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My journey with Abbey & other horsey bits 'n' bobs

5 photos 1 day

Haynet has set a challenge: 5 photos to describe one day. I make no apologies for the frequent appearance of ‘ the quadrupeds’ – they are often feature in the ‘best bits’ of my day.

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Every morning I wake up to this little face. The OH sends her in to wake me up because he knows I won’t get grumpy with her! After I drink my tea, I bore her silly while I get dressed and do my hair and make-up. “C’mon! Stop faffing! Time for walkies!”

 

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We’re very lucky to have a park on our doorstep for walkies.

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Ready and waiting….c’mon mum finish that cuppa!

 

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Trying be good and do our carrot stretches after each ride!

 

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And the day finishes the way it started; snuggles with Betty.

Novice 23, dressage test practice

Feeding Abbey’s Ulcers – Supplements

There is a dizzying array of gastric supplements on the market. If you’re like me starting my research, I felt overwhelmed and confused! However, it’s not as complicated as it first looks; most of them contain relatively few ingredients and these ingredients generally fit into one or two of the following categories:

Probiotics – these are the ‘good’ bacteria in the gut, yeast such as saccharomyces cerevisiae.

Prebiotics – these are the foods of the ‘good’ bacteria in the gut, FOS and MOS for instance.

Substances that are slimy – these protect the lining of the stomach and gut, protecting it from being scratched by food passing through and some stomach acid. Linseed oil, pectin and beta glucans are good examples.

Substances that have a neutralising effect on the stomach acid – calcium and magnesium, for example.

Substances that remove/destroy or help the body to protect itself from harmful toxins and ‘bad bacteria’.

For a list of the most common ingredients in gastric supplements and which categories they fit into, click here.

Continue reading “Feeding Abbey’s Ulcers – Supplements”

Feeding Abbey’s Ulcers – Common ingredients found in gastric supplements

If you’ve not read the previous post on supplements, here’s a quick reminder of the 5 categories of gastric supplement ingredients and how they work:

Probiotics – these are the ‘good’ bacteria in the gut, yeast such as saccharomyces cerevisiae.

Prebiotics – these are the foods of the ‘good’ bacteria in the gut, FOS and MOS for instance.

Substances that are slimy – these protect the lining of the stomach and gut, protecting it from being scratched by food passing through and some stomach acid. Linseed oil, pectin and beta glucans are good examples.

Substances that have a neutralising effect on the stomach acid – calcium and magnesium, for example.

Substances that remove/destroy or help the body to protect itself from harmful toxins and ‘bad bacteria’.

 

COMMON INGREDIENTS FOUND IN GASTRIC SUPPLEMENTS:

Apple pectin – a slimy one! Pectin acts as a barrier for the gastric mucosal membranes against excess gastric acid. (Source: https://forageplus.co.uk/the-egusin-concept-ulcer-prone-horses/)

Continue reading “Feeding Abbey’s Ulcers – Common ingredients found in gastric supplements”

Feeding Abbey’s Ulcers – Balancers

Following on from my post about chaffs, this post is about my research into balancers.

In my last post I concluded that the base of Abbey’s feed would be Simple System’s Organic Lucie Stalks, which is purely alfalfa (or lucerne as it is sometimes know in the UK). While this is a sound base and it’s calcium:magnesium content should have some antacid properties, it won’t supply all the minerals and vitamins Abbey needs. So Abbey needs a ‘balancer’.

With the ulcers and Abbey’s weight in mind I am looking for a balancer that delivers:

  • a range of minerals that balance those in her forage
  • vitamins – particularly vitamin Bs
  • some protein
  • some amino acids – particularly lysine
  • some ingredients that may help prevent Abbey’s ulcers returning in the future

It also needs to be low in sugar and starch and not contain any molasses or grain.

Continue reading “Feeding Abbey’s Ulcers – Balancers”

Feeding Abbey’s Ulcers – Revision Sheet

In doing the research on what to feed Abbey I realised I had forgotten most of my biology lessons from school and couldn’t remember what various ingredients were, nor how they are used by the body.

I did a ‘crib sheet’….here it is:

THE BIG STUFF

Amino acids – nitrogen-containing molecules containing an amine group. Most amino acids that a horse needs come from the protein they consume.  The horse breaks the protein down and rebuilds the molecules to make most amino acids and new/more proteins. The amino acids horses can’t make are: arginine, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine. Lysine is often in short supply in a hay/grass only diet. (See this article)

Continue reading “Feeding Abbey’s Ulcers – Revision Sheet”

This week: variety is the spice of life

Over this week Abbey has been to the gallops, hacked around the big block, and been doing some pole work.  While I always try and keep her work varied, this week has been exceptional.

I’ve always wanted to go to the gallops and it certainly lived up to expectations.  With the fields being so soggy it was a great way of blowing off some cobwebs and starting to build Abbey’s staminia.

We were very sensible and interval trained, waiting until the end to have a proper gallop. Unfortunately I couldn’t hold a phone and gallops, so here’s a clip of one of our more sensible laps:

 

On the way home, the horsebox seemed to be not liking first or second and sadly the garage have confirmed that the gearbox is broken so we won’t be going to our dressage tomorrow.

Continue reading “This week: variety is the spice of life”

Last lesson and Novice 30 Practice

Just a short update on our schooling. Lately we’ve been focusing on the bits of our next test which we’re a little weak on.  And I pleased to report that we’re making good progress.

Continue reading “Last lesson and Novice 30 Practice”

Feeding Abbey’s ulcers – chaffs

Abbey and I are now well into her second treatment for ulcers and she’s doing really well. Her symptoms all disappeared within a week of starting the omeprazole and sucralfate, she’s back in work and we’re starting to go out and about.

However, she’s still on the vet’s recommended diet of (hay and grass) alfa-a and linseed oil.  This is very calorific in comparison with her diet prior to the ulcers (hay, grass, handful of Thunderbrooks Herbal Chaff and a general mineral supplement). Predictably, she’s gaining weight and fast.

Continue reading “Feeding Abbey’s ulcers – chaffs”

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