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Veggie oil for adding weight?

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  • Veggie oil for adding weight?

    Ok..so I'm trying to put some weight on my OTTB..yep..hard keeper ..slowing gaining with omega plus supplementing his grain (can't give him too much grain bcuz he's still on stall rest and he can get crazy hot)..he gets free choice hay..my vet who I think is awesome stated that veggie oil isn't the best thing for a horse and yes he stated the reason which of course I have now forgotten. My question is... have you had any problems giving vegetable oil with feed...or how much has it helped?

  • #2
    I feed 2 cups a day to my hard keeper. It is mixed in with a huge munch bucket of feed, alfalfa pellets and beet pulp. Without the calories it provides I (the horse) would be sunk (very underweight).

    Like any feed product yes it can be over done, some horses just do not do well on it and there are some horses that should not have it. But we (both the horse and I) are grateful for it. His weight is great and he does not get so chilled in the winter time! So in general I give oil a thumbs up.

    BTW my vet had a client that had a thin TB. He wrote down my hard keepers munch bucket recipe to give the the TB's owner.

    Comment


    • #3
      I'll agree with your vet that veggie oil isn't the best oil or product you could be feeding, but it will add calories.

      The probable reason your vet cited is the unbalanced omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acids, which causes inflammatory effects in the body.

      Plus, veggie oil is usually a mix of soybean and corn oils-- two products that while very common in feedstuffs, have been found to have more and more ill health effects. (Insulin resistance, for starters)

      With that said, you're looking at a very cost effect way to add an additional 2000 calories a day. All oil can help prevent colic in some instances, and can improve coat shine.

      Personally, I've had better luck putting weight on horses calorie for calorie by supplementing with higher quality hay or additional protein than by feeding oil (veggie or other). But I'll still add a little oil with some when all else fails.
      Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO

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      • #4
        There are much better oils out there, veggie oil is so processed and offers little value other than calories. Have you tried a weight gainer or adding omega shine?

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        • #5
          consider cocosoya oil and rice bran - works really well for our hard keeper.

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          • #6
            "Veggie oil" differs by the area. In my area it is pretty much SB oil.

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            • #7
              I've used Cocosoya in the past, which is a combo of coconut and soybean oil. Works great for weight gain.

              Have you also tried alfalfa pellets/hay/cubes? Nothing packs weight on my horse faster than alfalfa. She just has to look at them and I swear she'll gain 10 lbs (kind of like me and cupcakes...)

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              • #8
                Ditto the cocosoya oil, and alfalfa cubes or pellets. All worked well.

                We also feed Legends Omega Plus. It's a rice bran and flax-based nugget. 1 pound is 1800 calories. Great calories per pound, and my horse LOVES IT. It also put a nice shine on him.

                Corn oil absolutely worsened his arthritis stiffness, and he eventually turned his nose up at it. I would definitely choose Cocosoya over vegetable or corn oil.

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                • #9
                  it gave our OTTB severe diarrhea.....

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mah Navu View Post
                    it gave our OTTB severe diarrhea.....
                    How was it introduced into your horse's diet?
                    To avoid digestive upset, oil should be added gradually to the diet, generally start with 2-4T/day & increase to 2c/day over 2-4weeks: some horses are more sensitive to dietary change so go more slowly, others appear more tolerant.
                    Generally, the oil is mixed with a few to several pounds of beet pulp or some other mash; it is better digested if split between at least 2 meals rather than given once/day.

                    You can try different oils - Rice Bran & Hemp Oil seems to be the "IT" oils - also products such as flax.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by jump4joy View Post
                      Ok..so I'm trying to put some weight on my OTTB..yep..hard keeper ..slowing gaining with omega plus supplementing his grain (can't give him too much grain bcuz he's still on stall rest and he can get crazy hot)..he gets free choice hay..my vet who I think is awesome stated that veggie oil isn't the best thing for a horse and yes he stated the reason which of course I have now forgotten. My question is... have you had any problems giving vegetable oil with feed...or how much has it helped?
                      Well, FIRST of all, you need to remember what your vet told you about why he doesn't like veg. oil. Ask him again and write down his answers. Then we could respond to his reservations one by one.

                      I feed most of my horses oil of some kind. (I feed canola oil rather than corn oil). They start when they are just weanlings. I find that and BP are both excellent sources of calories without other issues.

                      Alot of people do prefer other forms of fat (like rice bran, black sunflower seed or flax), but oil is the only form that is 100% fat. I think rice bran is 30%, for example.

                      And I did alot of price-per-calorie comparisons on various fat products & oil is by far the cheapest. I buy the big gallon jugs of canola oil from Wal-Mart.

                      I start my babies out with just a little -- say 1/4 of a cup. This is mixed with oats, BP, Vit/Min supplement and soaked. I also feed a good quality grass hay and (for the youngsters or broodies) some alfalfa hay.

                      My hard to keep broodies can get as much as 3 cups per day when they are lactating. Some horses don't care of it, I've heard, but I've never had one of mind reject it. And you DO have to introduce it slowing and watch that it doesn't give them the poops (which too much alfalfa will also do if given suddenly).

                      AND keep in mind that in the summer it can go rancid -- so it's important to keep it refrigerated in hot weather and make sure you don't give them more than they can finish in one meal. Clean their feeders out between meals unless they are licked clean.

                      Of course, I find it interested that the same researchers that came out praising added fat to skies 10-15 yrs ago are now finding fault with the same product -- I think mainly because they gotta have a job, right? So I'm sure they thought "Hey, we gotta keep our jobs, so let's think of another research project we can do. HOw 'bout we look into oil again?"

                      Seriously, from a historical viewpoint, breeders looking to add calories to their "performance" horses (which back then meant they were the horse ridden into raids & battles with other tribes) were feeding fat centuries ago.

                      Arab tribesmen brought their horses up by feeding them small amounts of grain & forage ('cause that stuff is sort of hard to get in the middle of desert), but a large portion of the horse's food consisted of dates (!) and camel's milk (very high fat).

                      And the Turkomen tribes who developed the Akhal Teke breed fed their horse barley, mutton fat and chopped lucerne (alfalfa). They rolled it into little balls and fed it by hand to their horses. Written historical records by the few travelers to find their way to that area speak of horses who were able to cover 200 miles in less than 2 days carrying large amts of weight and moving "at speed".

                      Of course many things played a part in the success of these breeds in terms of stamina & such, but obviously the feeding program was not bad for the horse(s). And, again, it's the same stuff (% wise) as modern horse breeders with all our labs & scientists have FINALLY figured out. I mean, I'm not sure who it was that started the "nothing but oats & hay" protocol, but it sure wasn't these REALLY old timey horse breeders.

                      Same stuff they tell us to feed today: protein, fat, carbs. Sometimes history will tell us more than modern scientists will...remember, these "old timey" guys fed their horses this stuff for centuries and produced very successful, sound animals with absolutely incredible ability. To me that carries more weight (so to speak) than a 2011 scientist who works in a lab.

                      I just wish Wal-Mart carried mutton fat & camel's milk....
                      Last edited by Kyzteke; Jan. 19, 2012, 04:23 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Texarkana View Post

                        Personally, I've had better luck putting weight on horses calorie for calorie by supplementing with higher quality hay or additional protein than by feeding oil (veggie or other). But I'll still add a little oil with some when all else fails.
                        That's because you are just increasing cals by feeding more hay. You are increasing the quanity, that's all. And that will work.

                        But alfalfa or any "high protein" food will not add cals by itself. ALL carbs and ALL protein foodstuffs have the same # of cals per unit (and I've forgotten what that unit is ) which is 4 cals. Pure fat of ANY kind -- corn oil, bacon fat, canola oil, etc. etc. have 9 cals per unit. Over twice the amout of cals as protein & carbs. So you are never going to get a horse to gain weight using protein, unless you are simply feeding MORE of it.

                        This is the same for people as well. That's why too much fat can screw your diet all to hell.

                        It could be that a fussy horse will "sort" through a lower quality hay, but when you improve the quality of the hay (and therefore we assume the taste) or go to alfalfa, which every horse I've ever met absolutely ADORES, the sorting stops and they eat every last crumb. So the reason adding hay of any kind to your feeding program end up helping your horse gain weight is simply that he's getting MORE food and he is eating every scrap of what he's given. But it -- it has nothing to do with protein itself adding cals.

                        Just to clarify.

                        And to the OP -- If you haven't already tried these things, you might want to look into them: Adding a pro and pre biotic to the horse's feed, have his teeth checked every year and be super scrupulous about your worming protocol, including the occasional fecal to make sure you are targeting the right parasite. All of this will make sure whatever food you are giving your guy is being utilized fully.
                        Last edited by Kyzteke; Jan. 19, 2012, 04:35 AM.

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                        • #13
                          My horse gets a couple cups of canola oil (I chose that one for some reason, I think having to do with the balance of omegas) with alfalfa pellets and a dash of Strategy.

                          Mostly I started feeding him the oil because he's a draft and I suspect EPSM and an "EPSM diet" works for non-EPSM horses too. He's in great weight and his coat's nice and shiny despite it being winter and so he's all fluffy. But yes, to avoid making his poo all runny, you'll want to add in the oil slowly (we upped it by a quarter cup every several days until we got to where we wanted it).

                          I know a lot of folks who have lots of good things to say about cocosoya oil but I couldn't find a local supplier and I like being able to just run to the grocery store and pick up a gallon jug when the pony starts running low, hence the canola.
                          The Trials and Jubilations of a Twenty-Something Re-rider
                          Happy owner of Kieran the mostly-white-very-large-not-pony.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            My ancient toothless pony gets about a cup and a half of veg. oil per day. I think it is soy/corn. No apparent problems with that. He also gets a flax-based feed, and rice bran, amongst a lot of other things.
                            My Equestrian Art Photography page

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Texarkana View Post
                              Plus, veggie oil is usually a mix of soybean and corn oils-- two products that while very common in feedstuffs, have been found to have more and more ill health effects. (Insulin resistance, for starters)
                              Just curious- how does oil contribute to insulin resistance? Oil, by itself, has close to zero effect on blood sugar levels.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I feed my old TB a gleam and gain powder (you can get it through Dover and they have similar products through Smart Pak, etc.) - he gets a scoop in his feed twice a day. It really isn't that expensive. In the really cold months I also feed a little corn oil once a day, just to add some more calories. He gets the supplement fall through spring and the oil Dec-Feb (usually). It's really helped him keep weight on in the winter without breaking the bank!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I cannot agree enough with the coccosoya comments- I give my mare OTTB 4 oz/day during winter/cold months mixed with her grain.

                                  I have used corn oil in the past but like the coccosoya better. I have been told to be careful about veggie oil by my vet as it is harder to ID what is in it and ingredients are sometimes not as consistent, especially if you horse has an adverse reaction.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by jump4joy View Post
                                    can't give him too much grain bcuz he's still on stall rest and he can get crazy hot
                                    Horses get "hot" on stall rest in part because of too many calories.

                                    You need calories to gain weight.

                                    There are low sugar grains that have calories, have *nutrition* (very important for healing!) and are no more likely to make a horse hot than the calories from oil.

                                    I would MUCH rather either keep a horse lean while on stall rest, or feed high quality nutritional calories, than feed just hay and oil.
                                    ______________________________
                                    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Texarkana View Post
                                      The probable reason your vet cited is the unbalanced omega 6 to omega 3 fatty acids, which causes inflammatory effects in the body.

                                      Plus, veggie oil is usually a mix of soybean and corn oils-- two products that while very common in feedstuffs, have been found to have more and more ill health effects. (Insulin resistance, for starters)
                                      Of course all these "inflammatory effects" from corn oil are from studies in humans and not horses. Since horses are hindgut fermenters and have an all together different GIT than humans, we need to be careful drawing conclusions across species lines (same with the "corn is always bad for dogs" argument).

                                      One of the most cost effective ways to add calories to a horse that is maxed out on hay/grain is to add corn oil. Start with 1/4c once a day and then work up to no more than 1-2c/day.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        i have used olive oil and have found success in doing so. remember to slowly increase to prevent the runs...yuck1

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