You all know that I haven't posted many pictures of Flashy this year and the primary reason was that I just did NOT like how he looked. He just was not doing as well as I am used to my yearlings doing.
He looked like absolute hell when I brought him home from next door. I hate to say that out loud. I KNOW he got fed and fed adequately. The hay was of good quality and I provided the Nutrena Mare & Foal grain. I also know he was on one of the highest priced supplements you can give horses (Platinum). When I would go look at him, I kind of just kept thinking that he looked so puny because the filly he was with was so big and so pretty. It was kind of like comparing apples and oranges.
Once I got him home and wasn't comparing him to the filly anymore, I realized he really was puny looking. It wasn't being next to her that made him look 'less'...He really was nowhere near in as good a condition as that filly.
(April 30th)I knew the filly had been bossy toward him, so I figured that being bullied a bit had affected how well he was utilizing his feed and assumed he would spring back now that he had his own pen, as much hay as he could eat 24/7 AND could enjoy his grain without feeling intimidated.
May came and went without a whole lot of improvement.
Then June came and went and Flash had only marginally improved. I was not as concerned as I had been before, but still not happy.
All along, I have had Flash on a bit of beet pulp, a bit of oats and the recommended amount of Nutrena Mare & Foal. He wasn't blossoming, his joints still popped and I was not pleased with how thick and upright his hind fetlocks looked.
Feeling a little desperate, I called my mom. There is a shit-ton of things I disagree with that woman about when it comes to horses...but I NEVER argue with her when it comes to feeding babies or old stuff. She is a freakin' guru when it comes to that.
She recommended putting Flash on Lampley's A-Z and Bone Repair supplements and a coffee can of Oats, with like a cup of beet pulp.
So that is what I did. To the letter.
It only took a couple weeks to see a big difference and no more popping joints or thick hind fetlocks.
And two months later, Flashy is finally looking like I think he should!! He's filled out and growing and not a single joint problem now.
What a relief!! I've had so many people tell me that because Flashy was premature that it might take until he is 5-6 years old to catch up. I wasn't really buying it because by the time he was 3 months old, you would have NEVER known he was a premie foal. Even the vet couldn't believe how well he was doing last summer. It didn't make sense that he would suddenly just fall off and not do well. I really think it was a combination of he got harassed more than I realized and his system wasn't utilizing the pre-mixed feed. Harassment over feed or feeling intimidated while eating is NEVER good for any horse and especially bad for youngsters. But just removing him from the situation wasn't enough. It wasn't until I followed mom's directions that he finally took off and started developing like he should. I guess from now on, it's the Oats Program for me. :-)