Monday, January 24, 2011

Good Horses and Good Food in Louisiana!!

I had the wonderful opportunity this past weekend to visit our friends at Live Oak Arabians in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Live Oak was having one of their regular sales, and featured in the sale were some horses that had been raised completely on Ultium Growth. Phil Witter, the fourth generation owner of the family farm helped us with the preliminary testing of Ultium Growth before it was available to our customers. After extensive research at our facility (literally years) we go to the field and find professional top rate farms that are willing to help us test the diets in the "real world". Mr.Witter and Live Oak were willing to put approximately 40 young horses on a test in 2008, feeding Ultium Growth and a control diet, and raise them completely on those diets to maturity. All the while allowing our research team access to his farm and horses to monitor their growth and health. You can see some of the test horses and work we did here along with Mr. Witter's comments. The horse business group at Purina truly feels like doing the right thing for the horse is what will make us successful in this business, Ultium Growth is an outstanding example of that philosophy. It shows how we can grow healthy, strong, vibrant, young horses better than ever. The fact that people like the Witter's are willing to trust Purina with their foals on a brand new diet is inspiring to say the least, and they help make the world a better place for the horse because of it! In the picture above are some of the people that made it happen, we are presenting Mr. Witter with a plaque of appreciation at the beginning of the sale. Dr. Appleton is a nutritional consultant that was present throughout the test, Dan Robichaux is the Purina District Sales Manager for the area, and Buster Smith owns the local Purina dealer that helped handle the feed- Dodge City Farm Supply in Denham Springs Louisiana. Each one of the people in the picture were absolutely instrumental in getting this test to work, from checking on the horses (Thanks Stacie!) to making sure the feed was where it needed to be when it needed to be there (Thanks Buster and Dan!) The biggest thanks goes to the Witter's for opening up their door and helping Purina do the job the right way! In the picture left to right: Phil Witter (holding the plaque); Dr. Stacie Appleton (also holding the plaque); Me!; Dan Robichaux; Buster Smith.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Winter is Still Here!

Snow started last night and kept going until this afternoon. We got some pictures throwing a little extra hay out this morning to keep some roughage in front of the horses in the cold. The temperatures are supposed to plummet this evening, last I heard was down to 3 degrees above zero. The last thing you want is to have health problems when the weather is like this- it pays to take all of the necessary precautions.

Lucky Timing!

The weather really helped us out yesterday, it was a little chilly but we managed to get our 10 pregnant mares down to the barn. They spend the summer months on pasture where they can just hang out and be horses. We like to get them in to the barn where we can keep a close eye on them when they get close to foaling. To get the 10 mares down from pasture we had to do some minor rearranging (like all of the other horses on the farm) to make the necessary space in the right places.

Once down to the barn each mare gets a nice stall to spend the night in with daily turnout. Night checks are a little easier when you aren't chasing the horses around in a pasture in the dark! Now all we have to do is wait, which is the toughest part of all when you get this close to foaling.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Monday, Monday

With the holidays being over its back to work! Just another Monday here at the farm, we are getting ready to haul our mares down from pasture in preparation for foaling. We usually like to do it a little earlier but the weather has not been very cooperative! (big surprise this time of year)

Stay tuned- pictures of the pregnant mares coming into the barn later this week......