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RE: [RC] The Great Vitamin Debate - kstandefer

Typically we are extremely magnesium and selenium defficient here in the NW as 
well as copper and iodine defficient.   Your hay may have an acceptable ratio 
of Cal/Mag, but adding beet pulp and pasture will imbalance that ratio. 

Because most pastures in the NW have a high amount of calcium and are devoid of 
magnesium (rain washes it out) it is a strong possibility that your horses will 
need magnesium supplements (which should be 2:1 to the calcium intake).  

The only way to know anything is to analyze.  Even then it is a guessing game 
because it's difficult to know how much pasture they are getting.

If the iron content in your water is high (also common in the NW) it can also 
completely throw off the mineral balances as well.  So, it's a good idea to 
have it analyzed as well.

Also, if you're feeding extra beetpulp and nothing else then you're imbalancing 
your calcium/phosphorus ration.  Rice bran is a good supplement to balance out 
the beetpulp.

(This info comes from working with Elleanor Kellon, DMV to balance my own 
horse's vit/min content.  Elleanor is an equine nutrition specialist).

Referenced Post:
Having a debate with a friend of mine that thinks you are neglecting your horse 
if you don't supplement with vitamins daily. I have been told that if you feed 
high quality hay (mine is: Eastern Oregon orchard grass) with beet pulp you 
should be fine. Mine are also on pasture in my backyard and get Sel supplement 
since I'm in the NW. Is it true you must add vitamins or just a waste of money?

Karla Watson

They're athletes! This is a partnership between horse and rider - we don't
have any jockeys out there, just pals and partners. We'd allow a rider with
a broken foot, a sore back and a nasty cold to compete - but we would never
let a horse in a similiar condition hit the trail.
~ Dr. Barney Flemming DVM

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