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*A WONDERFUL UPDATE* Giving back an adopted OTTB / HELP / PLEASE CHECK OUT LAST POST

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  • #21
    Originally posted by Sloeryder View Post
    The only reason I've been giving her the feed amount is she seems to be a harder keeper and that was what NV wanted me to feed her. And I guess I have been a stickler to the contract on everything. ( I just wanted to make sure I did everything like I was supposed to).

    She is only getting worked about three times a week right now. I work as a tack maker in a leather shop and with spring it's very busy

    Her episodes I guess are best described as her completly coming out from under you and trying to get away by any way she can.
    Personally, I highly doubt anyone is going to take an OTTB back just because you change their feeding regimen, especially if it for their own good.
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    • #22
      Yeah, I wouldn't worry about NV taking him back....

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      • #23
        Is soy an ingredient of your feed? I had a tb mare who when switched from her straigjt oats/alfalfa pellet diet to a 12% feed went from sane to spooking and bolting both on the ground and under saddle. Returned her to oats/alfalfa and she returned to her far more sensible self.
        In an age when scientists are creating artificial intelligence, too many of our educational institutions seem to be creating artificial stupidity.—Thomas Sowell, Is Thinking Obsolete?

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        • #24
          You have a feed issue at the very least, explore what others have said and pay attention to the protein, type of protein, and the soy content.
          "We, too, will be remembered not for victories or defeats in battle or in politics, but for our contribution to the human spirit." JFK

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          • #25
            I would cut WAY the heck back on grain. That's a ton of food for a horse in light work unless you like them fat and crazy. Add oil or "non-hot" fat supplements if you think she's too thin. And more hay.
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            • #26
              Just wanted to mention that it would be in your best interest to try changing things ONE AT A TIME. So many people want a solutions RIGHT NOW and change a bunch of stuff and then don't know what made it better!!

              I would start with the feed- switch to something higher in fat and feed less of it- and more hay if needed. Her turnout sounds adequate.

              I also want to throw this out there- I have an OTTB that NEVER outgrew his bolting issue. He ended up with a lameness issue at 9, so has been retired for the past 11 years. He still takes off like a crazy lunatic when turned out in an open field.

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              • #27
                I also adopted one through NV and know the guidelines for feed; I really think the intention to ensure horses aren't underfed. If feed is the culprit in your case, they're not going to take issue with a change if the horse is unsafe otherwise. Since you said she always spooks/bolts when things are behind her, she may be reactive to sound - if she can see it she's fine, if not, it's a monster. There's an Appendix at our barn who is the same way...he has a NASTY spook whenever there's a scary noise coming from behind him, but oddly enough never spooks at things ahead of him. Will your mare let you stuff her ears? She can't live in ear plugs, so it won't necessarily solve your problems on the ground, but it's a quick and easy thing to try under saddle. Hopefully you can figure out what's going on and get back the horse you fell in love with!

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                • Original Poster

                  #28
                  I just want to thank all of your wonderful help and responses. I'm definitely going to be changing her feed and I'm thinking of just taking a step back and turning her out for awhile. After seeing the responses I'm going to be giving TC a try I found out that I can get ahold of it.

                  I know change takes time and I have the time, I just want to work out the problem if I can.

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                  • #29
                    Sloeryder: Let us know how things progress with you and your mare. There are a number of us with young OTTBs that share our stories on here. I know that when I only get a new OTTB every 14-15 years I have to figure things out each time and I feel pretty ignorant each time.

                    Hope a different feed program resolves things. I fed my first mare some sweet feed for a week some one at my office suggested it, I could not even ride her after that. I learned about feed the hard way. Hope all works out.

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                    • #30
                      LOL it sounds like you've given your mare food induced psychosis. I've done it a few times too. 10lbs of grain is WAY too much. I am glad you are going to change it. I have found that sometimes one has to play around with food abit before you find the right food and amount.

                      For perspective, I feed my growing 4 yr old TB who works 5 days a week no grain at all. He eats beet pulp, hay stretcher and alfalfa pellets + free choice hay.

                      If this mare was mine, I would change her food, TC senior is great, cut down the amount of food, give her 2 weeks off and do 10 days of ulcer meds. Put her back into work and see what you got. If she's still stupid, put her on regumate.

                      Good luck!
                      Unrepentant carb eater

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                      • #31
                        Originally posted by stolen virtue View Post
                        I feed a large scoop rice bran and two scoops timothy hay pellets. I had an OTTB mare that was super hot. She never received anything more than hay, rice bran and hay pellets. She was a bolter and one spook and she was gone for the ride. I think your mare is fine since this is a behavior change. I would get her on more hay and see where you are. I also had to use regumate when I showed.
                        I totally agree, >I had an OTTB that was in work 6 days a week, and eventing low levels, and He never came close to that much grain a day. He would have turned inside out. I did the rice bran and hay pellets too, And regular timothy hay.

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                        • #32
                          I second the soy free route, especially with a mare. Heck, if she's in good body condition I would take her off feed altogether and just go with a vit/min supp and some magnesium.

                          That being said - your description is specific to a training problem where things are behind her. I think that would be my main focus. Lots of ground work, and teach her to ground drive (in a small enclosed area). If you can get her used to you walking/driving her from behind, she will hopefully learn that things behind her aren't going to kill her.

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                          • #33
                            TC Senior user here, for an ASB, but ASB are horses with motors descended from the same lines as the modern TB, so this might have relevance.

                            I use a 3 qt scoop that equals about 3 lbs 2x daily, along with a 3qt scoop of Standlee timothy pellets, sometimes I'll change it up to half and half tim and small sized alfalfa pellets for ease of chewing, plus about 20 lbs of grass hay. The old guy is a maddeningly picky eater and scrawny as heck right now so in order to deal with his quirks and our herd dynamics he's getting both his portions in two containers at about 7PM and eating all night. A couple of days I fed him when I went to work at 3AM, because if you're out there and it's light out he can't settle to eat, he wants out. NOW. Feeding then has some drawbacks so we've just started the two portion thing.
                            He's also really reactive although he settles when worked. A clap of the hands, gunshot, loud bangs or noises get a brief period of airborne suspension if he's in the pen, if you are in there with him it's not fun, not fun at all.

                            ETA he was eating less while boarded and slightly less reactive, but he is way too thin right now.
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                            • #34
                              Holy cow that's a lot of grain! Personally, if she's only being ridden 3 days a week, I'd pull grain completely and offer hay 24/7. If she's still doing it, you are dealing with something unrelated to food, but if she stops, you know exactly what it is.

                              The only horse I have that gets grain is conditioned 5 days a week, 6-10 miles a day and she only gets about 3.5 pounds a day - and 1.5 pounds on days off. A draft horse pulling logs all day would maybe get 10 pounds, but not a TB in light work! Remember, she may never get fat, and don't feel compelled to make her fat...that's a whole other can of worms!

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                              • #35
                                My OTTB Roy (Royal Lad) under went some strange and drastic personality changes that finally led to my having to make the call to have him put down before he hurt himself or someone. The final 3 days he was having siezures every few minutes, he no longer reconized humans, he was in total fear of us, he did not reconize his friends. Watching him stand there and have siezures, not being able to approach him, praying he did not clear a fence and take off..... the last morning he had 30 seconds of recognition, gave me a 'kiss' and he was gone again.
                                After it was all over we realized that he had been having strange episodes for a while. (about a year) While we chalked some of it up to him being a TB we hadn't realized how many things we had done to accommodate his changing behavior. He went from a steady Eddie, load in anything, try anything you asked him to do, to my second guessing everything I did with him, being afraid to leave him in overnight, not taking him anywhere unless someone was with me.
                                Since he was unapproachable our vet was not able to do more than see the siezures and agreed that he was too dangerous and euthanizing was the safest thing to do.
                                There was no change of feeds, hay, routine......the only problem he had ever had after we got him as newly gelded 8 yr old was that he was narcoleptic.

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                                • #36
                                  I just wanted to add my .02, after reading the replies and nobody has mentioned it yet (and I 100% agree that the issue is probably caused by her feed).

                                  When I got Herself, I was totally head over heels, couldn't believe that I would ever own a horse this fancy and wonderful, she walked on water, etc. etc. and the first few months she was great, we had a blast. Then things kind of went south in that she was getting pushy on the ground, being silly (bolting) on the lunge line, and finally nailed me right in the shoulder, fracturing my collarbone.

                                  It forced me to take a step back and, while I know that I'm a more than capable horse person, for whatever reason I was blinded by the Willow light and wasn't getting after her like I should of. She pretty quickly got my number. It took me a winter of consistent hard a**edness to get her mind around the fact that I actually was the boss. The way that you talk about her, and the time frame that you have had her, kind of makes me think that the same thing is going on here. I don't think that the feed situation helps at all and you've gotten some great suggestions about fixing that problem. COTH is awesome like that!

                                  Maybe that's not the case at all, but I wanted to throw it out there, just in case you could learn from my mistake.

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Originally posted by Superminion View Post
                                    I just wanted to add my .02, after reading the replies and nobody has mentioned it yet (and I 100% agree that the issue is probably caused by her feed).

                                    When I got Herself, I was totally head over heels, couldn't believe that I would ever own a horse this fancy and wonderful, she walked on water, etc. etc. and the first few months she was great, we had a blast. Then things kind of went south in that she was getting pushy on the ground, being silly (bolting) on the lunge line, and finally nailed me right in the shoulder, fracturing my collarbone.

                                    It forced me to take a step back and, while I know that I'm a more than capable horse person, for whatever reason I was blinded by the Willow light and wasn't getting after her like I should of. She pretty quickly got my number. It took me a winter of consistent hard a**edness to get her mind around the fact that I actually was the boss. The way that you talk about her, and the time frame that you have had her, kind of makes me think that the same thing is going on here. I don't think that the feed situation helps at all and you've gotten some great suggestions about fixing that problem. COTH is awesome like that!

                                    Maybe that's not the case at all, but I wanted to throw it out there, just in case you could learn from my mistake.
                                    I have to say this occured to me as well. It is easy to be so in love with one that you forget to set boundries and a mare And a TB to boot will challenge that and see what they are able to get away with.
                                    For sure something to think about! I know my OTTB about 2 weeks after I got him, suddenly went Rouge on me, Rearing, Charged me on the lunge line, Bucked me off, Acted like a real ass. My personality is such that I turned on him, A few Wrath of God moments and he was a solid citizen after that. We always got along great but we had an understanding, I could just give him a "Tone" and he would knock it off. He was a solid citizen for the 13 plus years I had him, We had an understanding. He respected me. Just a thought.

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                                    • #38
                                      I feed TC Senior and feed about 6 lbs to my older TB mare through winter, and drop to just TC 30% Supplement and a handful of senior when on pasture. I love the TC products.

                                      However, since a few people have mentioned that soy can be problematic for their horses, I might take her off all grain for now. Maybe give her some beet pulp if she's used to getting "something" at a certain time of day, or something like timothy pellets if you can find them. For a week or two, just to see what happens.

                                      Then try a week of Gastro Guard, and see if you see a change.

                                      I agree with the person who said don't change everything at once, or you won't be able to identify the problem or the solution.

                                      Since you say that she's like this with you and with the trainer, I am not thinking it's a riding/letting her get away/evasion thing, but never hurts to look carefully at what you're doing and consider that.

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        Not shedding by now is pretty odd. Nutrition, disease, ulcers? Any could cause the behaviour, too.

                                        If it's only things behind her and she always reacts the same way, I agree with having her eyesight checked. Though I'd also get help and experiment a little to see if it absolutely is "something behind her" and not coincidence.

                                        The random freak out and quick recovery/relaxation almost sounds more physical than mental to me. Even the over-grained 'hot' horses I've worked with were on their toes, looking for an excuse, and didn't act "doped" after a spook. Yes, you had the PPE, but I suspect it wasn't looking for a specific problem like this. And thing can change, injury can occur in turn out or from a badly-fitted saddle, etc.

                                        I definitely agree with changing your feeding regimen--lots of good forage, higher fat, decent amount of protein, cut the carbs, and make sure she's getting all the trace vitamins and minerals she needs. I have a sleek, shiny young TB on a few pounds of TC black bag feed and lots of good forage. The others just get a pound or so of ration balancer.
                                        ---------------------------

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                                        • #40
                                          I think what we're all trying to say here...at least on the feed end,is that you have to feed the horse what they need to stay in good weight, whether it's hay only or feed. And of course, the type and amount of feed you need to add is totally dependent upon the quality and availability of hay and the metabolism of the horse. There is no set formula, every horse and situation is different.

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