Blog and Nutrition Hub

Welcome to the T&R Blog and nutrition hub

The T&R Blog and Nutrition Hub features a great range of articles and blog posts covering topics like animal nutrition, health and management for horses, chickens, ruminants and more! We also post regular updates from our sponsored riders with tips and training advice. 

Have a scroll through our great library, or use the menu to the left to sort by your area (or animal) of interest.

"They say that if you’re working on a problem that can be solved within your lifetime, you’re not thinking big enough."
Dr Andrew McLean is always thinking big and he is forever curious. It makes dinner table conversation diverse and always very interesting, and made for some great discussion when on the first morning of his latest trip to Perth we took delivery of two hives of bees! Of course as well as being a world renowned expert in equine behaviour, it turns out he has also co-authored a paper on bee cognition, amongst other things. There is always so much to learn.
"If there’s one thing that I’ve learnt over the past few years of feeding a team of show jumping performance horses, it’s this: keep it simple, stupid (KISS)! Don’t get me wrong - equine nutrition is an extremely broad topic that involves complex bodily processes... However, as we all know, horses have evolved to survive and thrive on a natural diet; the more that we can adhere to this, the better."
Table and kitchen scraps can be a terrific addition to the diets of your chickens. Being omnivores, they will eat just about anything; however, care must be taken on just what (and how much) is given in the way of scraps. Remember that the bulk of what you should be feeding your birds is a specially formulated chicken feed – this will provide them with the correct amount of protein and nutrients. However, as a supplement to this everyday feed, some scraps can be given to provide variety (and reduce your own table scraps!). We will outline some of the common foods that should, and shouldn’t, be fed to chickens.
Campdrafting is a unique Australian equestrian sport in which horse and rider combinations select a bullock from a herd and drive it round a set course. The riding style is similar to American Western Riding, and the event is similar to stock horse events such as cutting and team penning.  
As much as we may not want to accept it, time does eventually catch up with our beloved horses and ponies.
As they become older, issues such as arthritis, stiffness, weaker immune systems, hormonal changes and more can take a heavy toll on their quality of life. Fortunately, we are better equipped than ever to deal with such issues, with management information and products being widely available. 
Liz Tollarzo is a dressage coach and rider based in Western Australia. Having ridden at the FEI level at the Australian Dressage Championships, she knows what it takes to keep horses looking and feeling their best to compete. “What do I feed my horses.... I see more and more posts regarding feeding and thought I would do my own post on the subject. 
So much is written on feeding practices, with different names for grains, pellets and hay, and everyone has a different idea. Many sources of information available are not applicable to Australian conditions, or even remotely similar to what is grown and sold here. It is often a matter of trial and error, availability, convenience, seasonal and personal choice. We all have our own likes and dislikes, as I'm sure our rabbits do. What works for one pet owner or breeder, won't necessarily suit or work for another. 
Keeping chickens can be both rewarding and fun, and doesn't have to be restricted to commercial farmers. We have developed a range of feeds for chickens throughout different stages of the lifecycle to make providing the correct nutrition easy. With a direct correlation between nutrition and egg output, it's important to provide your chickens with balanced, fresh feed that contains quality ingredients; this way, you know your chicken will be getting the right nutrients they need to thrive.  
Are you confused about what to feed your sport or leisure horse? We find that the best way to think of feeding is to ‘keep it simple’; if you follow general feeding principles and use common sense, you should be on the right track.
Buy Local. Buy Natural. Buy Fresh: Three reasons to support Thompson & Redwood, your local stock feed manufacturer With the volume of nutritional information available on the internet and across social media, it’s not unusual to see horse and livestock owners getting swept up in the latest “fad product craze”. The problem is, often the latest trends don’t take into account how purchasing stockfeed made right here in Western Australia not only benefits your animals, but also local farmers, the environment and everyone involved within the horse and livestock industries.
It’s hard to believe that I’m already talking about the 2017 show jumping season in the past tense; this year has literally flown by! In saying that, a lot has happened with my horses and it has certainly been a busy year.
Racehorses are usually fed high energy and roughage diets for maximum power and endurance. These feeds are made up of high levels of grain concentrates. When retiring the horse, it may not need as much energy, depending on the amount of work you will be doing. You can adjust their feed by dropping the amount of grain and increasing the amount of roughage, but monitor regularly according to what your horse looks like and how it is performing. The most suitable feeds are the Hi-Performance Muesli, Oat-Free Muesli and Claytons Pellets.
Jess Keeble-Jenkins and her horse Hard Target, otherwise known as ‘Alvin’, have been a successful partnership for many years. Having won and placed in some of the most prestigious events in Western Australia, they are a formidable pair in the eventing circuit. In this blog post, Jess shares the story of Alvin and how they came to form such a great partnership!
Feeding lambs the correct diet early on is extremely important for their long-term growth, health and feed conversion efficiency. Lambs are born with a digestive tract incapable of utilising pasture or other roughage. This is understandable because they initially consume only milk; their digestive tract has to undergo at least 3-4 weeks adaptation to develop the fore-stomachs that ultimately ferment solid feeds.
Scott Rogers is a Thompson and Redwood sponsored rider competing in the discipline of camp drafting. Here, he discusses the sport and why he chose it over other equestrian disciplines.
Did you know that all horses in the Southern Hemisphere celebrate their ‘birthday’ on the 1 August? Whilst they may not actually be born on this date, their birthday is standardised for comparison due to a historical lack of records of the actual birth date.
With a few new additions to the team, we have spent the beginning of the 2017 season building partnerships and training the youngsters. Eminence has started the season off well with two CNC*** starts and a CNC** where he has achieved improvements in his dressage phase at every start. We are excited to see him consolidate at CNC/CIC*** level during the second half of the season.
The feeding of herbs is becoming increasingly popular with horse owners across the globe. As we become more aware of the benefits of feeding certain herbs, it has become common practice to add dried herbs or herbal tinctures to horse feed as a means to promote health and wellbeing.
Laminitis refers to inflammation of the tissue which connects the pedal bone to the hoof wall. It is characterised by hot and painful feet and obvious lameness when moving. The lameness may vary from a mild shuffling to an actual reluctance to move or may get to the point where the horse is too sore to even stand.
~ By Daniel Goussac ~ What are the two most important nutrients for achieving a good egg production? It’s not often these days that the two most obvious answers that come to anyone’s mind – Protein and Calcium - are the correct answers, but in this case, they are! The full answer is, as usual, a bit more complex, and we will try and elaborate a bit in the next few paragraphs.
Providing your young horse with the correct nutrition is extremely important for growth and development. Incorrect feeding can result in imbalances that can be harmful to your horse. As owners, we need to be aware of what it is our horses require and feed them a tailored diet to suit their needs. Foals are commonly weaned at around six months of age. For a thoroughbred type, they will be on average 245kg (about 45% of mature weight), and will have attained around 80% of mature height. If well fed, they will continue to grow at up to 1kg per day and develop the muscle and bone which will later allow them to be a competitive race, performance, or pleasure horses.
The team here at Sophie Warren Equestrian had a huge year in 2016. Dance Hall Diva stepped up at the beginning of the season to CNC* starting out with a bang by winning her first ever start at this level. Eminence also stepped up a level to CNC/CIC***, the highest level we have in this state, and Let’s Impress had his first run back at this level since 2013.
We’re often told that local ANYTHING is better; better for the environment, better for the community, better for our health. But just what is it about locally produced goods that makes them so superior? And, in particular, what makes farmed Western Australia produce such an ideal choice for those of us lucky enough to call Australia home? 
Exciting things are happening here at T&R! As you may be aware, we have recently updated our website to a more modern design to make it easier for you to navigate. We have also launched our blog, where we will be regularly posting informative articles relating to the care of a range of animals, as well as exciting T&R news as it happens.
Feeding your broodmare the correct diet before and after pregnancy is extremely important. Nutritional requirements can change drastically in this time, and it’s important that we keep this in mind when choosing what and how much to feed; not only will this impact on the health of the mare, but the health of the foal will be affected as well.
It’s rather obvious – days are getting longer, temperatures are higher, air humidity increases and the Jacarandas are blooming – summer is kicking, or at least nearly is! As expected – laying hens feel it as well. A hot summer can, sometimes, be stressful for them, but there are a few things we can do to keep our laying hens cool in summer to minimise the stress and let the flow of eggs continue with no interruption.  
What does a day in the life of sponsored rider Sophie Warren look like? Sophie Warren is one of WA’s top eventing riders. She is a dressage and jumping coach and runs a horse training business breaking in young horses and re-training problem behaviours. Sophie is proudly sponsored by Thompson and Redwood and all her horses are powered by T&R Clayton’s Pellets. More info on Sophie can be found at her website. What a year we’ve had so far! We’ve been flat out at home with horses in training and lessons, as well as taking the team all around the state for events. It makes for long days, and plenty of trips to the physio, but it’s totally worth it!
What a year I’ve had so far, full of horse competitions and training (not that I’m complaining!). Having two horses to ride and juggling two full time study courses has been a challenge...
It’s been a pretty busy couple of weeks for me and my horses... A three-day trip down to Narrogin for the Dryandra Show Jumping Championships followed by a full weekend at the Swan River Annual Show Jumping Championships made for a very tired rider (and horses!). Not to mention the fact that I had been staying up until all hours of the night watching the Olympics AND managed to get sick on top of it all. Oops.
We were proud sponsors of the 2016 Midland Junction Poultry Annual Show. Congratulations to Domenic Auguste for being awarded Champion Bird of Show, and to Trish Brown for Reserve! Clancy Mercer was the Junior Champion.
We can all feel it in the air – nights are getting cold, days  are getting shorter, rain drops occasionally drop on our heads - Autumn is here to be soon followed by winter. And laying hens – they feel it too, of course;  and  they have a unique way of reacting to this change of season,  especially to the shortening of daylight hours. See what  can be done  do to help them get through this autumn blues…
Exercise for polo horses is characterised by high intensity periods of repeated rapid accelerations and deceleration during matches, interspersed with periods of light to moderate level training activity on non-match days. Overall, the exercise level is rated as moderate to heavy, with rapid depletion of muscle glycogen stores during intense competition to normal levels during recovery periods.

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