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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.

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All the best,

 Dr. Getty 


Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition
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Re: Changing the hay supplier: How to make the transition easier?

Hi Jennifer,

Glad to help!

Dr. Getty
Author of Feed Your Horse Lika A Horse

Thank you so much, Dr. Getty! I'll let you know how it went. Great advice, highly appreciated!

Jennifer from Germany

Dr. Getty
Hi Jennifer,

If at all possible, have your new hay analyzed to make sure that the protein content is not above 10-12% crude protein. This is because mules (and donkeys) should not have too much protein and could cause digestive upset (as well as laminitis).

To make the transition easier, I would add a prebiotic to their diet each day. This consists of "fermentation products" that feed existing microbes. The product I often suggest is called Ration Plus (which you can look at to see what it contains). But, if this type of product is not available, go with a probiotic (contains live microbes). These are easy to obtain. Give your horses a dose twice a day to keep the hindgut bacteria in good condition.

From what you describe, softer manure is generally not a problem and should get better as your mules adjust to the new hay. The concern would be if they had runny diarrhea.

Keep me posted!

Dr. Getty
Author of Feed Your Horse Like A Horse

Where are you from? Bayfield, CO