Pounding The Feed...Not Gaining The Weight

Discussion in 'Horse Health' started by CautionWetPaint, Jun 30, 2018.

  1. CautionWetPaint

    CautionWetPaint Senior Member

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    My Gelding came to me in March and was a decent body weight, but could use a few pounds. Since I have had him, he has definitely lost weight. I feed him 4 scoops of Nutrena Perform daily with a once a day complete mineral supplement, as well as turnout to grass pasture everyday, and as much good pure alfalfa as he wants. But he is still not gaining like I would like him to. You can't see his ribs at all, but he's definitely not where he should be. He is all UTD on worming (within the last 2 weeks was his last dose), teeth, and shots. He is 4 years old. The other problem I have with him, is he just picks at his food and eats very slowly. He has never been a very fast eater, and will not clean his hay up that is in his stall overnight. He is not a fence pacer, and does not go anywhere very fast due to being very lazy! Also his work load is only a ride a couple times a week at the most, as the weather has not been cooperating. So I don't believe he is "running" the weight off in any way.
    The Nutrena Perform feed I give him is 14% Crude Protein, 15% Max Crude Fiber, and 9% Crude Fat. This is the highest protein and fat pellet that I have been able to find in our area. I will be going to the feed store again soon, and will be searching the tags more, just to make sure there is something higher I could be giving.
    Do you all have any suggestions as to a good feed, or good additive? He absolutely hates powder and will do anything to eat around it, including leave the little pile of grain it's mixed with. Any pelleted or liquid options I could try? I know he will never look like I beefy halter horse, but I would like to get him up to a good healthy weight.
    The below picture is about 2 weeks after he got here:
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    This one was taken on June 3rd.
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    He has lost a little more weight than in these pictures. I will see if I can snap a picture with no saddle the next time I go out to the barn.
     
  2. manesntails

    manesntails Senior Member

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    Grain is for energy. Hay builds weight. Free choice good hay will put weight on. More grain just makes them all hyped up.
     
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  3. doublelranch

    doublelranch Senior Member

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    Ulcers from being stressed from the move. Picking at feed is one of the signs his stomach is bothering him.
     
  4. Alsosusieq2

    Alsosusieq2 Senior Member

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    He looks fine. Why would you want him to gain? You really don't want him fat.
     
  5. Alsosusieq2

    Alsosusieq2 Senior Member

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    He looks fine weight wise, but I'd check him for ulcers. That's not a happy persona.
     
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  6. PyroTekNik333

    PyroTekNik333 Senior Member

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    First thing I'd do is weigh what he is getting for food (grain and hay) so you have a baseline.
    If he's eating all the hay/grass he will and is at the max recommended amount of the hard feed you might have to add a fat supplement in the form of a pellet or oil unless you can find a different feed that will work. I think nutrena (or maybe purina?) makes a fat supplement that is pelleted, amplify maybe? Cheaper option, albeit messier and not always well recieved by poneh, would be cooking oil.

    Ulcers are a good possibility too, you might want to talk with your vet about treating or you can get some otc treatments to try. Lots of threads here with recommendations and dosages if you do a search :) You might also ask about a super b injection to boost appetite.

    Fwiw the pic when you just got him is as heavy as I'd want to see him if he were mine :)
     
  7. CautionWetPaint

    CautionWetPaint Senior Member

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    I'll get some new pictures tomorrow, he has lost more weight since these pictures. I don't want him fat by any means but to me he just looks slim for a 16h stock horse. My mare on the other hand looks like she eats a round bale a day, and she's only on a handful of grain to keep her quiet when my Gelding eats!
     
  8. Faster Horses

    Faster Horses Senior Member

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    As long as ribs are covered, he may just be less round in the rib cage than your mare.

    That being said, if he's thin along the top line, something is going on.

    Any chance he eats in a sandy area, fed directly on the ground, or his pasture has sandy soil?
     
  9. CautionWetPaint

    CautionWetPaint Senior Member

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    Nope, it's all nice black dirt here under the grass. And when he gets hay outside its in the hay bay with net we built so nothing but grass on ground. Sand is only in the arena here and he does not eat there. And we use corn cob bedding on mats, with hay in slow feed bags and grain in buckets.
     
  10. manesntails

    manesntails Senior Member

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    Take the net off his hay. Let him eat 2-3 flakes three times a day. He'll bunk up. Add a probiotic to his feed and get him scoped for ulcers.
     
    GONE ROPING likes this.

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