Care and feeding of a draft horse is not a lot different than a saddle horse. Most newcomers to draft horse breeds tend to make the common mistake when designing a feeding program to strive for a lean horse like what is desired in the saddle horses. American Cream Draft Horses, like other breeds of draft horse are intended to be rounded out, not lean like a sporting horse.
Creams are generally easy keepers. On our ranch good quality grass hay that we raise here is an adequate diet and meets their dietary needs most of the year. We raise Timothy and an Orchard Grass/Alfalfa cross in two different fields. It is very light on the Alfalfa. Alfalfa is a hot feed, and although it will give you immediate results in bulk with minimal feed, it is too hot and too high in phosphorous for long term feeding. It can cause kidney and bone problems in horses as they age if they have been kept on a steady diet of straight Alfalfa.
We find ample amounts of good quality grass hay, good clean water, salt (even in the winter when water is lost in body heat production) and minimal grains. We do give a grain mare & foal supplement to the mares in the last three months of their pregnancy, and for the first year of the foals life. Barney is only grained when he is hard at work and breeding, and then we are careful to not over do it. The mares get a mare & foal supplement while nursing. Too much grain pushes the drafts to grow too fast and can cause later bone problems. They are designed to mature slowly. Creams reach their full height by 4 or 5 years, and their full weight by 6 or 7. Barney grew an inch between 6 and 7. They are slow to mature.
As in all horses a good worming program usually every 6 to 8 weeks rotating types of wormer is highly recommended as most horses are kept in confined pastures and can not get away from their manure all the time. Regular innoculations are also recommended.