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[RC] More Feeding Discussion - Lucy Chaplin Trumbull

This question relates a little to the person who mentioned that
they didn't want to give grain the morning of a ride, to prevent
an energy spike to add to her horse's natural, uh, enthusiasm at
the start of a ride.

Note that I am *very* leery of concentrated feeds and up until now
have mostly avoided them except as a BP "seasoning". I don't trust
myself to not screw it up and cause some catastrophic problem. But
I also recognise that my horses suffer fatigue and could probably
benefit from getting more energy from feeds.

My worry is how to avoid overdoing it, without *under* doing it.

As Bruce writes:
> [horses can have] 150-200 pounds of hay is on board at any given time

[this I can barely comprehend - my hay bales weigh 120 lbs and
I can't imagine - even given the length of the horse's gut - that
they can stash that much inside of them... are you talking 850 lb
arabians (as mine are) or something more chunky? <g>]

Anyway, given this figure, my puny "couple of lbs" of concentrated feed
(I use LMF Performance - http://www.lmffeeds.com/lmf_performance.html)
really isn't going to make much of an impression on the horse, I assume.

So how d'you figure out how much to give? LMF recommends "4-12 lbs".
That's quite a range. I ride slow 50s (very slow).
Kat writes:
There is no way for a
horse to eat enough during the course of an
endurance ride to provide it with enough energy to fuel the effort of
the entire ride, even if you were to feed it straight glucose.
Endurance horses fuel their efforts with what they ate the day or so

That being the case, and knowing that the horse is going to be
standing around in the trailer on the way to the ride, and later
tied to the trailer at ride camp, how much grain/concentrated feed
should you be giving in the few days *leading up* to the ride?

As Bruce says:
> ...For some reason, some people seem to think that elevating
> blood glucose is bad. It's not. In the exercising horse it's
> a very good thing.

So what does one do for the "non-exercising" horse? Should
you only feed larger quantities of grain/concentrated feed
when the horse is going to be exercising?

And if so, unless you've "prepped" the gut by feeding some
grain/concentrated feed leading up to that time, will you end
up with the wrong bacteria in there and run the risk of colic/

Again, I'm worried about balancing the active horse with the
inactive one.

Crysta writes:
> Where I start to get confused is how do you keep glucose
> levels elevated during an event?

Bruce responds:
You keep the glucose levels up within a good range for work
by frequent feedings of carbs--grain, carrots, sweet feeds,
molasses, glycogen powders, whatever.

Your idea of a 1 lb baggie of grain every hour or two is an
excellent way to start, along with some carrots...

this idea I really like. Since my horse is clicker-trained
(to some extent), he's used to taking his treat by hand from
the saddle. Whether I can get him to focus enough at a ride
to eat from my hand remains to be seen...

I really like the compressed energy bars sold by the Platinum Performance people, too. They have significant carbs, protein and electrolytes in them and a horse can eat one in a matter of seconds.

Do they like them?

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Lucy Chaplin Trumbull
elsietee AT foothill DOT net
Repotted english person in the Sierra foothills, California
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