With the recent cold snap, we’ve had several questions pertaining to impaction colic and hydration, due from lack of water consumption. Making sure your horse is properly hydrated is not just a summer issue. During the cold, winter months, water consumption is key to keeping your horse’s overall health.
When horses eat more hay, they should drink more water. Water consumption should be a minimum of 10 to 12 gallons per day for a 1000 lb. horse to support normal function of the digestive system and maintain adequate hydration. During weather changes and especially during extremely cold weather, horses often drink less water. When they eat more hay but drink less water they become at greater risk for impaction colic and reduced intake due to dehydration. To help encourage water intake, keep water sources clean, fresh and free from ice. A minimum water temperature of 45°F is a good goal for horses during harsh, cold weather.
Many owners have traditionally offered warm bran mashes to their horses during winter. Research would suggest that the benefit of these mashes is more related to increased water consumption and possibly a slight digestive upset from receiving a meal of bran that isn’t consistent with their normal daily diet. Another way to encourage water consumption is to add warm water to the horse’s normal feed ration along with a couple ounces of loose salt.
Wondering what to do with the old Christmas Tree? Consider Christmas tree recycling.
Give it to the birds!
Move the tree outside and create your own backyard bird buffet!
Find a place outside where the tree is sheltered from the winds, and stand it upright instead of on its side. Birds prefer a tree that is off the ground and way from predators. Attach it to a pole or fence if necessary.
Get the entire family involved, especially the kids. If you have pinecones have them add peanut butter to the pinecones and then hang them in the tree. Or roll the peanut butter pine cone in bird seed, or press dried cranberries, raisins, or sunflower seeds into the peanut butter. Other ideas include stringing popcorn and cranberries and hanging the strings in the tree.
Cardinals, finches, and grosbeaks love popcorn. Cedar waxwings and robins will appreciate cranberries and raisins. Another idea is to cut an orange in half, take out the pulp, and fill it with homemade suet. This provides a good energy source for woodpeckers, chickadees, and nuthatches.
Looking for wild bird seed? Come see us, we have a great selection of bird seed and houses.
Create a fish habitat.
Sink your tree in a pond (with permission, of course). In deep water, old trees become habitats for fish and aquatic insects. In shallow wetlands, trees can act as barriers to sand and soil erosion—though currently only the State of Louisiana has a tree-based restoration project in place.
Mulch your tree.
Cut off the boughs and place them on the ground like a blanket to protect plants that are susceptible to windburn, plants that are marginally hardy in your area, and plants that might come up early and be nipped by a late spring frost, such as fall-planted pansies or early emerging perennials.
Find out if your town or city has a special day for picking up Christmas trees or a place where you can take them after the holidays.
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With the Ft. Worth, San Antonio, and Houston Stock Show’s around the corner, many student’s are working on with their animals as they prepare for the stock show season. Here are seven stock show preparation tips to consider as you work with your animal.
Diet: Watch and control your animals diet. Inconsistent feeding can lead to problems in consumption and growth.
Always watch your animals diet. 45-30 days out from the show, look to see if your animal on track. Do they need to gain more weight, loose weight or do you need to hold them? The answers to these questions will help you determine if it’s time to cut back on feed, increase it or introduce supplements to their diet.
Coat Care: Your animals coat and skin condition are an important part of their show ring success. Know what the requirements are your animal and make sure they are clipped correctly.
Organization is key! Be prepared to answer questions the judges may ask you. Know your animal’s weight, breed & feed. Once at the show, know your schedule and class.
Showmanship: The time you spend working with your animal now will pay off in the show ring. Be prepared to answer questions on animal care, feeding strategies, weight, and breed. Dress appropriately and neat! Judges look at you as well as the animal. Nice shirts, clean jeans, and belts to hold up those pants. Be polite and respectful.
Judges: Each judge is different. Find out who the judge is, the information is available to you via the county extension office or the show rule book. Learn what is important to them. Understand their preferences, do your homework.
Be prepared: If you are traveling to an event consider putting together a check list for you and your animal. What do you need to bring with you and what should you do to get ready? When at the show, make a list of what you should do to prepare you and your animal. Keep all your equipment and show supplies together. A little preparation goes a long way in easing the stress for you and your animal.
Ask questions: The road to show ring success is long and requires discipline. You are bound to have a question along the way regarding care and feeding of your animal. Ask questions, it’s the best way to learn. Talk to your Ag teacher, local feed store or county agent, they are wealth of information and are happy to help.
The Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) will take effect January 1, 2017, and affects how distributors sell feed-grade antibiotics, and how you, the customer, will purchase these products. Rest assured,you will still be able to purchase these products from J&N Feed and Seed.
If you’re not familiar with the Veterinary Feed Directive, here’s a quick overview from the FDA. Over the past several years, the FDA has taken important steps toward fundamental change in how medically important antibiotics can be legally used in feed or water for food-producing animals. Now, the agency is moving to eliminate the use of such drugs for production purposes (i.e., growth promotion and feed efficiency) and bring their remaining therapeutic uses in feed and water under the supervision of licensed veterinarians – changes that are critical to ensure these drugs are used judiciously and only when appropriate for specific animal health purposes. The Veterinary Feed Directive (VFD) final rule is an important part of the agency’s overall strategy to ensure the judicious use of medically important antimicrobials in food-producing animals.
J&N Feed and Seed is ready to work with you and your veterinarian to acquire the feeds you need to keep your livestock healthy. Questions? Please give us a call at (940) 549-4631 if we can answer any questions regarding the new changes coming in 2017.
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Quick Tips For Healthy Pets In The New Year. With the New Year here, it’s time to take stock and make improvements in our lives and our pets lives. Here are some ideas and tips to hopefully enhance the health and add some fun to your pets’ lives.
Pets can suffer from overeating and lack of exercise just like humans. But there are more things to consider than diet and exercise when it comes to being a good example for our pets. Here are a few tips to help your pets be happier and healthier in 2016.
Regular exercise has the obvious health benefits, but it also is a great time to bond with our pets. A simple daily walk helps a dog learn proper manners, provides some good quality time, and does wonders for the human counterpart, too! Keeping pets at the proper body weight reduces the risk of heart and joint problems, diabetes, and a host of other poor health conditions.
2) Health Check Up
A regular visit to your veterinarian is the best way to stay ahead of potential problems. Annual examinations of teeth, heart/lungs, and body condition overall will be less costly than waiting for a problem to develop and your pet suffering needlessly from complications of preventable problems. Having a good “baseline” of information about your pet also gives the veterinarian something to compare against and determine exactly what is wrong when something isn’t quite right with your pet.
3) Good Nutrition
Like humans, pets who eat poor quality food just do not have the health reserves that those that a good balanced diet. Poor skin, hair coat, muscle tone, and obesity problems can be a result of a poor diet. Also, pets are not humans — a diet rich in table scraps is not a healthy one, and can lead to problems such as obesity and pancreatitis.
4) Good Grooming
No one wants to be around a stinky pet. Regular grooming — bathing, toe nail clips, brushing teeth and hair coat, parasite control — not only make the pet more pleasing to be around, it is much healthier for the pet! For skin and coat problems that don’t resolve with regular grooming, please see your veterinarian — there may be an underlying medical condition affecting the skin, coat, or toenails.
Keeping pets safe is something most pet owners take for granted. However, take a moment to assess the toxic chemicals used in your house and yard. Are they necessary? Are all safety precautions followed? Where are household chemicals stored? Can your pet access these items? If toxins such as rodent poisons are used, can your pet access the rodents? Think too about enclosures for pets — is the fencing secure? Can your pet get caught or hooked up on the fence, a tree, etc. and choke or be stuck out in the weather when you are away?
Being informed is the best way to keep track of our pet’s health and well-being. If possible, keep a medical log of your pet’s vet visits, medications, special needs, etc. to help keep track of your pet’s medical history. Knowing what is normal and not normal for your particular pet will assist your vet figure out what is wrong in the case of illness.
The Internet is a wealth of information, but caution is advised when seeking out a diagnosis or medical assistance via the web. Just as in real life, there is good information and bad information out there. The only way to get an answer/diagnosis is through a thorough physical examination, review of medical history, and possible lab work performed by your veterinarian.
7) Love and Attention
This is probably obvious, but too many pets are left outside in all kinds of weather, with very little human contact. Same goes for inside pets — those who are largely ignored for lack of time and busy human schedules. Take the time to focus on your pets and create/nourish that human-animal bond!
This refers to the more “unpleasant” aspects of pet care — the litter box scooping, yard clean up, cage cleaning, and fish tank maintenance. A clean environment for our pets is a healthy one! Poor sanitation can lead to behavior problems (i.e. litter box avoidance) and health problems such as skin infections and the spread of communicable diseases.
By Janet Tobiassen Crosby, DVM
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Cactus Turn-out and Winter Horse Blankets are now available at J&N Feed and Seed. Now that winter is approaching and the temperature is dropping, horse owners need to consider how to winterize their horses. Help protect your animals from the winter elements with horse blankets by Cactus.
Our Cactus Gear and Relentless Turn-Out blankets are loaded with features to keep horses warm, dry and comfortable in inclement weather.
Fleece over the withers adds comfort and prevents rubbing
Tail enclosure keeps wind out and body heat in
Cross belly surcingles
Shoulder gussets to increase comfort and freedom of movement
Open front design features two buckle closures for proper fit
How to measure for a blanket?
Measure from the center of the chest, horizontal around the largest part of shoulder, across the barrel, around largest part of hip to edge of tail. Measurement is size of blanket, round up for odd numbers.
During the cold season, horse owners must make sure that their animals receive proper feed, water and shelter to stay healthy and comfortable. Further, since riders usually put a lot of time and effort into getting their horses ready for shows, trail rides, or other events during the warm months, if they maintain their horses over the winter, all that effort won’t go to waste and have to be started over in the spring. Stop by J&N Feed and Seed and shop our selection of horse blankets, feeds and shaving to keep your horse warm and healthy during the winter months.
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Could you use a new pair of warm, weather proof boots? Stop by J&N Feed and Seed and pick up a pair of Muck Boots. We carry styles for men, women and kids. Don’t find the size or style you need? No problem, we can SPECIAL ORDER any style of Muck Boots and have it here at the store usually with-in 3 days!
Gear up for wet & sloppy conditions with Muck Boots, now available at J&N Feed and Seed. Muck Boots for men, women and kids are the most comfortable, 100% waterproof rubber boots you’ll ever own. Whether you’re working hard on the farm, in your garden, hiking in the snow or slopp’n in the mud – your feet will be dry and warm.
WHY ARE MUCK BOOTS™ THE GREATEST BOOTS IN THE WORLD?
Not only are they waterproof, but also they keep your feet warm, dry and protected in cold and messy working conditions.
MUCK BOOTS™ have the self-insulating, waterproof CR Flex-Foam “bootie” construction. This serves as a “neutral medium” between inside and outside temperatures, so therefore the foot and lower leg stay warm and protected in wet and cold conditions. The CR Flex-Foam bootie is lightweight, buoyant and comfortable.
MUCK BOOT™ brand boots and shoes are equipped with a 6mm removable Nitracel-EVA insole that also includes a 5mm CR Flex-Foam that provides extraordinary comfort and protection in extreme cold conditions.
MUCK BOOTS™ have a natural rubber overlay that covers the external base, which is triple reinforced in the toe area and quadruple reinforced in the heel area. The rubber used to make MUCK BOOTS™ will stay flexible for years and will not cold-crack like boots and shoes made of PVC and TPR materials. (P-Plastic)
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