When it comes to dealing with the weight of your horse, you always want to make sure they’re healthy; that’s a top priority. Now, even if a horse is healthy, sometimes they just don’t have the weight they once used to. If they don’t have the proper weight, unfortunately, it will be hard to take a ride.
That’s why, today, we want to show you how to put weight on a horse. If you’re struggling with your horse’s weight, or just curious about the process if the issue ever presents itself, you’re in the right place.
Now, without wasting any time, let’s take a look at the answers.
- The basics
If your horse seems to be a bit thinner than usual, don’t panic. In this section, we want to break down some of the basics, so you know what you’re working with.
- Is your horse healthy?
The first thing you’ll need to consider is your horse’s health. If a horse is unhealthy, it will definitely have trouble putting on weight. So the first thing you should always do is check the health status of your horse. Some things to look out for include:
- Rapid weight loss
- Loss of appetite
- Signs of pain
- Dental ailments
If your horse has any of these symptoms, this is something that you need to address before attempting to help them gain some weight.
- Is your horse happy?
This may seem silly at first, but this can actually be a significant reason as to why some horses may lose weight. Horses are social creatures, so if you’re not getting enough time in with your horse or if they feel lonely, this can contribute to their lack of appetite.
- Is your horse eating enough?
One of the most common reasons as to why a horse can’t keep weight on is its diet. This can be anything from simply not providing your horse with enough food, or it can even be a symptom of providing your horse with the wrong food as well.
So once you figure out the problem, it’s time to take a look at how to fix it.
Adding Weight to a Horse Quickly
Putting weight on a horse the fast way is not as hard as you may think. This is true for horses that have a tough time keeping the weight, and also for horses that have just lost some weight recently.
If your horse is on a standard grass and hay diet, you might want to consider switching over to alfalfa. Alfalfa has a much higher calorie count than grass and hay. Now, while you may want to put your horse on an alfalfa-only diet, we would definitely suggest an alfalfa and grass blend. To start, try using a 50/50 blend. This will put weight on your horse faster than you can imagine. Also, alfalfa is quite tasty for horses, so you won’t have to force them to eat it!
Also, you should consider focusing on a pellet-based diet instead of a traditional one. Pellets tend to have high calorie counts, which means that it will get the job done much faster. Remember, it’s a numbers game, so you want to make sure that your horse always has enough to eat.
As horses grow older, they tend to lose a bit of weight. This may be alarming, but don’t panic, because it’s totally normal. So, we want to set some time aside to talk about older horses as well.
One thing to consider again is health. Older horses are more prone to certain ailments, so always consult your vet before changing a diet.
- Alfalfa works here as well
Whether you want to put some weight on your older horse for riding, or to prepare for the winter, alfalfa is the way to go. We would recommend doing a 70/30 blend with their normal food as the 70, because it will help make sure that they don’t gain too much weight.
- Switch to pellet rations
Older horses may not retain as many calories from hay and grass as younger horses. This is why you should switch to pellet rations, because the increased caloric intake will definitely help. Even if your horse doesn’t have the appetite they used too, they’ll at least be getting more calories for what they eat.
So as you can see, a lot of this comes down to the diet of your horse. Grass and.hay are not always easy to digest, especially if your horse has a fast metabolism, which is why we always recommend pellet rations first. Then, if that doesn’t help, feel free to add some alfalfa to your horse’s next meal.
Also, and we can’t stress this enough, be wary of your horse’s health. If you follow the tips we gave you, and still don’t see a weight increase, it might be time to take a trip down to the vet for more help. Also, feel free to check out some horse weight gain feed reviews for more information.