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Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition

   Welcome to my forum. 

Here you will find more than 6 years of questions and my answers. It is searchable and offers a great deal of information. 

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 Dr. Getty 


Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition
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Feeding a new gelding


I have just bought an 18yr old gelding. He is very sound and doing well right now. I am concerned that I feed him correctly. We feed sweet feed 2 times/day as well as hay.

Am I on the right schedule and feed? Do I need supliments? He has 24hr access to fortified mineral salt blocks. Also, can I feed peanut hay? We currently feed coastal.

Thanks for your help.

We are in the process of establising new pasture for him as well. We have heard that Fescue would be best. What do you think?


Re: Feeding a new gelding

Hi Debi,

Congratulations on your new horse!

If you are working him where he needs extra energy, then the sweet feed is fine. However, be careful to not overfeed – no more than 3 lbs of feed at any one meal, especially one that is grain-based.

Two times each day is what most people choose, mainly because it is convenient for us. But horses’ digestive systems are really not designed for two large meals, so if it is possible to spread out the feeding to three meals each day, that would be better.

Peanut hay? Now that’s something I don’t hear about often! Peanuts are legumes and the hay is wonderful to mix 50/50 with the grass coastal. This will create a high quality protein source for your horse.

Fescue is a nutritious grass. However, because it is prone to endophyte fungus infestation, you should never allow a broodmare to graze on fescue. If you just plan on having geldings, you’ll be fine.

Since his complete feed is high in vitamins, you likely do not need supplements. However, if you decide to cut back on this feed (which I recommend, if his energy requirements are not high), you’ll want to give him a good multivitamin/mineral supplement.

And don't forget clean, fresh water at all times (warmed to 50 degrees Farenheit in the winter) and a salt lick.

Hope this is helpful!

All the best,

Dr. Getty