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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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Working Carriage horse diet for winter.

I just recently purchased a Percheron draft horse to be used as a carriage horse. The horse has been accustomed to carriage work for the past 3 yrs so her work level will remain the same. She is currently being free fed grass/alfalfa mix. I was wondering if I need to add anything to this for the winter.Or does it stay the same year around? Thank you for your help and time.

Where are you from? ca

Re: Working Carriage horse diet for winter.

Hi Kristy,

She's getting enough to eat if she is holding her weight on this diet and doing the same amount of work that she'll be doing throughout the winter. However, some horses do lose weight in the winter because they burn more calories trying to keep their body temperature normal.

So, if she will be outdoors most of the time during the winter months, it would be worthwhile to add a meal to her diet. I would recommend something low in starch since draft horses often do not tolerate grain (due to a disorder known as EPSM -- Equine Polysaccharide Myopathy). So, give her a meal of soaked beet pulp, and perhaps some flaxseed meal added. Or you can choose a low starch feed such as Triple Crown Low Starch or Purina Ultium.

Thanks for writing.

All the best,

Dr. Getty

Where are you from? Bayfield, CO