How long to see results?

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hsrascal

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I did some feed changes in Jan. for my yearling mini.

He went from a pad of alfalfa to free choice alfalfa (not much change really, he normally had some hay left all day)

And January 13th I switched him from 12% to 16% Omelene 300.

He also got power wormed with Safeguard on the January 15th.

How long do you think it usually takes to see some change in their bodies (belly) from that change - for any of you who have done the same thing?

I see him everyday so maybe that is part of the issue, but I don't feel like there is much difference but of course it hasn't even been a month. My aunt is dead set on showing him this year, but I'm hoping to keep him home until he's at his best.

Is it unrealistic to hope he has lost some belly by Mid-March?

Thanks for all your replies as always
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Minimor

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I have seen results (reduced belly) in two weeks, but that is with feeding a grain that contains brewers yeast. (highly recommend brewers yeast for a youngster with a belly!). Rounding out the top line can take longer--6 weeks, sometimes less sometimes more
 

HGFarm

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I would never feed alfalfa free choice- I would feed a regular feeding twice a day, along with your grain. You should see SOME kind of result in 30 days. For fun, take a before and after picture. Then take another pic at 60 days and you should be surprized at the difference- but I would never free feed the alfalfa, unless it's with an orphan baby or something that has been ill and really needs it for a boost, but not as a regular diet.

How much excercise is he getting? Is he turned out all day to play and run off some fat?
 
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rabbitsfizz

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Also an awful lot depends on how much of the new feed you are giving him....
 

Reignmaker Miniatures

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I second the brewer's yeast. It will help get his digestive system on track. I also would not feed alfalfa free choice but in the case of an easy keeper I wouldn't feed any of them free choice. It can also be very hard to tell if you have made a real big difference in how they look at this time of the year. All that winter hair can mask a lot and can make the belly look much bigger than it really is. I know what you really asked was NOT how to tell nor how to tweak the diet but rather how long before you can expect a change... in answer to that I'd say ...it depends (big help right ;) ) I like the idea of before and after pics, take one from the same angle every 2 weeks and if you aren't seeing a change you will know he needs something more.
 

Minimor

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I have to say I have no concerns with feeding a yearling free choice alfalfa. An older horse no, but a yearling is okay. I would of course monitor his condition to make sure he isn't getting fat--my youngsters do often get free choice alfalfa and they do great on it.
 

Marty

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I think I cornered the market on yearlings with big bellies over the years but I also would not be feeding free choice alfalfa. You can really get yourself into trouble like that. I like alfalfa for sure. Its good stuff and I have and do feed it when there is a need but neverf would dole it out free choice. I do believe horses need long stemmed forage so I provide grass hay and/or pasture also. Good luck. Don't rush it. Be cautious on forced exercise. Take it all in stride.
 

hsrascal

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I do not believe he is overweight. I thought he looked pretty healthy when I bought him but the hair was hiding some lightly showing bones (not an animal rescue case, but not filled out) Its just been a big belly which I was told is most likely from not getting enough protein or maybe worms.

He eats about 3lbs of the Omelene 300 a day and free choice he eats about 3-4lbs of Alfalfa (that's an estimate)

He is in a large stall 12x12 with a double paddock (24 x 12) and he gets turned out in a 2 acre pasture for about 2 hours a day while I'm there. He does not get any structured exercise because of his age, but does get walked/trotted around by the barn kids A LOT.

I thought about a belly sweat BUT since he doesn't seem fat, I don't think it would have an effect.

I attached a picture from the end of January. Body clipped.
148324_10151376283699551_1469325999_n.jpg
 
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chandab

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If he's truly getting 3# omolene 300, that is likely too much for a mini yearling. Purina doesn't recommend anywhere near that amount for a yearling miniature. Their chart only covers minis maturing to 200# for the growth chart, but if you do the math for one that would mature around 300#, then the recommendation is for about 2.25# and that's for the Omolene 200 they recommend for yearlings.

He eats about 3lbs of the Omelene 300 a day and free choice he eats about 3-4lbs of Alfalfa (that's an estimate)
 

Marty

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Two hours a day turn out is not nearly enough for any horse.
 

jandjmc

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Hi:

I think that he doesn't need feeding up. That's a lot of rich feed you've got him on. If it were me:

I'd start weighing his hay, see how much he is really getting. I'd also switch to 1/2 grass, 1/2 alfalfa. I'd probably reduce the grain , too. The idea of before and after pictures are a great idea.

Have you gotten your hands on him and felt of him over the ribs, over the back, hipbones and down to beginning of tail? How much bone are you feeling or is it well covered?

You might consider whether he really is exercising during his turn out. If not you might try some structured exercise, 10-15 minutes won't hurt, and would do a lot to condition him.

I haven't tried the brewers yeast, but sounds interesting.

He is very cute, love his markings.
 

ohmt

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I would not lower the amount of grain he is getting by much. Maybe a little over 1 lb per feeding-perfect. That's about what I feed mine-more for taller, of course. I have always had to feed much more than what purina has on their guidelines. I don't switch to the 200 until they are 2 yr olds.

What I would do is lower his alfalfa intake and add beet pulp (start weighing everything). He will also need a phosphorous supplement because his calcium to phosphorous ratio will be much too high and that can cause a variety of problems. The beet pulp will lower his overall protein intake as it usually has 9-10%. The beet pulp isn't an add on-it's a replacement for some of the alfalfa, so keep that in mind.

Would love to see new pics!
 

Minimor

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Yes, oldsters too! Definitely the seniors benefit from alfalfa; they and pregnant/lactating mares get generous alfalfa here as long as I have it; I cannot always get good alfalfa so then use a good mixed hay or supplement with alfalfa pellets.

I have put alfalfa or strong mixed hay (round bales) out for the horse's, but I do monitor the mature horses closely--if they are very easy keepers in the 3-15 year range they may not need all they can eat alfalfa. Some can handle it, a few can't.

I have found that most do not over eat on alfalfa if they have it in front of them all the time. They get their fill and cut back. A horse that gets only grass hay or obe that gets just a small bit of alfalfa--give him a big pile of alfalfa and he will stuff himself with it. A horse that is used to eating plenty of alfalfa will leave some of that big pile.

Alfalfa isn't the evil scary thing some make it out to be; in actual fact the biggest problem in miniature horses is the tendency to keep horses on a small dry lot. I have noted that the fattest horses tend to be those kept on small dry lots with limited hay--horses out in a large paddock will move around a lot more and will generally not be over fat, even on generous hay.
 

mizbeth

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By looking at his photo I would say he needs more protein, but if you are in fact feeing him Omalene 300 that would not be it. I would suggest you do power pack worming, or worm with Equimax. That will surely help him. The feed he is getting will not produce a pot belly like that, that is most certainly worms.

He does look heavy - by looking at his crest, but heavy does not mean a pot belly - fat goes to the crest and top of the shoulders first - then the back, butt. He is not heavy in the butt as yet......

Take your finger and poke him in the shoulders, you can tell how fat they are by doing that. If soft, spongy too fat, if you can easily feel the bone, too thin (not in this case : ) ----so it has to be inbetween.
 

Hayley~Diaz

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I live in New Zealand so cant really advise too much on what to feed, however, I believe it can take up to 8wks to see results
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