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Re: Feeding Toc

> If I
> could get him to stop brain farting in the dressage, I could probably move
> him up, because the XC phase is fine.  

If you've ever watched the eventers do dressage at the Olympics, you'll
see that they balance the same issues all the time.  The situation is,
though, that unless you plan to go out and do 5-10 miles during warmup
before dressage, you need to keep the fitness at a level that will allow
him to THINK during your test.

> The XC phase is about a mile, and the
> speed varies depending on conditions.  
> I also plan on hunting him this season, if possible, which is another reason
> I want to keep him fit.  And because, in all honesty, I can't abide the
> sight or feel of an unfit horse.
Well, honestly, I think those last two reasons are more relevant than
keeping him fit for x-c.  Galloping a mile, even over fences, is going
to be nothing for this horse.  Lower level eventing is not really a test
of fitness or athleticism.  Around here, they often run the 3 phases out
of order, for management's convenience (dressage, SJ, XC) ... Including
warmup time, I'm guessing you're not even in the saddle for 2 hours.
> >My girls just like to be where they can see what's going on, and keep track
> of it.  Very little in the way of playing, but they do cover a lot of ground
> even in the paddock.>
> I've noticed that Toc does, too.  He's very rarely still, even though he
> doesn't get around all that fast.

Don't discount that from the sanity equation.

> >I think all told I'd probably recommend minimal concentrates and maximum
> turnout - 24/7 if you can manage it.<
> I wish I could, but it's too dangerous 

Lots of horses get by on that amount of turnout.  I'd just still keep
the "cooped-up" factor in mind if I were you.
> >Depending on what your x-c challenge looks like, I'd go for a couple
> gallop/jump rides (x-c
> training) a week, 30 minutes each, and spend the rest of the time in the
> school doing flatwork & jumping gymnastics. >
> Do you think I should continue the lunging, or not?  And what about
> roadwork?

Let me put it this way:  I had a friend who sent her horse out for
training (problem was, she wasn't happy as a dressage horse).  So the
trainer started by longeing her for 10-15 minutes each day before she
rode her to "settle" her.  Well, after a week or so, she had to increase
it to 20 minutes, since she didn't "settle" any more after 10.  In
another week or so, she had to go up to a half hour on the longe ... I
think you can follow me from there.  

The thing is, unless you're TEACHING him something on the longe, I'd cut
it back.  If you drop it out entirely, of course, he's going to go nuts
on you.

On the feed side, I've recently started feeding a chopped chaff to my
Fat Mare.  She loves it, because I can give her a whole bucket full of
food, and she doesn't have to stand and watch the others eating after
she's finished her meager ration.  I sprinkle her vits on top, mix in
her sweet feed (she does get a little of that) and sometimes cut up a
carrot to throw in for a treat.  First time ever she's felt like she
wasn't being cheated.


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