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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. 

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All the best,

 Dr. Getty 


Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition
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Horse Camping in Mountains ?

Dr. Getty

We live in Colorado and enjoy taking the horses to the mountains for extended weekends several times a year. Usually 4 days up to a week. Certified weed free hay and or processed feed are mandatory. Certified Hay is really hard to come by for us and inconvenient. In the past we fed each animal 3/4 of a coffee can of sweet feed and 3/4 can of Purina 100 or 200 twice a day morning and evening. We have been trying to work in more grazing via picketing or hobbling. But that too is not always a option. We try to water as much as possible i.e. every stream crossing and take them to water at camp or even bring them a 5 gallon bucket to drink out of. At camp the horses are high lined.
Riding is fairly heavy (for us anyway). Usually 1 or 2 days is 8-10 hours @ about 10,000 feet in elevation is very common. The horses and mule are all under15 years old.
So what I am asking is what would be the best feeding scenarios for our situations. Also available to me is Nutrena Life Design products, Small Timothy grass pellets, alfalfa grass mix small pellets, alfalfa small pellets, hay cubes, and the big hard pellets.
Thanks, Chuck

Where are you from? Denver Colorado

How did you locate this forum? surfin

Re: Horse Camping in Mountains ?

Hi Chuck,

The Omelene 300 (Performance) product is likely an appropriate choice for this situation (though I rarely suggest a sweet feed) since they are working hard and require the additional calories and fat.

So, you could offer this feed according to directions. However, I understand your concern about enough forage. If grazing is a problem, give them soaked hay cubes. This will not only provide forage, but will also increase the amount of water they are consuming. Hay cubes should be soaked anyway to help prevent choke.

If you're not already doing so, give them an electrolyte to replace lost minerals and also to encourage drinking. Acculytes is an excellent product and it comes in a paste, which is convenient for traveling.

Your trips sound wonderful. Enjoy!

Dr. Getty