- good weight, good coats, they bloom with health and dapples. I've found that a ration balancer with good quality forage will keep weight on a hard keeper better than grain. For a truly hard case, a complete senior feed seems to do the trick.

Most horses in our area are on the Purina Enrich with some upper-level competition horses on Safe Choice during show season. Seems to work, especially when combined with good grass and hay. Nothing fancy, but it works. I have one horse also on flax to help quell his immune response to insect bites, and that same horse also gets a feed-through fly supplement, but that's it. I have the emptiest feed room I've ever had and they all look great :)
 

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I did not have as much luck with Purina because ONE of my horses didn't metabolize it very well. (the others did fine with it). I have had a lot of luck with Triple Crowne and Nutrena. Currently I'm a big user of Safe Choice Senior and I also use the DUMAR brand for my other horses (The tractor supply brand). I think to be honest, it's really in what works for your horse.
 

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Purina's Strategy Healthy Edge is wonderful. It will put weight on without making them hot and that is a great thing because I ride Arabians!!!
 

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I switched to Nutrena Safe Choice about 8mo ago. Ive noticed quite a difference in coat and hoof health. I have both my 9yr old Paint gelding, and my 1yr old rescue pony on it....I dont have to feed them the recommended amount thats on the bag, and I actually had to cut back to a handful each now that the grass is readily available.

But do keep in mind, my gelding is a easy keeper, and clearly my rescue pony is as well! I will add though, my gelding is as shiny as ever, and Ive even seen a hint of dapples which Ive never seen before!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I switched to Nutrena Safe Choice about 8mo ago. Ive noticed quite a difference in coat and hoof health. I have both my 9yr old Paint gelding, and my 1yr old rescue pony on it....I dont have to feed them the recommended amount thats on the bag, and I actually had to cut back to a handful each now that the grass is readily available.

But do keep in mind, my gelding is a easy keeper, and clearly my rescue pony is as well! I will add though, my gelding is as shiny as ever, and Ive even seen a hint of dapples which Ive never seen before!
I think I’m going to give the Safe Choice a try, to see what it does for him
 

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Change one thing at a time if you want to know if it is that new product fed making appearances change.
You know what the horses appearance is now...
Document...measure, take pictures and make your change but don't remove/change but one thing at a time to see if the horse can maintain, better thrive and appear fleshed out as you are seeking.
So...

Safechoice has some additive in their feed that supports weight being put on the "hard-places" of back and spine.
I tried it, Safechoice Original, and I did see improvement but it did not hold and last feeding just their food in recommended amounts.
I had to feed more, way more than recommended amounts and that is a no-no to me.
I needed something safer for my horse than feeding feed in ridiculous amounts...

And I found it...
What I found that works is feeding alfalfa cubes, it must be cubes.
Soaked, yes soaked for a few hours then feed them wet worked and is still working well for me.
I use 2 - 3 handfuls, large handfuls tossed in a bucket...cover with water so a full bucket of water you see...
Soak for several hours and feed it all to the horse...
Once a day and if the horse needs any feed like "grain", give it to him mixed in it as you feed.
I returned to my feed I was feeding and now feed 1/3 less and still my horse maintains because of the alfalfa cubes fed.

My horse I classify as a hard keeper, period.
He is a older OTTB approx 21 years of age, 16 hands, with a "hunters bump" sacroiliac joint and slightly elevated spine near that joint...and he is finally covered with flesh.
His coat glistens, actually glistens. He is a flea-bitten gray so not so easy to get that deep shine to his appearance.
He is round up top, all covered and it takes not much effort now to keep him this way.
Alfalfa cubes, store brand from Tractor Supply...worked for getting the topline covered and him filled in in the places you not realize are not filled in till they do...:|
One bag lasts me 2 - 3 weeks, @ $15.99 a bag is a cheap fix.

Alfalfa cubes....try it.
You'll know by the time you finish one bag if it works..if it helped and whether to continue with them or search elsewhere.
They are healthy to feed and my horse loves them!
:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Change one thing at a time if you want to know if it is that new product fed making appearances change.
You know what the horses appearance is now...
Document...measure, take pictures and make your change but don't remove/change but one thing at a time to see if the horse can maintain, better thrive and appear fleshed out as you are seeking.
So...

Safechoice has some additive in their feed that supports weight being put on the "hard-places" of back and spine.
I tried it, Safechoice Original, and I did see improvement but it did not hold and last feeding just their food in recommended amounts.
I had to feed more, way more than recommended amounts and that is a no-no to me.
I needed something safer for my horse than feeding feed in ridiculous amounts...

And I found it...
What I found that works is feeding alfalfa cubes, it must be cubes.
Soaked, yes soaked for a few hours then feed them wet worked and is still working well for me.
I use 2 - 3 handfuls, large handfuls tossed in a bucket...cover with water so a full bucket of water you see...
Soak for several hours and feed it all to the horse...
Once a day and if the horse needs any feed like "grain", give it to him mixed in it as you feed.
I returned to my feed I was feeding and now feed 1/3 less and still my horse maintains because of the alfalfa cubes fed.

My horse I classify as a hard keeper, period.
He is a older OTTB approx 21 years of age, 16 hands, with a "hunters bump" sacroiliac joint and slightly elevated spine near that joint...and he is finally covered with flesh.
His coat glistens, actually glistens. He is a flea-bitten gray so not so easy to get that deep shine to his appearance.
He is round up top, all covered and it takes not much effort now to keep him this way.
Alfalfa cubes, store brand from Tractor Supply...worked for getting the topline covered and him filled in in the places you not realize are not filled in till they do...<img style="max-width:100%;" src="http://www.horseforum.com/images/smilies/icon_neutral.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Neutral" class="inlineimg" />
One bag lasts me 2 - 3 weeks, @ $15.99 a bag is a cheap fix.

Alfalfa cubes....try it.
You'll know by the time you finish one bag if it works..if it helped and whether to continue with them or search elsewhere.
They are healthy to feed and my horse loves them!
<img style="max-width:100%;" src="http://www.horseforum.com/images/smilies/runninghorse2.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Runninghorse2" class="inlineimg" />...
I messaged you privately because I had more questions
 

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The major thing about Purina I have a prob with is nothing to do with 'press' but that it's 'fixed formula' NOT fixed ingredients. Meaning they can use whatever they want(depending on what's cheapest for eg), to make up the 'forumula'. The main reason I have a problem with 'Safe Choice' is because it's CALLED Safe Choice and advertised as such, when it's NOT low NSC, not 'safe' for IR/laminitics. That aside...

If your horse has always had a prob keeping weight on, he probably has gut probs - ulcers for eg. Could also be teeth, worms, nutritional imbalance... Very often though it's due to ulcers from incorrect feeding in the past, hind gut acidosis from too much grain/sugar/starch for eg.

If your horse seems in good weight for the most part, but his 'top line' is poor, this is likely NOT about him needing 'more groceries' but that he has damage/atrophy, or just lack of muscling there, for whatever reason.
 

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I’m not a fan, they have been on it for awhile and they’ll look decent one week and the next they look skinny. They are both hard keepers though. My trainers horses look fabulous and always look to be a perfect weight and even have dapples. I’m switching to Tribute Ultra soon because I’m just not happy with Safechoice original and how it’s been for me and my boys.... jmo.
 

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It's really has to do with what works for your horse. I have always had good results with Purina. I have had to toss Dumor. I am currently using Standlee for my cubes.
 

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I have added Nutrena Empower Topline Balance to my feeds as a supplement and seen good results. I have fed both Nutrena SC (senior and special care) and Purina (Senior, Strategy GX and Ultium). Triple Crown Growth as well. The supplement that overall worked the best for mine was ProAdd Ultimate as what is important to build topline and muscle is the amino acid profile and availability/amount. Adding weight is a product of the number of calories so adding in good fats can also give them a nice finish.
 

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I wouldn't recommend Safe Choice, seems a pretty clear cut downgrade from what you're doing. I would look into changing things up, but don't think that's going to do much for you. As an in general Safe Choice is best for a easy backyard horse without any special nutritional needs, it's just not going to do it for anything more then that.

Can you share a picture? It sounds like it is not weight but muscling on a narrow build. There may or may not be anything to do about it. For starters I would rule out any health issues. I would then double check his weight is optimal. I would then consider the nutrition he is getting, you're feeding a very basic feed to a horse whose needs are not basic. Since you have access to Purina I would highly recommend their Ultium feed. It's very likely you'll end up feeding a lot less and can cut out the beet pulp (though I agree with one change at a time!). They need not only the right weight but the right nutrition to gain good muscle tone. And regardless of what this horses specific issues are (excluding health issues of course) I've never seen a horse NOT do well on Ultium, it's a top quality feed. My own don't get it because they are easy keepers, but if I had a horse that needed more that would be one of my top choices.

Omolene is protein 10 fat 4.5 fiber 10, Ultium 11.7/12.4/18.5. HUGE fat boost. Safe Choice does have higher protein but is a significantly poorer quality feed. I would explore other Purina options, or one of Nutrenas better lines first (or a different brand altogether, but not sure what is available). At the end of the day it depends on what your horse does well on.

Supplements may also be beneficial to you.
 

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I use nutrena feeds and they've worked for me. It's the feed most people use around here, though we do have Triple Crown, Purina, and DuMor available. I try to stick to as little grain as possible and rely on pasture and alfalfa pellets. I wish I could find alfalfa that soaked faster though, the only one that absorbed water quickly had rice bran in it and was this cheap dusty stuff I'm never getting again. Alfalfa is really great. The only time I really use grain is during the winter.
 

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If you can get triple crown feeds that is your best choice. Purina feeds i have found are never the same from bag to bag.I won't feed Purina horse feeds, wont feed there dog food either.

Nutrena is ok not great safechoice line of feed is low quality ,horse's look dull coated an just don't thrive on it. Not at all for a metabolic horse as nsc is high on the safe choice line on feeds. Even the special care line is far from safe to feed to a IR/cushings horse.

Heard Dumor is junk feed low quality cheap feed.

I've been feeding triple crown feeds and my horse's look fantastic shinny coats picture of health.
 

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I add some Nutrena Safe Choice Special Care pellets to Greenmeadow chopped forage and sugar beet but only enough to make the feed more interesting because they get magnesium and vitamins A and E in it plus Vit D in the winter
I have more trouble keeping weight off my horses than putting it on, even the ones I’ve bought that were said to be hard keepers.
Once they’ve been treated correctly for parasites and ulcers, if I suspect them, then they go from hard keepers to air ferns really fast
 
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