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Free Choice Minerals?

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  • Free Choice Minerals?

    This past weekend at a horse trial, I was having a passing conversation with a rider who's a vet, talking about my two year old whose joints are growing exponentially (and I'm going to have him xrayed yet again this weekend). She suggested giving all my horses "free choice minerals".

    I've never heard of this, and I didn't get to see her again to clarify.

    So I'm picking your collective brains: What is a good free choice mineral supplement, where do I get it, etc.?

    Thanks in advance!

    BTW: She noted this was more than merely the mineral salt block, which we have.....
    Last edited by Kairoshorses; Oct. 15, 2008, 01:07 PM. Reason: salt!
    --Becky in TX
    Clinic Blogs and Rolex Blogs
    She who throws dirt is losing ground.

  • #2
    A good friend of mine bought my horses (ages 19, 18 and 5) a bag of Red-Cal, made by the Natural Horse Vet. It's expensive, but my horses seem to love it. They nibble at it every now and then - my youngster more so than the seniors. They've had access to it for nearly a month now, and I haven't noticed really any difference yet.

    Comment


    • #3
      I use Purina's Nature's Essentials 12:12 minerals, get them at the feed store. I keep them in a tire feeder under the run-in area right next to the salt block; they can eat some if they feel like it.
      Click here before you buy.

      Comment


      • #4
        equipride or ABC rush creek minerals

        These are very good, both of them. both are balanced in CA/P. Both are safe for free-choice feeding. The benefit of Equipride is that the freechoice is in a hard-tub form so water/wind etc will not damage it. great stuff.

        Comment


        • #5
          I've been happy with both of Progressive Nutrition's free choice loose mineral products.

          They have several versions depending on forage type - and you can also choose between just vitamin/mineral/yeast or a product with added protein.

          All of my horses get the protein added version (ForagePro) out in the field which makes life very easy since the only horses I have to bring in to "feed" are lactating moms and horses in work that need more calories.
          Liz
          Ainninn House Stud
          Irish Draughts and Connemaras
          Co. Westmeath, Ireland

          Comment


          • #6
            i use ADMs Mineral choice lick

            I have no idea if free choice minerals will help with big joints or not, BUT I do offer all of my babies minerals in the form of ADMs mineral choice lick. And adequate zinc and copper seem to be important for joint health in horses, but I don't know if the standard mineral licks have enough zinc and copper in them.
            Plus I prefer that the Zn and Cu be in a chelated form, which is way to expensive to put into a lick.
            Yours
            MW
            Melyni (PhD) PAS, Dipl. ACAN.
            Sign up for the Equine nutrition enewsletter on www.foxdenequine.com
            New edition of book is out:
            Horse Nutrition Handbook.

            www.knabstruppers4usa.com

            Comment


            • #7
              Loose minerals are a MUCH better way for the horse to get what it needs.

              I tried the Moormans Quad block and my horse would not eat it.

              So I stick with Purina 12:12 ... and loose stock salt.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by gabz View Post

                So I stick with Purina 12:12 ... and loose stock salt.
                I too feed (loose) minerals with (loose) salt separately. A few years ago during the heat of the summer one of my neighbors horses became very, very sick. After a gigantic vet bill, they concluded the horse had overdosed himself on minerals in the mineral block while trying to get the salt he needed.
                my horse trailer was stolen from kentucky horse park. Seen it?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by CurlyLindsay View Post
                  I too feed (loose) minerals with (loose) salt separately. A few years ago during the heat of the summer one of my neighbors horses became very, very sick. After a gigantic vet bill, they concluded the horse had overdosed himself on minerals in the mineral block while trying to get the salt he needed.
                  I use ADM Grostrong loose minerals and I also ALWAYS keep salt available seperately. The ADM salesperson told me that there was salt in the mineral so I didn't need the extra salt blocks, but I don't want them to overeat the minerals when they just want some salt. I think he just wanted me to use more of his minerals! LOL!

                  april
                  april
                  Equine Retirement at
                  www.StonyRidgeFarm.webs.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Here's info on the EquiLix by Equipride that El Tovar mentioned: http://www.equipride.biz/product.aspx?id=2

                    My mares LOFF the Lix and give it Two Hooves Up.
                    <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have used either the Southern States or Purina product for years, depending on which store I'm at when I run out. My mini donks only get hay and that way I can assure they get some minerals they need. The horses like it too. I find when a new horse comes in, they will eat a LOT, I'm assuming to make up whatever deficiet they have had previously. Then they just eat it occasionally as would be expected.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Boy, the Equilix sure looks like something that might work here. I can't seem to see how long they expect one to last?

                        Anyone able to say how long one lasts with, say 4 horses?

                        I use free choice hay all winter... Am dithering over vits/mins right at this moment. Want the BEST choice, not the cheapest nor the most expensive.

                        As far as the Forage Pro--do you have run-ins that you keep it inside of? How do you put it out?
                        InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs
                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                        Bits are like cats, what's one more? (Petstorejunkie)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Pinto: Send a PM off to LMH. She has more horses than I do so could tell you better how long a large EquiLix would last.

                          I started with a small tub to see how Tank would do with it. Ummm, inhaled would be the right word -- I just got her a giant one and should see that one lasting a while. Tis much loved.
                          <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            If I got Equipride, could I stop feeding Accel and Omega Horsehine? What about Lysine, I do not see that listed. I'm trying to cut down on the money that I spend
                            Missouri Fox Trotters-To ride one is to own one

                            Standardbreds, so much more then a harness racing horse.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              With the EquiPride and EquiLix, I ceased feeding ground flax (big savings).

                              You're right...no lysine. (gotta ask the EquiPride folks about that). I make it up with 2 scoops of Super BioZin....plus this way they get the extra biotin my drafties need.
                              <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                How much is the recommended feeding per day for the Equipride?
                                Missouri Fox Trotters-To ride one is to own one

                                Standardbreds, so much more then a harness racing horse.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by pintopiaffe View Post
                                  Boy, the Equilix sure looks like something that might work here. I can't seem to see how long they expect one to last?

                                  Anyone able to say how long one lasts with, say 4 horses?

                                  I use free choice hay all winter... Am dithering over vits/mins right at this moment. Want the BEST choice, not the cheapest nor the most expensive.

                                  As far as the Forage Pro--do you have run-ins that you keep it inside of? How do you put it out?
                                  I put the Forage Pro in a covered feeder that looks similar to this one (scroll down to "3 block bull feeder") - I just fill the basins with the loose mineral and the horses flip up the top with their nose to access it. The only thing I don't like about it is that everyone is getting a little rub mark on the side of their face that they use to flip the lid. Using Forage Pro as a base with forage, I just feed any horse I have in to ride before I turn them back out and so they get their extra calories that way - and a big bonus is no feeding time craziness in the pasture.

                                  Regarding Equi-lix - I really liked the idea of the yeast/flax base of this product and so when a dealer popped up near me this summer I did an eight week feeding trial and cost comparison vs the Forage Pro. I don't have the numbers anymore, but the Equi-lix ended up being nearly twice as expensive on a daily consumption basis compared to the Forage Pro AND if I'd kept feeding it exclusively, I still would have needed to supplement copper and a few other things for the youngsters and pregnant broodies. That said, I think the base product (yeast/flax) is a great idea, it sure was convenient, and the horses liked it - I just can't afford it when I've got a more cost effective (and equally high quality) option.
                                  Liz
                                  Ainninn House Stud
                                  Irish Draughts and Connemaras
                                  Co. Westmeath, Ireland

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    This topic came up during a very recent visit with my equine dentist. He noticed that 2 of my horses had quite a bit of tarter and said it had something to do with them "eating" dirt. They always have access to a free choice salt block and hay or grass, they receive whole oats and corn and on occasion Super 14. He suggested feeding free range minerals by ABC (Advanced Biometric Chemicals). I haven't ordered any yet, as I am still in the research phase. I have decided that I am definitely going to offer the minerals individually opposed to a mineral block. Just need to figure out where I am going to order them from inexpensively (relatively speaking of course).

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      All my horses have access to free choice "loose" mineral. Ours is from Progessive.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I keep loose mineral (EquiMin from Southern States usually) as well as a plain salt block available in all the stalls and the run in shed.

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