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Can you recommend which feeds would be best during a 100-mile ride for holds at vet checks? Which feed you would recommend for the two to three weeks after a ride when my horse is running around the pasture on rest and recovery but not being ridden?
Feeding during a ride. The most important thing about feeding at rest stops during a ride is to keep the horse eating—whatever it takes. Their taste choices can change dramatically at this time and what the horse normally eats on a daily basis may seem unappetizing during a race. The key is to have a variety of feed choices to keep the horse interested in eating. Sometimes it is the neighbor’s meal that appeals and not what you have brought for him. The important thing is to offer what is appetizing so he does get something in his stomach during his time at the stop.
On the forage side, good-quality grass hay and alfalfa (lucerne) would be available for the horse to nibble on. Sometimes they will want the alfalfa, sometimes the grass hay. It is hard to predict which will be most enticing, so have both. The forages can be in the form of regular hay or chopped hay (chaff) or hay cubes/pellets. Because water intake is of the utmost importance, the forage can be served wet, or the chopped, cubed or pelleted hay can be made into a mash with something like beet pulp and wheat bran. If there is green grass available, the horse will truly benefit from grazing or being offered some fresh-cut grass because it not only supplies the horse with beneficial fiber but it is also 70-80% water...
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