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The mechanics of feeding

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  • The mechanics of feeding

    My horses are super easy keeper pets so I feed them a semi concentrated equine supplement (so they get a few cups a day) and trace mineral analysis shows all vitamin minerals are within normal range. The complete equine supplement I am feeding is also recommended by my vet for easy keepers.

    I have been thinking of changing my horses over to a organic horse feed. I have been of the understanding with a complete equine ration you should be feeding around the suggested amount in order to achieve nutritional needs, considering the local hay is pretty much filler. My hesitations to switching to this organic feed is that I am not sure my pets need grain and that if I was to feed the suggested amount for a 1000 lbs ldle horse I would be significantly increasing there amount of food. Or if I was to feed less than suggested amount I would possibly need to add a supplement on top of the complete feed. Is my way of thinking incorrect.

    I have seriously considering switching my horses to the complete equine supplement that my barn owner is feeding her horses but are my concerns valid or am I over thinking. Any wisdom would be greatly appreciated.

  • #2
    Yes, your thinking is correct. I would not increase the intake of grains in a horse that does not need them, simply to be "organic". Not sure what your desire is by changing to organic...is the hay they eat organic? If not, the minimal amount of organic grain doesn't make sense. If they don't need the supplement for anything beyond vitamin/mineral intake, then either find an organic version (does such a thing exist??) or keep them on their current ration.
    Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


    • #3
      No. I would continue feeding them the ration balancer they are on.


      • #4
        unless the land they live on is certified organic, and he hay is grown on certified organic land with certified organic practices, you are essentially pi$$ing away your money with an organic feed.... and they'd be eating more.
        chaque pas est fait ensemble


        • #5
          I would not assume the local hay is "pretty much filler" unless I had it tested.
          "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

          ...just settin' on the Group W bench.


          • Original Poster

            The reason I am contemplating organic feed is because farm owner prefers all organic on her farm and feeds her horses organic feed. Saying local hay is filler was me being nice, it has been tested and has very little and next to nothing in it just dried grass not very green. Horses need to be supplemented with selenium and other minerals or can develop serious deficiencies. The organic feed is complete and appears lovely and barn owner horses have lovely shinny coats although they have only been on that feed a few months now. But Barn owner is actually feeding less than suggested amount for an idle horse. I am concerned that if I feed my horses the same they may develop as deficiency over time. I have been told of horses in our area have actually almost died attributed to a serious selenium deficiency. But it is not just selenium, the complete supplement my horses are on now gives them what they need, I have done a complete trace mineral panel and all vitamins and minerals were within normal range, also I am feeding the complete supplement recommended by my vet.


            • #7
              IMO, don't fix what isn't broken. "Organic" is not worth the hype unless you are trying to deal with a specific problem.
              come what may

              Rest in peace great mare, 1987-2013


              • #8
                Originally posted by SAcres View Post
                IMO, don't fix what isn't broken.

                And if your horses are super easy keepers be thankful that your hay is "pretty much filler"!!
                Follow us on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/peonyvodka/


                • #9
                  is the barn owner pressuring you to change?
                  chaque pas est fait ensemble


                  • #10
                    If your horses also have lovely shiny coats you are probably also fine with what you're feeding. Not that this is the only marker of a healthy and well-nourished animal, but changing for the sake of changing if your animals are doing fine doesn't make sense. You've said the product your VET recommends gives them what they need, so why change?

                    If the BO is insisting you change, that's a different story and IMO a terrible business practice.
                    Click here before you buy.


                    • Original Poster

                      Originally posted by Petstorejunkie View Post
                      is the barn owner pressuring you to change?
                      Yes the barn owner is trying to convince me to change. I am just concerned grain may be to much for my horses. If they were in full work that would be another story but they are not in work and even when they were they were still easy keepers. My horses coats are not as shinny as I would like but I do see shine under that dirt. We live on the wet coast and I try and manage the mud as best possible but I have limited funds so we do have some mud and my horses like to roll and get dirty. Usually when my horse sheds out and has his first bath he looks gorgeous. I have actually had compliments the equine surgeon I sometimes use on how good my horse looked.


                      • #12
                        Then tell the barn owner as politely as possible that you appreciate her suggestion but will stick to what youre feeding. You know a lot about nutrition already, and yes, I think the grain would be too much if they are doing this well on ration balancer and hay. With your mineral results being normal, the horses happy and healthy, and your vet recommendations I see no reason to change what you are doing


                        • Original Poster

                          I have not changed anything . But as organic is really important to barn manager I am going to try and find an accessible organic supplement. BTW I truly appreciate organic non-GMO, I just need to be confident my horses adequate vitamins and minerals they need without getting much grain that I do not think need much of.
                          Last edited by Fharoah; Feb. 3, 2013, 04:08 AM.


                          • #14
                            If there is a change in BO horses, I would check the feed tag for flax, rice bran, etc before I assumed the shiny coats were due to improvement. I know plenty of people who feed Omega HS/flax as an alternative to actually currying their horses and are so proud of how they look!



                            • #15
                              Dynamite (marketing, if you google it add the marketing!) doesn't advertise organic, but they are as organic as you can get. They're actually the ONLY organic mill as far as I know, most mills spray with pesticides, not the machining, but the grounds, they do not. It may seem expensive, but you have to feed very little so it lasts forever. I would chat with a rep, if you need a suggestion I have a couple great ones who are really knowledgable and may even have alternative suggestions that will satisfy your Bo.


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by SAcres View Post
                                IMO, don't fix what isn't broken. "Organic" is not worth the hype unless you are trying to deal with a specific problem.
                                High Quality Tack Resale


                                • Original Poster

                                  Originally posted by TBRedHead View Post
                                  Dynamite (marketing, if you google it add the marketing!) doesn't advertise organic, but they are as organic as you can get. They're actually the ONLY organic mill as far as I know, most mills spray with pesticides, not the machining, but the grounds, they do not. It may seem expensive, but you have to feed very little so it lasts forever. I would chat with a rep, if you need a suggestion I have a couple great ones who are really knowledgable and may even have alternative suggestions that will satisfy your Bo.

                                  I live in Canada and they no longer list ingredients only the guaranteed analysis. When talking to the feed store they stated the feed companies were not allowed to label as GMO or non GMO. I hear different things from different sources so don't know what the true situation is.


                                  • #18
                                    Yes, Canada has WEIRD laws surrounding natural products. If you need screen shots, feel free to pm me! I have a friend in Canada who may have suggestions.


                                    • #19
                                      I don't understand why the BO would want to switch your horses to a presumably more expensive grain when the RB they are on is working perfectly fine? Who pays for the feed? Why should you have to purchase a new/different supplement to make up for the vit/min your horses WON'T be getting when they are given a small ration of complete feed (that won't be complete in your case because it sounds like they won't be able to handle the recommended amount).

                                      If your horses are healthy, the appropriate weight, and happy with their current diet it would not seem like a wise decision to change t up completely (new feed, new amount, new supplement).
                                      "No hour of life is wasted that is spent in the saddle" - Winston Churchill

                                      Check out Central Virginia Horse Rescue


                                      • #20
                                        Haven't quite figured out the common sense of organic anything, having been born long before such a concept was ever considered necessary (it was all organic back then) or possible.

                                        Enjoying some aspects of this "Brave New World".
                                        Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.

                                        Remember the horse does all the work, we just sit there and look pretty.