Recommended veteran feed for retired Tb with no muscle

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1 November 2017
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Field ornament aged 25, Tb, can’t be ridden due to two previous collateral lig injuries and a superficial suspensory. No muscle whatsoever, ie scrawny neck, hollows behind withers, but weight generally ok. Has ad lib hay, haylage gives her squirts. What would you feed for condition and build up muscle? I’m currently feeding grass pellets soaked and a mug of linseed twice a day. Horse is on long term loan and owner doesn’t want her back. She’s a sweet mare, no trouble at all.
 
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Nudibranch

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You can't really build up muscle without work, and as she's retired is it that important? Hollows behind the withers may be due to past saddle fit.
If she's on ad lib hay and linseed I'd just keep on with that tbh and up her turnout if possible so she's moving more. Possibly swap the grass nuts for oats or unmolassed beet (beet has worked well for me with weight on TBs). Could she ride and lead?
 

ihatework

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She’s a 25yo retired Tb, she is going to loose topline.

If what you are feeding currently agrees with her, then I’d just give her a bit more of it if you want more weight on.
 

TGM

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Agree with the above, if she is not being ridden then she will lose topline anyway, especially if she has physical issues. Changing her feed isn't likely to make her gain muscle, although it might increase her fat deposits.
 

mule

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Feed won't create muscle, it will just put on fat. Exercise is the only think that works for muscle. As she's not been ridden, and given her age I wouldn't be bothered about muscle loss. It's to be expected.
 
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Yes that is correct, work produces muscle, not feed. Hence, me outlining the reason for her unable to work. Thanks for responding, thought I was doing everything right, just needed the reassurance, bit more micronised linseed as needed then. It’s difficult, emotionally, to watch them get old when they look scrawny but are up to weight. Ride and lead might be an idea. I can certainly give that a go, though she is a typical chestnut Tb mare with other horses lol. Thanks everyone once again.
 
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