April 20 - our annual Summer Horse/Pony Camp issue
R & J HOW
“What is your horse nutrition IQ?” This was the main question Rusty Bane, Purina Equine Nutrition Specialist, asked the audience at the Purina Horse Owners workshop at R & J Feed in Jackson, Tenn., Tuesday evening March 7, 2017. His intent was to educate the audience on how to feed proper nutrition to their horses.
Hosts Ginger Kemp and her husband treated nearly 40 guests to a grilled hamburger dinner with all the trimmings before the educational presentations got started. In addition to Bane, the other guest presenter was Equine Chiropractor Dr. Jennie Cook from Equine Vet Services in Paducah, Kentucky.
Bane had tailored a quiz for the audience so folks could determine what they knew and didn’t know about equine nutrition. Then folks could adjust their feeding program based on this new knowledge.
You can take the quiz too. See how much you know!
1. The horse’s digestive system is more like a: (1) pig, (2) rabbit, (3) dog, or (4) cow.
2. What is the minimum amount of hay/day to feed a 1100 lb. horse? (1) 24 lbs., (2) 2 flakes, (3) 1/3 bale, (4) 11 lbs.?
3. Purina started making horse feed in what year? (1) 1876, (2) 1894, (3) 1918, (4) 1926.
4. A feed tag will tell you how digestible the feed will be to your horse. (1) true, (2) false?
5. What does a feed tag tell you?
6. Which nutrient(s) is/are important for a performance horse? (1) protein, (2) fat, (3) fiber, (4) calcium, (5) all of the above.
7. You can take a feed tag and mix a formula exactly like the tagged feed. (1) true, (2) false?
8. What is the amount of crude protein in oats? (1) 8.5%, (2) 11.0%, (3) 13.0%, (4) all of the above, (5) none of the above.
9. Feeding this will provide more muscle to your horse. (1) a higher protein feed, (2) more feed will provide more protein, (3) Alfalfa pellets, (4) Purina Supersport.
10. Which of the following is NOT a reason to add fat to the horse’s diet? (1) Provide more cool energy for performance, (2) Increase mare’s energy source for lactation, (3) Maintain weight for an easy keeper, (4) more shine to hair coat.
11. If you can feel your horse’s ribs, but you can’t see them, you need to do what to the feed? (1) increase amount, (2) feed the same amount, (3) decrease the amount, (4) change feed, (5) 1 and 4.
12. If you can feel your horse’s ribs and you can see them, you need to what to the feed? (1) increase amount, (2) feed the same amount, (3) decrease the amount, (4) change feed, (5) 1 and 4.
13. If you can’t feel your horse’s ribs and you can’t see them, you can do what to the feed? (1) increase amount, (2) feed the same amount, (3) decrease the amount, (4) change feed, (5) 3 and 4.
Next Bane explained Body Condition Score (BCS), giving two general rules of thumb to remember: the ideal Body Condition Score is between 5 and 6. If you can see the horse’s ribs, the BCS is below 5. If you don’t see the ribs, the BCS is 5 or above.
1. (2) like a rabbit. Bane explained the types of digestive systems. Avian includes chickens and turkeys. Monogastrics include pigs, dogs, and cats. Ruminants include cattle, goats, sheep, and deer. Horses belong to “Hind Gut Fermenters,” which also includes rabbits and the ostrich.
2. (4) 11 lbs. Feed a minimum of 1% of the horse’s body weight.
3. (2) 1894 Purina first made Horse & Mule Feed. In 1918 Purina came out with O-Molene. And in 1926, the Purina Animal Nutrition Research Center was established.
5. The feed tag tells the name of the feed, purpose statement, guaranteed analysis (list of guaranteed nutrients, which can vary by state), list of ingredients (in individual or collective terms), directions for use, warning or caution statements, name and address of manufacturer, and quantity/weight.
6. (5) All of the above.
7. (2) False. Even though the ingredients are listed the percentages can vary. Nutrients can change from bag to bag. Ingredients can change as the prices of them change. Look for a feed that is formulated for constant nutrition.
8. (4) All of the above. Depending on how grown and when harvested, oats can vary in crude protein percentage from 8.5% to 13.0%.
9. (4) Purina Supersport, which is an amino acid supplement. Bane gave the example of a horse in work who was fed this supplement and showed photos of the muscle mass increase that occurred over a few months.
10. (3) Maintain weight for an easy keeper. The easy keeper doesn’t need extra fat! Note: 2 cups oil = 1 lb. 1 pound of fat = 3 pounds of oats or 2.5 pounds of corn. Purina makes a high fat supplement called “Amplify.”
11. (2) feed the same amount
12. (5) 1 and 4, increase the amount and change the feed because, evidently, the current feed isn’t providing all the nutrition the horse needs.
13. (5) 3 and 4, decrease the amount and change feed. The horse may need a lower fat feed or a low starch feed. Purina makes a feed, “Enrich” for the easy keeper.
To get more information directly from Purina, text Purina to 95323 and enter to win prizes and have a $10 off coupon emailed to you.
Dr. Jennie Cook, DVM, explained what a chiropractor does and does not do, and then demonstrated a chiropractic adjustment on a 22-year-old roping horse. Dr. Cook is on staff at Equine Veterinary Service in Paducah, Kentucky.
Chiropractic medicine is a noninvasive treatment used to correct confirmation, injury, or soreness from repetitive use. Dr. Cook uses manual manipulation employing a high velocity, low amplitude thrust with her hands to correct a subluxation along the horse’s spine or extremities. In the demonstration, she explained how much force is needed to adjust a joint. She explained that Mass X Acceleration = Force, so “the smaller you are, the faster you have to be.”
Chiropractic medicine was once thought to only have a “placebo” effect (in humans), but the fact that it is so effective with animals eliminates that theory.
In her examination, Dr. Cook wants to know where the horse is stiff, which indicates that a joint may not be moving with its normal range of motion. She wants to know what is the horse’s job and the horse’s age.
As she started at the poll and moved down the horse’s spine, she pushed on the vertebra to see its movement. She determined at what angle the joint is moving and was testing for good range of motion in the joints. When she found a joint that did not have a good range of motion, and that is where an “adjustment” is needed. She said that the “adjustment” won’t take all his pain away, but in the next 24 to 48 hours, he will feel better and his performance will improve.
Sometimes a horse “compensates” for a joint that is not moving properly, and may not appear to be lame. The lameness will, however, show up when the compensation is removed. That is when she finds the “true” cause of the lameness.
Many animals need a “tune up” every 4 to 6 weeks, depending on their job and their age. She sees problems in the sternum and ribs areas in a lot of horse from bad saddle fitting. She also sees problems originating from the rider pulling too hard (on the horse’s mouth) or being behind the motion.
Dr. Cook grew up in southern Illinois, competing in team sorting and rodeo. She received her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree at the University of Missouri, Columbia. She is a graduate of the Options for Animals Veterinary Chiropractic Program. For more information, visit http://equinevetservice.com/ and find them on facebook at Equine Veterinary Service, Dr. Tony Hicks.
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