Return to Website

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
This Forum is Locked
No alfalfa for mare in foal?

I have a 10 year old paint mare that is 8 months pregnant. She is ridden by my 9 year old daughter in Pony Club. She's a pretty "hot" mare and our trainer has suggested we take her off alfalfa and SafeChoice until we stop riding her (which will probably be in about a month and 1/2 or so, she's in great shape so our vet said we can continue to ride (no jumping after this month though)).
Right now we have her on grass hay (2x day), 1 cup soy bean meal, Mare Plus, 1 Tbls. kelp, and a scoop of rice bran. Should I add anything else since she won't be getting alfalfa or SafeChoice for a month or so?
She is in a paddock at a boarding facility and gets ridden about 4 days a week.
Thanks for your help!

Where are you from? San Jose, CA

How did you locate this forum? internet

Re: No alfalfa for mare in foal?

Hi Tami,

Congratulations! She is entering her last three months of pregnancy and will be gaining 1/2 to one pound per day! So, she needs lots of extra calories. She should have hay 24/7 -- not just twice each day -- so she never runs out. And, alfalfa does not make horses "hot" -- too much starch and sugar can for some horses because it causes highs and lows of blood sugar levels. Alfalfa is very important for pregnant mares to provide additional protein, calcium and other nutrients.

So, all the hay she wants, 30 to 40% of which from alfalfa, a vitamin/mineral supplement designed for pregnant mares, and I would replace the kelp with plain, white table sale -- one ounce (two tablespoons) per day along with an available salt lick (white).

Happy Foaling!

Dr. Getty

P.S. If you are looking for a foaling guide to help you through what to expect, what is normal, what is not, and how to care for your mare and newborn, I highly recommend "The Complete Foaling Manual."

Where are you from? Bayfield, CO