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Forage Fit for a King!

Mary King and High Fibre HorseHage

We offer four varieties of HorseHage dust-free bagged forage to suit all types of horses and ponies, from a laminitic Shetland to a top, four-star event horse

Both the High Fibre and Timothy options can be safely fed to laminitic horses and ponies as the sugar content can be lower than a lot of hays. These varieties are also ideal for equines that are convalescing, resting or in light work.

Ryegrass HorseHage is a good choice for horses that need a little more from their forage and the Alfalfa variety is suitable for those in very hard work or breeding and young stock.

International event rider, Mary King, understands the importance of good forage and feeds High Fibre HorseHage to her team of event horses.

Said Mary, “I find that HorseHage offers many benefits compared to hay or ordinary haylage – it’s dust-free which is vital for maintaining a healthy respiratory tract and preventing conditions such as RAO (Recurrent Airway Obstruction).This is especially important when your horse has to be stabled for extended periods of time, as most of mine are, and essential for any horse or pony that competes.”

“HorseHage also contains no chemicals, additives or flavourings and due to the fermentation process that takes place inside the bag, it has a sugar level of 5% or below which is considerably lower than most other forages. I like this variety because it is low in protein, sugar and starch which means you can feed more during the day replicating the horses’ little-and-often method of feeding out in the wild.”

Mary weighs her HorseHage and feeds from a HorseHage Net allowing her to monitor exactly what the horses are having, so that she can adjust the quantity according to their body condition and work load.

Said Mary, “As a rule they have 10lb nets twice daily, but the slimmer horses may get 12lb and the chubbier ones 8lb twice daily, or a 6lb net in the morning and an 8lb one in the evening. This is in addition to the grass they eat when turned out.”

The importance of high quality forage should never be underestimated. Horses have evolved as trickle feeders with a small stomach and very large, bacteria-filled hind gut, designed to contend with an almost continuous supply of grass and associated herbage.  Therefore their dietary requirements should focus on forage, supplemented by hard feed only when necessary (ie. if more energy or more weight gain is required). Your horse’s fitness level should also be assessed before feeding for more energy as 99% of horses lacking in energy (unless under-weight) is due to a schooling problem rather than a feeding one. HorseHage is highly digestible, allowing efficient utilisation of the available nutrients and can potentially enable you to reduce your horse’s hard feed by up to a third.

Posted in HorseHage Team HorseHage by admin.

Spencer Roe’s Latest Blog

In my last blog I was heading out to Spain for several weeks but before I left I received some exciting news…

BSJA Awards Ball

Spencer Roe - BSJA Awards

At the end of September I received a phone call from the BSJA informing me that I had been nominated for two awards – ‘Leading Rider (21 and under) of the Year’ and ‘Horse and Rider Combination of the Year’. My family were all very excited and keen to go to the ball, so we booked a table and headed over to the Hilton at the Birmingham NEC.

‘Horse and Rider Combination of the Year’ went to Scott Brash and Hello Sanctos who unquestionably deserved it, but I did win ‘Leading Rider (21 and under) of the Year’. As it turns out, I’m not very good at giving acceptance speeches. Put me on a horse and send me to a championship competition and I don’t get nervous, but stick me on a podium and ask me to say a few words and I fall to pieces. Never mind, you can’t be good at everything.

Furusiyya Nations Cup Final

Nations Cup Final Team GB

Nations Cup Final Team GB

The next morning I had to be up early as I was flying out to Barcelona for the Nations Cup Final, my horses having been driven out a few days previous. The first round went well for Wonder Why and I, as we finished with just an unfortunate four faults at the last fence.

Saturday’s final however couldn’t have gone better with us jumping a foot-perfect clear round. In the end The Netherlands won with three brilliant clear rounds, Team GB finished in 6th just behind Germany on time.

Oliva Nova Autumn Tour

SPENCER RoeFrom Barcelona I headed down to Oliva Nova, which is just below Valencia for their Autumn Tour. Having come straight from the final, I was a week early but the show very kindly let me stable anyway. It was the closest I’ve had to a holiday this year and Ballando II especially enjoyed being exercised on the beach. Alas we had to get back to work when the show started though.

We had a really good show with placings throughout the tour; Ballando II came 6th in the first week’s Grand Prix and Wonder Why had a great finish to the show, coming 2nd in the Gold Tour Grand Prix on the last day. Thank you to the show organisers and the stable manager who were very helpful to us the entire show, we will definitely be back next year.

Stuttgart German Masters

Stuttgart was a show of firsts for my horses and I. It was our first indoor show of the year and I was pleased with how well my horses went on the whole. Ballando II moved up a stage and is now jumping bigger tracks. He coped with it well until we came to the 1.70m Joker in the Accumulator, I must have had more confidence than he did as it was only me that landed on the other side of the fence!

Wonder Why and I both competed in our first ever World Cup competition, we had and unlucky couple of fences down but I was pleased with how he went. At least it was a British win though, as my friend and GB teammate, Will Whitaker, won the class – Congratulations Will!

Next Time…

Now I am back home in the UK and looking forward to the London International Horse Show at Olympia. This will be the first time I have competed there in the international classes, as I have only ever done the Under 23 Young Rider Competition. I’ll let you know how I got on next time.

Merry Christmas!

Spencer

Posted in HorseHage by admin.

Less Stress with Mollichaff Calmer

Minerals, and in particular, magnesium,  play a vital role in the diet of the horse, helping to maintain a normal blood sugar level and improving the sensitivity of cells to insulin. Magnesium is also important for the general growth and repair of tissue and assists with blood circulation and transmission of nerve impulses. In the spring when the growth is lush, grass can have an increased sugar content due to its fast growth, but this often means that it is deficient in minerals, including magnesium. This in turn can lead to a magnesium deficiency in the horse’s diet. The result of this is very often a fresh, excitable horse and that is when many owners turn to a calming supplement or feed.

Of course there can be many other reasons for a fizzy, tense horse and it is important to try and find out why so make sure you analyse your horse’s diet and exercise routine too. If your horse just has a nervous temperament, patience and a quiet atmosphere can help too. If you think your horse may have a magnesium deficiency, ask your vet to take a blood sample to check it out.

An alternative to an expensive calming supplement is a complete fibre feed such as Mollichaff Calmer. It contains a balanced blend of fibre pellets, oat straw, dried grass, herbs, soya oil, vitamins, minerals, limestone and trace elements, and it can be used as the sole bucket feed. It is suitable for all horses and ponies, including laminitics, as it is low in sugar and starch providing limited controlled energy from high quality, digestible fibre and oil-based ingredients.

In Mollichaff Calmer we have included elevated levels of Magnesium along with a carefully formulated combination of camomile, lemon balm and mint, to help relax your horse. It also contains Vitamins B1 and B12 which are known to help decrease anxiety by exerting a calming influence on the horse.

MolliChaff Calmer

Posted in MolliChaff by admin.

Helen West Gets New Ride on Eebay

HorseHage-sponsored rider, Helen West, is to take over the ride of the Dutch-bred gelding, Eebay, from owner, Sophie Stockdale, who purchased the seven-year-old from event rider, Lucy Wiegersma 18 months ago.

Said owner Sophie: “Lucy said she had a horse with a huge jump for sale – we went to try him and bought him and took him home that day!”

Devon-based event rider,Helen, took over the ride for Sophie in September and will be aiming him for second round show-jumping qualifiers for the Horse of the Year Show (HOYS) at Newcomers and Foxhunter level next summer.

Said Helen: “Eebay is not the easiest horse to ride, but we seem to have bonded well and he has a seriously scopey jump. He has had all double clears this season and I look forward to taking him further next year.”

Eebay

Posted in HorseHage Team HorseHage by admin.

Spencer Roe’s Blog – September

Spencer competing at the Alltech World Equestrian Games

Spencer competing at the Alltech World Equestrian Games

Welcome to the first of our regular blogs from our newest sponsored rider, Spencer Roe:
“Now I am part of the HorseHage team, I have been asked to write a blog introducing myself and keeping you up to date with my career in showjumping.

So to start, I am a 21-year-old show-jumper based in Lincolnshire, currently ranked number 20 in the UK. I have been part of Team GB for the last three years with my top horse, Wonder Why, but my career has really taken off in the last five months.

Representing Team GB
“It started with being chosen to represent Great Britain in my first 5* Nations Cup in St Gallen, Switzerland last May. To be chosen to represent my country was a great honour, but to win at my debut Nations Cup at that level was unbelievable! Wonder Why jumped two amazing rounds, just picking up one time fault in each round.

On the back of that win, we were then picked for the teams for Rotterdam, Netherlands and Falsterbo, Sweden; where the team was 4th and 6th respectively.

Dublin Horse Show
“Our next big adventure was the Nations Cup in Dublin.  By this time it was looking bleak for Team GB as we were close to being relegated from Division One. Rob Hoekstra had brought out his big guns: World No.1 Scott Brash, World No. 3 Ben Maher, World No. 61 Joe Clee and me…World No. 320. The pressure was on; we needed the win!

By the end of the first round we were in joint first with the Netherlands on 0; with Scott, Joe and I having gone clear and Ben having had an unfortunate four faults. I was third to go in the second round, with Ben and Joe both having four faults, the team needed a clear. As I waited to jump I was nervous, but as soon as I started jumping I forgot everything else and just focused on the course. Wonder Why jumped incredibly, mirroring our clear from the first round.

Between us we managed to gain second place, which as first place went to the USA, we took the 100 points we needed, qualified for the Nations Cup Final and remained in Division One. Job done!

The World Equestrian Games
“At the start of this year if someone had told me I’d be competing at the World Equestrian Games, I wouldn’t have believed them. I’m still pinching myself now!

Being chosen to represent my country at championship level was a great honour and even though we didn’t qualify for Rio, I am still grateful for the chance Rob Hoekstra gave me and experience I gained.

What’s next?
“Next month I will be off to Barcelona for the Nations Cup Final. I’ll also be taking a couple of my younger horses, as I will be staying in Spain for a month and going to shows in Vilamoura and Oliva. So I’ll be writing my next blog from there, hopefully I’ll be able to bring you some good news from the final.”

Posted in HorseHage by admin.