Does anyone have suggestions to make supplement giving easy on the barn staff plus be tasty enough to get a horse to eat it?
I'm doing a five-month experiment to try and get some better hooves on my horse -- he had been "all wall, no sole" and threw shoes constantly last summer. Between a daily hoof supplement and multi-vitamin, Farrier's Fix treatments a couple times a week, and a new trim schedule, he's staring to get some nice feet.
I'm about two months into this and he's started to avoid eating the hoof supplement/vitamin mix (scoop of Horseshoer's Secret and scoop of Accel in his morning oats/sweet feed mix). I need to do something to encourage him to eat it, but I also need to make it easy on the BO to feed -- right now, everything is packaged in sandwich baggies she just has to open and dump into his pail/mix with his grain.
I need an additive I can put in the baggie with the rest to make it taste better/encourage him to eat it. This means it can't be too sticky so the stuff will come out of the bag and it shouldn't spoil the contents when packaging up a month's worth at a time.
I've thought of making a cookie, but 6oz of hoof pellets is a lot to disguise in oats and molasses....
Buy some Keratex Hoof Gel....he doesn't have to eat it.
That's sorta what the Farrier's Fix does. I was trying to do an "inside & out" program to get the initial growth working, then back off the supplement to finish with just the topical application to the hoof itself to see if it would work just as well for maintenance.
Thanks for the Gatorade idea, Joiedevie. I heard that Jell-o might help, but that would be quite a lot to have to buy!
Ditto adding a little bit of oil. Since I've been doing an EPSM / PSSM diet (read: lots of oil) with my horse, I've felt more confident that he's been getting all of his supplements. So it's not something you can add to the supplement baggies you make ahead of time but it's probably the cheapest and fastest way to do it if your horse will tolerate the little bit of oil.
Originally Posted by RugBug
Don't throw away opportunities because they aren't coming in exactly the form you want them to.
What form is the supplement in? I used SmartHoof in the smart paks for a long time (coming off them now as stabling arrangement has changed and that has made a HUGE difference in his feet!). They were convenient for boarding situation as they're pre-measured and they are in a pellet form similar to pelleted feed-my horse eats them with his grain with no issue.
One thing about hoof supplements you have to keep in mind is that a hoof takes about a year to grow out, so it will take than long to see any effect from the supplement. Vets and farriers I've talked to seem split on the effectiveness of the fed supplements. Mine recommended them in addition to Keratex, so that's the route we went. I think they did help some, but the Keratex and change of environment along with my farrier changing from steel to aluminum shoes with clips were what really made the biggest difference.