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Important, first times on grass- belly is big!

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Basketmiss

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I let my Giddy out for 1 hour today to graze. His belly started getting BIG, so my husband put him back in his stall. I got home and he told me so I walked Giddy for probably 45 minutes around and around, his belly is still big and he has gutt sounds...

Do I give him any hay tonight and his grain? If grain should I put alittle oil on it??

My biggee Suman was out today too and his belly is making LOUD gurgling sounds! He acts fine, but also should I hay and grain him tonight or none??

Thanks

Missy
 

Brandi*

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I don't know much about this except when I have asked the same question I have been told that grass can cause bloating. I have been letting Melody graze all day long and then I lock her up at night. I cut her strategy in half and she has been looking really good. Her belly is always bloated in the evening but then in the morning she is back to normal. She is looking better now than when I was feeding her hay. My pasture grass is long and coarse so that probably contributes to her bloating since she has been eating it all day. She seems very happy with the arrangement and acts like she feels great


When the grass first started coming in I only put her out for an hour or so at a time for the first week and then gradually worked up to all day.
 
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maplegum

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I know that their systems can take a while to adjust to the grass, so perhaps just keep going with one hour at a time spells on the grass. Build up to longer times. I'm a big believer in letting my horses be out and about, rather than have them locked away in a stall.

My suggestion is just do it slowly. My 2 both have grass bellies, but they are happy and healthy, being outside grazing.
 

Basketmiss

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I don't know much about this except when I have asked the same question I have been told that grass can cause bloating. I have been letting Melody graze all day long and then I lock her up at night. I cut her strategy in half and she has been looking really good. Her belly is always bloated in the evening but then in the morning she is back to normal. She is looking better now than when I was feeding her hay. My pasture grass is long and coarse so that probably contributes to her bloating since she has been eating it all day. She seems very happy with the arrangement and acts like she feels great


When the grass first started coming in I only put her out for an hour or so at a time for the first week and then gradually worked up to all day.
Wow Brandi, if I let Giddy eat grass all day he would probably bloat up so bad and fly away like a balloon!! LOL

I thought 1 hour was ok and then keep increasing it each day but now I'm not sure... I want him to be out too but dont want to do anything wrong by him...

Last fall, he was out for awhile and got bloated, I walked him and by morning his big bloat belly was gone.

I just dont know if I should feed him any grain or hay tonight or would that make it worse. I dont want him to colic...
 

Alex

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Same amount of grain, a little less hay. If your not showing, Id gradually work him up to being on grass in the day, stalled at night. If he was only on grass for 1hr, he'll be fine. What kind of grain do you feed?
 

Basketmiss

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He eats Senior since everyone said it is a complete feed. I dont show him...
 
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maplegum

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Seriously, if you don't show him, I don't think there is any need to give him grain! I only feed Willow hard feed as she is a young growing filly and needs it. Other than that, they get a mineral lick and a few handfulls of hay each day, along with all the grazing they want.

His belly will finally adjust and won't be so bloated so quickly on grass, but I do think they will always have some amount of bloating.
 

Basketmiss

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Seriously, if you don't show him, I don't think there is any need to give him grain! I only feed Willow hard feed as she is a young growing filly and needs it. Other than that, they get a mineral lick and a few handfulls of hay each day, along with all the grazing they want.

His belly will finally adjust and won't be so bloated so quickly on grass, but I do think they will always have some amount of bloating.
Giddy is a yearling, he will be 2 in July..
 

Alex

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Wanted to say- Currently that belly you see isnt actual fat. Its just bloating from the high water content in the grass. A horse with a true grass/hay belly will lose the belly when taken off grass.

Edit: Please do not stop the grain! Grass doesnt have enough essential nutrients, especially for a still growing boy.
 
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kaykay

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If he is not used to grass and hour is too long. We usually start with 10 mins and build up from there. Spring grass is very lush and can be dangerous so please be careful
 

Basketmiss

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He has had 30 minutes to an hour recently but not everyday because it has rained so much here, he couldnt get out every day.. So today it was finally 1/2 way decent mud wise so i let him out in the dry paddock for probably 5 hours, he ran and played and had alittle hay, then I put him in grass for the hour...

Ok I will start with 10 minutes tomorrow and go from there.

Thanks

Missy
 

Brandi*

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I know why your concerned because I was really scared too for the first few days of letting Melody graze on all that lush grass. Once those first few days passed her belly stopped bloating up so big. I'm sure your boy will be fine so don't stress too much! If you have been letting him out there even every other day for a bit at a time his body has already started adjusting.
 

whitney

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Kaykay is right. Founder is NOT FUN. Better to be SAFE than very SORRY! Start out with 10 minutes a day for 3 or 4 days on grass and double it every 3-4 days. Remember too that grain is starch just like grass and can add to an overload. BECAREFUL!
 

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