After having done quite a bit of research. I changed my feeding program. Jewels had trouble keeping weight on. Her coat was less than desirable and she always had this crusty mess flaking off from the base of her mane and tail. I had talked to several people who were getting great results from their feeding program. Nice shiny coats, long luxurious manes and tails, and they felt great! I’ve always managed my horses condition pretty well in the past, but they never seemed to be the way I’d like them to be. There is nothing more annoying, than a hay belly and a seemingly dull coat. Truthfully, my husband took care of their feeding most of the time. I worked around the clock. It was easier to go along with his idea of how the horses were suppose to look, than take the job away from him. Not to mention. My husband doesn’t like change. And, he hates the idea of having to spend more on the alfalfa hay. LOL
We’ve always fed twice a day and let the horses eat all the hay they could consume. I firmly believe, forage is the key to maintain a healthy gut. I had gone to the vet last year for him to do blood work on Jewels. She was lacking in protein levels. He had suggested, I feed alfalfa as her main forage source. Make sure her teeth are floated, worm her regularly and it would bring her protein levels back to normal. I was a little skeptical about his choice of forage. I’d heard it wasn’t good for many reasons. Previously, my hay of choice was coastal, native prairie grasses, Tifton 85 and orchard grass, when I could find it. Since I’m the horses sole care giver. Two months ago, I threw caution to the wind and bought some alfalfa. I bought a different kind of grain as well. It’s a 14% pellet. I’m not totally sold on it, yet. It’s a bit dusty for my liking. I may change to Omolene 100.
My daily feeding regime is still twice a day. I feed alfalfa in the morning and then turn them out on the pasture. At night, I feed grain and 2 flakes of hay. One alfalfa and the other coastal. I keep them up during the night. The extra hay lasts them into the early morning hours and I don’t worry about them standing around on a empty stomach. I’ve had more trouble with Jewels and gastric upsets without the free fed forage. I don’t have to worry with the extra flake of hay. As a result of the change. Jewels is looking wonderful. Her coat is beautiful. It shines like newly minted pennies. Her mane has grown 6 inches this year and her tail is dragging the ground. I have to keep it braided and wrapped, to keep it up off the ground.
I’ve spent so much time at the barn the last two months. Jewels is becoming a nuisance. She’s all over me. She even nickers at me when I come outside. She will let me brush while she’s eating hay. Without the halter on. I can put a fly sheet and mask on her now. She wears the sheet to protect her coat from the sun during the day. Flies are horrible this year. Her face needs more protection than it normally would. I keep the mask on 24/7. If not, her eyes will water from the flies. I sold Jerzey Girl a month ago. I miss her terribly. Jerzey was first choice to sell for so many reasons. I knew it wouldn’t be hard to find her a great home. She was as perfect as a horse gets. A wonderful family came along and it love at first sight. She now resides in Rancho Cucamonga, California. She has an 11 year old girl who will love and care for her. I couldn’t have asked for a better family to pick up where I left off. I dread the day, I may have to give up one, or both of the other horses. Three horses were just to much for me to keep up with. My husband requires my care around the clock and it’s much easier having to deal with two. Until next time. Happy horsing around!