Taking energy out my horse

Jonathan89

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27 March 2017
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Hi looking to take the energy out of my horses diet to try help myself riding him as he’s very busy at the moment. He’s 500kg roughly and he’s been out of work a while but with his food, hay and grass is very well in himself at the moment. What would people suggest, open to any help. Over summer he will be light work if that helps with suggestions.
 

Jonathan89

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What are you currently feeding?
I was feeling conditioning cubes and Alfa a chaff twice a day as he was very underweight and now he’s in very good condition I’ve gone onto speedy beat, Alfa a and conditioning cubes.
 

Pearlsasinger

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If he is now in good condition I wouldn't give him anything other than hay/grass. TBH, I wouldn't have given him conditioning cubes to put weight on him, I would have done it more gradually and naturally. It might be the alfalfa that is making him appear to be so full of energy, it can have that effect on horses.
 
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He’s a thoroughbred so I was a bit worried about ulcers? What balancer is your preferred?
if ur worried about ulcers then you DEFINITELY want to take them off hard feed and put them on all hay. alfalfa is preventive for ulcers.
Also thoroughbreds are a more anxious breed however they’re not more ulcer prone than other breeds in my experience
 
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I would ditch the cubes and just keep him on all hay and a small feed with a balancer and a handful of chaff.
 

Pearlsasinger

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Because horses have evolved to digest fibre, very efficiently. They do not digest sugar and starch effectively, these ingredients can upset the balance of bacteria in their digestive system (stomach and intestines). Horses which are trickle-fed fibre, either dried forage or grazing, use the hydrochloric acid which is constantly secreted in the stomach to digest their food over time and are much less prone to ulcers, although they can happen as a stress/pain response. Horses which are fed starch/sugar in the form of 'hard feeds' do not get the 'trickle' effect, so apart from the upset bacteria they have the acid sloshing about in their stomach, rather than being used to digest their forage.
 
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a lot of hard feed contains starch, which can lead to an even worse acidity. besides, grain is very unnatural for a horse and since ulcers is usually due to stress/anxiety, the best way to fix it is to reduce all stress. You can do this by getting as close to possible as you can to their natural state. Also, hay (especially alfalfa) changes the ph in the stomach and buffers the stomach, which prevents ulcers
 
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a lot of hard feed contains starch, which can lead to an even worse acidity. besides, grain is very unnatural for a horse and since ulcers is usually due to stress/anxiety, the best way to fix it is to reduce all stress. You can do this by getting as close to possible as you can to their natural state. Also, hay (especially alfalfa) changes the ph in the stomach and buffers the stomach, which prevents ulcers
if he needs to be treated for ulcers with omprezole (what i use for my guy right now) you can use something low in starch or hardly any starch like rice bran. (Rice bran is helpful because it’s just fats, it also has them gain weight - horses usually loose weight when they have ulcers - and it won’t make them hot headed, simply just fat while getting their medicine and meal)
 
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a lot of hard feed contains starch, which can lead to an even worse acidity. besides, grain is very unnatural for a horse and since ulcers is usually due to stress/anxiety, the best way to fix it is to reduce all stress. You can do this by getting as close to possible as you can to their natural state. Also, hay (especially alfalfa) changes the ph in the stomach and buffers the stomach, which prevents ulcers


Do you understand what starch is?

Starch is present in hay, grass etc you are aware of this yes?

And hay does not change the pH level at all
 
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Reduce the hard feeds, if he's ulcery maybe a bit of alfalfa before you ride as a tummy soother. Also Night Turnout™ - better than any drug. Ours are dope on a rope right now with it, I know the weather is shit but they're a lot more nocturnal than people think being prey animals and all.
 

Shay

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Arizona1's logic may be faulty but the basic premise is right. (As is Pearlsinger) Horses are designed to trickle feed and the easiest (and most natural) way to do this is with forage. Although it is theoretically possible to trickle feed with concentrates it isn't easy and if the horse now has sufficient condition not to need them it would make more sense to stop. If you allow him to keep his stomach always occupied and his legs (almost) always moving, as nature intended him to be, it will help prevent ulcers.

If you want to take energy out of your horse either work him sufficiently hard that he uses it (which you can't at the moment) or stop putting energy in!
 
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