FOOD AND FOALS...........Feed help needed


New Member
Jul 14, 2007
Heathcliffe is growing like there is no tomorrow.

He has lots of good quality hay, Happy Hoof, Beet, carrots, apple and pink powder, but I just feel he is 'lacking' something............

He is using all his 'food' to shoot upwards and I just feel he needs something to give him a little more weight and condition.

Was thinking of Stud Mix but wondered if any of the 'feed experts' on here could recommend anything xxx


Active Member
Aug 22, 2007
I'm definitely no expert but I've heard quite a few native pony breeders mentioning that mixes in general aren't the most efficient foods for the natives as they don't digest them efficiently.

I swear by TopSpec balancers, Puz and Inca are on the light balancer and Bella is on the stud balancer, she's growing well and has a good shine on her coat. I wish I'd known about it when Inca was a foal, I had her on the Bailey's stud balancer and she always looked well but the TS just adds an extra bit of shine.

I measured Bella a few weeks ago and she was nearly 14.2hh in her croup, but that just didn't seem right but I couldn't work out what I was doing wrong, anyways measured her today and she's very nearly 14.3hh which seems about right. Her withers are still only 14hh!!


Well-Known Member
May 27, 2007
I'd say Topspec balancer too. They do the comprehensive one or a light one. It was originally made for native ponies (darties i think).

Anyway that was what Piccolo had as a foal, although i did take her off it when she started to get a little podgy on it at one point and put her on baileys lo-cal but that wasn't until she was about 3.5. Before that she had topspec balancer, chaff and speedibeet added in winter.


Cob lover
Jul 31, 2005
You have to be very careful not to give them anything too rich when they're young, Kay.... it can cause awful joint problems in later life. With the greatest of respect to gorgeous Mr HC, he's a "cob" and therefore will do fine on fibre-based feed with either a broad spectrum vitamin and mineral supplement or a balancer. Rule of thumb for baby hosses is that it is good to be able to make out the ribs up to the age of 3. Not a toast rack, obviously, but it's FAR better for them to be slightly underweight than slightly over. Don't want to put too much weight on them there growing joints and bones.

Sounds like he's getting more than enough to prevent his growth being stunted and also bear in mind that we are nearly into February and spring... and that awful flush of grass.... is just around the corner.....


New Member
Mar 6, 2008
Albert is on this:

He is growing really healthily and happy and he looks great. Really good condition, but he isn't getting overweight at all. When I bought him, I looked for something suited to native breeds and did a lot of research and came across this. He is growing so well. Sure he is going to overtake his dads height. He stands about 14.2/3 at the moment!

My others are on Top Spec anti-lam balancer, but I think at 2, Albert still needs this. I am going to move him over to Top Spec at some time in the future.


Minnie, Sam and Dolly
May 30, 2002
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Although he is a cob, he still needs proteins and all the vits and mins to help him grow steadily. Obviously not to make him fat but to help him develop into a lovely handsome boy that we will all coo over. I used Spillers Stud Mix/nuts on my youngster, but maybe do a little research with the feed companies on the balancer/mix suggestions would be good..:wink:


Active Member
Aug 22, 2007
Another point that I thought of, it's taking a while for Bella to actually fill her muscles, like Heathcliffe she was very poor and had sunken dips where muscle should be in her hindquarters and shoulders. She's coming along, but it is taking time as you've said with Heathcliffe there's so much going in to the growing that there isn't much else left for condition, also the babies can look a bit raggedy at this time of year as winter has gone on for a few months.

The Spring grass will make a big difference to him and to be honest it probably wouldn't do him much harm going in to Spring a little slim either.

If he's getting a stud balancer to give him all his vits and mins but you feel that he needs a bit of extra weight to get him through some of the harsh winter weather then maybe topping him up with some pony cubes rather than an actual stud mix could help without overloading him?


New Member
Jun 1, 2009
I have various youngsters and breeds, the most success i have had with feed was with suregrow, mine all loved it.

I gave them suregrow, surelimb (supplement) and chaff and they are did fantastic on it. Only fed it for their first year, then moved onto either calm and condition or fast fibre.


New Member
Jul 14, 2007
Thanks all for your advice, I may ring some of the feed companies and see what they suggest.

I used Stud Mix/Nuts for Sioned as a Youngster and she did really well on that, pretty sure it was Baileys No 7 or similar.

I agree with you Domane that I don't want to be throwing too much protein into him, however think he needs a little 'more' than he is having as I said everything he is having is going into growing at this time and nothing, as B n P has said, into 'conditioning.

Come end of May/beginning of June we will be moving Yards and he will be on some excellent grass, however would like to see a little more
condition on him before then. He looks so much better than he did on his arrival when he was all bedraggled and wormy thats for sure but I feel he could still benefit with that little extra 'something'.


Well-Known Member
Sep 14, 2009
My two baby thoroughbreds had stud nuts and did very well on them. Which make I can't remember! I think hard feed (obviously not huge amounts) is really important for them.
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