I know, I'm starting a lot of threads.. Just want to see what's out there for everyone! What do you feed your horses? Why?
My late TB gelding was fed:
1 lb Omolene 500 (12:8) AM/PM
1/2 pound soaked rolled oats AM
1 sc. MSM AM
1 sc. Cetyl M AM
He was fed the Omolene because at the time, I wanted something similar to Ultium and Omolene was readily available - without the 28$ price tag. I tried him on it, he did VERY well - for the first time in a long time he was "cut back" from his feed while being in work. It really seemed to work for him. The oats were given to me by my job, and I was like "why not?" - they don't have much nutritional value but the gelding loved them.
The MSM was more of a maintenance thing: he had SI injections and while I didn't notice a difference to his movement before/after the MSM, I figured it wouldn't hurt.
Cetyl M was something I had to beg my store to carry: and once we did, we sold out. I bought the first bucket.. administered it to him and within two days alone noticed a drastic difference in his willingness to go forward. Love it, definitely noticed it improved his movement!
And naturally, he was on good quality hay too.
So, what do you feed your competition horse? What are the ratios? What have you found "Worked"? In an ideal world, would you feed something different?
Orchard hay, a mix of 1st and 3rd cutting, grass when it's available, generous amounts tailored if necessary to the animal's weight.
Purina's Enrich 32 ration balancer, about 1-1.5 pounds per day depending on the horse and its workload.
Flax seed, about a cup a day. If I can find Uckele's Equi-Omega on sale I will buy a tub since the horses really love it and I don't have to feed much for the same "shine factor".
A multi-vitamin/mineral/essential amino acid supplement because none of my horses gets the full recommended amount of the RB based on the bag, so I don't want to short them on micronutrients. We are profoundly selenium deficient in this area.
Solitude feed-through fly control stuff February through November.
No joint stuff (well, Bonnie gets Pentosan IM monthly if she's working hard), no other supplements.
Why? Because it meets their needs. I have my hay analyzed and the ration balancer consistently allows me to fill in the gaps in what the hay can't provide without feeding excessive amounts of concentrate. Flax or the Equi-Omega helps keep their coats shiny, and the vit/min/AA supplement keeps me from having to feed them more concentrate than I want to and still make sure all the nutritional bases are covered.
I have been a mega-supplementer in the past and have never noticed any significant benefit to most of them. Probably even the vit/min I use is superfuous and I could just give them selenium and maybe some extra lysine, but I can't stand piddling around with a million different products and the vit/min/AA stuff covers the bases and is very cost effective and palatable. What they don't need, they pee out, and there's nothing in there that is going to cause problems with a bit of excess.
For our 13 y/o full TB who is a moderate-to-hard keeper running 2*/I-A level:
- Free choice grass hay
- Turnout on grass whenever possible (as little as 6 hours/day as much as 18 hours/day); hay in paddock if no grass available
- 7.5 pounds Ultium/day, divided into 3 feedings
- Cosequin ASU
He also has access to a salt lick and gets electrolytes in hot weather/heavy work/competition. He was on flax last season, but he's been doing so well body condition-wise this year that we haven't added it back. He's legging up for the season and looks the best he's ever done.
My Brandy girl gets a pound of Triple Crown 30 Ration Balancer and a pound of Triple Crown complete once a day.
Doccie is high maintenance and eats (splint into 2 meals) 1.5 lbs of TC30, 1.5 lbs TC Complete, 1 lb beet pulp no molasses (weighed dry, then soaked), MSM, biotin and is on a 30 day run of high protein supplement to see if we can help him distribute muscle better.
My retired guy, Ari, eats 1lb of TC30 and a bunch of beet pulp with molasses.
All get free choice, high quality hay and have access to excellent pasture.
Ugh. Toby, sadly, is NOT an air fern. *knock wood* I think I have feeding him down to a pretty fine art form, since we've been able to maintain a very nice weight since the end of his summer break last fall.
RIGHT NOW, without the galloping and competing, he maintains well on:
- All the nice quality timothy hay he can eat, which averages about 20lbs a day, for him. He also has access to fresh pasture, when it's around (he actually has a lot to chew on out his pasture right now, but all of it is dormant). In a perfect world, the hay would be a tim/alf mix (my personal preference for a horse like him), but he's one of a very few in the barn who would benefit...so, he gets straight tim.
- 7lbs of Fibergized Omega (he can go down to as little as 4lbs if he's not working, but he's a workaholic, so 6 or 7 is were we typically stay).
- 8oz of Cocosoya oil (split between AM and PM)
- A little MSM to help with skin inflammation (he's got a host of skin issues. This helps).
- A little garlic to help repel ticks and because supposedly it can help with immune system strength, etc (I can hear dw rolling her eyes in MI all the way here in VA! ). The garlic is a VERY old habit, and it DOES help with ticks. I RARELY pick ticks off of him.
- His weight in Meadow Mints, carrots, and peppermints. NO APPLES, please.
When we are galloping and competing (kinda sorta prelim level):
- He tends to lose interest in hay, especially in the hottest months, so I supplement his forage with chopped alfalfa or alf hay if I can find someone in the barn to share it with. He DOES have great pasture in the warm months, and is out all night, so I don't worry TOO much.
- His grain gets bumped to 9lbs, split between 3 meals.
- He gets a lot more omeprazole, though that is totally precautionary.
- Everything else stays the same. For now.
No joint sups (unless you count the MSM, but that isn't way I feed it). I used to feed digestion sups, but he is on such a high quality feed that also HAS pre and probiotics in it...he doesn't really need anything. I switched from a skin and coat sup to the Cocosoya last year, which helps kill 2 birds with one stone (helps give him more calories without feeding him heaps more of concentrates AND helps his sensitive skin). I don't like to waste a ton on money on sups if I don't really need to. I have a healthy, happy, shiny critter, so we stick, as much as possible, to the KISS philosophy.
My draft cross used to be on Cavalor, which I loved (and he loved, as did my old retired mare) but I can no longer get it locally. If my mare were still alive, I would probably be schlepping to Ocala for it, but since she passed, I decided to go back to his old diet:
AM and PM:
1 pound Seminole Ultra Dynamix
1/4 pound Seminole Ultra Bloom
Gluquestrian joint supplement
Hilton Herbs Bye Bye Itch
Hilton Herbs Hoove and Coat
2-3 flakes orchard/alfalfa hay
With his allergies, I need to be careful not to feed him beetpulp or too much flax. The Ultra Bloom is for extra fat to keep him on a EPSM diet. Because of his allergies, this is the best diet that works for him.
Beowulf, I haven't ever found anything about Quiessence being illegal. We feed it as a Mg supplement just to get him to his maintenance needs- I can't remember the GA of magnesium in Ultium (I think I may have had to call and ask and even then it wasn't guaranteed? I want to say it was something like 0.25% but that is pulling deep from my memory and may be wrong), but it wasn't enough for a horse in heavy work (which is something like 1.5-2 times the maintenance requirement, so about 25 mg/kg/day).
Yep, it's a good bit of Ultium, although if you check Purina's feeding recommendations, for his body weight and level of work it's actually slightly less than what he "should" be getting (which is a miracle considering how skinny and hard to keep flesh on he used to be!).
Tess is on a small amount of soaked beet pulp
1lb of McCauley Brothers M-10 vit.-min. suppliment
1 scoop of Quiessence
1 sm scoop of Probios
1/2 scoop of EquiShure
3/4 scoop of Thyro-L
1 squirt of Hyulan
Free choice Brome hay
These amounts are given 2 times/day, except for the free choice hay and Hyulan.
Tess was a chronic colicer. I have tried many different feeding programs to figure out what would stop her from having so many episodes. This one works for her. I hate feeding suppliments, too. However, if this program works for her, I will keep plunking out the money for them. In the long run, they are cheaper, than hauling her to Rood and Riddle.