I just bought my first cob! Introduction + feed advice + photos!

Red-1

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After a torrid 2 years of stress (not horse related) I have sold the posh competition horse and bought my first cob!

Introducing Rigsby!

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Fetched him yesterday - before anyone has a fit, I was NOT grazing him on the lawn, I was walking him to his field, where he wears a muzzle, he only had half an hour, and we are scalping it when we have bought diesel this morning. He was like a terrier in a maxi Shetland body on the way and made me feel like a hapless 10 year old as he grabbed a mouthful!!!

Rigsby is 15 years old, he was owned by wonderful, caring people who had to sell him due to personal issues. He has EMS and has just recovered from mild lami (which caught them by surprise and was caught extremely early) and is ready to start coming back into work.

Rigsby is admirably slim right now (his sticky out bits actually stick out!), and his owners have given me feeding instructions, which I will follow. But, I wondered what else I can do. He is on soaked hay, 8kg a day unless he has time at grass ( up to 3 hours with a muzzle) when the hay is reduced. He has just a single handful of chop when he comes in, which I will continue as he comes to call because of it! Once he is back in work he will be able to eat a bit more bulk, which will please him greatly, I think.

Also, he has his legs clipped to keep scabs under control (which they are) but I would love to try to grow his feather. His old owners tried all sorts, including the mite injection, but his scabs are persistent. They are controlled by a good scratch every morning, so it may be that he needs to stay shaved.

I must confess, I don't feel like I own Rigsby, I feel like he now owns us!

My plans are to get him back to daily hacking, which is the only thing he has ever done so far. I am stressed and busy right now, and having a furry pal to walk the lanes is just the ticket. He has obviously been very well cared for, he is confident and friendly.
 

Trouper

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He looks lovely - and I love his name too. I am sure he will enjoy having an active life - and the extra grub which comes with it. I might think about some sort of skin supplement to help with the bites/scarring or maybe a good balancer?
Have fun!!
 

holeymoley

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He looks lovely.

See how he gets on with the grass, monitor any changes and check for pulses every day. Depending on your grazing he may need less by sectioning off an area or muzzling. Hay should be anything that doesn’t include rye grass unless you can guarantee the sugar levels of it. For hard feed, try simple systems. Fellow EMS laminitic owner x
 

Red-1

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"Barefoot" balancer with its high zinc levels might help the scabs.
.
I have some Formula 4 feet in the feed room, that has no iron and with copper and zinc. I used it for the previous horse as I could feed it as a hand treat. With Rigsby I think the 'hand treat' will migrate to a bucket treat so we can keep manners!

After that, I may change to progressive earth, at least with this horse I have no fear that he won't eat it!!!
 

Red-1

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I am liking the look of Rigsby..he has fallen on his feet getting a home with you Red.
Thank you. I have had such a bad couple of years, don't get me wrong there have been good times too, many of them, but I have been left less resilient - hmmmm, not as resilient and just bought a cob... What could go wrong :eek:
 

Red-1

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He looks lovely.

See how he gets on with the grass, monitor any changes and check for pulses every day. Depending on your grazing he may need less by sectioning off an area or muzzling. Hay should be anything that doesn’t include rye grass unless you can guarantee the sugar levels of it. For hard feed, try simple systems. Fellow EMS laminitic owner x
Thank you.

He has been off box rest for 3 weeks and on sparse grazing with a muzzle at the old home, they got him up to 3 hours. I am using the muzzle, but there is nothing I can do to make our grazing poor, so he is now on 2 half hour stints, with turnout on the arena for the other 2 hours. He can have all day on the arena provided he doesn't dig it up, rip the fencing down or do any other ASBO behaviour. I am going to start with hand walking out and about, for a week, before riding. I just need to find what will be a safe method of controlling him before we take to the streets, he is not too rude TBH, but I have many injuries and am not very strong.

The paddock he is in, we have sectioned it off to 25m X 25m, and we are scalping it this morning. Although, TBH, while it is a bit longer, he seems less able to get it through the hole in the muzzle! I haven't used a muzzle before, he was VERY frustrated.

I have this sectioned paddock, or one of about an acre which is still good grass, but is a LOT shorter. I am contemplating trying that one this morning, at least until the small one is scalped.
 

holeymoley

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Thank you.

He has been off box rest for 3 weeks and on sparse grazing with a muzzle at the old home, they got him up to 3 hours. I am using the muzzle, but there is nothing I can do to make our grazing poor, so he is now on 2 half hour stints, with turnout on the arena for the other 2 hours. I am going to start with hand walking out and about, for a week, before riding. I just need to find what will be a safe method of controlling him before we take to the streets, he is not too rude TBH, but I have many injuries and am not very strong.

The paddock he is in, we have sectioned it off to 25m X 25m, and we are scalping it this morning. Although, TBH, while it is a bot longer, he seems less able to get it through the hole in the muzzle! I haven't used a muzzle before, he was VERY frustrated.

I have this sectioned paddock, or one of about an acre which is still good grass, but is a LOT shorter. I am contemplating trying that one this morning, at least until the small one is scalped.
Its such a shame that we have to do but otherwise they’d be 💀 or not allowed any grass at all. Which muzzle is it? My guy took to the muzzle eventually but I bought him a flexible filly one and it’s amazing. He eats ‘normally’ with it, it doesn’t restrict him at all he just looks like a normal horse grazing in the field but obviously it’s restricting the volume he’s getting. Maybe worth a try?
 

Red-1

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He is lovely! Nice to see you perfecting the cob "power stance" in picture 2 ;)
The rookie error was in leading him over the lawn whilst he was not wearing the grazing muzzle. That is a bloomin' Be Nice controller halter too! I didn't think it would fit over a muzzle, but on the way back in I found that it did. Then we had a smooth and uneventful walk in. You live and learn!
 

Red-1

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Its such a shame that we have to do but otherwise they’d be 💀 or not allowed any grass at all. Which muzzle is it? My guy took to the muzzle eventually but I bought him a flexible filly one and it’s amazing. He eats ‘normally’ with it, it doesn’t restrict him at all he just looks like a normal horse grazing in the field but obviously it’s restricting the volume he’s getting. Maybe worth a try?
I have had sports horses, I am new to the world of muzzles. Mr Red is going to be doing the Silence of the Lambs impressions of "A nice Chianti" for weeks :rolleyes:

It is a black one! With webbing around the side and a plastic bucket, with a hole about an inch and a half near his mouth. I will look at the other one, but for the first month at least I think I will stick with the tried and tested one.
 

rabatsa

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The longer grass may be better for him than short stressed stuff. If he cannot just plonk the muzzle down and bite off short stiffer stuff that pokes through even better. I had one that once he had worked out the method on short grass the muzzle barely slowed his grazing but longer grass which folded over was a lot harder work.

Love Rigsby by the way.
 

chaps89

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Congratulations - he looks lovely and you look so happy! I wish you many content hours of ambling about together :)

I have an EMS cob. Exercise is the main thing to make a difference.
I find she is better out on longer grass muzzled than shorter grass without a muzzle.
That's said, as there has been so little grass growth here this year she's barely worn her muzzle and touch wood, has been ok.
I am able to turn her out overnight (grass sugars are lower then) and bring in during the day. If I had enough land, she'd be out 24/7 in winter, but not with ad-lib hay, so she has to go off and forage and regulate herself.
She's turned out on a track and I will strip graze the rest as we approach winter. The track really does help, as does a fairly active companion - more movement.
Soaked hay to be rinsed when it's pulled out of the soaker. Where possible split into smaller more frequent servings.
She always has a bucket of straw available to eat at all times (bedded on non-edible bedding else I'd just let her pick at her bed)
Minimal rigging too, let nature do its job and let her metabolism try and stabilise. Luckily he's a good colour for being naked!

Scabs wise, it's really finding what works for the individual horse. For mine certain bedding makes it worse, it's also worse in summer. You really need to keep the skin soft and hydrated, so nothing harsh or drying. I use neutrogena t-gel shampoo, when her scabs are bad I use it every 3 days, when they're not so bad probably every 5 or 6 days, then apply aloe Vera gel in between. This works for her, I've tried plenty of other creams that haven't helped, it is horses for courses I'm afraid. Her skin is a bit manky in general but 'clean' feeds (she gets a touch of speedibeet and a handful of thunderbooks organic chaff - literally chopped hay and straw, nothing added) and equimins advance complete and she's currently looking great and is no greasier than any other horse really.
 
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Ceriann

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He is very lovely and from one who uses hacking to de-stress, you are going to have a fab time. No real advice on feeding (other than sympathy as I also walk mine through lush grass to their less lush grazing and have to deal with the accomplished side swiping) but on mites, I treat mine with frontline and have managed it generally quite well (with feathers). She gets a wash, dried and then frontline, followed by another dose ten days later. In late autumn she also gets a bit of pig oil on the feathers.
 

cauda equina

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He looks smashing, lovely dapples!
I'd be cautious about grazing times to start with; your grass may be 'worse' (from a sugar point of view) than the stuff he was on previously

For the scabby legs - Biteback Sweet Relief Silver is worth a try

And he needs someone to help him eat the grass. Perhaps a Shetland?
 

Pearlsasinger

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Congratulations on your new hacking partner! I would try to introduce a track system, it really does keep them moving more than strip grazing. Does he have a companion to share the track with? As that also makes a difference to the amount of movement. I have also used plain oat straw chaff to fill up a horse on restricted hay which works well - there is literally nothing worse to deal with than a 'hangry' cob!
 

Red-1

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Thank you all.

Oat straw chaff on the shopping list. Plain if I can get it. What quantity is good?

He was on 3 hours a day in the old place, I only allowed him half an hour yesterday as out grazing is too good.

I watched as he tried to eat this morning, he isn't getting much though so he can have an hour this morning ad half an hour this evening.

The previous owners did really well with his dieting, you can actually see ribs. This will, I hope, give a small buffer of safety whilst we get to grips with the feed situation.

I didn't know to also rinse the hay, thank you.

Learning curve!!!
 

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