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Purina Senior...recommended by my vet...

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  • Purina Senior...recommended by my vet...

    Yesterday I brought my mare back to the clinic for rescoping her stomach to check the status of her ulcers after 28 days of UlcerGard daily. The ulcers are healed! I'm going to give her 1/2 tube for the next 6 days to dial her down on the dose.

    The vet at the clinic recommended 6 lbs of alfalfa per day, which I need to feed in pellets or cubes (bales of alfalfa are not readily available in my area). She isn't finicky about the taste of the alfalfa, she was eating the pellets just fine in the summer/fall before her ulcers starting bothering her more this winter. Recently, she has been happy to have "grain", waiting at the gate, saying "GIMME MY BREAKFAST!" but then doesn't eat all of it (2 lbs currently of a mix of alfalfa pellets and cubes, soaked...exactly like she got it before...and some days she eats all of it, some days she only nibbles) The vet suggested that I add Purina Senior to make the alfalfa more palletable (spelling?). I inquired about the quality of Purina grains, because in my opinion (and its just my opinion...) the Purina brand of horse grain is comparable to Ol'Roy dog food...they said that they strictly feed the hospital horses Purina Senior and have for years with great results...

    ...all said while the vet was wearing a Purina Mills hat...

    Folks - can people give me more input on Purina grain, and other good quality, low starch, senior grains out on the market? She is 19 so being on a senior feed in addition to her alfalfa wouldn't hurt.

    Can anyone
    "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

  • #2
    There's a big thread on "why do you hate Purina Strategy" or something to that effect - I haven't read it all, but no doubt there are loads of posts on why some folks don't like Purina in general

    Purina Sr is high in sugars and SO not what I would give an ulcer-prone horse Ingredient issue aside (not a fixed formula), I don't care how good a product is in general, *I* simply wouldn't put an ulcer horse on something with an NSC in the 20's.

    TC Senior would be FAR better for her - high nutrition, palatable (there are always those who just don't like it), easily digestible, and at 11% NSC, that's hard to beat
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      JB - I asked the vet about TC Senior and the response was "TC is so much lower quality than Purina"

      I have heard great things about TC Senior so that is why I mentioned it to him.

      My boyfriend's mom was with me at the clinic, and when the vet left the room, she said, "Did you see what's on his hat?" and when he returned, I realized she was referring to the "Purina Mills" hat he was wearing...we're thinking they are pushing Purina so much because they get a break on feeding it at the clinic from Purina, so they're reciprocating by recommending it to clients
      "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

      Comment


      • #4
        I think alot of clinics get a break on Purina feeds and feed them there at the clinics. We had a horse in the clinic not long ago that NEEDED to get calories in her and she wouldn't touch the Purina Sr...or any of their feed. They had us bring our feed down...she happily chowed We feed Pennfield and our Sr.'s get the Pennfield Sr...we like it.

        Stacy
        www.rushtonstables.com

        Comment


        • #5
          LOL sounds like your vet is sponsored by Purina! IMO TC Senior is light years ahead of Purina Senior in both quality and, as JB mentioned, MUCH lower NSC% which is important for ulcer-prone horses.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Yes, I asked him about feed for my coming 6 year old QH gelding while we were there...easy keeper (not obese, but definitely could lose a few pounds...not in work either so he is living the easy life right now!) Currently he is on good quality hay, and Poulin MVP for his vitamins and minerals. He was on this last summer while being ridden and was still in good shape. I wanted to know if this was sufficient (I believe it is since he is obviously not needing weight, and I'm making sure to get him his vit/min from the MVP).

            Anywho, he brought out a feed chart from none other than...PURINA! You slide the scale to where your horse falls under weight and activity, and the chart tells you what grain and how much to feed...that was the vet's way to talk to be about equine nutrition! WHOA! I just kept nodding and making noises like I was agreeing with him......

            So, for an ulcer prone mare who is getting NeighLox daily, alfalfa up to 2 lbs per feeding AM & PM, what feed would be good for her? I'm thinking of adding a senior feed to help with the palletability of her "grain" since she doesn't seem to be entirely interested in just alfalfa.

            She only needs it in the winter, she is quite round and happy in the summer, but I will more than likely keep her on some alfalfa to get her neighlox into her, and for the calcium in the alfalfa for her tummy.
            "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

            Comment


            • #7
              Thread

              I started the "Why do you hate Purina feeds" thread & there is some good info. on there....

              My horse was at Cornell & the vet I was dealing w/ wanted him to switch from Purina to TC Senior...we have different issues then you, but I really do think the vets try to do what's best for the horse, but if there is a "price break" then I'm sure that is why they push it.
              Royal Guardian- aka "Gabe"

              Comment


              • #8
                Many vets aren't familiar with products other than Purina unless they've pursued nutritional education outside of what they receive in vet school.

                When all you're taught is, "Purina is the best on the market," and then the company gives vets a discount on their products and pays for all sorts of (product-biased) educational opportunities, of course they're going to be inclined to recommend it.
                Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Texarkana - are you implying that vet schools only educate about Purina?

                  It was just annoying that when I inquired about NUTRITION, he just pushed Purina, and from a CHART! He couldn't talk to me about nutrition...

                  He also could not convert Selenium from PPM to Grams.
                  "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    These are the grains available in my area:

                    Blue Seal
                    Poulin (I love Poulin but will NOT feed their Senior...high in NSC)
                    Nutrena
                    Purina
                    Triple Crown
                    Dumor (TSC Brand)
                    "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by SuckerForHorses View Post
                      JB - I asked the vet about TC Senior and the response was "TC is so much lower quality than Purina"
                      Good Lord Ask him then why TC specifically lists exact ingredients, but the vast majority of Purina products list "grain products" or "forage products" or both.

                      Ask him what his definition of "quality" is.

                      In other words, ask him to explain specifically why he says this.

                      My guess is he's in the pocket of Purina and says/believes what the sales rep tells him

                      My boyfriend's mom was with me at the clinic, and when the vet left the room, she said, "Did you see what's on his hat?" and when he returned, I realized she was referring to the "Purina Mills" hat he was wearing...we're thinking they are pushing Purina so much because they get a break on feeding it at the clinic from Purina, so they're reciprocating by recommending it to clients
                      Exactly.
                      ______________________________
                      The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Annoying!

                        It's very annoying that you can't even get an unbiased opinion from your VET!
                        "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          [quote]
                          Originally posted by SuckerForHorses View Post
                          Currently he is on good quality hay, and Poulin MVP for his vitamins and minerals. He was on this last summer while being ridden and was still in good shape. I wanted to know if this was sufficient (I believe it is since he is obviously not needing weight, and I'm making sure to get him his vit/min from the MVP).
                          Poulin is a great company that offers a consistently good product. If your horse is keeping weight fine and hardly in work the MVP should be fine. It is my understanding that it acts as a ration balancer so it is ideal for the easy keeper.

                          So, for an ulcer prone mare who is getting NeighLox daily, alfalfa up to 2 lbs per feeding AM & PM, what feed would be good for her? I'm thinking of adding a senior feed to help with the palletability of her "grain" since she doesn't seem to be entirely interested in just alfalfa.
                          I would absolutely try TC Senior. It is very palatable, high in fat and high in fiber. Low NSC. Great grain choice for an ulcer prone horse

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by SuckerForHorses View Post
                            Texarkana - are you implying that vet schools only educate about Purina?
                            In a nutshell, yes. I'm sure a hundred vets will jump in here and talk about how they had an in depth, semester-long rotation on just equine nutrition. But in my experience working at vet schools and vet clinics, most are taught either directly or by example that Purina is an exemplary company and to turn to them for equine nutrition needs. Purina funds a lot of veterinary nutrition "research," so they're always right there in the forefront with their products. They're very good at catering to the veterinary community.
                            Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              LookinSouth - the only think I dislike about Poulin is that their Senior feed is quite high (in my opinion of course) in NSC at 27.3%! Otherwise, I think they definitely do offer a quality product.

                              I have a local retailer for Triple Crown...they recommend 6 lbs a day for a horse that can eat hay (she can), and to adjust up or down from the 6 lbs. I think I will start with 1 lb AM and PM and work up to 4 lbs per day...after all, its the volume of feed that I think makes her stop eating...she gets full, and walks away. It of course could also be that she is no longer finding the alfalfa tasty enough to eat alone. If I add the TC Senior and find that she is eating and finishing a meal, I'll assume it was the palletability of the alfalfa. TC Senior is $19.35 a bag in my area...I forgot how expensive feeding a senior can get!

                              I am also having her testing soon for Cushings...just a recommendation from the vet at the clinic (the good vet, not her husband!) since my mare is 19, quite hairy, and has the tucked up flank appearance despite the treatment of the ulcers. She said that can be a visible sign of Cushings, and since my mare falls into the appropriate age group, better to get her tested now for peace of mind.
                              "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Whoa, whoa, whoa folks.
                                Veterinarian does not = nutritiontionalist does not = veterinarian.

                                They are not the same thing. We, ie vets, have some knowledge and training in nutrition. We have 4 yrs to learn physiology, anatomy, medicine, pathology, surgery, canine, feline, exotic, cattle, small rumimant, birds, equine, anesthesia, ICU, vaccinations, etc, etc, etc, etc.

                                We are not experts in, or knowlegable in, every brand of feed. Any more so than we are experts in every brand of vaccine, or shoe, or suture or drug or anything else.

                                If you feel you know more about nutrition than your vet (and you may), than use your knowledge. If you don't, but don't feel your vet's nutritional knowledge is what you are comfortable with, find or ask for a nutritionalist. You can go to the American College of Veterinary Nutrition at www.acvn.org for more information and to see if you can find a board certified nutritionist to help you. A board certified nutrtitionist is like a board certified surgeon. They have done a residency in just nutrition, and have passed the specialty exam for it.

                                And, vets are not in the "pockets" of Purina, or any other feed company, or drug company. Their reps come by vets' offices to provide information about the products. And pass out things like FREE caps, promo items like the wheels and charts, etc. As the vet we have to assume the Purina rep knows more about nutrition, and the product, than we do since that is their job and their area of expertise. Remember, we do medicine/surgery, not nutritition, for a living. It is not a conspiracy between us vets and Purina against you horse owners, trust me.

                                FWIW, there is a reason there is more than one feed company out there. If there was the PERFECT one, there would be only that one. And presonally, I like Purina. I have fed Purina for nearly 50 yrs and my horses have done very well on it. I am not fond of Senior in general. My horses just don't care for it.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  SuckerForHorses,

                                  If the goal is just to get her to eat more of the alfalfa pellets (and not really start senior feeding) I think the smartest choice is to look into flavorings and since peppermint oil is "good for the tummy" (google it and you'll get the 411 on anitspasm benefit and more from medical sources) why not start there. It is easy enough to find at GNC or other places for a few bucks. If she does not like it you wasted a few bucks and if she does you can start ferreting out a cheaper sources.

                                  As for Sr feeding, I generally make my own and that allows me the flexiblity of individuallizing the ration....both in form and nutrition. But if the need arises for prebagged Senior feeds they are here, there and everywhere. I hate paying the cost, but hands down of all the prebagged seniors the best results is Purina Equine Sr.

                                  I have done my share of Purina bashing. Their egos frequently get in the way of their clients needs. But I like Purina Equine Sr.

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by D Taylor View Post
                                    SuckerForHorses,

                                    If the goal is just to get her to eat more of the alfalfa pellets (and not really start senior feeding) I think the smartest choice is to look into flavorings and since peppermint oil is "good for the tummy" (google it and you'll get the 411 on anitspasm benefit and more from medical sources) why not start there..
                                    She may be finicky about the alfalfa, or she may just be full. We're thinking to add another palettable grain to see if that entices her to eat her full meal. And, since she's 19, a senior feed wouldn't hurt. She is SUPER PICKY, and honestly, I think the strong scent of peppermint will turn her away, not encourage her to eat. By "super picky" I mean, sometimes I think if she even sees you put something in her dish other than her regular grain, she won't even go near the dish
                                    "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by MeghanDACVA View Post
                                      Whoa, whoa, whoa folks.
                                      Veterinarian does not = nutritiontionalist does not = veterinarian.
                                      I realize this. I was just expecting some discussion on general nutrition, and instead the vet just started ranting about how great Purina was and that nothing else compares, without really explaining WHY he thought so. I don't expect him to be an expert about nutrition, but offering NOTHING to the conversation except that I should be feeding her Purina Senior was disappointing.

                                      Also, he said that the soil in this area is Vit E & Selenium deficient, and that she should be getting 1 Gram of Selenium per day, no matter what I feed. I told him that I have been feeding Poulin MVP, so he printed the nutrition info on that supplement, and proceeded to scan over the paper numerous times, then never said if she was getting what he was recommending, just said "well, at Selenium 2.75 PPM and Vitamin E at 25,000 IU/LB, I don't know the grams, but that should be enough."

                                      I just didn't feel that he was educated in nutrition on any level, even though he and the other vet claimed he was the "nutrition expert."
                                      "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Of the brands you listed my top choices would be Triple Crown or Blue Seal. Purina would be third, cross the rest off.

                                        The TC senior is good stuff if hte horse likes the taste of it. If you do decide to try Purina Senior, try the Purina ACTIVE senior HEALTHY EDGE. It is new, and has lower NSC, it is NSC of 16%. Not as low as TC at 11% but better than their regular senior. Also it has a higher fat content for better keeping weight on. I have been using it for a few months to save money (tc senior is pricey here) and my horses are doing fine on it. Truly I don't see a difference in them so may stay on it for awhile as it is a bit cheaper.

                                        Comment

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