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Oats for easy keepers?

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  • Oats for easy keepers?

    I'm wanting to switch my horses over to crimped oats (want them off of soy). They are all easy keepers. They are currently getting between 1/2-1lb of RB a day. I will be replacing it entirely with oats and multi-vitamin/supps. If I keep the amount the same, is that going to be too many calories for air ferns? I just want to give them something to nibble on and to put their supps in. Horse are out on pasture 24/7.

  • #2
    I doubt that small an amount of oats will cause a problem but watch them for excessive weight gain. What about using hay pellets instead of oats? My easy keepers (on a non soy diet) are getting alf. pellets to carry in their supps.

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    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by Daydream Believer View Post
      I doubt that small an amount of oats will cause a problem but watch them for excessive weight gain. What about using hay pellets instead of oats? My easy keepers (on a non soy diet) are getting alf. pellets to carry in their supps.
      I have a mare that just can not handle alfalfa at all. What about grass hay pellets? Do they make such a critter and would that be better?

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      • #4
        My mare's on oats, but only gets about 1 cup per meal, to mix in with her min/vit supplement. She does fine on that.

        I really think this no soy thing is not a whole lot more then a trend though, to be honest. Just because some horses don't do well on soy, doesn't mean no horses should eat soy ever.
        Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!

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        • #5
          They make timothy pellets as well, so that might be good for a falf sensitive horse. Or beet pulp for higher fiber lower carb fare.
          Celtic Pride Farm
          www.celticpridefarm.com
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          • #6
            I have airferns too, so they just need something to mix their Equipride in. I prefer plain (no molasses) soaked beet pulp. Uber low in NSC's (virtually nil), adds more water to the gut and it's long-stemmed fiber/forage.

            Plus in winter, they get it hot which they loff

            EDITED TO ADD: Shreds soak MUCH quicker than pellets, so that's what I use.
            <>< 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.

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by sublimequine View Post
              My mare's on oats, but only gets about 1 cup per meal, to mix in with her min/vit supplement. She does fine on that.

              I really think this no soy thing is not a whole lot more then a trend though, to be honest. Just because some horses don't do well on soy, doesn't mean no horses should eat soy ever.
              I agree, and I too think it might be a 'trend' and I might be getting overly paranoid. But I'm having a LOT of problems that I never had when they were on oats before so after reading, I'm starting to wonder if it's been the soy all along. My plan is to pull them all off of it, and if some have no changes at all I will know that soy was not a problem and I can put them back on an RB.

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              • #8
                I would stay away from any cereal grains, especially when it comes to easy keepers and use hay pellets instead. Horses were not meant to eat such a rich diet. I would only consider if the horses were wroking extremely hard - most horses don't.

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                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by okggo View Post
                  They make timothy pellets as well, so that might be good for a falf sensitive horse. Or beet pulp for higher fiber lower carb fare.
                  Ok, more questions that hopefully will get answered without starting a new thread.

                  What about something like Calf-Manna to add supps to?

                  Second question, I have a horse that choked a couple of years ago. So I am beyond overly paranoid as I seriously thought he was going to keel over dead right before my eyes (it was the first choke episode I had witnessed). Beet pulp scares me because I know how easily they can choke on it dry. Obviously it would be soaked but does that kill out a lot of the chance for choke?

                  Also, I know nothing about beet pulp. I will do a search on some threads but how much would I feed?? Giving the measurements they are on now.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by jaimebaker View Post
                    Ok, more questions that hopefully will get answered without starting a new thread.

                    What about something like Calf-Manna to add supps to?

                    Second question, I have a horse that choked a couple of years ago. So I am beyond overly paranoid as I seriously thought he was going to keel over dead right before my eyes (it was the first choke episode I had witnessed). Beet pulp scares me because I know how easily they can choke on it dry. Obviously it would be soaked but does that kill out a lot of the chance for choke?

                    Also, I know nothing about beet pulp. I will do a search on some threads but how much would I feed?? Giving the measurements they are on now.
                    I soak it and I know a ton of people feed it this way, so I think the soaking really does minimize the risk of choke.

                    My air ferns get the equivalent of probably 2 cups dry per feeding. Wet it makes a lot more, they are happy, they think they are eating more and only I know the truth And it's super easy to mix powders into soaked BP.
                    Celtic Pride Farm
                    www.celticpridefarm.com
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                    • #11
                      Keep it as simple and specied specific as possible - we tend to make feeding way too complicated. Critters who are fed a species specific diet tend to be much healthier.

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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Originally posted by okggo View Post
                        I soak it and I know a ton of people feed it this way, so I think the soaking really does minimize the risk of choke.

                        My air ferns get the equivalent of probably 2 cups dry per feeding. Wet it makes a lot more, they are happy, they think they are eating more and only I know the truth And it's super easy to mix powders into soaked BP.
                        I called my feed store and they carry the shreds and the pellets. I will get the shreds to try (especially if the soak faster since everyone's food is now soaked).

                        Should I maybe add a handful of alfalfa pellets for added protein (minus mare who doesn't do well on it)? I'm sorry for so many questions, I'm just confused and skiddish of trying a new feed.

                        Back when my horses were on oats, they didn't have the same issues they have now but I had two that were morbidly obese. I've gotten their weight more manageable now but I also started doing a lot of groundwork with them and exercising them.

                        These horses aren't ridden, currently being trained (very sloooowwly) and only 3 of the 6 at that. Pastures are grazed down in the winter when we start feeding hay but is abundant in the spring and summer. Just trying to think of everything to add into the equation. Oh, and all are Arabs (prone to so many ailments it seems)

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                        • #13
                          What about something like Calf-Manna to add supps to?
                          Have you read the label on Calf Manna??? There's soybean in it....

                          My suggestion is to go with chopped hay or beet pulp. I would think half a pound per animal would do to get their supplements into them. I would only add oats if the horse demonstrated it couldn't hold its weight on just forage products (i.e. hay pellets, chopped hay, beet pulp, long stemmed hay, etc.). Oats are to give the horse energy if it needs it, or if it's in work. A horse can only eat so much hay and if it can't hold its weight on that the horse needs more help in the way of concentrates.

                          If the horse is on no grain though where is the phosphorus coming from? The minerals?
                          "None of us can move forward if half of us are being held back." ~Anonymous~

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                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Originally posted by Cherry View Post
                            Have you read the label on Calf Manna??? There's soybean in it....

                            My suggestion is to go with chopped hay or beet pulp. I would think half a pound per animal would do to get their supplements into them. I would only add oats if the horse demonstrated it couldn't hold its weight on just forage products (i.e. hay pellets, chopped hay, beet pulp, long stemmed hay, etc.). Oats are to give the horse energy if it needs it, or if it's in work. A horse can only eat so much hay and if it can't hold its weight on that the horse needs more help in the way of concentrates.

                            If the horse is on no grain though where is the phosphorus coming from? The minerals?
                            Nope, haven't read a bag of Calf-manna in years.

                            As far as phosphorous, what do you suggest? They'll be on complete vitamins with phosphorous in it. Minimum is 1700 mg from what the label reads.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The no soy fad is just that. A few horses may be sensitive to soy protein but that does not make it bad for all!!! Just because I'm deathly allergic to shrimp doesn't mean others can't enjoy them safely!

                              Calf Manna is a tried and true protein/mineral/vitamin supplement and should not be avoided by all just because it has soybean meal (Which, by the way, happens to be one of the best for amino acid balance of any of the protein supplements!). When fed in the recommended amounts (8 ounces per day only) it was actually the predecessor to the current myriads of "hay balancer" products out there! People got into trouble when they insisted on feeding pounds of it but then taking a whole bottle of vitamin pills in one sitting will make you pretty ill too!

                              That being said, jaime, your arabs really don't need concentrates if they are getting fat on just hay/pasture! Why add oat calories, which is about all the oats are giving? if you need a supplement carrier my vote goes to a few soaked hay cubes or beet pulp.

                              When you are trying to lose or maintain weight yourself do you eat sweets/fats just because it made your vitamin pill taste better?
                              Sarah Ralston

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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Cherry View Post
                                If the horse is on no grain though where is the phosphorus coming from? The minerals?
                                All Hays and grasses have phosphorus in them, usually in sufficient amounts for the average adult horse. You should not be feeding grains just to provide phosphorus!!!
                                Sarah Ralston

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Look gang, please don't turn this into a 'soy isn't bad, soy is bad' debate. I just wanted to ask some questions on oats. Now that that's out, I wanted to ask questions on beet pulp.

                                  How long do plain shreds need to be soaked for (in hot water)? I was reading anywhere from 15 minutes to 6 hours to you can't soak it in hot water because it's undigestible.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Cold water 20 - 30 minutes
                                    Hot water 10 - 15 minutes

                                    I've fed it with that soaking time for five years to allll kinds of horses. Not a single issue. And that "hot water = indigestible" part? Oh please... silliness.

                                    My mares ADORE hot beet pulp in the cold months. Hot supper is a true treat to them.
                                    <>< 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

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Thanks for the info! I think I figured out where the COTHer that stated hot water makes them undigestible came from. I found this on The Horse online

                                      You can use cool or warm water; some people feel it soaks a little more quickly using warm, but be careful not to use water so hot that you cook the beet pulp, because that will destroy most of the nutrients it contains.


                                      Then again, if they are air ferns and on a complete vitamin and I'm just doing this to make them *think* they are getting fed, then I guess it doesn't matter nutrient wise, huh?

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Yup! It's just the carrier to get their vitamins/minerals in. Just be sure to get "plain" shreds...no molasses please, since we don't want to add sugar back to the nice low NSC diet

                                        For another, no-sugar treat (and it helps hide things sometimes), add a couple tablespoons of cinnamon to it as it soaks. Uber yummy
                                        <>< 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.

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