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Re: feeding schedules

There was a study that estimated that feed efficiency is reduced by
approximately 10-15% (and is highly variable) when horses are fed
outside a 2 hour window---in other words, if a horse expects to be fed
at 5, efficiency drops if he ISNT fed between 4-6.

On the other hand, you might want to check out a post a few days ago on
"trail foods and fluid shifts".  The fluid shifts discussed in there
occur in ANY horse fed "episodically", as in getting two large meals a
day vs. being fed free-choice.  I realize everyone's situation is
different, and sometimes it just ain't possible, but if it IS an option,
you might strongly consider switching to a feeding regimen that allows
your horse to munch whenever he wants, rather than gorge (relatively
speaking) twice a day.  Also easier on you so you don't have to stress
so much getting there right on time---after all, s**t happens! :-)

Good luck!

Susan Garlinghouse

Horsestwo wrote:
> I have a question for the vets and tech types.  How important is being prompt
> when feeding i.e. scheduling the times?  I had read years ago that besides
> helping with anxiety, feeding on a set schedule increased the utilization of
> the feed.  Since then I have had to try to explain to friends and family why
> it was important that I be at home to feed my horses.  I try to feed within a
> one hour window but that is as close as I can come.  If it doesn't matter that
> much it wouldn't change my schedule too much but at least I wouldn't have the
> guilt trip!  I know that when at a ride the schedule is disrupted but the
> horse has to learn to eat when food is in front of him.  I'm concerned about
> the home schedule, day in and day out.
> Melanie in AZ  "The air of heaven is that which blows between a horse's ears"
> Arabian proverb

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