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Re: RC: Probiotics life span

At 12:49 PM 4/2/2001 -0400, you wrote:
>? Also, what's the correct dosage recommended to give along with 
>electrolytes at vet checks on a 50, and how often? Thanks, randi in Florida

Hi Randi:  I noticed that there weren't a whole lot of responses to this 
question.  Probably because nobody really knows the answer.  Electrolyting 
is an art form -- you really can't tell somebody how much they should 
electrolyte their horse because there are so many variables.  Sure, we all 
know that we probably should be electrolyting....most riders nowadays do 
use electrolytes.  How much can vary considerably even with the same horse 
-- depending on the weather and trail conditions, and how you ride.  It 
also depends on what and how much your horse eats, and how often.

Generally, I try to give a dose everytime the horse drinks--obviously, you 
can't do that on some rides where there is a lot of natural water or you'd 
be having to bring along a packhorse just to carry your electrolytes 
along.  I like to start preloading two or three days before we leave for a 
ride, an ounce two times a day.  This, IMO, really does help because the 
horses seem to arrive at the ride site with a full tank.  There is a 
noticeable difference in how much they poop, how many times they urinate 
overnight and also how much they continue eating and drinking.  After we 
arrive at the ride, I continue to give a dose of electrolytes twice a day, 
and also in the morning a couple of hours before we start.  I find that 
then they are always happy to drink out of the first water stop we come to.

Once we finish the ride, I try to continue giving electrolytes for a couple 
of days---longer if we have a long trip home.

As far as using probiotics -- you just have to experiment.  I haven't been 
using them and can't tell a difference.  I'm not sure why that is -- it 
could be that the horses have this all figured out......they don't usually 
get real stressed out or excited anymore at rides (yeah now that I said 
that wait till the next ride and they'll turn into raging monsters 
<g>).....I think a horse that is more stressed out about the whole thing 
tends to need a little more help with things like eating, etc. and 
probiotics probably do help them.  When I was using probiotics, I was 
mixing Optamax (from United Vet Equine) at about 1/2 oz. to 1 oz. of 
Enduramax, and that seemed to make a good mix for the syringe (along with 

As an example of why it's hard to always know how much electrolytes to 
give, I have done one multiday (Death Valley) and gave the horse a huge 
amount of electrolytes.  There was no grass to eat on the trail, and no 
natural water.  Same horse did a different multiday -- the June XP, and was 
given probably less than half the same amount of electrolytes.  There was 
grass to eat and plenty of natural water on the trail.  I had Pride Project 
testing done on the horse for both rides, and his electrolyte levels always 
stayed in the normal range for both rides.  After doing 5 days of the XP, 
he lost a total of 25 pounds of weight overall (250 miles).  I don't know 
weight loss at DVE because there was no scale yet -- tho it probably was in 
the same ballpark.  On other rides he has done that I tested him on (the 
shortest test was on a 2-day ride) he has actually gained weight from start 
to finish.  The way I electrolyte is different for every ride, depending on 
how we ride and the conditions.  I think I've got it figured out (sort of), 
Susan G. seems to think so.  Everytime I talk about trying something 
different she slaps me.  hehe

West Region
& Dream Weaver, 3420 miles
& Rocky, 3380 miles

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