CushCare Condition FAQs
Q: Is CushCare Condition suitable for horses with Equine Cushing’s Disease, also known as PPID?
A: CushCare Condition is not a medicinal product, it is a complementary feed for underweight horses which need a diet lower in starch and sugar and is also suitable for horses prone to laminitis. It is also designed to support underweight horses or horses that struggle to maintain condition by promoting weight gain and by supporting muscle mass. If your horse or pony has any medical conditions then it is always best to check with your vet first when choosing a diet for them.
Q: Is CushCare Condition suitable for horses that struggle to chew or that need a soft diet?
A: Yes, CushCare Condition is ideal for horses that struggle to chew; the diet’s unique coarse-crumble consistency means that it can be fed dry, or made into a mash with lukewarm water. Either way, the diet is soft and easy to chew. If your horse has particular difficulty chewing or you are worried about choke, then we would recommend feeding CushCare Condition as a mash; mix the required amount of the diet with half that volume of lukewarm water just before feeding.
Q: Can I feed chaff with CushCare Condition?
A: CushCare Condition can be fed with or without chaff, depending on your horse’s preferences. As a general rule, we recommend feeding chaff in every meal as short-chop fibre promotes efficient digestion when fed alongside hard feed. Dodson & Horrell Alfalfa is the perfect chaff to feed alongside CushCare Condition; it is a high protein and high calorie chaff so helps to support older or underweight horses.
Q: Can I feed soaked sugar beet with CushCare Condition?
A: This is entirely up to you; CushCare Condition is high in digestible fibre and can be made into a mash, so in many cases there is no need to feed soaked sugar beet as well. However, if you want to or if your horse or pony needs soaked sugar beet as part of a hay-replacement diet then you can certainly feed soaked sugar beet alongside the diet. Check the soaking time for the sugar beet (for KwikBeet this is ten minutes) then add the soaked beet to your horse’s ration of CushCare Condition.
Q: Can I feed CushCare Condition to my other horses?
A: The simple answer to this is yes; CushCare Condition is fully balanced and because it is lower in starch and sugar (less than 10% in total) it can be fed to a wide range of horses, including those prone to laminitis or those who require a lower starch diet, whatever the reason. It is also suitable for horses in work; the oil and fibre in CushCare Condition provide slow-release energy to promote performance. However, as CushCare Condition promotes weight gain, it may not be suitable in large amounts for overweight horses or for horses and ponies on a calorie-controlled diet. In these instances we would suggest feeding only a handful or contacting our Nutritional Helpline to find a diet suitable for these horses.
Q: Do I need to feed a balancer or vitamin and mineral supplement with CushCare Condition?
When fed at the recommended amount, CushCare Condition provides all the vitamins, minerals and nutrients that your horse needs. The high specification, high quality protein and patented QLC antioxidants mean that you do not need to feed a balancer or vitamin and mineral supplement if you are feeding the recommended amount each day. However, if you are feeding less than the recommended amount (for instance, if your horse needs a little support but not the full amount), you do need to ‘top-up’ with a balancer. For older horses or those who struggle to maintain weight, we would recommend using a balancer rather than a vitamin and mineral supplement as a balancer normal provides a more complete level of support. Dodson & Horrell Ultimate Balancer is the ideal ‘top-up’ as it is high in the essential amino acids such as lysine, plus contains our patented QLC natural antioxidants. The Dodson & Horrell Nutritional Advisors will be able to help you work out the correct amount to feed.
Q: How long will it take before I start to see an improvement after feeding CushCare Condition?
A: This will depend slightly on what we are trying to improve, but normally you should notice a difference within two to four weeks. The most common improvements that owners have reported when feeding CushCare Condition are increased appetite, better coat condition, weight gain and a generally happier horse.
Q: Do I need to keep feeding my other supplements?
A: CushCare Condition contains all the high quality ingredients, nutrients and herbs that your horse needs to thrive. These include cinnamon, chaste tree berries (Vitex agnus castus), glucosamine, prebiotics and live Actisaf yeast. You should therefore be able to stop feeding many supplements as these are already included in CushCare Condition. If you are unsure if you still need to feed a particular supplement then please speak to our Nutritional Advisors who will be able to help you.
Q: Do I need to tell my vet if I start feeding CushCare Condition?
A: If your horse is being treated for, or has ever been diagnosed with, a medical condition then it is always best to check with your vet before changing their diet. If your horse is healthy but needs a bit of an extra helping hand then you may not need to tell your vet, however if you are unsure it is always better to check first!
Q: Are there any circumstances where CushCare Condition may not be suitable for my horse?
A: CushCare Condition is a lower starch, complete and balanced feed and as such is suitable for most horses. However, as it contains 13% protein it may not be suitable for horses that need a lower protein diet, such as horses who are suffering from liver problems. If your horse is overweight or has ever been diagnosed with Equine Metabolic Syndrome then we recommend that you check with your veterinary surgeon before feeding CushCare Condition, as this diet may not be suitable for these horses in large amounts.
Q: After making my horse’s meal of CushCare condition into a mash with warm water, the mash appeared to ‘set’ and become more solid again after a while. Is this normal?
A: CushCare Condition contains a high amount of oil; occasionally if you add hot water to the diet this could cause the diet to ‘set’. The diet would still be safe to eat but in order to avoid this happening we recommend that you use cold or luke-warm water to make CushCare Condition into a mash rather than hot water.
A: Yes this is perfectly normal and is a natural consequence of the coarse-crumble nature of CushCare Condition. The high oil content of the diet makes the nuggets very soft and easy to chew. When the coarse-crumble diet moves around in the bag you can get a bit of powder forming – this is just the nuggets crumbling and is perfectly normal, plus it helps the diet form an easy to chew mash. It is safe to feed the crumble and you can continue to feed CushCare Condition as normal.
Q: Can I stop giving my horse his medication when I start feeding CushCare Condition?
A: No, absolutely not. CushCare Condition is designed to support older or underweight horses and will provide the very best nutrition, however it is not a replacement for medical therapy and should never be used as such. If your horse has a medical condition then all treatment decisions should be made by your veterinary surgeon, who can also advise you on the best management for your horse. CushCare Condition may be used to support your horse and promote weight gain and muscle mass as part of your vet’s recommendations for supportive care.
The health of your older horse
If you have any concerns about the health of your older horse, you should of course contact your veterinary surgeon. We also recommend discussing any dietary changes with your vet.
If you have any further questions, please call our nutritional helpline on 0845 345 2627 to speak to our company veterinary surgeon.
We are always delighted to receive feedback on our products. You can contact us to tell us about how CushCare Condition works for your older horse at our feedback page, by email or at Facebook and Twitter.
The launch of CushCare Condition is yet another innovation from Dodson & Horrell. The company is a globally recognised brand with a proud tradition of excellence going back 75 years.
Dodson & Horrell is a third generation family business. The company’s manufacturing base is in rural Northamptonshire, and it exports to 42 countries.