Balance Cubes with Stabul 1 as complete feed?
I have recently switched my 28 year old pony Foster from Mountain Sunrise Pellets as his feed to the Triple Crown Balance Cubes.
He has dental issues so he can't eat hay as his food source.
He has started rejecting the Balance cubes for the most part after eating them for a few weeks.
I have placed an order for Stabul 1, in the hopes that once it arrives I can make a mix of 50% TCBC with Stabul 1.
But I am still confused after spending many hours searching the site trying to see if Stabul 1 can actually be used as a complete feed or not for horses with dental issues. Some say it is a complete feed, and safe, while others say that as a complete feed it probably won't be tolerated. What does this mean? This is very confusing to me.
Stabul says it can be used as a safe complete feed.
I absolutely do not want to give him too much Stabul 1 if it is only safe as a carrier. If it can only be fed in small amounts to IR PPID ponies I don't want to over do it and create a problem.
But if it is actually safe as a complete feed, I would love to start using it to get him excited about eating again. He is being stubborn, and a perky handful, but not liking the Balance cubes anymore wet or dry. He doesn't like soaked beet pulp, and can't eat hay because of hit teeth.
Also what would be the feeding rate for 430lb. American Shetland of Stabul 1 if he is at a good weight now and if it is used as a Complete feed.
Like I said, my hope is to mix it with the Triple Crown Balance cubes once the Stabul arrives.
Sorry if I missed a post that explains this clearly, but I combed over the messages for hours and didn't find an absolute statement about the Stabul 1 as a complete feed.
Thanks in advance for helping me clear this up.
Cris Bliss California 2018
You've asked a good question. Yes Stabul one can be fed as the only feed but it is higher in calories than the Triple Crown Balance Cubes. So if you feed just the Stabul one pellets you will probably have to feed less by weight to prevent him from gaining weight. As most IR equines need to be kept trim rather than fat you will need to keep an eye on his weight. What do you think about his current weight? Does he have fat deposits around his tail base or a cresty neck? You can find extra long measuring tapes at fabric stores (or online) and keep track of weight gain or loss by regularly measuring his girth for changes and watching for weight gain.
From personal experience: when my Mouse was over fed and allowed to get fat he became IR. I was able to get him to take his supplements in the timothy balance cubes soaked for a while. He also disliked wet feed of any kind. I found that I could use far less water on the hay cubes if I used a lidded bucket and poured HOT water on the cubes, stirred once then put the lid on the bucket. I made his PM feed in the morning and by evening his cubes had fluffed and expanded and were not soggy. In the PM I made his AM feeding. I would add the Stabul One pellets to the cubes to soften also as dry pellets could potentially cause a choke. I did use a small amount of Stabul One as a taste tempter and stirred those into his cubes.
I found that Brewers Yeast (Animed) is tasty and is safe to feed in a reasonable amount, like 2 Tablespoons. It is a good amino acid source. Also Fenugreek powder seems to be tasty and is one of the Stabul One flavors.
I have added an explanatory document for new members below. It is lengthy but packed with information and many links to more sections of this site. We ask that you join the Case History sub-group and create a case history folder for you and your horse in the files section. We also have a photos area within the Casehistory group. You can create a photo folder for Foster and upload body pics to the folder if you want to ask for weight opinions. Many members will upload hoof photos, radiographs, etc. At any time if you are struggling with how to navigate this group, how to make folders or upload documents you should use our Main Group WIKI. The Wiki is located in the column on the left side of this page. It explains "How To Do" most things.
Welcome to the group!
The ECIR Group provides the best, most up to date information on Cushing's (PPID) and Equine Metabolic Syndrome (EMS)/Insulin Resistance (IR). Please explore our website where you'll find tons of great information that will help you to quickly understand the main things you need to know to start helping your horse. Also open any of the links below (in blue font) for more information/instructions that will save you time.
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Below is a general summary of our DDT/E philosophy which is short for Diagnosis, Diet, Trim and Exercise.
DIAGNOSIS: There are two conditions dealt with here: Cushings (PPID) and Equine Metabolic Syndrome (EMS)/Insulin Resistance (IR). These are two separate issues that share some overlapping symptoms. An equine may be either PPID or EMS/IR, neither or both. While increasing age is the greatest risk factor for developing PPID, IR can appear at any age and may have a genetic component. Blood work is used for diagnosis as well as monitoring the level of control of each.
PPID is diagnosed using the Endogenous ACTH test, while EMS/IR is diagnosed by testing non-fasting insulin and glucose.
The fat-derived hormone leptin is also usually abnormally elevated in insulin resistance but because there are many other things which can lower or increase leptin ECIR is not recommending routine testing for this hormone. Leptin is the hormone that says "stop eating".
In Europe, adiponectin is tested instead of leptin. Adiponectin helps regulate glucose and fat burning, and maintain insulin sensitivity. Low levels are associated with EMS. It has come to be preferred over leptin because it is not influenced by things like weight or exercise, and also because it was the only factor other than insulin levels that predicted laminitis risk
*Before calling your vet to draw blood for tests, we suggest saving time and wasted money by reading these details and then sharing them with your vet so that everyone is on the same page regarding correct testing and protocols.
*Please remember to request copies of the results of all the tests done rather than just relying on verbal information. Your vet should be able to email these to you. If you have previous test results, please include those as well. All should go in your CH, but if you are having any trouble with the CH, just post in the messages for now.
Treatment: EMS is a metabolic type - not a disease - that is managed with a low sugar+starch diet and exercise (as able). The super-efficient easy keeper type breeds such as minis, ponies, Morgans, Arabs, Rockies are some of the classic examples. PPID is a progressive disease that is treated with the medication pergolide. Some, but not all, individuals may experience a temporary loss of appetite, lethargy and/or depression when first starting the medication. To avoid this "pergolide veil" (scroll down for side effects), we recommend weaning onto the drug slowly and the use of the product APF. The best long term results are seen when the ACTH is maintained in the middle of the normal range at all times, including during the annual seasonal rise. To accomplish this, the amount of medication may need to increase over time. Neither condition is ever "cured", only properly controlled for the remainder of the equine's life. If your partner is both PPID and IR then both medication and diet management will be needed.
DIET: Almost all commercial feeds are not suitable - no matter what it says on the bag. Please see the International Safe Feeds List for the safest suggestions.
No hay is "safe" until proven so by chemical analysis. The diet that works for IR is:
We use grass hay, tested to be under 10% ESC + starch, with minerals added to balance the excesses and deficiencies in the hay, plus salt, and to replace the fragile ingredients that are lost when grass is cured into hay, we add ground flax seed and Vitamin E. This diet is crucial for an EMS/IR horse, but also supports the delicate immune system of a PPID horse.
*Until you can get your hay tested and balanced we recommend that you soak your hay and use the emergency diet (scroll down for it). The emergency diet is not intended for long term use, but addresses some of the most common major deficiencies. Testing your hay and getting the minerals balanced to its excesses and deficiencies is the best way to feed any equine. If you absolutely cannot test your hay and balance the minerals to it, or would like to use a "stop gap" product until you get your hay balanced, here's a list of "acceptable" ration balancers.
There is a lot of helpful information in the start here folder so it is important you read all the documents found there. The emergency diet involves soaking your untested hay for an hour in cold water or 30 minutes in hot water. This removes up to 30% of the sugar content, but no starch. Starch is worse than sugar since it converts 100% to glucose while sugar only converts 50%, so starch causes a bigger insulin spike. Make sure you dump the soaking water where the equine(s) can't get to it.
What you don't feed on the EMS/IR diet is every bit as, if not more important than, what you do feed! No grass. No grain. No sugary treats, including apples and carrots. No brown/red salt blocks which contain iron (and sometimes molasses) which interferes with mineral balancing, so white salt blocks only.
No products containing molasses. No bagged feeds with a combined sugar and starch of over 10% or starch over about 4%, or fat over about 4%. Unfortunately, even bagged feeds that say they are designed for IR and/or PPID equines are usually too high in sugar, starch and/or fat. It’s really important to know the actual analysis and not be fooled by a name that says it is suitable for EMS/IR individuals.
We do not recommend feeding alfalfa hay to EMS/IR equines as it makes many of them laminitic. Although it tends to be low in sugar, many times the starch is higher and does not soak out. Additionally, protein and calcium are quite high, which can contribute to sore footedness and make mineral balancing very difficult.
TRIM: A proper trim is toes backed and heels lowered so that the hoof capsule closely hugs and supports the internal structures of the foot. Though important for all equines, it's essential for IR and/or PPID equines to have a proper trim in place since they are at increased risk for laminitis. After any potential triggers are removed from the diet, and in PPID individuals, the ACTH is under control, the realigning trim is often the missing link in getting a laminitic equine comfortable. In general, laminitic hooves require more frequent trim adjustments to maintain the proper alignment so we recommend the use of padded boots rather than fixed appliances (i.e. shoes, clogs), at least during the initial phases of treatment.
Sometimes subclinical laminitis can be misdiagnosed as arthritis, navicular, or a host of other problems as the animal attempts to compensate for sore feet.
You are encouraged to make an album and post hoof pictures and any radiographs you might have so we can to look to see if you have an optimal trim in place. Read this section of the wiki for how to get a hoof evaluation, what photos are needed, and how to get the best hoof shots and radiographs.
EXERCISE: The best IR buster there is, but only if the equine is comfortable and non-laminitic. An individual that has had laminitis needs 6-9 months of correct realigning trims before any serious exercise can begin. Once the equine is moving around comfortably at liberty, hand walking can begin in long straight lines with no tight turns. Do not force a laminitic individual to move, or allow its other companions to do so. It will begin to move once the pain begins to subside. Resting its fragile feet is needed for healing to take place so if the animal wants to lay down, do not encourage it to get up. Place feed and water where it can be reached easily without having to move any more than necessary. Be extremely careful about movement while using NSAIDs (bute, banamine, previcox, etc.) as it masks pain and encourages more movement than these fragile feet are actually able to withstand. Additionally, NSAIDs (and icing) do not work on metabolic laminitis and long term NSAID use interferes with healing. Therefore, we recommend tapering off NSAIDs after the first week or so of use. If after a week's time your equine's comfort level has not increased, then the cause of the laminitis has not been removed and keeping up the NSAIDs isn't the answer - you need to address the underlying cause.
There is lots more information in our files and archived messages and also on our website. It is a lot of information, so take some time to go over it and feel free to ask any questions. If you are feeling overwhelmed, don't worry, you will catch on, and we are always here to help you! Once you have your case history uploaded, we can help you help your equine partner even better.
For members outside North America, there are country specific folders in the files and many international lists in the wiki to help you find local resources.
If you have any technical difficulties, please let us know so we can help you.
Bonnie Snodgrass 07-2016
ECIR Group Primary Response
White Cloud, Michigan, USA
Thank you for answering! I do hope he likes the Stabul mixed with his Triple Crown Balance cubes. It has been stressful worrying about him being hungry since he decided he's "over" the Balance Cubes.
Today I tried adding a small amount of Beet Root Powder and a small amount of dried peppermint leaves the the soaked cubes. He went for it and ate a bit. He feels good I can tell, I think he is just protesting and missing the straight Timothy Pellets he used to get.
His weight is very good right now for him. He is a small pony, apparently "runt" sized based on the other American Shetlands he was rescued with at around 1 year old. He does have fat deposits( I jokingly refer to them as butt implants) but his neck is perfect now without the crest he had years ago. He is neither fat nor skinny.
I will try to figure out the amounts I should feed him of both the Balance cubes and the Stabul 1.
Any help with proper calculations on that would be greatly appreciated. Like I said I am planning to give him 50% Triple Crown Timothy Balance cubes and 50% Satbul 1.
Currently giving him 3.75 lbs. of Balance cubes per feeding, twice a day. But as I said he is now protesting and only eating a tiny bit of them. I don't want him to drop a lot of weight. And it is awful when they won't eat their meal. Hopefully he will like the flavor of the Stabul mixed with the cubes and we will be good to go.
I am also giving him a bit less than 1/4 cup Chia Seeds(he refuses Flax), iodized salt and a very small amount of the Timothy pellets as a carrier and hiding his 1/2 Prascend inside. He gobbles it all up thank goodness.
As an afternoon treat I bring him diced celery, with a very small handful of roasted salted peanuts, sprinkled with stevia powder. He adores this treat.
I will look into the brewers yeast powder, and appreciate that tip.
I ordered a bag of the Fenugreek flavor Stabul 1 and a bag of the Peppermint flavor. I hope he likes them both so maybe I can mix it up during the week, or not....... We will see.
I am thankful that Triple Crown offers the Balance Cubes, and that the Stabul 1 is available and safe as well for the horses and ponies that are older and have lost the ability to chew/ break down hay!
Thanks so much.
Cris Bliss California 2018
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