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What grain are you feeding?

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  • What grain are you feeding?

    Well my show pony is finally coming home from his lease in a few days. YAY! He's going to a boarding facility where client buys their own grain. But its been so long since Ive had to grain my own, I dont know what to get anymore lol.
    So what is everyone else feeding these days. What are the good brands now? Are there some that most people are trying to avoid?
    A bit about him.....Pony is an easy keeper only needs about half a scoop / 1.5 lbs twice a day. to stay plump. Plus his hay and grass. He eats everything pellets or sweet. I'll keep him at a 12%.
    He'll be in light to moderate work. I think years ago I was feeding him Horsemans edge? Is that still any good?

    Any input will be great. Thanks

  • #2
    Pony + easy keeper = no grain

    Plump is not healthy.

    HE is not a quality grain, no formula, and is too high in sugars for pony+easy keeper.

    At most go with a ration balancer. It may be a full 1lb, but if it's a small pony you're looking at 1/2lb.
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


    • #3
      What grain were they feeding him at the lease?
      R.I.P. Eagles Hill. 4/6/00-12/10/11.


      • #4
        Whatever it was, 3lb was too much, and less than that is likely shortchanging nutrition.
        The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


        • #5
          Why don't you just continue feeding whatever grain he is currently getting?

          I use Triple Crown and Standlee products currently. I love that TC has a fixed formula, and lists NSC levels on their website. I use their senior formula and their ration balancer, both seem good and all the horses on my farm have dapples now. I also use Standlee alfalfa pellets for my TB and my boarder's TB.

          For an easy keeper pony I would use a ration balancer.
          come what may

          Rest in peace great mare, 1987-2013


          • #6
            But why continue to feed what he was getting when, in her words, he was "plump"? Plump is not healthy!
            The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


            • #7
              Personally I HATE plump, I want trim with ribs lightly visible to ribs very easily felt but not seen (dependent on breed and body type). Smartpak makes a product called EZ Keeper which provides basic vitamins/minerals and can round out a grass/hay only diet. I would just keep him on that and if he needs something more or loses weight come winter, I would look at a ration balancer.
              A ration balancer is fairly low calorie and is fed at a rate of 1-2 lbs depending on size and activity level. My mare is not an easy keeper but is an easier keeper in the summer and she is eating 2 lb of a ration balancer made by Buckeye (gro n' win, gro n' show, something like that) and then 1/2 lb of their pelleted rice bran product called Ultimate finish. I've had very positive experiences with both Seminole and Buckeye.


              • #8
                Agree with JB.

                I've just started the Cavalor feed. It's beautiful and not cheap, but I have only been on it a week.

                I'm a big fan of Pennfield. Their Cool N Lite is much like a ration balancer.

                Horseman's Edge is not anything I would personally feed.


                • Original Poster

                  I havent asked the current trainer yet what kind of grain he's getting right now since when she sent me pictures he looked a bit under weight. I also dont even know if I can get the same kind of grain here. Im in a different part of the country than trainer and my pony are. but we'll see on that one.

                  I definetly do not like seeing over weight ponies myself. I like to be able to feel ribs. not see them. Yes in my world plump is nicely muscled and no hip/shoulder or rib bones poking out. Not fat or overweight And that is how I had him 3 years ago. Lets not everyone start jumping to conclusions.

                  Ive never had a problem feeding him grain and him becoming some kind of monsterous over weight roly poly animal that cant breathe or move. Ive never used a ration balancer before or felt the need to. So im not educated in that department. Who knows maybe ill need too at the new place since the grass there looks pretty good. Oh and Ill mention pony is on the larger size of large ponies.
                  I'll have to check some of these brands out. I think I might be ok to get a more expensive brand(if its one thats good) since he doesnt need a whole lot.


                  • #10
                    Purina Enrich 32 (and pasture) because I only need to feed 2 lbs to get the full vit/minerals needed vs. 5 lbs of regular grain to hit the daily minimum vit/minerals needed and the horse doesn't need 5lbs of grain.

                    This is true for my yearling and my 16 year old. Yearling gets some additional calories from oil and flax seed.

                    Purina brand, because I can get it here.
                    DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/


                    • Original Poster

                      So I just went and did some research on the ration balancer. What a neat product. Im thinking I like the sounds of it for any horse.

                      So to those of you that feed the ration balancer. Do you all feed it with some other 'regular' grain as well or by its self? Especially if the horses are being worked regularly?


                      • #12
                        I don't need to for the riding horse during the summer, because he is a pig on 40 acres of grass. During the winter he was fine because he got some alfalfa. But if he wasn't then I would probably add plain oats for him, because he could actually use a bit more zing--he is extremely quiet.

                        See above, the baby gets some flax and oil added to hers to up the calories/fat. I'm not sure what I would go to next for her. Hasn't been an issue yet! She does get a bit of alfalfa as well in the winter (not much).

                        I REALLY like feeding it. It is more cost effective for me too. I have needed complete grain (like Triple Crown Senior) for hard keeping, older TBs before though. I can't get all funky with adding this or that because I board, so with a hard-keeper that was easier for me and the barn owner.
                        DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/


                        • #13
                          My pony is also an easy keeper. She just gets some beet pulp with a multi-vitamin. Some Omega Horseshine as well for her coat.

                          She looks great on it. No grain needed.
                          <3 Vinnie <3
                          Jackie's Punt ("Bailey") My Finger Lakes Finest Thoroughbred


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by NiQi View Post
                            So I just went and did some research on the ration balancer. What a neat product. Im thinking I like the sounds of it for any horse.

                            So to those of you that feed the ration balancer. Do you all feed it with some other 'regular' grain as well or by its self? Especially if the horses are being worked regularly?
                            Ration balancers are meant to be the sole non-forage source of nutrition, and with few exceptions, you do not feed any other fortified grain product with them. Exceptions are when you need more calories than 1lb of a RB, but not as much as, say, the 5lb+ recommende for TC Complete. So, you cut the TC Complete in half and give a 1/2lb of the ration balancer.

                            In your situation though, you are looking for nutrition without many significant calories. So, 1lb at most for a pony, less if it's a small to medium.

                            if for some reason you find you need more calories, then a pound or three of alfalfa pellets and/or beet pulp would do the trick nicely.
                            The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by NiQi View Post
                              So I just went and did some research on the ration balancer. What a neat product. Im thinking I like the sounds of it for any horse.

                              So to those of you that feed the ration balancer. Do you all feed it with some other 'regular' grain as well or by its self? Especially if the horses are being worked regularly?
                              I've had great luck with ration balancers and I'm a huge fan of Triple Crown. TC30 and TC Lite have low NSC values, which is great and very important for ponies. We have fed both with very good results. Changing my daughter's old pony over to TC Lite and flax seed from a Pennfield feed made a huge difference for him. He no longer needed regular injections, looked the best we'd ever seen him and started winning every time out. We currently feed TC30 and because of a move are going back to boarding. The barn feeds a Pennfield feed and would order the Pennfield ration balancer for us, but I'm going to make the drive to the feed store that carries Triple Crown instead because the NSC value is lower and I'm really happy with it.


                              • #16
                                Not all ponies are created equal, folks. I've had ponies that live on air and have to be muzzled the moment they step outside the barn door, but I've also had ponies with TB type metabolisms. You feed the individual, not the type. Both of my ponies right now are hard workers and are quite fit...they still have different needs, but they could NOT get by on forage alone with the amount they work.

                                OP, I feed an RB to a good deal of my horses, including one of the ponies...he gets' about 1.5lbs right now. Some of them I add a little bit oil to for some extra calories (including him, though his is a tiny amount). Lots of quality hay, and they look and do great! These are event horses (and ponies), so they are hard working, even at the lower levels.

                                My other pony, who has a little bit less pony like in his metabolism, gets 3-5lbs (depending on the time of year and his work load) of a 12% P, 6% fat textured ("sweet") feed. Also gets lots of quality hay. Both feeds are made by Pennfield.

                                I think RBs are a great choice for a lot of horses, especially ones that are a little on the easy side. They get what they need into them without a lot of extra stuff, and they still feel like they are getting SOMETHING to eat.


                                • #17
                                  I agree they aren't all created equal - some are ponies, some are just little horses LOL

                                  My recommendations were based off "pony + easy keeper + plump" which defines the stereotypical pony
                                  The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


                                  • #18
                                    We feed Legends Performance Pelleted and love it. The hard keepers are fat on it and the easy keepers (with just enough grain to get supplements) look great on it too. It is cheap and even the picky guys love it!

                                    Good luck with your pony!


                                    • Original Poster

                                      Thanks to all for the input!