Deacon and Sundance
Right after I set up my ad on Craig’s List I started getting responses. The first person to call me had two paint geldings, Deacon, a 14 year old Tennessee walker and Sundance, an 8 year old Quarter horse. I started coming out twice a week and I rode both of them consistently until the end of September, only taking a traditional summer vacation and giving them a break when it was too hot to ride.
Unfortunately, Sundance came down with a cough during the first couple of weeks from allergies. He had a running nose and hacking cough which the vet said could eventually break down muscle on the sides of his stomach permanently, so of course he was required to take some time off.
Later that summer I started to notice that Sundance was losing hair, it looked as though he were balding a bit around his tail, flanks, and sides and I could just start to see the pink skin underneath. I didn’t think this was normal so I discussed it with my mother, who knows a great deal about horses, and we came to the conclusion that Sundance and Deacon might not have been getting enough vitamins and oils in their diet. The horses were fed grass hay without any access to pasture and since it was the same every day it wasn’t providing enough vitamins and oils for their skin, coat, and health. Imagine only eating one food group for a period of time, you would of course notice a difference in your health.
Horses need plenty of oils and vitamins and if they can’t get them in their diet then it is time to include supplements. I talked with the owner, and recommended putting the horses on some low fat grain and vitamins and feeding them less grass hay to make sure they didn’t gain more weight. Even though the grain is more fattening than just grass hay, it can provide necessary oils for a horse. I recommended Horse Guard as a good source of vitamins and EquiLux as a quality brand of grain.
A couple weeks after the horses were being fed grain and vitamins I began to notice a difference in their energy and the quality of their coat. Sundance’s hair began to grow back and both of the horses were more energetic, although this was most likely a combination of the new diet and the consistent exercise. At the end of September, both Deacon and Sundance were happy and healthy and not quite so fat. This shows how important variety, vitamins, and oils are to a horse’s health.
I have been supplementing my horse’s diet with vitamins for the past few years consistently and I really do notice the difference. She has a beautiful healthy coat and plenty of energy! I absolutely recommend supplementing with vitamins and quality grain each day for the long term health benefit of the horse.