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Hormonal Mares
 Moderated by: DrDeb  
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Marne
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 Posted: Fri Dec 4th, 2009 12:29 am
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WE have tested our ground here for those elements and they were not an issue here.

thanks again for the idea.  Marne

Jineen Walker
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 Posted: Fri Dec 4th, 2009 02:15 pm
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Hi Dr. Deb

I need to know how much to feed and where to get boron. They laughed when I inquired at the supplement store-. As to the magnesium I was feeding, I just followed the label directions. For the new hay crop I was told to increase zinc. Selenium is low in New England as well.
Here's the real question: instead of me relying on the reading of the hay analysis taken from the feed store rep so that he can sell me the complementary grain,  how do I read it myself so that I can supplement accordingly?

Thank you, Jineen

Jineen Walker
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 Posted: Fri Dec 4th, 2009 03:08 pm
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Dr. Deb

Just talked to my hay analysist. He said  he hadn't tested for zinc.
He said that his Forage Extender would come in at about 6% for starch, sugars and carbs.(per lb) So would his carb-safe grain, made for insulin resistant horses.

The new hay I have would come in about 4% with 9.2 protein,and last yrs hay that I still feed about 5lbs a day has twice as much simple sugars, 1/3 more carbs. and 20.4 protein.
Jineen

Pauline Moore
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 Posted: Sun Dec 6th, 2009 12:59 am
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Hello Jineen

There is nothing unusual about one or two horses in a group being very sensitive to sugars and/or phytoestrogens that do not affect the other horses.  I still have two aged TBs - the 25 yr old is an easy-keeper and has always been able to eat anything with no change to his temperament; oats by the bucketful, fresh grass, bright green lucerne - nothing bothers him and he still does not need magnesium or other supplements.  The other horse is 20, has Cushings syndrome, very hard to keep weight on and is extremely sensitive to sugars - he needs magnesium and all the other supplements I've mentioned previously.  It's just the luck of the draw in the same way that some people are more able to tolerate dietary sugars than others.

When you were feeding the beet pulp to your 20 yr old, did you soak and rinse several times until the rinse water was completely clear?  Any remaining brown colouring in the water indicates that excess sugars are still present.  Also, what oil were you using?  If it was plain vegetable oil, there is a good chance it was soy based and may therefore have carried some phyotestrogens.  You've already worked out that the forage extender caused problems because of its alfalfa content together with the added sweeteners.  There are several products on sale in this country, marketed for IR/Cushings horses, with low NSC of around 6% - I would not use any of them for my Cushings horse as they have substituted high sugar material with high phytoestrogen material from soy or sunflower seed.  Relying on feed analyses can be misleading, it's not that simple, we really have to go for a lot of trial and error with each individual horse to see what best suits that particular horse.

It might also be worth checking what form of magnesium you are using.  Most horses will respond well to plain magnesium oxide even though it is not well absorbed but some horses need the chelated form which is much more highly bio-available.

Best wishes - Pauline


Jineen Walker
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 Posted: Thu Dec 10th, 2009 02:24 pm
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Hi Pauline

Thanks for your input. No, I didn't rinse the beet pulp clear-it didn't have a lot of color, or so I thought, so I got lazy with rinsing, and just soaked it.
The magnesium supplement has both oxide and chelated.

Another thought I was having in regards to my hay, is that I am in a depleted soil are for selenium. As I hunt to find that as a supplement, I have to realize that lack of selenium might play a part in Trey not liking to be brushed. I had been feeding a vitamin/mineral supplement over the past few years, and as I study the ingredients and amounts, I realize that he was getting too little of that.  I had a horse tie up many years ago, so that may be a factor. So I am off to hunt, and hopefully not over supplement, but you can't buy just one ingredient. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

  Thank you, Jineen

DrDeb
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 Posted: Thu Dec 10th, 2009 06:50 pm
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Jineen, selenium supplements are easy to find -- just talk to your vet. If you really have selenium-deficient soils in your area, the veterinarian will know all about it because all the cows in the area will need a selenium drench before they calve. Your vet will be able to direct you to a variety of products, some that are just selenium, some where the selenium is mixed into either a bag of feed or into a salt block.

You need to be sure what you really are responding to by supplementing with anything, but especially with selenium because a small overdose is toxic. What I mean is, it does not matter much what YOUR OWN soil is like if the horses are getting 50% or more of their food from hay or alfalfa that is grown SOMEWHERE ELSE. Then what you have to concern yourself with is whether the hay or alfalfa is low-selenium; or else go find the very field in which your bales were grown, and have THAT soil tested.

A horse that eats hay is as good as standing on the other person's property.

Let me caution you once again against running around trying to buy ingredients one at a time in order to respond, as you think, to this or that "behavior" in your horses. While it is true that a properly balanced diet, including adequate levels of all minerals, is an aid in promoting tractability and calmness, changing the diet will not solve all or even most of your problems.

Further, Jineen, if you are trying to buy a little bit of this and a little bit of that to make your own supplement-mix, you'll never make it. It's a hobby, dear, and one in which any sane person will quickly lose interest. What you do instead is talk to your veterinarian, ask them what other people in your neighborhood are feeding. Ask the vet where the barn is locally that has the horses he finds the easiest to work with. Find out what they are feeding -- then feed that.

Once again: horses eat two things -- grass and water. They also need a red-mineral block, i.e. the one with NaCl plus a variety of trace minerals balanced for your part of the country, which can be bought at any feed store. Make sure your horse does lick the block so that you see it visibly get smaller every day. If he doesn't, then buy small blocks and break them up with a hammer and feed the resulting powdered salt-mineral mix on top of the hay to encourage the horse to eat it. Provide plenty of water.

As to grass, make sure you know what the species is so that the grass you are feeding is non-poisonous.

Go light on alfalfa, or, for some horses, none at all.

If you have insulin-resistant, founder-prone, obese, or Cushing's horses, soak any sugary greenstuff, i.e. beet pulp, cereal hay, or sweet grass hay, in water for from 30 minutes to 2 hrs. -- until the water turns the color of coca-cola.

For horses with maloccluding or absent teeth, who cannot chew their food and/or who are quidding, feed pelleted (not cubed) hay with the least amount of molasses or wax binder or none.

Once these things have been done, you will have done a workmanlike job of feeding your animals. Then, if they still have so-called "behavioral" problems, you address those by working to get the horse 100% OK on the inside, as explained in The Birdie Book. What did you think, Jineen, at the clinic, when I was so hard on that girl with the Paint horse from Pennsylvania? Did you think I was doing that because I disliked her? I don't dislike her or anybody else. She came to that clinic in order to SHOW how good her horse could PERFORM -- before she had taken care of a lot of the underlying unease in the animal. And then when I showed her "this is how you really do it" she did not like to admit to having gotten off-course. Remember how her horse went to sleep after I had handled him a few minutes?

So I want your National Show Horse gelding to be able to go to sleep, too -- in other words to be able to completely relax when you are handling or riding him. No amount of dietary alteration can ever produce this; only learning how to do it will help. -- Dr. Deb

 

SuziQ
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 Posted: Fri Jan 15th, 2010 08:40 am
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Could I please ask at what age you would consider feeding Chaste berry to a horse? I have an 18 month filly who comes into season regularly and is very winky/squirty with it and also seems 'stiffer' in her back legs (I say that tentatively as her movement is full but she seems more reluctant to move). I have had the vet check her and he is monitoring her with consideration to possible cystic ovaries but is mainly putting her reaction to the season down as part of 'just developing hormones'. Feeding-wise I have cut out all lucerne (which she was put on without my knowledge by a 'well-meaning' friend!) and she is only being fed hay and a small amount of yearling mix over winter which has the least amount of molassess, soya, and lucerne that I could find.

I was wondering if a chaste berry supplement would be helpful at this age?

Thanks for all your input

Pauline Moore
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 Posted: Fri Jan 15th, 2010 08:15 pm
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Hello Suzi - I would be reluctant to give any medicinal herb to such a young horse without the full agreement and involvement of the vet who is monitoring her.   Chastetree berry has an effect on the pituitary gland which governs many body systems - I have not seen any reports, positive or negative, indicating its use for still-growing horses; the closest I've seen are anecdotal reports of it being used to eliminate severe acne in teenage boys.  If your vet agrees, you could possibly try it for one or two heat cycles to assist with reaching a conclusive diagnosis.

If it turns out that cystic ovaries are not the problem, it might be worth trying to find a veterinary herbalist whom you could consult.  Where do you live?

What type of pasture does your filly eat?  What type of hay are you feeding?

Best wishes - Pauline


SuziQ
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 Posted: Sun Jan 17th, 2010 05:51 pm
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Hi Pauline, thanks for getting back to me. I'm in Southern England - Surrey. She is on a clover grass and a timothy hay, as good as we can get it. I have just made the decision to move her to a different yard which is calmer and quieter with more space and a few more youngsters as I am wondering if the energy of the one of the humans who looks after her might be exacerbating the situation. Not quite sure how that works physiologically or whether it is purely a mental thing on both parts but she seems much worse around her. So I think I will monitor her for a few cycles until she's settled and then talk to the vet about the chasteberry.

Thank you!

Pauline Moore
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 Posted: Sun Jan 17th, 2010 08:46 pm
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Suzi - You could try cutting out the clover grass, this is as bad as lucerne in terms of potential for disrupting hormones.  Good luck with your yard change, if this also means a change of pasture to one that doesn't have clover your problem may be solved.  Please let us know the outcome.

Best wishes - Pauline

warren
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 Posted: Tue Aug 17th, 2010 02:44 pm
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RICE HULLS

I am told that in the Philippines, horse owners feed their horses large quantities of rice hulls.  It seems they substitute rice hulls for beet pulp or oats.  In addition, I am trying to determine if, in the Philippines, farmers grow hay....or do horse owners just allow horses to graze on sugar loaded, green grass for endless hours?

Any information, advice or comments most welcome.

DrDeb
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 Posted: Tue Aug 17th, 2010 10:25 pm
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Warren, rice hulls are also available as a horse feed supplement in this country. They are used for two purposes:

1. To increase the percentage of structural carbohydrates in the diet, i.e. to increase what is commonly called the 'roughage'

2. To improve the coat, and/or to help the horse gain or maintain weight, because in many cases rice hulls have a lot of oil.

I am not at all up on what horse feeds are grown or commonly fed in the Philippines, and I am not sure we have anyone reading here who is from that area. I myself would be interested in any responses from people knowledgeable or familiar with it. Also: I'm interested in learning more about horse feeding practices in tropical countries generally, and throughout Africa and Asia -- world areas that we know less about. -- Dr. Deb

warren
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 Posted: Tue Aug 17th, 2010 11:05 pm
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Thank you!  I had not been aware of rice hulls being fed in this country.  I have a young student of agricultural science in the Philippines researching these issues for me.  So far, it seems that farmers grow very little hay since abundant grass exists all year around....so much sugar!


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