Thursday, April 28, 2011

Scratch that, we are going Progressive.

So I had my plan laid out and I was headed out on the hunt for all the things I was planning to add to Steady's diet.  On my list were:

Flaxseed oil
beet pulp
rice bran
alfalfa cubes

In my search I went to a feed supplier and had a looooong conversation with him.  I hope he wasn't just trying to sell me but he was very convincing and I made the decision to go with his suggestions.  These are the two items I came home with that he assured me would take the place of all of those other items I was going to buy.

ProAdvantage diet balancer
Envision Classic

He said give it 30 days and he guarantees I will see the difference.  He encouraged me to take photo's of before and after.  So I am hoping he is right and Steady will be the poster child for Progressive :)  The price tag on these items are not something to sneeze at but their feeding amounts are so small that it will cost me no more than what I am already doing and not getting results.  One 50# bag of the diet balancer is $30 but you feed 2#'s a day.  The envision 50# bag is $40 and you feed 2 #'s a day.

Question how careful are you when switching and/or adding things to your horses diets.


  1. Add things very slowly over a period of several weeks, would be my recommendation.

  2. I like that plan! I love how high fat it is. Steady should bloom! We fed Progressive when I worked at the farm in Lebanon (where Hampton was born). The horses were always shiny and borderline fat. :) I will be honest, we did come across some bags of grain that were moldy several times. But that's to be watched for no matter what brand you use. And do take before and afters!

  3. Well, to answer your question, not very. I know, I know.... it's a horsekeeping sin to not be super careful and gradually change a horse's diet! But, I've never done it that way, and I've never had a problem. I managed a training/sale barn for years, most times people would come in and not have any of their old grain, we had to switch to our grain immediately. We also dealt with imports and sale horses and most of the time we had no clue what those horses had been eating before they came to us. We just fed them house grain and there was never a problem.

    For my own horses, I add a high fat supplement to their diet in the winter and spring (Nutrena Empower) and I never add it gradually. I also increase their grain rations at the same time, and that isn't done gradually, either. I honestly don't think horses are as delicate as many people think they are. I think many of the colics we see are because of other factors, like the horses suddenly being confined to their stalls for the winter, or other changes in exercise, and not because of the change in feed. A horse's digestive health is heavily associated with their exercise level. They need to move around a lot for their digestive tract to work properly. But, I'm no vet and those are just my observations and opinions. You should to do what you think is best for your horse.

  4. Comparing what you are trying and what our barn feeds - they are very similar! I bet this will put the weight on your boy.

    We have always switched feeds over a period of a week. Can't hurt :)

  5. Several horses in our barn use Envision as a fat supplement -- which is what you want, fat fat fat. I use rice bran because it's cheaper, but both work.

    When adding fat, I have not seen any problems just dumping it in there, if your base grain is the same. I might try to find something a little higher quality and with more punch than Purina Senior, but I think with the balancer and fat, you will see a big improvement in a month.

  6. I usually only take a week or so, and usually because on the rare occasion I switch barns, they are happy to give a week's worth, but not much more. My mare doesn't have a very sensitive stomach, either.

  7. I think those products look just fine. I feed Enrich 32 which is a ration (diet) balancer and I love it. You also only feed two pounds of it a day. I usually switch over three days because I've never really had horses with sensitive stomachs. I just do 75/25, 50/50, 25/75 and then 100% new stuff on the fourth day. That's with feeding twice a day. I would love to see before and after pictures. :)

    Also I've heard that when feeding a ration balancer that if they need more calories that you can feed simple grains (I used oats because I wasn't worried about sugar/starches with Chrome) instead of a complete feed because they are getting the vit/min they need from the balancer. That's also why I used beet pulp and timothy pellets, but Chrome is an easy keeper. Might be something to research. I don't know about feeding a ration balancer with a completely feed.

  8. They have it all spelled out in the pamphlet which some people probably hate but I love. I need simple instructions. For weight gain they say one full scoop of oats along with the diet balancer. So once we finish up this bag of Strategy we will be switching to oats.

  9. Okay cool. That sounds fantastic. That's the only part I was concerned about. You're doing such a wonderful job taking care of Steady. It's just a steep learning curve. I went through it with Chrome too. :)


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