I’ve had a lot of emails but since I’ve started posting about GM feeds, I have had thousands! Within 3 days of posting the GM Alfalfa issue, I had more emails and responses and downloads of the brochure than all the other posts on this blog! (I have been answering the questions as fast as I can: sorry for the “blanket” response to most but I’m getting overwhelmed with emails). I’m proud of all of you! We care for our horse from the inside out! You are paying attention!
“We care for our horse from the inside out.” April
Since everyone is listening, I will add another important post on feed. This one deals with chemicals. While our horses rarely see pesticides on our hays, it’s important to know where your hay comes from. Growing next to fields that use sprays (especially aerial spraying) means your hay crop will be contaminated.
A few years ago, I watched a farmer spraying a crop of peas. The cloud of insecticide drifted over to a horse facility and landed on 2 ponies and a quarter horse belonging to a friend of mine. In less than 6 months, the quarter horse lost weight and died. The 2 ponies lived, but one is still suffering.
The vets concluded that it could have been from vaccines. While I agree (as I don’t like vaccines), I did watch the insecticide cloud drift for 3 days in a row over to their small field. The other horses were not directly in the drift. The vets dismissed my findings.
Please send this to every horse owner you know!
I’m involved in politics when it comes to horses. I am a food activist and have spent years studying and understanding food and how it impacts us and our horses. I lecture and speak all over the country on this, and I’m asking for your help.
I want our horses to be able to eat healthy, non-toxic foods and I want to be able to buy horse feeds without fear of this. However, those of you who feed sweet feed – you are feeding GMO, Genetically Modified Organisms. The corn 20 years ago is no longer the same. It has been genetically altered (DNA has been changed) and contains deadly bacteria (Bt), viruses, and pesticides/herbicides. While this may not matter to you, the rise in cancer and other serious health problems in young horses leave one suspect, especially when you didn’t even hear of a horse getting cancer 40 years ago. In 2009 in my area 6 died from cancer before the age of 10.
Please read through this and decide for yourself. I hope that you act and send your letters in today. Your horse will thank you for it by living a long, healthy life. We don’t want GM foods, not for us or our animals!
Appeal to farmers and consumers – Act now to stop GM alfalfa.
Send your comments to the US Department of Agriculture by February 16,
Its not yet legal for Monsanto to sell its GM alfalfa seeds in Canada
but a US injunction on planting in that country could soon be
overturned. If GM alfalfa is planted in the US, it will quickly
contaminate our food system as well as Canadian alfalfa crops. It will
also lead to the legalization of GM alfalfa in Canada (Canada approved
Monsanto’s GM Roundup Ready alfalfa in 2005 but it still needs variety
registration as a last step before commercialization here).
Question: I have a yearling Arabian filly that I want to feed correctly. I have gone through countless pages of books, online websites, and opinions from feed stores, friends, trainers, and breeders. EVERYONE is an ‘expert’ – no one has a consistent opinion and I’m getting frustrated.
What I DO know, is that she is doing really well on her Orchard/Alfalfa (30% alfalfa or less) and now that she’s a yearling I want to drop her protein from 16% to 14%. She gets 2 qt/day of the grain. She’s ok on the feed I was giving her, but I DON”T like how sweet it was. She has free access to the hay, and I want to put her on something that she will truly benefit from as far as her graining. I saw in another post your comments on Arabians and sweet feed and its effects on their coat and system.
What are your opinions on feeding the Growing Arabian Yearling? Do you think their tendency to take a little longer to mature physically should change the “regular” young horses diet? In what way?
Answer from April Reeves: When it comes to feeding first ask 2 things:
1. Are there foodstuffs in the product that a horse would not find in the wild (molasses, sugars, especially refined, corn, soy, oils)?
2. Do the feeds you purchase (concentrates) have studies done by the manufacturer themselves? Many companies are jumping on the ‘trends’ bandwagon, meaning they build what horse owners want. Problem is, not all horse owners have a clue as to what their horses actually ‘need’. We tend to overfeed our horses, pumping them with chemicals, diets and concentrates that they really don’t need and their liver and kidneys sure don’t! I’m always questioning the motives behind a feed company’s choice of ingredients. Many are in it for the quick dollar, not the simple science of the horse.
A SPECIAL POST BY KATHRYN WATTS, SAFERGRASS.ORG
Question: “Is there any evidence, or any studies done regarding effects of Genetically Modified forages and grains on horses?”
Answer: The easy answer to your question is no.
The term ‘genetically modified’ is not well understood by lay people. Do you mean genetically engineered? As in inserting genes, such as creating resistance to RoundUp? RoundUp Ready alfalfa and soybeans, canola oil and BT corn are probably the only ones that might end up in a horse.