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Safe NSC % for horse with history of EGUS

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  • Safe NSC % for horse with history of EGUS

    I have been searching for a high energy low NSC feed for ages and found nothing even remotely close to what I need.

    Now I found one with the levels of energy my horse needs and an NSC of 11,8. Would you consider this safe for a horse with EGUS?
    Last edited by SCMSL; Apr. 26, 2013, 09:42 AM.

  • #2
    I don't know if there is any sort of standard for what's safe for those guys. I'd just go as low as you can.

    What do you mean "high energy"? TC Sr is where I'd start, and that may be what you're listing there.
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


    • #3
      Originally posted by JB View Post
      I don't know if there is any sort of standard for what's safe for those guys. I'd just go as low as you can.

      What do you mean "high energy"? TC Sr is where I'd start, and that may be what you're listing there.
      I cannot recall where, but a "suggestion" was to try to stick below 15% NSC for horses with gastric ulcer issues, cushings, and other metabolic stuff. I personally think 15 is a bit high for metabolic issues, but I can't recall where I saw that to reference....

      When my mare had ulcers, she lost a ton of weight. Once we got her started on GastroGard, I introduced Triple Crown Senior (11.8% NSC) and she found it very palatable. It put the weight back on her and did not cause more stomach issues, she seemed very content while eating this feed and going thru the healing of her ulcers.

      What brands are available to you? If the feed you found with 11.8% NSC is also meeting your horse's caloric needs, I wouldn't hesitate to give that feed a try.
      "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."


      • #4
        I agree that 15 is a bit high for most metabolic horses, but IMHO, 15 is starting to get on the higher end of what most horses should have anyway (regardless of whether it causes immediate issues)
        The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


        • #5
          Originally posted by JB View Post
          I agree that 15 is a bit high for most metabolic horses, but IMHO, 15 is starting to get on the higher end of what most horses should have anyway (regardless of whether it causes immediate issues)
          "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."


          • Original Poster

            Not many brands available, and none you know.

            This particular feed is 14,9 MJ/kg DE, 12,9% Protein and 11,8 NSC. She needs a lot of calories and protein to keep up with her work and general metabolism (which I swear, I would love to have myself). It looks pretty good, but I just wasn't sure on the NSC part.


            • #7
              Depends on what the hay is. If the hay is low NSC, you can get away with more of the relatively higher (but MUCH smaller volume) NSC of concentrates.
              Click here before you buy.


              • Original Poster

                Well, the hay is out of my control, really. I had an analysis done on this batch but its the BO who chooses and orders it so the next one can be completely different. This is a complete feed though so I am hoping she'll eat more of what I am providing and have less "room" for the hay.


                • #9
                  You want the horse to eat LESS hay? I don't understand your feeding ideas at all. Complete feeds are not REALLY meant to replace forage.
                  Click here before you buy.


                  • #10
                    If the horse can physically eat hay, you should be providing that forage, not replacing it with a grain product, complete feed or not.
                    "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."


                    • Original Poster

                      She has hay ad lib. She can eat as much as she wants. However, hay isn't stellar so if the prefers to eat the complete feed instead of the hay, that's fine by me as at least that way I know she's getting the calories she needs.


                      • #12
                        What's the horse's BCS?
                        Is she underweight?
                        "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

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


                        • #13
                          I try to stay in the teens with NSC. There are a lot of options out there, really, but have you looked at the high-fat feeds? They will be higher in calories (energy) and lower in starch.

                          Healthy amounts of hay are still going to be necessary, and unless the BO is feeding a hay with the seed heads still attached, that should be something you're feeding.

                          I guess, to answer your original question, a feed with 11 percent NSC would be fine??
                          COTH's official mini-donk enabler

                          "I am all for reaching out, but in some situations it needs to be done with a rolled up news paper." Alagirl


                          • Original Poster

                            Horse has history of ulcers and hind gut issues. Has a hard time keeping weight even when scoped clear and without hind gut symptoms.

                            We have already been feeding her a high fiber/high oil diet, but she is still underweight. This new feed has same amounts of fiber and oil but has more protein and energy (but since I am supplementing with alfalfa cubes, the overall protein intake will remain the same). I understand Alfalfa is good for ulcers and this new feed has quite a bit of that as well, so I am not concerned about taking her off the cubes.

                            Hay has seeds, is very dry and almost straw like. BO is considering changing to haylage, which would aggravate her digestive issues as it has a lower pH. I cannot bring my own hay.

                            Maybe this new feed could work, thank you for your input


                            • #15
                              Have you tried a ration balancer? You feed less of it since it is meant to balance hay/pasture diets, so the AMOUNT of NSC you feed is less, even though the percentage can be in the mid teens.

                              Purina has Enrich 32 which is 32% protein, 1500 calories per pound, and 14% NSC.

                              I am unfamiliar with ulcer diets, but I use this with success on my metabolic mare.


                              • #16
                                so if the prefers to eat the complete feed instead of the hay, that's fine by me as at least that way I know she's getting the calories she needs.
                                So you're going to provide it free choice?

                                I'm not sure I know many horses that would choose hay over grain, given the opportunity.
                                Click here before you buy.


                                • #17
                                  I have a horse with chronic ulcers due to delayed gastric empyting and NSC was never brought up...and I think I was informed, etc

                                  Hay is the best thing for a horse, unfortunately, my horse cannot eat hay due to dge.

                                  I do feed all my others, without egus, triple crown senior, and all the hay/pasture they want.
                                  My hard keepers get beet pulp, soaked alf cubes, plus tc sr and hay, and lots of it. I tend to feed good quality 2nd cut orchard.

                                  With egus, you want the stomach constantly having food in it, thus why I feed my dge mare almost round the clock. yes, I have no life.

                                  Please share where you read about egus and low NSC....?
                                  Cushings and metabolic, which I have two of those, I am careful about NSC, and they do not get alfalfa per the vets.
                                  my dge mare gets a ration balancer and alf pellets and hay stretcher pellets and year round grass. She is the one with ulcers, and on ulcergard daily. Never did a vet freak when they heard about the alf pellets. In fact, they said that was good for her ulcers. NSC was never brought up as to be an issue.
                                  HAY HAY HAY, for all, but my dge, she cannot digest it.
                                  save lives...spay/neuter/geld


                                  • #18
                                    NSC is a fashionable villain for many maladies.
                                    Click here before you buy.


                                    • #19
                                      your hay sounds like maybe oat hay, which tends to have an NSC close to 22%
                                      I'd devote more time to finding a reliable source for quality hay, and working out some sort of agreement with the BO if you want to see some real changes.

                                      Alfalfa is 9% NSC and 14% protein and is the main base of my horses' concentrate diets (one of which has PSSM AND is ulcer prone). I then incorporate a ration balancer (5% NSC, 32% protein), beet pulp (10% NSC, 7% protein), and veg oil (0% NSC)

                                      This gives them plenty of protein, fat, and fiber, with below 10% NSC for their concentrates. Most true grass hays hover at around 13% NSC depending on when cut, and since hay makes up the largest portion of their diet, it's the most important to get right.
                                      chaque pas est fait ensemble


                                      • Original Poster

                                        Yes, it is oat hay, and even though I have been through this with the BO she won't allow me to bring in my own hay. So I have been trying to find other ways to feed her that will diminish her hay consumption - any horse can only eat a certain amount of food per day, so if given more alfalfa cubes, for example, she'll eat less hay.

                                        She is, however, intolerant to beet. Oil can only go so far and she is already on a 15% oil diet, so I can't add any more.

                                        I won't provide it free choice but almost - she is a very slow eater and usually has some of her night dose still uneaten in the morning.