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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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broodmare nutrition

I have a five year old mare that is due to have her first foal in the middle of March. She is currently eating plenty of grass hay, Equitech 10% fat 10% protein and Triple crown senior 14% in equal portions with the 10/10. She looks great, but I'm wondering if I should make a change. Is the Senior food a problem? We don't have much pasture, so they eat the senior as a way to bulk up their diet along with the grain. She's on strongid c daily and ABC plus. Any suggestions you may have would be lovely

Where are you from? Highland, MD

How did you locate this forum? Foaling manual website (Teresa Jones)

Re: broodmare nutrition

Hi Athena,

During this last three months of her pregnancy, her calorie needs increase dramatically, since she will be gaining 1/2 to 1 pound each day.

So, I would suggest two things. First, give her some alfalfa hay in addition to her grass hay. She needs the extra protein and calcium. And, I would also remove the ABC free choice minerals. She is not able to assess her need for additional minerals, with the exception of electrolytes (sodium, potassium, and magnesium). And, her needs and the needs of her growing foal are not being met in this fashion.

Instead, I would recommend feeding a supplement designed for pregnant mares such as Mare/Foal IIP. Since you are already feeding a complete ration, she may not require the full dosage of this supplement, so go with half of the dosage. This is not exact, but that's where the problem exists with feeding commercial rations along with supplementation. But, it will boost the vitamin/mineral content of her diet, which she needs right now. And, after the foal is born, her needs will be even higher due to lactation requirements.

Make sure she has grass hay available to her 24/7 and is drinking plenty of clean water.

Happy Foaling!

Dr. Getty

Where are you from? Bayfield, CO