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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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weight gain for TB

I have a 14 yr old TB gelding and the problem is he wont put weight on around his hips,withers and back.He has a nice belly on him but that is about all.As for exercise he does nothing, while his back doesnt have enough fat I really dont want to ride him,
Right now he is getting all the alfalfa and grass hay he can eat,I have tried to feed him beet pulp but he wont eat it. From what I've read here it sounds like he needs some Flaxseed and/or ricebran and mabey some Vitamine B since it looks like his immune system is not that good right now, (he has a cut on his ankle that is not healing good) also should I get him on a probiotic to help with the weight gain and what kind of grain is it in. Also can you get flaxseed in grain?
or is it separate and where would I get that or possibley lineseed oil instead of the flaxseed.
Sorry this is so long, any help he could give me would be great.

Where are you from? British Columbia,Canada

How did you locate this forum? internet search

Re: weight gain for TB

Hi Jenni,

Yes, you're right about adding flaxseed meal to his diet -- this will add additional fat and calories. It is not a grain or part of a grain -- you would buy it separately. Your feedstore may carry it, or I can let you know what it would cost to ship it to you in Canada.

A prebiotic, rather than a live-microbial probiotic, is a better choice. The reason is, a prebiotic nourishes the bacteria that live in the hind gut, making digestion of hay more efficient. That way he gets calories from his forage. Ration Plus is a good choice.

You can also add some oil to his diet -- up to one cup/day -- build up to it slowly. I recommend canola oil.

Also, give him some alfalfa or alfalfa pellets. This will round out his protein profile.

A good, overall vitamin/mineral supplement would fill in any gaps.

Keep me posted on how he's doing.

All the best,

Dr. Getty