Normally I don't do supplements, but earlier this summer I was getting a little desperate to bring Taran to the next level strength-wise. He's not a hot, energetic horse by any stretch of the imagination, and his increased workload often left me feel like we were out of gas pretty early in our ride. I tried switching his feed from TC Lite to TC Senior, but he didn't gain any weight on that, nor did he eat it particularly well (he's weird?). So we went back to Lite, and I did a little research on supplements, and decided to give Platinum Performance a go.
Handy storage bin.
One of the things I really don't like about the vast majority of supplements is the amount of fillers they have in them. After dealing with a horse that was super sensitive to changes in feed, you start reading labels and steering away from anything that's got "extras" in it, like wheat middlings or soy (yes, I know TC Lite has these things in it, and we're considering cutting that out entirely). Platinum Performance doesn't contain any of the things that get my antennae up, so that was a huge plus for me.
After chatting online with the PP folks (who provide FANTASTIC customer service, btw), I decided to go with the standard Platinum Performance Equine supplement, with Healthy Weight (Flax oil) to add more calories. I opted to get it in the little packs for ease of feeding.
I feel like I'm wasting packaging, but DAMN these things are handy.
And this little cutout thing makes them so easy to open, even with gloves on.
Shortly after I started feeding PP to Taran, we realized that Brego would need to have a hoof wall resection. My vet recommended loading him up on a good hoof supplement, and I decided to go with PP again, and add their hoof supplement to the basic supplement. Brego's been on that for about 70 days so far. While I was at it, I decided to put Paddy on the basic supplement too. Because fair's fair, right?
All three horses LOVE the supplement. It's a dry powder, and there's a lot of it, which I was a little worried about. However, they all lick their bowls clean. A+ for palatability. Taran isn't fond of the oil, and it's a little messy to feed - but then, so is any oil.
It really is a lot of powder.
Here's what I've noticed about each:
Paddy has not shown any noticeable change while on PP. He's always had great feet, a slick coat, and tons of dapples, and he still does. He's slimmer, but that's because he's getting more work. I don't feel like the supplement is doing anything visible for him. However, the ingredients list is better than TC Lite, and it costs about the same to feed per day. I may end up discontinuing the TC Lite entirely and instead giving a handful of alfalfa pellets to go with the supplement - which is actually what PP recommends.
For Brego, I have not seen a marked change in his hoof growth or quality of hoof, which is what we were hoping for. However, although he's always had a great coat, the dude is now like a piece of satin, despite my best attempts at neglect. Seriously, he is so damn shiny, he just GLEAMS. He hasn't had a bath in FOREVER and no coat care products are ever used on him, but this is how shiny he is after a little curry and brushing:
Seriously. And he's super soft too.
Unfortunately, we're not going for a gorgeous satiny coat here, we're going for better feet. However, I realized that I made a mistake when ordering and didn't get enough of the hoof supplement added, based on his ginormous size. I've ordered more though, and hopefully in higher doses we'll see a bigger difference. So the jury is still out on this one.
For Taran... well, greys generally aren't shiny, so I wasn't expecting much of a change there. However, he definitely has a lot more gas in the tank, and he's filled out quite a lot more, despite the only other change in his feed being the addition of one flake of alfalfa per day. Granted, he's also been getting quite a few trainer rides, so that probably helps a lot with the muscling, but I still feel like the Platinum Performance has helped him bulk up significantly without pouring a lot of processed grain in him. That's definitely a win in my book!
So, bottom line? It's an expensive supplement no doubt, and for some horses that are easy keepers with great feet and Naturally Gorgeous Haffie Hair (TM), it might not be worth it - or it might be, if you can discontinue using any other hard feeds. However, if you want horse horse to look like you've been grooming him for days when you haven't, or if you're looking to help a horse with energy and fitness without lots of hard feed, I would definitely give it a try.