How do You Feed Your Weanlings?

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Bunnylady

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I'm considering buying a weanling filly. It's not a done deal, so I can't post her picture, but I can tell you a little about her. She's about 6 mos. old, both parents AMHA/AMHR/WCMHR. Per the breeder, she was about a month overdue, and large at birth, and (perhaps from being crowded up in the mare for so long) has some conformation issues that may prevent her ever growing into a halter-quality horse. She is healthy, strong, and sound. Most of the details are hiding under foal/winter fuzzies, but this much I can see: she is leggy, refined, very agile and athletic. She looks like she will shed out a golden Palomino. The breeder thinks she'll probably finish out around 36". Best of all, she has a very calm, loving, sweet personality. She may not make a halter horse, but I think she has great potential in performance!

Back on topic - how best to feed her? I want to do my best by her, and give her the best shot at reaching her potential, even if it's only as a healthy, loving family pet. I figure this starts with a sound feeding program, so, input, please! Does she need a Mare/Foal feed, or something else?
 

novachick

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Hi!

I've only had 2 weanlings so far...both came to me at about 6mo. of age. With Rascal, my current weanling, we are feeding a 50/50 mixture of Purina's Complete Advantage and Omolene 200. He gets about 3c. total 3x a day, plus his share of grass hay that he splits with my other 2 horses. Although it seemed like a lot to me at first, it seems to be working real well for him, I'll see in the spring when he sheds out if we need to cut it back a little.

Please post pictures if you decide to get her!
 

Alex

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The key is to feed quality feed and lots of it. I perfer a 16% protien with a good amount of fat and protien. Equine Jr(purina) and Nutrena youth are good and Im sure their are others. Some people feed free choice hay but I dont like to. A good amount of quality hay is important.

Back when mine was a weanling he got somewhere around 2 and a half- to 3lbs a day and enough hay that he is filled most of the day.
 

Versatility Farm & Training

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I feed my weanlings 2-3 cups of Tiz Wiz 16, which is 16% protien snd s pelleted feed, twice a day along with 1/3-1/2 flake of alfalfa or alfalfa grass mix. Depending on condition, time of year, and how they look I also sometimes give 2 cups (dry) beat pulp or 3-4 cups wet. This feeding program has worked very well for me. My weanlings look more like yearlings, maturity wise, compared to several other farms I've visited lately with foals of the same age.
 

Leeana

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Versatility Farm & Training Posted Today, 03:18 PM I feed my weanlings 2-3 cups of Tiz Wiz 16, which is 16% protien snd s pelleted feed, twice a day along with 1/3-1/2 flake of alfalfa or alfalfa grass mix. Depending on condition, time of year, and how they look I also sometimes give 2 cups (dry) beat pulp or 3-4 cups wet. This feeding program has worked very well for me. My weanlings look more like yearlings, maturity wise, compared to several other farms I've visited lately with foals of the same age.
Im going to actually start feeding tiz wiz 16% here in the next month or so, we'll see how everyone does on that....

Right now babies, which is one weanling filly and then four yearlings are on Purina Omlene which is a 14% sweet feed, look just fine on that. Im just going threw way to much of the Omlene right now an its right around $16 a bag...compared labels and it looks like Tiz Wiz (which, ive always wanted to try, have a mare that has PLE on the TW 12% and for just being a broodmare, looks great on that) is the better of the two feeds and cheaper at $13 per 50lb bag, so going to give tiz wiz 16 a try once i get near the end of this pallet of omlene...
 

Minimor

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This fall two of my weanlings are getting (each) a 500 ml scoop of Frontrunner Phase Two and a 500 ml scoop (heaped) of rolled oats 2 times a day. Normally I'd have bought the Phase One for them but I happened to have a new bag of Phase Two on hand when I got them so started them out on that. They liked it so well I just stuck with it rather than switch them over to the foal feed, Phase One. Phase Two is 14% and slightly higher in fat (1% more I think?) than the foal ration, which is 16%. These two colts are doing awesome on this feed. They were newly weaned when I got them, and they had dropped a bit of weight so looked a bit rough. I noticed a big difference in just 2 weeks--they rounded out, lost their bellies and their coats gleam. They are perky & full of life too.

My other two weanlings, who arrived later than the other two, didn't like pellets at all, so I gave up on pellets and just gave them rolled oats--they each get 2 heaping 500 ml scoops of rolled oats twice a day. I wanted them to have something extra so got them onto calf manna. In the past I have been very pleased with the results from calf manna, but this time around it's just not doing it for these two babies. They're doing okay--bright and lively & healthy--but aren't rounding out as nicely as the other two. So, I've gone back to trying to get them onto the Phase Two pellets, and they are starting to eat them now. So, I'm expecting these two little fellows to catch up to the first two very shortly now.

I guess this is sort of my own little comparison between Calf Manna and Frontrunner...I never would have guessed that Frontrunner would outperform the Calf Manna, but with these babies it most definitely has.

Our weanlings also get free choice hay--we have some grass (timothy) which they love, some 2nd cut alfalfa which they can take or leave, and some 1st cut alfalfa/timothy which is rather dry, a bit coarse and had one rain on it--not the nicest hay, and yet they like it. They get enough that they can eat what they want and leave the rest. As well, they have Equest mineral/salt blocks.
 

ThreeCFarm

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We use Progressive Nutrition's Diet Balancer and alfalfa pellets. Depending on the horse, we may add some Envision which is a calorie booster. One pound of Envision equals the same number of calories as three pounds of oats. Our horses also get free choice grass hay if on dry lot or in the barn, otherwise they are on pasture.
 

Mona

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I mix Omolene 200 with soaked beet pulp. They get a heaping 4 cup container each of this mixture, 2 times a day, as well as getting 3rd cutting alfalfa mix hay twice a day.
 

chandab

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I've used foal feeds from a couple different companies (both Nutrena and Progressive) when I've had weanlings to feed; then after the first of the year, they all go on Progressive Nutrition ProAdvantage grass formula (ration balancer to go with grass or mixed hay), if they need extra calories they get a little oats.
 

minih

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I mix Omolene 200 with soaked beet pulp. They get a heaping 4 cup container each of this mixture, 2 times a day, as well as getting 3rd cutting alfalfa mix hay twice a day.
I was giving beet pulp to two of my weanlings and they kept very loose pooh, not runny just not formed good, and one of them kept a noisy belly. Stopped giving the beet pulp and just feeding Omalene 200 with pretty much free choice hay, and everything has straightened up. I don't know if it was just these two, but I have not even tried beet pulp with another new weanling that arrived later.
 

Miniv

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This is a good subject to bring up...........We have never fed 16% feed to our weanlings because it is so hot. We feed a complete 14% with a high quality grass mix.

Perhaps why we haven't had a problem is that our regular grass hay mix tends to be high in protein? We live in an area of hay growers in a high desert which gives a lot of sun.......creating more protein. The alfalfa here tests at 20 to 24%, so people shy off of it.
 

ShaunaL

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I have my first weanling this year but on the advice of a well-trusted breeder (Thank you Erica!!) I feed my weanling and yearlings Omelene 200 mixed with Equine Jr, ratio right now about 1/4 Omelene to 3/4 Equine Jr. I am THRILLED with it, my weanling and yearlings look fantastic - they have trim bellies, filled in toplines, rears and chests, nice shiny coats, even the winter fuzz. I see no problem fitting them up for the upcoming show season, just with feeding well and no conditioning other than turn-out they are in great shape.
 

Bunnylady

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Wow! Lots of different recommedations, but I kinda expected that! Thanks bunches!

It seems like, whatever the brand, you are all leaning toward significantly higher protien for the little guys. I don't know what the breeder is feeding this filly. I know she's not stinting on quantity, but I had noticed that this girl has a bit of a belly, and was wondering about the protien content. Her coat seems dull, too. I know she's UTD on her shots, and getting regular farrier care, I hope (don't know for sure) that she's being wormed regularly.
 

Miniv

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Bunny, A dull coat can mean either or a combination of needing worming and/or lack of proper nutrition, just from our experience........ Sounds as though she's going to a great home.
default_smile.png
 

nootka

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Well, in my observation, no matter what pellet/foal or growth feed you are giving them, it's a good idea to make sure they have access to free choice, HIGH QUALITY hay. Many people mistake a rounded, bloaty looking tummy as being a symptom of too much grass or hay, when it feels to me that it's the opposite.

I feed orchard grass and I put it out on top of my sparse pasture for the babies. They eat pretty much 'round the clock and while they do tend a teeny bit fat, I think they end up looking good, and rarely get the belly when they are fed a good quality feed along with free choice forage.

Worming is, of course, important as well and you can discuss with your vet(s) what you feel will work for your situation and part of the country.

I'll add a few photos of my weanlings that are fed the way I'm describing:

pyrolb.jpg


5 months old.

kyanl06.jpg


7 months old, fully weaned for two months, half brother to the above colt.

bellaliz06.jpg


5 month old filly.

Good luck!

Liz
 

funnybunny

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We free feed our babies when they are first weaned, then we switch to feeding twice a day sweetfeed 14% and soaked beet pulp.

Top quality hay is tremendously important. We get "imported" Timothy Hay and Alfalfa. It is very costly, but the quality is extremely good. We think that if you want a quality animal, you have to give quality food. They get a variety of hays each day.

Cutting corners with food is not good. We try to save money on other things, but our horses get the best food.
 

SHANA

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I feed my weanlings Omolene 200 with soaked beet pulp except it made one weanling have softer stools so took her off the soaked beet pulp and have her just on Omolene 200 and that solved the problem. Though I plan to start mixing in Equine Jr as soon as I go buy a bag. They have hay in front of them most of the day. I try to only give them enough hay to eat during the day or they waste it.
 
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Bunnylady

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Well, in my observation, no matter what pellet/foal or growth feed you are giving them, it's a good idea to make sure they have access to free choice, HIGH QUALITY hay. Many people mistake a rounded, bloaty looking tummy as being a symptom of too much grass or hay, when it feels to me that it's the opposite. I feed orchard grass and I put it out on top of my sparse pasture for the babies. They eat pretty much 'round the clock and while they do tend a teeny bit fat, I think they end up looking good, and rarely get the belly when they are fed a good quality feed along with free choice forage.

Worming is, of course, important as well and you can discuss with your vet(s) what you feel will work for your situation and part of the country.

I'll add a few photos of my weanlings that are fed the way I'm describing:

pyrolb.jpg


5 months old.

kyanl06.jpg


7 months old, fully weaned for two months, half brother to the above colt.

bellaliz06.jpg


5 month old filly.

Good luck!

Liz
Wow, you found these ^ hiding under foal fuzz?? Pretty babies!
 

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