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My barn manager won't feed my horse the way he's supposed to be fed >:-(

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  • Original Poster

    #41
    Originally posted by LauraKY View Post
    I never feed more than 5lbs of feed at a meal and actually, in practice, have not fed more than 4lbs. I break it up into 2 or 3 meals. But, the basis of my feeding program is hay. Good quality timothy, timothy/orchard grass and, if needed alfalfa. I add to that, as needed Triple Crown Senior which is a wonderful choice for putting on weight in addition to being a little higher in fat than most feeds and low in NSC (and has beet pulp for fiber). By the way, SafeChoice does not have nearly as low an NSC as TC Senior and it's not a fixed formula feed.

    One example is an OTTB we bought 4 years ago. He was extremely thin. We started him on free choice hay, 9lbs of SafeChoice per day and 2lbs of Empower. I discovered TC Senior last year and he now gets free choice timothy/orchard grass mix, one flake of alfalfa and 6lbs of TC Senior per day in 2 meals. We also have a nice grass mix round bale out in the pasture. He's actually a little chunky on this, but we're just going into winter and he's been off work due to our wonderful , unusual winter weather.

    I know I'm repeating myself, but if your horse is having an extremely hard time keeping weight on with free choice hay and a reasonable amount of a good quality grain, you may have an ulcer problem that you need to address.

    It sounds like you've made a good decision in changing barns. The easier you can make your feeding program for your BO/BM, I would think the more likely it will be followed.

    Dalpal, I've been told there are plenty of barns out there that will just throw out bagged supplements. One of my friends caught the barn workers at her barn throwing out her SmartPaks. Could it be any easier than SmartPaks?
    I think I missed this post till now. Whoops!

    For some reason, I don't know if it's the hay I have or what, but Ivan doesn't always eat all of it. Overnight, he'll get 3 flakes to munch on in his stall, and he always as 1-2 flakes left in the morning. I don't get it. He has eaten 3 or 4 different types of hay so far, and while he will enthusiastically eat hay, he often just won't finish all of what you give him. I give him the option of 20-25 lbs a day, and he really just won't eat all of it.

    By the way, I'm not feeding Safechoice at all. I'm feeding Purina Ultium, which actually is higher in fat than Triple Crown Senior. TC Senior is 10%, and Purina Ultium is 12.4% guaranteed minimum. The vet said the max I need to give him of that in a day is 11 lbs total until he gets his weight up, then we're going to start cutting him back to about 5 or 6 lbs total. He still needs to gain about 50 lbs, then once I have at least that much more on him, I'll start training a bit more heavily with him to hopefully build up another 50 lbs in muscle. Ideal would be to have him at 1000 lbs by summer.

    As to an ulcer problem, he hasn't been prone to them, and he doesn't show symptoms, though we did consider it for a moment. He's really young, only 5, and is still supposed to be growing (outward) for a minute. He never had ulcers before even while under super heavy training at the track, so both his old vet and my vet think it's unlikely that he has them now. It's just so hard to get weight back on a skinny horse when the lows have been in the 20s so consistently over the past month. It's a real uphill battle, particularly when he didn't grow a coat this year after coming up from Florida.

    I'm looking forward to getting them moved down to my new barn tomorrow or Monday. I've got them temporarily at a friend's place that was down the street, and we rode out on some awesome trails yesterday for about 5 hours, taking advantage of all the trails while we were there and the weather was good. Since I'll be the only one feeding at the new place (with it being self-care, nobody feeds anybody else's horses unless you make an arrangement with another boarder to help each other out), that makes things really simple! I will be able to feed him exactly as the vet tells me, no supplements thrown out or anything!
    When life throws you lemons, put on your best Asian accent and scream "Faaack yuuuu Rehmooohns!" (says yours truly, the half-Japanese kid )

    My Pony Blog Dressage & My Horsey Life

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    • #42
      I looked, but didn't see what type of hay you are feeding. The horse I mentioned above, did not eat a lot of hay at first either, but sure tucks into alfalfa. You might want to try some alfalfa and maybe hang a hay net in the aisle outside his stall. That's what they are used to on the track.

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      • Original Poster

        #43
        Originally posted by LauraKY View Post
        I looked, but didn't see what type of hay you are feeding. The horse I mentioned above, did not eat a lot of hay at first either, but sure tucks into alfalfa. You might want to try some alfalfa and maybe hang a hay net in the aisle outside his stall. That's what they are used to on the track.
        Oh, sorry, it's a mixed grass hay. I know it's mostly timothy and something else plus a little bit of fescue mixed in for a longer stem. I want to say either bahia or orchard, but I can't remember. I know for sure it's not bermuda. Probably timothy/orchard mix, with some fescue put in for long stem roughage. It's been a minute since I spoke with the hay guy, but back at the beginning of November I sat in the hay with him and discussed the hay with the hay guy. I want to say he said bahia... but I can't be 100% positive. The barn manager was there to meet him the last time he delivered my hay, so I didn't get to talk to him. I'm probably going to switch to a friend of mine's hay guy since he's closer, and she said I should actually avoid the fescue. I think she said it's more sugary? I don't know where to access straight alfalfa hay other than this place I've heard of that's way over on the other side of Birmingham, like an hour and a half away from me. I have access to alfalfa pellets and cubes, and I've been feeding the pellets out of convenience since you don't have to soak them.
        When life throws you lemons, put on your best Asian accent and scream "Faaack yuuuu Rehmooohns!" (says yours truly, the half-Japanese kid )

        My Pony Blog Dressage & My Horsey Life

        Comment


        • #44
          If I didn't know better, I'd think we boarded at the same facility! I finally became so fed up that I decided to move. I don't like to barn hop but my horse's care is my #1. Trying to get through to BO was like talking to a brick wall. While I'm not dealing with the loss of Ultium, my feed is quite expensive as well and I am experiencing the same ordeal, yet I have a skinny horse (who is NOT a hard keeper). Do what is best for your horse and move. Thanks to the people here on COTH I was encouraged to put my horse's needs before mine and do the same

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          • #45
            good for you for moving! I had the opposite but similar problem. I had a 3 year old mare who was a great weight. I moved her to a small 4 horse barn near me and had her on the same amount of grain as she was on at the trainers, about half a scoop of reg pellets 2x a day.She was only 15 hands and built very dainty. She was in light to moderate work, mostly groundwork and was just developing actual muscles. Well the woman who owned/ran the barn had 2 fat horses. I mean fat deposits everywhere they were really unhealthy. I assumed she would listen to my instructions for the amount of grain I wanted my mare to get. Well she felt that my mare didn't have any topline so she needed 3 TIMES the grain to get a topline. Keep in mind she was 3 years old and had been broke a few weeks prior...duh she doesn't have a topline she needed to just grow up and be trained. Anyways got in a few nasty fights about it because she flat out refused to feed her less, I was being cruel and starving her etc etc. So I bit the cost of a months board and moved her out immediately.

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            • #46
              Hi,
              I just have a few ideas I thought I might throw out here
              - a horses stomach volume is quite small, between 4 and 6 lbs of feed usually (all kinds of differences between horses and feed weight/volume ratios, but as a general rule that is always what I was taught) when your horse eats more than that some of the feed leaves the stomach partially undigested and will affect the ph and thus the natural bacteria of the hindgut.
              - so is it at all possible that your horse isn't finishing his hay because he's getting a large amount of grain? How long does it take him to finish his grain? I realize its impractical for you to feed him more than twice a day, but maybe its possible for him to have access to some kind of grain slow feeder? Like a NibbleNet but for grain instead of hay I really and honestly feel like horses digest their food so much more efficiently the more meals per day they have.
              -and finally have you thought about feeding pre/probiotics at all? Not as something designed for a horse with ulcers (since yours doesn't sound like he has any) but once you get his grain where you want it and its (hopefully) no longer affecting the ph of the hindgut there isnt any way for him to regain the natural bacteria in his gut without you feeding it to him.
              -I've had really great success with the product SUCEED (its expensive, I know) but I don't feed it as a daily supplement. Only for a week or so when I have a new horse come through the barn and I know they've been stressed out, either from the long trip or the switch to my feed or a nasty colic. Anything that while it may not have been stressful enough to actually cause laminitis, I feel like it did affect the hindgut and thus the horses' overall digestive efficiency. And oh my gosh, do they BLOOM on it

              Sorry for such a long post, I hope I didn't just tell you a bunch of things you already know. And I just want to say congrats on getting your horses out of that barn and closer to home, I really hope it works out wonderfully. Reading this has really made me grateful for a.) my own amazing self care situation for my three current ponies and b.) for their highly efficient little pony digestive systems! I used to get so frustrated managing a barn of hard keeping TBs, and now I jump the same jumps and feed way, way less! Lol
              Best of Luck,
              A student in all things.

              Comment


              • #47
                There have been studies done by the AAEP, which showed that a very high percentage of horses at the track have ulcers. A lot of them do not exhibt ulcer behavior, but when scoped, they where there nonetheless.

                If possible, break the meal times into smaller portions, more often. Feeding grain three to five times a day, with free choice, quality hay will help get more weight on your horse.

                For most folks, five times is not doable, but three can be. Have you sent samples of your hay to your county extension office? They can analize it for you to make certain that it is not a "filler" hay.

                When I was growing up in Tuscaloosa, I had a mare who was allergic to Bahia hay, so we had to feed Bermuda. Back in the 60's, we did not have anything but Bahia and Bermuda to feed. Of course, we thought nothing of giving a 5lb coffee can full of sweet feed 2xday, either.

                I have a friend who lives in Centreville, AL, who suppliments her horses with alfalfa, besides giving Timothy and/or Bermuda. I am not certain where she gets it, but her supplier gets it from Canada. My friend works in B'ham. TKR, who posts on COTH, is a TB breeder in your area. She could probably give you some good ideas for better quality hay, too, if yours turns out to be a filler hay.

                Please do not discount him having ulcers?
                When in Doubt, let your horse do the Thinking!

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                • Original Poster

                  #48
                  Oh goodness, I'm not even sure why you guys revived this old thread or how someone came across it in the first place. This was forever ago, and by now I have my own farm and no longer deal with any boarding managers. Thanks, but this matter has LONG been closed. I'd rather not dredge up old, bad feelings again by rehashing this thread.
                  When life throws you lemons, put on your best Asian accent and scream "Faaack yuuuu Rehmooohns!" (says yours truly, the half-Japanese kid )

                  My Pony Blog Dressage & My Horsey Life

                  Comment


                  • #49
                    Really old threads have been coming back up a lot lately... not sure why.
                    Boyle Heights Kid 1998 16.1h OTTB Dark Bay Gelding
                    Tinner's Way x Sculpture by Hail to Reason
                    "Once you go off track, you never go back!"

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                    • #50
                      Originally posted by BoyleHeightsKid View Post
                      Really old threads have been coming back up a lot lately... not sure why.
                      I suspect it is the "similar threads" box that shows up now under all threads. And people don't notice the dates. Some of the zombie threads that have been bumped up ately go back way further than this one even!

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                      • #51
                        Good call to leave this barn. The situation is not likely to improve if you are this far apart in your thinking. Been there, done that. Glad to be out.

                        Comment

                        • Original Poster

                          #52
                          Is there anyway to get the Moderator to close this thread? The horse I mentioned in this thread died from suspicious causes, and the anniversary of his death was 2 frigging days ago. Every post made on this stupid thread makes my heart ache. Is there anyway to flag it to be closed or deleted? I'm hoping this comment catches some Moderator's attention and that they just close the stupid thread for me.
                          When life throws you lemons, put on your best Asian accent and scream "Faaack yuuuu Rehmooohns!" (says yours truly, the half-Japanese kid )

                          My Pony Blog Dressage & My Horsey Life

                          Comment


                          • #53
                            Report it to the moderators by clicking on the triangle in the bottom left corner of each post. You can ask that it be closed.
                            Caitlin
                            *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
                            http://community.webshots.com/user/redmare01

                            Comment


                            • #54
                              Originally posted by ClassynIvansMom View Post
                              Is there anyway to get the Moderator to close this thread? The horse I mentioned in this thread died from suspicious causes, and the anniversary of his death was 2 frigging days ago. Every post made on this stupid thread makes my heart ache. Is there anyway to flag it to be closed or deleted? I'm hoping this comment catches some Moderator's attention and that they just close the stupid thread for me.
                              I'm so sorry. The horse I mentioned died in a freak pasture accident in June. He was my horse in a million. I'll ask the mods to close it as well.

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