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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. 

Currently, I am discontinuing new questions. This may change in the future, but in the meantime, please know that It has been a true pleasure serving you. 

Take a look at my Nutrition Library and Tips of the Month for a variety of answers on selected topics. Be sure to sign up for my monthly e-newsletter, Forage for Thought

I also have a growing number of recordings on "Teleseminars on Nutrition Topics that Concern You" as well as the new, Spotlight on Equine Nutrition Series -- printed versions of favorite teleseminars.

And finally, look for my articles in a variety of local publications and online newsletters, as well as the Horse Journal, where I am the Contributing Nutrition Editor.  


All the best,

 Dr. Getty 


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

I am trying to keep my cobs weight down as she is to be shown this year - someone suggested feeding her to fill her up before she goes onto grass (with speedy beet low sugar sugar beet) as she can take less from this than from the grass. I think she is greedy and will eat just as much and blow her stomach up twice as fast - what do you think? Currently she does 12 hours in 12 hours out with an occasional 24 hour stint out and I am only just managing to keep on top of her weight.

Where are you from? Scotland UK

How did you locate this forum? Google

Re: Fat Cobs

Hi Ally,

Actually, beet pulp has more calories than most grasses, so letting her fill up on beet pulp is not reducing her caloric intake. Horses need to eat all of the time -- their stomachs constantly produce acid, and chewing (saliva) helps neutralize that acid. So, it is important to let her eat, even when off pasture. In fact, if you take her away from food for many hours, not only will her stomach suffer, but her metabolic rate will slow down.

I would suggest that you allow her to graze on grass, and add some grass and alfalfa hays to the mixture, so her protein intake is of high quality. Beet pulp is not necessary, and only adds extra calories (I recommend it to people who want their horses to gain weight). I would also recommend adding a good multiple vitamin/mineral supplement so she is able to better metabolize her nutrients.

But, the most important thing you can do for her would be to exercise her every day. Diet alone will not do it.

Keep me posted!

All the best,

Dr. Getty