Spillers? Are you SERIOUS?

horsy

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I would like some advice on feed please :D Ok my cob got Laminitis last year, keeping a close eye on his weight this year and I've got him down to about 520kg on the weightape. He is now on a well grazed field and coping nicely with turnout from 8.30 am to about 3.30-4pm. I can now feel but not see his ribs, but he still has quite an apple bum and fat pads on his shoulders, which are reducing slowly but surely.

He is being ridden or excercised about 5 days a week, gentle work really as my confidence isn't up to doing any fast work yet. Anyway back to my question. I'm wondering if hes getting everything he needs, as he seems to be getting more sluggish as he gets fitter, he has short bursts of energy, and then totally reverts to almost coming to a standstill.

He gets literally two single handfulls of Spillers Happy Hoof, with a magnesium supplement. Now I dug out the bag of happy hoof and checked the scale on the back, and apparently he should be having 3kg. A DAY. So I double checked on the website, and yes, 3kg A DAY. I just went to the kitchen and weighed that out and it seems absolutely ridiculous!!! But then I've never really fed him more than a handful of anything because he lives on fresh air. The bag is only 20kg, that means it would only last me a week!!!

Is this right? Am I overeacting? I'm gonna try and up it a bit just to make sure hes getting all the vitamins in it, but 3kg just seems a bit over the top to me. Is it like dog food, where they seem to grossly overestimate how much a dog should be fed? My dog also seems to live off fresh air as she eats nowhere near what they reccomend she should!!!

He also has one of those himalayan salt licks in his stable that he seems to like, and that is supposed to have lots of minerals in too.
 

Showjumper

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3kg per day is how much you'd need to feed to not need to feed an additional vitamin and mineral supplement. Rather than upping the feed (which will only add calories), I'd add a mineral supplement such as Feedmark Benevit to what you're currently feeding, or swap to a pelleted balancer like Bailey's Lo Cal which is fed in small quantities but provides all the vitamins and minerals he needs.
 

eml

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I am not a great believer in the 'advice' given on feed sacks.

From your description I would be feeding a mineral/vitamin supplement only, the sort that comes as treats are useful as they double for catching etc. Are you sure your horse has a magnesium deficiency, often oversupplementing can reduce performance?
 

horsy

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3kg per day is how much you'd need to feed to not need to feed an additional vitamin and mineral supplement. Rather than upping the feed (which will only add calories), I'd add a mineral supplement such as Feedmark Benevit to what you're currently feeding, or swap to a pelleted balancer like Bailey's Lo Cal which is fed in small quantities but provides all the vitamins and minerals he needs.

When I asked for some advice from the man who runs the local feed store about wether I should have him on all of these laminitis supplements that are floating around, he mentioned baileys lo cal, but when I said I was feeding Happy Hoof he said that he would be getting everything he needs vitamin wise from that. But I may look further into it, thanks.

I am not a great believer in the 'advice' given on feed sacks.

From your description I would be feeding a mineral/vitamin supplement only, the sort that comes as treats are useful as they double for catching etc. Are you sure your horse has a magnesium deficiency, often oversupplementing can reduce performance?

I may try those treats, just assumed they were "treats" and therefore packed with sugar, didn't realise there were vitamin ones. Not sure about the magnesium defficiency, was just told by the same feed merchant as above, that locally our grazing is low in magnesium, and it would help in the control of his gut and therefore his laminitis risk? I've also read alot about it helping with Lami? He's been on that since he came down with Laminitis last year, its the Equine America Magnitude stuff.
 

eml

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Trying not to be unfair to your feed merchant but I would take your vets advice on supplements. Magnesium is the latest 'must feed', a few years ago it was selenium.

Laminitic horses need particular care, just because a bag says 'Laminitus Trust Approved' does not mean it is good for your horse merely 'less bad' than a lot of others.

I would be concerned about the 'sluggishness' it could be all sorts of things from low grade pain to a schooling issue but probably the best thing to do is to ask your vet to run a blood profile to see what if anything is going on.
 

Chip

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Magnesium is now widely used as a calmer, so could actually be what is making him sluggish. Your feed merchant was giving correct advice about the Happy Hoof, but not in fullness. It will only provide sufficient vits/mins if fed at the recommended rates. Personally, I would feed just a handful of HH and add a broad spectrum vit/min supplement.
 

BenjiandAnge

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Like the others sy, feed a couple of handfulls of Happy Hoof and a balancer too.
As for the sluggishness; Could be the warm weather, I know mine goes on slow mode when its hot! Really you should up the exercise, lots of walking out, hill work and trotting to build up stamina.
 

neveragain

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Like someone said on an earlier post, happy hoof it supposed to be fed at that quantity for him to get the required vit and mins. if you aren't going to feed him that amount, save your money and swap him to a chaff and add minerals, topspec do a really good supplement for lamanitic or pre laminitis horses no1 healthy hoof. its a broadspec vit and min sup with added healthly hoof vit and mins.
As for his energy, when you say he almost comes to a stand still, do you mean literally stops and rests then carries on? it could be caused by sore feet, although he's over the effects of the laminitis his whole hoof has changed and you need to feed a supplement that will help suport lamini. also feeding the right supplement will help convert that stored fat, turn it to energy and get rid of it. don't worry about feeling his ribs. condition scoring works better, looking at the whole horse rather than feeling his rids, if he's still got and apple bum and fat over the shoulder then he's still overweight so don't feed him any calories.
I do kind of agree about not trusting some feed merchants as at the end of the day they want to make a sale but we're not all like that!. i always do myself out of sales of horsefeed at this time of the year, but it's better to have a healthy horses.;)
 

horsy

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Thanks everyone for your replies. Im going to try him on a balancer, think I will try the Lo-cal one as he will only need 2 mugs a day on that, and use up the rest of the happy hoof that I have, give that a couple of weeks and see if it makes a difference. How long will it take to kick in? If he doesn't improve I will get some blood tests done.
 

old_woman

a VERY senior citizen
I am afraid I wouldnt trust a feed merchant as to advice on what local grazing 'does' and 'doesn't' contain. You have no way of knowing if he is giving good advice or not, and his advice is bound to be affected to some degree by what he sells or hopes to sell. He also has no idea of what treatment, if any, your grazing land has or hasn't had, and he has not had an analysis done on any hay that you use.

If it were my own land, I would pay for full testing on the ground and the herbage - and supplement the GROUND, not the animal. I would also have analysis done on the hay I buy in. I appreciate this is difficult if you are buying it a few bales at a time from different sources - but if you are doing this, it is also less necessary, as the chances are that a deficiency in the bales from one source would be offset by the contents of bales from another source.

Otherwise I would ask my vet what is normally needed locally as a supplement, and get the most economical version. Reasonable grazing should supply most, of not all, of what a horse needs if it is mature, healthy and not working hard, and over-supplementation can cause just as much, or more, problems than not supplementing at all.
 

horsy

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Old Woman, the feed merchant I spoke with mentioned that he had to supplement his ground for his hay and haylage with magnesium, as he had had it tested and it was low.

I would also hope he would get everything he needs from grass but he is currently on restricted grazing which is why I am a little worried. But I agree with everyone on not trusting them completely as I have just been to a different feed place that I used to go to regularly which has given me completely different advice!!

So anyway I've bought him the Baileys LoCal and will be taking off his magnesium supplement as this may also be causing the sluggishness.

Time will tell I suppose, look out for me posting about how he has changed into a little pocket rocket and I need to calm him down again :D
 

y03mylers

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My farrier has recommended i get magnesium supplements for my boy, who currently has lami. He said it can help to control wether they get it or not x
 

old_woman

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Old Woman, the feed merchant I spoke with mentioned that he had to supplement his ground for his hay and haylage with magnesium, as he had had it tested and it was low.

But that was HIS ground, not yours ... unless you graze your horse on the land he takes his hay and haylage off, his results are, in the main, irrelevant to your horse's grazing.

Actually, that's one reason I like to buy my hay - or at least half of it - from out of the area entirely. Then I don't have to listen to all the bull$h!t spouted by people who 'think' they know what my land lacks or doesn't lack ...
 

horsy

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But that was HIS ground, not yours ... unless you graze your horse on the land he takes his hay and haylage off, his results are, in the main, irrelevant to your horse's grazing.

Well yes I suppose you are right :eek: I just get so worried that I'm not doing the right thing for my horse that I tend to listen to people who seem like they know what they are talking about, and then get totally in a spin when they conflict each other! Need to trust in my own knowledge and instincts a bit more I think.
 
E

elliebelly

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Himalayan salt lick

Sorry to be OT but I stopped buying these after seeing an article in the Brooke magazine I think about how hard the people and the donkeys / horses have to work who mine the salt for these. Basically there is no fair trade price made to these people and there working conditions are horrendous. Same goes for table salt. I now only buy sea salt. Thought there may be people who want to know about this it's not a dig by the way :)
 

Lemme

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I have one Laminitic 9hh who gets 400g Happy Hoof ( 2 x 200g feeds) daily and a joint suppliment. he has been on it for approx 3 months , he maintains his weight at 158kg for that period, he is out during the day on restricted grazing (with hay available) and Hay on a night currently.

we have one 19yr 13.3hh who is on 800g Happy Hoof a day ( 2 x 400g feeds)and joint suppliment, daily she is now 380kg and is maintaing her weight, but is out 24/7 on medium grazing.

the other is a 2yr old 11hh who is 200kg and is on 550g a day (split into 2 feeds) he is growing obviously but is developing nicely in good condition, and is on 24/7 medium turnout,

a Bag of HH for all 3 lasts approx 10 days, which equates to approx £30 a month, which is acutally cheaper than what it cost us for balancer/hi-fi.

All are currently on light exercise.

All the feed weights where recommended by Spillers to ensure they get what they need.
Was a little nervous at first as although we always fed a balancer during summer the fuller buckets make you think "weight" but it hasn't had that effect we are really pleased with the results we are getting.
 
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