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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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The difference from Brazil to Arizona

Lets just say I think I still work on a small ranch in Tombstone. There are 3 Arabians and 3 Quarter Horses there. We seem to be having some problems on how to feed and care for horses, the AZ way or Brazlian way.
Now I don't know how they do things in Brazil but I know how we do things in AZ.
Correct me if I'm wrong but in AZ we don't bath our horses two to three times day, Right? Especially if they are not being ridin or exercised and have no skin problems to warrent that much bathing.
In AZ we don't free feed alfalfa because of the heat and the threat of colic, Right? Between the everyday temp(105) and the natural heat of alfalfa your just askng for problems. I feed my horses a small flake of alfalfa at night and a big portion of grass and luckily my colic episodes are slim to none.
I just need someones help in letting my boss know we do know what we are doing taking care of horses in AZ.
Please Help!!! before they damage or kill innocent horses.

Where are you from? Tombstone, Arizona

How did you locate this forum? Search Engine

Re: The difference from Brazil to Arizona

Hi Kristina,

Bathing horses several times a day is not necessary and can remove valuable oils from the skin. It is fine to hose them down with plain water each day, but do not use soap.

Alfalfa hay does not produce any more heat than grass hay. It is the fermentation of fiber in the hind gut that produces heat. And, the fiber content of alfalfa is comparable to grass hays. So, in that regard, it is not a problem to feed more alfalfa than you are currently feeding.

Having said that, I do not recommend feeding alfalfa free-choice. It is high in calcium and is better fed with a grass hay to balance out the calcium/phosphorus ratio. I like a 60/40 mixture of grass/alfalfa.

Your feeding plan on offering a flake of alfalfa at night is fine and as long as your horses are healthy, I would not necessarily change it.

I hope this clarifies things!

All the best,
Dr. Getty