My boy has gained weight and not time to re-evaluate his feeding plan...ideas???
So I have been bringing back to health a 17H TB named Forrest. Within 6 weeks he had most of his weight and on the diet we had him on steadily gained during the winter. Well hopefully winter is finally over and my horse now has WAY too much energy and I thought since the toughest feeding time is behind us it was time to re-evaluate his feeding.
Currently he is getting 1/2lb of rice bran and 2lb of triple crown senior feed 2X a day.
I want to cute the rice bran out of his diet completely so we are finishing the what little they have left in the bag. But I wasn't sure about the grain. I was thinking something other than senior. Is there another grain that I can use to give him enough calories not to lose weight but not give him too much energy hes running around constantly?
Forrest is pretty hot at the moment and I know its a combination of not being ridden, no routine and feed.
You can give him plain soaked beetpulp...i also give Progressive Nutrition's Pro Advantage Grass Diet Balancer for his nutritional requirements and Progressive Nutritions Envision Classic for added balanced cool calories-this is the best and lowest starch/sugar way to feed a horse....since high starch/sugar tends to cause erratic and hot behavior. Check out www.prognutrition.com
the minimum of Triple Crown Senior is 6lbs...by you only giving him 2lbs -he is not getting enough/proper nutritional requirements....and as you stated if he gets more = hotter...Triple Crown senior is a great feed...and it actually is quite low in starch/sugar-however it has been reported to make alot of horses quite hot,and others no effect at all...just depends on particular horse-maybe its the molasses?!?
You can also add alfalfa pellets as well....and as always...as much free choice top quality hay as possible...and a mixed hay w/ alfalfa or some straight alfalfa will definitely add calories the natural way-through fiber
Also...a good probiotic helps w/ weight gain/maintenance such as Fastrack,and an ulcer supplement helps alot too....Corta Flx Uguard or Finish Lines u7 Gastric Aid are great choices
I feed TC Senior to my can be hot OTTBs and it doesn't make them hot. Alfalfa does. What kind of hay are you feeding? How old is he? Does he have a lot of turnout or is he stalled most of the time. How large is his turnout and is in with a herd/buddy or private. How long has he been off the track? Their personalities will change drastically if they've been starved (think hotter). I'm not saying all OTTBs are hot...they're not, but sometimes they do go through a hot stage right off the track until they learn some manners.
You say there is no routine--that may be the biggest influence.. Life on the track is extremely regimented. To go from that to no routine can be very upsetting. You should try to stick to as rigid a routine as you can and later start to vary. And work on ground manners! Repetition is your friend.
The lack of the correct amount of minerals and vitamins (from not getting the recommended amount of senior feed) alone can make horses act strangely. Not all horses are quiet when they don't get enough of everything - low B vitamins, for one, will make horses squirrely and so will low magnesium. If you cannot feed him the recommended amount then it's time to change to something else where you can, or revise entirely.
"Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
--- The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.
With warmer weather coming, a lot of horses will start packing on the pounds if we keep the hay intake at "winter" levels. I'd get rid of the rice bran--why finish the bag if he doesn't need it? Also, why can't he get some exercise? Or at least be turned out more?
My thought is to finish up your rice bran or give the rest to someone who can use it. With the TC senior he should be getting AT LEAST 5 lb of senior a day to meet vit/min requirements.. he is getting 4 lb right now..so bumping it up to 5 lb and then taking away the rice bran "should" be ok, the next thing I ask is with warmer weather arriving will he begin to be ridden and worked or get more turnout time?? If so, he should be fine on 5lb of senior without "continuing" to get too heavy with that amount of feed, it will also depend if he ends up getting extended amounts of time out on pasture and still gets hay, some things may need to be adjusted a little bit. If he is going to be ridden consistently soon, spends a large portion of the day running around ouside playing or may even do some showing it is not unreasonable that he may need more TC senior down the road or a fat supplement or more hay to maintain his weight. As for being a "hot" horse..was he hot when you got him?? It could be part of his temperment or in his genes and he may just be that way. You also have to consider his environment..it is getting nice out which causes a lot of horses to "get silly" and play more. TC Senior is a very low NSC feed and low in molasses so generally this feed is recommened to hardkeeping "hot horses", many, many people report it keeps their horses quiet, not hot...of course it can't work for everyone... Also remember starch and sugar levels can vary in hay/pasture and could be high as well.
OP- what great before and after pictures of your cute gelding! He looks terrific!!
I have had success twice this fall/winter using Calf Manna by Manna Pro to get weight on a horse without "hot". The first was my 2 1/2 year old colt who didnt' have fat over his ribs and is prone to gastric ulcers. He was on a round bale of horse quailty hay and twice daily getting beet pulp, alfalfa chops, 1# of Safe Choice and a Kent feed supplement Equine Base 38. It just wasn't working. I dumped the Safe Choice & EB38 and switched to Calf Manna at 1 pound a day. Again, the colt is prone to gastric ulcers so I feed the least amount of a concentrate/grain that I can. Within 3 weeks the ribs were covered and he wasn't wigged out.
Fast forward to Feb and my 20 year old QTR/Arab cross fox hunting horse. He was getting twice daily beet pulp, alfalfa chops, Compete grain @ 2# and EB38. He is a type A horse, very busy by nature and after two months off of hunting due to snow and those rations above, his first hunt back in Feb was, well, like riding an ADD/ADDH horse who was running from Zombies. No fun. I put him on the same feeding program as the young horse- beet pulp, alfalfa chops and 1# of Calf Manna and again, in 3 weeks, he had fat on his ribs and today he hunted again and was a SAINT, his normal self.
Thanks everyone! It has been a hard road. He is on 24/7 turnout with run-ins for shelter. He shares a 5acre field with my older horse. They get free choice hay and its a clover mix hay. He use to get alfalfa when first putting weight on, but we stopped that. Also I had to move him to a boarding facility that would help with his weight gain so he is about 35 minutes away from me and with winter and being underweight I didnt want to ride him. He had seriously issues with his hip being so underweight and I didnt want to add the weight onto him. Im hoping to move him closer now within the next month or two since he is ready to start riding again. He is an OTTB but has been off the track for 5 years now. He is 10.
He does do better with a routine its hard being so far away and weather making it nearly impossible...aka I officially hate snow at the moment. I do have a friend who will hopefully help me out and get him back in shape, she only lives 15 min from him.
He has a very good head on him and is very smart, he just feels great! Its been probably 2 or 3 years since hes looked so good from what I understand. I plan on riding him at least 4 or 5 days a week and hopefully show him as well regularly. So I would want him on something that will meet those needs as well. The vet is coming out tomorrow to see them since she last saw them so severely underweight, so I am curious to see what she has to say.
But thanks for the suggestions, I was just wondering if there was something out there that would better meet his needs! Will definitely try to get his total grain intake to be 5lbs!