Dr. Dan: I own a 8yr old rocky mountain gelding that has colic twice in six months.
I switched over to oats, just add oats, red cal and weight check after the second colic. Both situations- the weather changed cooler at night and he did not drink as much.
I feed free choice hay because I only have two acres and my horses are not on grass unless I hand walk them.
Vet has suggested equine senior 2 quarts 3x a day with 60 cc of corn oil at each feeding. Low bulk diet. 1/4th a flake of timothy hay 4x a day or chopped hay of denji. The goal is to increase or decrease the volume being fed to maintain his weitht adequately and keep him content without resuming the volume of bulk he was used to prevously.
Adding lite salt or electrolyte powder to his feed to encourage drinking. My paddock area is 50 x 150 on quarry dust. Vet suggested unlimted grazing allowed.
Dr. Dan, I truly love this horse. This diet the vet is suggesting is not what I think is best for him. I agree with your diet.
My question is that is the oats going to cause impaction in the small intestine since that is where it is digested (from your web call). How much oats should I feed him? I was giving one cup 2x day with free choice hay. Was I wrong to feed him free choice hay since I lack grazing?
Dr. Dan: I love this horse with all my heart. But I am unable to offer him unlimted grazing. If he is only allowed 1/4 of flak of hay 4 x a day I think he would be bored out of his mind and am afraid I will have behavior problems and unhappy mountain horse. I would hate to sell him to a home that has lots of land because he is the closest to bomb proof that I have ever seen in a horse. I love him. But I can’t have this happen again to him.
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. He just came home from the horse clinic from colic by being treated intervenous fluids to help him pass the impaction. I already see a change in his personlity regarding his engery level from the clinic vets diet.
Any suggetions would be greatly appreciated.
P.S. I had the pleasure of meeting your daughter at dinner with H.T. a few years ago.
He does not need salt or other electrolytes. The oats and the diet suggested will and has prevented more colic than any I know. Oats are less likely than anything to cause impaction (though I doubt this is your horses cause for colic). Oats can cause impaction in the esosphagus but only if there is some other problem causing partial paralysis etc.
But in the gut NO. Oats are actually a(ccording to the Natural Research Council for horses), better digested (hind gut) than other grains even and cause less gas.
SO>>> you know my opinion on commercial feed. Re read the article on “salt and minerals” found in the Magazine and in the Library (be sure RED CAL is offered Free Choice that is all the time every day every minute too).
I would consider offering the Hi Mag version of Red Cal perhaps . it can keep the gut a little looser … perhaps switch back and forth on the two products weekly. The Hi Mag is identical but it does have 6% added magnesium. You might also consider the Gut Check as a source of extra enzymes and probiotics for the gut to keep it even more healthy. In most cases gut check not needed because essentially all our products have some of such, but Gut Check is loaded.
You are doing the very best I know for your horse in my opinion and based on past results should, if anything nutritionally, help prevent more than anything else.
Thanks for your comments and thanks for your support!
P.S. I would also put a tablesoon of RED CAL on his food daily also since he drinks less.It can never hurt. (I would use the regular Red Cal for this)
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The Natural Horse Vet Magazine:
What To Feed Your Horse?
Dr. Dan’s Library:
The Natural Vet On The Net: