Feeding Oil

My horse receives 1/2 cup sunflower oil 2 x day & 30ml Omega Oil 1 x day in his feed. He is a heavy sweater and I have to be quite careful if it is very hot. Someone just told me that oil can be 'heating' and that they don't feed it in summer as their horses sweat too much. Is this true? I feed the oil for a variety of reasons, mainly being on the advice of my vet as he is prone to mild impactions and constipation and the oil helps the passage of the food so I really don't want to stop feeding it if possible. However I also think that the sweating can add to the colic issue as he dehydrates very quickly and doesn't drink enough water.


The oil you are feeding your horse is fine and is unrelated to his sweating problem. By 'heating' people usually mean that it makes the horse very energetic and full of spark, but oil is not as heating as many of the grains that are commonly fed. Oil can be fed right through the year, and it does not cause sweating.
What does concern me is your horse's excessive sweating and colic issues. I would have your vet do a thorough work up of your horse to determine the reason for the excess sweating. It is vital that you provide your horse with a salt lick at all times, as well as an unlimited fresh supply of water. If the sweating is very bad, you might have to give your horse electrolyte supplementation, however this you will have to discuss with your vet.
Keep feeding the oils, but have your horse checked out by the Vet please, adn get a second opinion if you must.


Thanks Renee I do give him electrolytes now in anticipation of hard work, like when we are going to shows, and 1 or 2 x a week anyway. Funnily enough he has for about 6 weeks been given regular Bemer blanket treatments (to assist in healing a puncture wound) and apart from him feeling so good following them that he has been bucking all over the place his sweating has reduced significantly, even following really hectic workouts (trying to cure bucking issue). He still sweats slightly more than your average horse but no where near as much as before.


How interesting - this sounds like some kind of pain response to me! In fact, it almost would seem like a low grade azoturia that your horse might be suffering from. One of the side effects of that would be sore muscles, especially along the back and hindquarters which would result in him being uncomfortable when you ride hence the bucking. The Bemer blanket treatments work well on back pain and azoturia, which may be what is causing the improvement.
I would seriously have your vet take a look at him, and possibly do the blood tests for Azoturia when he has another sweating episode or at least do a thorough back exam and check his muscles for pain.
Failing that, I would also have him looked at by a physiotherapist or Acupuncturist.
Let us know how he goes!


Been down that road! Vet passed him 100% and the bucking doesn't just occur when I am riding him, it happens on the lunge, in the paddock, he has even been bucking in his stable. I have had numerous experts have a look and they all say the bucking is not a pain reflex, he just looks incredibly fresh and pleased with himself. He literally can't help himself, it's very cute. He is all bright eyed and bushy tailed. Luckily he doesn't have a lethal buck, it is more a happy thing. Problem is when you are trying to interest him in focusing on your imminent dressage test, happy can be problematic! I think you are correct with the low grade azutoria thing, or it being at least related to his circulatory system, though. He has always been a lazy, non forward moving horse until these intensive Bemer treatments, but not anymore. He raced for a very long time so goodness knows what went into his system, but I definitely think we have got to the end of the road, after a year. I think that I am going to keep up with regular Bemer sessions and have now dropped him onto a 10% food as opposed to 12%. Thanks for putting my mind at rest on the oil issue.

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