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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 

 



Forum: Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition
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Now what??

Dear Dr.G, my previously very chubby Shetland pony is now very fat, cresty neck etc. just since Easter. He has a serious suspensory ligament injury which is my guess as to why he was headed to Canada meat plant. He can not bear much weight on a rear leg and his weight is seriously effecting his life situation. He has been on nothing but free choice grass hay and a handful of vitamin/mineral pellets daily. He needed to lose weight when I got him to improve the situation with his leg. The farrier can not trim the opposite hoof as he can not support himself on the injured leg. Now what??? Do I have to dry lot him and ??? The hay is last years hay and just stemmy grass. I am worried as he continues to gain weight. He always has hay in front of him and leaves a lot uneaten so he has accepted the fact that it will be there and does not gorge. The big boys are out on pasture and he is locked up in a corral. :( What next?? Thank you from "Lightning".

Where are you from? sedro-woolley, wa

How did you locate this forum? newsletter

Email  
Re: Now what??

Hi Cristine,

Since exercise is so important toward weight loss, I would do everything I could to help his ligament heal. High dosages of vitamin E, B6, and quality protein are all critical toward ligament healing. I recommend 5,000 IU of vitamin E per day, two scoops of B Plex per day, and branched chain amino acids to boost protein quality.

The stress of isolation is also keeping him fat. Give him a pain reliever such as Stop the Pain, and perhaps bring a buddy in with him.

All the best,

Dr. Getty
Author of Feed Your Horse Like A Horse

Quote: Cristine Cameron
Dear Dr.G, my previously very chubby Shetland pony is now very fat, cresty neck etc. just since Easter. He has a serious suspensory ligament injury which is my guess as to why he was headed to Canada meat plant. He can not bear much weight on a rear leg and his weight is seriously effecting his life situation. He has been on nothing but free choice grass hay and a handful of vitamin/mineral pellets daily. He needed to lose weight when I got him to improve the situation with his leg. The farrier can not trim the opposite hoof as he can not support himself on the injured leg. Now what??? Do I have to dry lot him and ??? The hay is last years hay and just stemmy grass. I am worried as he continues to gain weight. He always has hay in front of him and leaves a lot uneaten so he has accepted the fact that it will be there and does not gorge. The big boys are out on pasture and he is locked up in a corral. What next?? Thank you from "Lightning".

Where are you from? Waverly, Ohio

Email  
Re: Now what??

Thank you Dr.G for your ideas on "Lightning"'s ligament problem. The only thing is though, the injury is years old according to the foster lady that had Lightning for 2 years before coming here. Will those ideas still have any effect on healing? He is on pasture most of the day now in his grazing muzzle which he seems to tolerate very well. I know you have said they too can create stress (weight gain) but he seems okay each day when I go to put it on and wears it until I take it off- ? That way he is getting some exercise, is with his pals, and eating more naturally. Then at night I have bought 4 slow-feeder hay nets. THAT causes him great stress!! He paws at his, stomps on it, picks the whole net full of hay up and tosses it around to stomp it some more and it is mostly full in the morning. The other two horses end up leaving quite a bit of hay in their nets as well. The holes seem VERY small. Are they leaving hay because they don't want any more or can't get it out once the net starts to empty and get limp?? I went on your site for slow feeder advice and checked out a half dozen different kinds. I like the solid stationary types but they are so much more expensive (and I spent $1100.00 on 'Sam' last week). Is "Lightning" being a spoiled brat tossing his hay bag or is he actually having trouble getting the hay out? Shetland Ponies are sure a different breed from Tennessee Walking Horses!!!

Where are you from? Sedro-Woolley, WA

How did you locate this forum? newsletter

Email  
Re: Now what??

Hi Cristine,

The holes in the slow feeder may indeed be too small and are causing frustration. This should be remedied by getting a larger sized holed feeder. Take a look at Nibble Net - I believe they offer different sizes.

Yes, even an old injury will benefit from additional supplementation but it's true that they won't be as effective as when given to a newer injury.

All the best,

Dr. Getty
Author of Feed Your Horse Like A Horse

Quote: Cristine Cameron
Thank you Dr.G for your ideas on "Lightning"'s ligament problem. The only thing is though, the injury is years old according to the foster lady that had Lightning for 2 years before coming here. Will those ideas still have any effect on healing? He is on pasture most of the day now in his grazing muzzle which he seems to tolerate very well. I know you have said they too can create stress (weight gain) but he seems okay each day when I go to put it on and wears it until I take it off- ? That way he is getting some exercise, is with his pals, and eating more naturally. Then at night I have bought 4 slow-feeder hay nets. THAT causes him great stress!! He paws at his, stomps on it, picks the whole net full of hay up and tosses it around to stomp it some more and it is mostly full in the morning. The other two horses end up leaving quite a bit of hay in their nets as well. The holes seem VERY small. Are they leaving hay because they don't want any more or can't get it out once the net starts to empty and get limp?? I went on your site for slow feeder advice and checked out a half dozen different kinds. I like the solid stationary types but they are so much more expensive (and I spent $1100.00 on 'Sam' last week). Is "Lightning" being a spoiled brat tossing his hay bag or is he actually having trouble getting the hay out? Shetland Ponies are sure a different breed from Tennessee Walking Horses!!!

Where are you from? Waverly, Ohio

Email