March 16, 2016 at 8:13 amHorseyGalTopics Started: 0Replies Posted: 6
First, have your vet come out & do a thorough exam. Any possibility she’s in foal? Stranger things have happened. That could explain the big belly. Then the current ration might not be meeting the needs of two. I’ve known people who changed boarding barns, only to discover the mare had a “romantic encounter” before leaving the previous barn. Or a mare was sold because they didn’t want the responsibility of the foal.
Feed to try – Nutrena Pro Fuel – high in fat, but low in starch for hard keepers. Also try adding Nutrena empower boost – a good and safe fat that always packs the pounds on my horses.
Is she finishing her hay? If she has trouble eating her hay, you can try soaked alfalfa cubes.March 16, 2016 at 12:47 pmFoxFireTopics Started: 0Replies Posted: 4
You have received a lot of good advice, but when it comes down to it you need to decide which direction to take first. Here are my priorities.
1.) teeth and poop – if you mare has chewing problems, she will have digestive problems and her poop will have large pieces of undigested hay. If her poop is smooth and moist, most likely your vet was correct that her teeth are fine.
2.) worming – I am presuming that she has continued on a worming regimen since you mentioned she looked good when you bought her.
3.) stress – hotter horses do tend to show stress by dropping weight. If this is the case, she will come around. Are you seeing any other signs of stress, is she calling to her old friends, pacing or trotting fence lines? If not, her stress is most likely under control and not affecting her weight.
4.) the fact that she takes a long time to eat should not be a concern – better too slow than too fast as horses, by nature, are grazers. the concern here would be that her new friends don’t get to eat her left overs.
5.) lastly, keeping her diet the same until you transition over to what you buy locally. I have my personal ideas on the difference between high protein hay such as alfalfa vs high quality grass pasture / grass hay. The last hard keeper I had was fed minimal alfalfa hay, balance of hay was a high quality grass hay, and I am lucky enough to have year round irrigated pasture that he was turned out onto a couple of hours every day. I do not feed grain, instead he had a pound of All-in-one so his salt and vitamins had something to stick to, and a few pounds of Stable Mix. There are a zillion (or so it seems) types of weight gaining supplements you can try. I have tried a few, but have found that increasing the Stable Mix worked best. It is nice and crunchy and digests easily. If you do decide to try a supplement, my personal choice is Platinum Performance – it is a bit pricey, but with my hard keepers, it worked. My current horse is a very easy keeper, so her expenses are spent elsewhere! Supplements should get 2 – 3 months of trial to determine if they are working.
I hope this helps!March 21, 2016 at 11:28 amdardj1Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 1
I have had good success with adding Chia seeds and coolcalories as well as good quality hay–grass and alfalfa mix. The chia seeds are a good source of omega 3s, protein and can help with digestion, the cool calories is a really good fat source and is easy to add and most horses really like it. I would also wet her food so it is easier to eat. The good quality hay with alfalfa provides protein and is easier to digest. I have found that with my horse the ribby hay belly thing comes from a lower quality hay. The protein from the chia and alfalfa along with the fat helps build a topline, one without the other doesn’t work as well-at least for my horse.March 21, 2016 at 11:43 amyvonne_gallentineTopics Started: 0Replies Posted: 2
Hello, I’ve been involved with many seriously ill horses over the past 40 years. First, you need a fecal count and a look at her teeth. Also she needs a pet. A goat, llama, mini horse. Horses are social animals. You didn’t mention worming, a critical part of health. I would suspect a tape worm and teeth problem. She needs good grass hay unlimited. Add small amountd
I talk to four leggedsMarch 21, 2016 at 11:56 amyvonne_gallentineTopics Started: 0Replies Posted: 2
Sorry, I hit a wrong button. Give small amounts of alfalfa. I would give rolled barley and Purina vitamins/minerals. Remember, in a natural setting, horses eat a great variety of grasses. Alfalfa being a small limited season. Grain also is limited season in the wild settings that horses evolved. Have you paid attention to how much water she is taking in a day? Also does she have a salt block? Often horses who are run down, don’t have the energy to get enough off of a lick. I give loose salt in their grain. Just don’t over do it. Good luck, I commend you for knowing you need more information and reaching out to the community. Yvonne (60yrs of equine study)
I talk to four leggedsMarch 21, 2016 at 3:56 pmfelicityfTopics Started: 0Replies Posted: 5
I assume you have had her vetted. A conversation about ulcers may be in order. I would recommend an equine dentist for the teeth check. I have a mare with TMJ and sometimes her jaw needs ‘adjusting’. I am usually alerted to this need when it takes her forever to finish her food and she has difficulty chewing up her carrot treats. Can you watch her eat to see if you notice anything else (other than the dropping feed)amiss? It does sound like a tooth issue. I would also recommend taking a fecal and then worming based on the findings and not just doing a rotation worming (but you may have already done that – I wasn’t sure as you stated she was ‘wormed’). Are there other signs of stress- pacing, chewing on boards, etc.? And I agree that it is best to contact the previous owners and 1. Talk about her feed and 2. See if this mare any of these issues before. Good luck. I am sure you are probably also stressing about this less than smooth transition for your mare.March 21, 2016 at 4:58 pmpeggy_lewisTopics Started: 0Replies Posted: 1
I have had great luck with Purina Amplify. It is pure fat and doesn’t make the horses nutty. I put weight back on my 23-year old mare by adding a cup and a half per day for a few months. Now I have a four-year-old paint gelding who needed weight and with him, 2 3/4 cups per day plus two extra flakes good grass hay on top of his regular grass hay and grain has been perfect for getting his weight up without super charging him. Good luck!
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