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Am I slowly KILLING my horse with beet pulp??????

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  • Am I slowly KILLING my horse with beet pulp??????

    Let me preface this by saying the person who told me this DOES NOT agree with feeding beet pulp for any reason and doesn't understand why I would feed my alfalfa, soy, corn, and molasses sensitive gelding plain soaked beet instead.

    She told me today to be careful when feeding my horse beet pulp mashes AND wet hay (his buddy is heavey so they both get damp hay now) because he will stop properly absorbing water in his gut and colic severely.

    I know I did read something somewhere about beet pulp pulling water into or out of the gut, but cannot remember what the reference was.

    So am I a bad mommy or is this a biased statement? For the record, my guy gets sufficiently soaked beet pulp pellets (plain) one pound morning and one pound night along with rice bran and SOME wet hay. Not all of it is wet, for instance the stuff in his stall is dry because he is not the one with the issue.
    Gone gaited....

  • #2
    Good grief people are crazy.

    Beet pulp is a fine food for your feeding purposes. Some horses stop drinking as much water when they get soaked or even soupy mashes, but their water intake is usually about the same if you calculate how much water they get as a total.

    And I wouldn't stop the wet hay either. Plenty of people soak their hay for their metabolic horses and they haven't colicked because of it. Nor did they colic because of the soaked beep.

    Good luck to your ponies, and I'm sure their fine. The only thing I would investigate because I'm just-that-way is a good multivitiman/mineral to add. That would be it.
    RIP Bo, the real Appassionato


    • #3
      Did a grave for me too!! And all the rest that love it on this board.

      I have fed beetpulp for many years and have not had any issues except a satsified horse.

      You know your horse and it sounds like you are careful and need to be .

      If they become too much on the subject, then ask them if you can borrow a shovel !


      • Original Poster

        THANK YOU!

        I do also feed a mulitvitamin, forgot to mention. Trust me, I have spent months working out this poor horse's diet only to hear this!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

        I also figured the hay wasn't an issue to because of metobolic issues. Hell, he may even get quieter .
        Gone gaited....


        • #5
          Water is pulled into the gut to help the flow of "things", which is mostly fiber, through, in simple terms. Impaction colics occur, in part, when there isn't enough water to help get all that fiber through.

          If what goes in is already wet, there is little need for more water to be pulled in. It does not change how a horse does or doesn't absorb water
          The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


          • #6
            Sounds like said person has no clue about feeding, or about beetpulp.
            Smile politely, move. on. It's easier that debating it.
            Originally posted by ExJumper
            Sometimes I'm thrown off, sometimes I'm bucked off, sometimes I simply fall off, and sometimes I go down with the ship. All of these are valid ways to part company with your horse.


            • #7
              If you read some of the endurance rider sites alot of them feed beet pulp, especially before rides, it helps with hydration for them.

              We have feed beet pulp for years with very good results and lots of our vets recommend it for our horses. Mine is also on beet pulp only because she tyed up badly so I pulled her off of all grain.


              • Original Poster

                I was appalled at the lecture I was getting!!!!

                Beet is a fantastic food for many reasons. I had a rehab years ago that could not get hay due to a broken tail... he processed and passed straight soaked beet better than hay and was able to come back from that injury on that diet.

                WTF are people thinking sometimes?

                Clearly I must have wanted to do something on purpose to hurt my horse.
                Gone gaited....


                • #9
                  My response to those "OMG you shouldn't ever feed XYZ!" when I know it's a good thing is Really? Hmmm, perhaps you could show me the empirical data supporting your claim? Since I know that no such thing exists, it leaves them speechless and I return to my bucket of soaked plain beet pulp to mix in the other goodies to feed to the mares
                  <>< 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.


                  • #10

                    I'm sorry lol

                    not laughing at you, laughing at her.

                    I have a mare that just doesn't drink much water, so she gets extra soupy beet pulp and wet hay. She's been getting this since she was a yearling, she's 18 or 19 now.

                    Check out this link from Dr. Evans-Garlinghouse for "proof" for your friend. Emphasis and snips are mine
                    Although lower in fiber than
                    most hays, beet pulp can be used to replace up to 50% of the forage portion of the ration-a
                    feeding strategy which can significantly increase total calories without increasing the risk of
                    colic or founder.

                    ... Research conducted at several universities have fed dry beet pulp in amounts up to
                    45% of the total diet and saw no instances of choke or other adverse reactions.
                    Concerns about beet pulp "pulling water from the blood and into the stomach and causing
                    dehydration" are also unfounded. Regardless of the type of feed, horses will generally drink
                    approximately 3 to 4 liters of water for every kilogram of dry matter consumed (dry matter is
                    what's left over in a feed after its own moisture content is disallowed). Assuming free access to
                    clean, fresh water, horses will voluntarily consume enough water to adequately process any
                    amount of beet pulp consumed.
                    Michael: Seems the people who burned me want me for a job.
                    Sam: A job? Does it pay?
                    Michael: Nah, it's more of a "we'll kill you if you don't do it" type of thing.
                    Sam: Oh. I've never liked those.


                    • #11
                      Geez..where do people come up with this stuff? Like my mother telling me if I stuck out my tongue, it would get stuck that way.


                      • Original Poster

                        Sorry-had to revive to giggle!

                        Same person told me today I should never feed a horse prone to tying up beet pulp. Even the plain beet pulp is deadly.

                        As another poster said, smile politely and move on.

                        Her suggestion was get him back on grain. Oh, and the oil. That's deadly too. LOL.
                        Gone gaited....


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by manyspots View Post
                          Same person told me today I should never feed a horse prone to tying up beet pulp. Even the plain beet pulp is deadly.

                          As another poster said, smile politely and move on.

                          Her suggestion was get him back on grain. Oh, and the oil. That's deadly too. LOL.
                          Oy vey!!

                          Geez, she'd die then if she saw my mare's buckets: I've got BOTH evil items! Shock horror!
                          <>< 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.


                          • #14
                            Last year I did not have running water on the farm for 3 months.

                            In the beginning, I quit the beep because I couldn't soak it. Then I realized I had hot water at one of the places I was hauling water from, so soaked it on the way home and fed.

                            What I discovered in my entirely non-scientific experiement, was the horses drank just about exactly LESS the amount of straight water as the amount of water added to the beep.

                            IE--before beep they were drinking 5 muckbuckets full of water daily. Once I started adding the beep, at approx 3 gals water per 5 gallon bucket, their water consumption went down by almost half--which is just about right.

                            Days for some reason I couldn't get the hot water for the beep--they drank more.

                            So, it did not appear to 'increase' hydration AT ALL. What it might do is GET hydration into a horse who otherwise might not be inclined to drink. But it didn't get any MORE into them in addition to plain water.

                            I was terribly dissapointed in The Horse's last online newsletter, which mentioned something about pulling water from the gut. That's a wives tale up there with Baucher bits having poll pressure. You soak to avoid choke. Or, as said above--a horse that isn't drinking, you might get SOME fluid into them.

                            For those of us with beep pellets, soaking is a must. I lost a beautiful young yearling to complications from choke. If you've got the shreds, you can feed it dry, mix it with stuff, add oil, water, whatever.
                            InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs

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


                            • #15
                              It may not increase overall water consumption, but it won't pull fluid from the plasma the way pellets/grains do.

                              There's a definite relationship between dry matter intake and water consumption.

                              Factoid: a 500 kg horse secretes over 100 liters/day of fluids into the foregut. (Much of it is reabsorbed further along the alimentary canal.)

                              When grain/pellets are fed as meals, there is a transient drop in plasma volume, as the bolus of food stimulates increased GI secretions.

                              Slower eaters are affected less.

                              I have observed the same effect on free water consumption in my older mare who eats both soaked hay and soaked beet pulp. She barely touches her water bucket.

                              Nonetheless, her urine output is fine, and her hydration status is, as well.
                              "It's like a Russian nesting doll of train wrecks."--CaitlinandTheBay

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


                              • #16
                                She told me today to be careful when feeding my horse beet pulp mashes AND wet hay (his buddy is heavey so they both get damp hay now) because he will stop properly absorbing water in his gut and colic severely.
                                I'm sure this same person has no problem with their horse eating grass, which is about 85% water...


                                • #17
                                  My event horse had colic surgery at New Bolton last fall in the middle of his first one star..... He had a displacement caused by dehydration. Lovely. He's not a huge drinker.

                                  New Bolton's recommendations:
                                  1. Soaked Beet Pulp
                                  2. Soaked Grain
                                  3. Soaked Hay
                                  4. As much fresh grass as he can get
                                  5. Electrolytes in feed

                                  He's been doing great so far!!
                                  Jessica Bortner-Harris
                                  "Throw your heart over the fence and your horse will follow."


                                  • Original Poster

                                    I was amazed that she has now slammed me for feeding beet pulp TWICE!!!!!!!! Just google is for darn sake!

                                    Thanks for the info on water consumption, especially compared to eating dry grain from Pintopiaffe. My guys are the same... with my gelding he gets about 16 QTs of water (so, 4 gallons?) with his beet pulp PLUS what he drinks from his heated tub. In total, about 15 gallons a day. Nothing wrong with that. And that is in the winter!
                                    Gone gaited....


                                    • #19
                                      To your friend - bull puckey!!!!!
                                      Tranquility Farm - Proud breeder of Born in the USA Sport Horses, and Cob-sized Warmbloods
                                      Now apparently completely invisible!


                                      • Original Poster

                                        Originally posted by Tiki View Post
                                        To your friend - bull puckey!!!!!
                                        Gone gaited....