He might be getting 'enough' copper, but I've read in various places that the darker the horse, the more copper they need in order to prevent the coat fading, so you could be seriously under-supplementing him and not know it. With a dark horse I'm pretty sure it's hard to overdose, but I remember Pat Coleby saying the lighter the horse, the easier to overdose with it, especially cremellos/palominos. I'd try the Poly Copper starting now.
My horse fades horribly and his parentage makes him a black. Anyway he fades were ever he sweats. You can see a complete bridle on his face and a saddle pad outline on him. Even if I hose him after every ride he still fades horribly.
I had a dark brown horse that always faded to buckskin in the summer no matter what I did. I finally gave up and dyed him back to dark brown. I wish I had pictures to post, but this was pre internet and digital cameras and I did not think it was important to document at the time. I used 10-12 boxes of Clairol Balsam Color in very dark brown. It is still pretty cheap per box. Mixed it up in a bucket and sponged it on. Waited the time stated on the box and rinsed very well ending with a final rinse with a splash of apple cider vinegar. Horse looked great.
I also read a lot about the ratios so I am hoping that this will help his sun bleaching!
From what I read zinc to copper ratio should be 3 to 1 or 4 to 1.
Also because he is a darker color it seems he may need more of both which is what many of you said.
The ratios of zinc to copper are not well established, but yes in general between the ratio's you listed is thought good.
I however live on high molybdenum soils. High enough that Cu defiency in ruminants can occur. Tho the antagonist role of Mo with Cu in the horse is not to the extreme as in ruminants I tend to keep my Zn to Cu ratio between 2.5 to 1 and 3 to 1.
Last edited by D Taylor; Jan. 26, 2013 at 04:02 PM.
Sorry, didn't mean to hijack! Thanks for the compliments everyone - he's a total goofball but I adore him. He's actually an appaloosa but has quite a bit of quarter horse and TB in him.
I did start him on SmartPak's Smart, Dark & Handsome last spring to see if that would help with the fading but he started headshaking out of the blue a couple of weeks after. I think the timing was just a coincidence but since it was the only thing that had changed I pulled him off it right away just to be sure. He's been fine and off all meds since July but it makes me a little gunshy to try it again. Will look into his copper ratios though to see if anything there might be lacking. Good info to have!
It's not about the color of the ribbon but the quality of the ride. Having said that, I'd like the blue one please!
I put both my horses on SmartHoof last spring, mostly for the copper and zinc. I don't know if it helped with fading or not, but their coats looked fantastic! I'm keeping them on it. My mare is bay and does fade, but my gelding is a liver chestnut that gets darker and darker all summer. By October he is a deep, dark liver chestnut. Then he gets his winter coat and turns red and fluffy!
Yep, it's a strong smell, so start small small and and start mixing something yummy smelling. You WILL need to make this a bit wet for it all to stick - I don't know that any horse is going to lick it off the bottom of the tub lol
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