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Spin-off: Fattening up the hunter (and adding energy!)

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  • Spin-off: Fattening up the hunter (and adding energy!)

    I have an 16 year old Hanoverian who is a very picky eater. He is currently getting a scoop and a half of grain 2 times a day, a massive amount of beet-pulp for lunch and all the hay he can eat. He could still use about 100 lbs. He also is QUITE lazy and his attitude on life is that he could just sit back and watch it pass by without any effort from him. He's a lovely 3' hunter, has multiple year end champions and is a truly great horse, but getting him to GO is so much work. He gets corn oil in his feed which is supposed to fatten him up and we've heard add energy, but so far I haven't seen a change. He's just a very lazy boy, and anything that would add weight and maybe some energy would be great.
    Proud pony person

  • #2
    I have always had good luck with rice bran. I would add it to what you are already feeding. The beet pulp and oil are great. What kind of grain is he getting? Maybe switch him to senior, or something else with high fat. I would also add some alfalfa pellets or cubes if you can get any more food into him!

    As for the energy, have you tried any supplements? My mare is very, very lazy. I have used Red Cell and Smart Energy (not at the same time!) and have had good luck with both of them. Maybe get a blood test, often times anemia can be a cause--which the Red Cell or Smart Energy would help!


    • Original Poster

      Originally posted by Reagan View Post
      I have always had good luck with rice bran. I would add it to what you are already feeding. The beet pulp and oil are great. What kind of grain is he getting? Maybe switch him to senior, or something else with high fat. I would also add some alfalfa pellets or cubes if you can get any more food into him!

      As for the energy, have you tried any supplements? My mare is very, very lazy. I have used Red Cell and Smart Energy (not at the same time!) and have had good luck with both of them. Maybe get a blood test, often times anemia can be a cause--which the Red Cell or Smart Energy would help!
      Thanks for the suggestions! He's on Senior and sweet feed, and he gets a ton at mealtimes. I'll suggest the rice bran, hopefully he'll eat it! He's had a blood test done and he's not anemic, just lazy. We considered Red Cell but my BO said that we shouldn't give him that unless he was anemic. Since he's not anemic, would Smart Energy work do you think?
      Proud pony person


      • #4
        Just an idea, have you scoped him? Heavy horses can have airway issues. We recently had a lovely 3' horse on lease/ purchase. we go weight on him with Buckeye Nutritions EQ8, but he never had the right energy level. We scoped him and he has a fairly obstructed airway. He made no offensive noises while working, but would never get in front of the leg, and would frequently ask for breaks.


        • #5
          I would talk to your vet, but I don't think it would hurt! It is basically the same idea as the Red Cell, but with a few "extras" thrown in. You can read about it on smartpak.com. I can't see the red cell doing any damage, we have used it on horses that aren't anemic, it gives an extra immune boost (by increasing the number of blood cells) and is my secret weapon for scratches or rain rot!

          I would probably call your vet and bounce some ideas off of him/her. Good luck with your boy!


          • #6
            I would like to point out that, in general, most senior feeds are not high fat. Both Life Design Senior and Equine Senior reside in the 5-6% category. They are designed as complete feeds, meaning most of their calorie content comes from readily digestible fiber sources. Triple Crown Senior however, is a 10% fat.

            There are a lot of performance feeds that might help you out with weight and energy. Ultium, XTN, Omolene 500 or one of the Triple Crown Performance feeds are all going to carry fat levels of over 8%. These feeds will have a higher NSC level as well, which will give you a little more oomph energy wise, but you want to be aware of how your horse handles sugars.

            Alfalfa pellets might also not be a bad way to go.
            You know, if you took this jello, put it in a mold and froze it, you could be like look....an emerald. Dude, I'd kick some guys ass he ever tried to give me a jello ring.