Skinny Horse, Nothing Working

Horse management, health, feeding and grooming.
JoLy
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Skinny Horse, Nothing Working

Postby JoLy » Fri Oct 13, 2006 9:27 pm

My family has 3 Arabian Mares. One is 15 yo, the other two are 14 y.o.s. The two bays 15 and one 14 y.o are both sleek, healthy and happy. Then there is Angy, a sickly looking thing with screaming ribs and hip bones. She was the result of a neglectful breeder who fed Angie's momma "calf lick" or something like that during the pregnancy, basically no real feeding supplement. She has horrible conformation, and was going to be put down right after birth, but with the help of some friends, we rescued her, after all, she is the half sister of one of our other horses.
We feed the bays and Angy the same feed, worm regularly, and have a mineral block and water available at all times. Yet her health has deteriorated until now she is literally nothing but skin nd bones. We have been giving her Weight Builder and red Cell for several months now, and we have seen little to no results.
Has anyone seen anything like this before? Any ideas? Even though she can never be ridden, she is a great conpanion horse and I've had her since she was a weanling, I would hate to see her suffer anymore than she has too if I can do anything
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msscamp
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Postby msscamp » Fri Oct 13, 2006 10:29 pm

JoLy, have you had her teeth checked? If she has teeth problems, the type of feed isn't going to matter much. If you haven't already done so, you might try soaked beet pulp or mashes that don't require actual chewing. Another good source of fat is oil's, such as corn oil - there is another one, but I can't think of the name of it. Have you tried googling 'senior horse and what/how to feed'? http://WWW.Equisearch.com has some very good information for this type of situation. I fully understand what you're trying to deal with, we have a 25 year old mare that has arthritis. I honestly don't think she will make it through the winter. We had several cold days earlier in the week, and they took a pretty serious toll on her - I expect she will be put down when winter arrives in earnest. :( That will be a very sad day, because she is one helluva horse!
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JoLy
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Postby JoLy » Sat Oct 14, 2006 9:12 am

I feel for you and your situation, we also have a goat with arthiritis, and I don't know how long she is going to last. But I will check Angy's teeth, and look into the beets.
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Alice
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Postby Alice » Sat Oct 14, 2006 9:38 am

Does this horse crib? I know someone that has a horse that does a form of cribbing...sucking air, I believe she called it...something about the horse throwing his neck over the top fence rail and "sucking air."

The horse, before she got him, had gotten down to skin and bones. She had his teeth floated and put him on an equine senior food. The horse still couldn't put on weight.

She moved the horse into a pen with nothing but a hot wire around it. The horse wasn't able to throw it's neck over the wire and bounce it up and down and suck air...and began to gain weight.

I know I haven't gotten all of this right...but from what I understood from her, whatever it was this horse was doing was causing him to not keep weight on. Do a search on cribbing and "air sucking."

Anyway, the combination of an equine senior food and the change in pen made the big difference for this old horse.

Just a thought...

Alice
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Postby Alice » Sat Oct 14, 2006 9:40 am

msscamp wrote:JoLy, have you had her teeth checked? If she has teeth problems, the type of feed isn't going to matter much. If you haven't already done so, you might try soaked beet pulp or mashes that don't require actual chewing. Another good source of fat is oil's, such as corn oil - there is another one, but I can't think of the name of it. Have you tried googling 'senior horse and what/how to feed'? http://WWW.Equisearch.com has some very good information for this type of situation. I fully understand what you're trying to deal with, we have a 25 year old mare that has arthritis. I honestly don't think she will make it through the winter. We had several cold days earlier in the week, and they took a pretty serious toll on her - I expect she will be put down when winter arrives in earnest. :( That will be a very sad day, because she is one helluva horse!


Msscamp, I hate to hear that about your 25 year old mare. A good animal like that is hard to come by and doubly hard to part with. I'm sorry.

Alice
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JoLy
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Postby JoLy » Sat Oct 14, 2006 10:49 am

Alice wrote:Does this horse crib? I know someone that has a horse that does a form of cribbing...sucking air, I believe she called it...something about the horse throwing his neck over the top fence rail and "sucking air."

The horse, before she got him, had gotten down to skin and bones. She had his teeth floated and put him on an equine senior food. The horse still couldn't put on weight.

She moved the horse into a pen with nothing but a hot wire around it. The horse wasn't able to throw it's neck over the wire and bounce it up and down and suck air...and began to gain weight.

I know I haven't gotten all of this right...but from what I understood from her, whatever it was this horse was doing was causing him to not keep weight on. Do a search on cribbing and "air sucking."

Anyway, the combination of an equine senior food and the change in pen made the big difference for this old horse.

Just a thought...

Alice


I don't think I have ever seen her crib. One of they bays used to crib, but they haven't been able to since we took down the cedar round pen.
Another way horses crib is by biting down wide on wood, then sucking air.
I knew it caused problems, but didn't know it effected weight.
I'll be keeping my eye on her. Thanks for the advice.
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msscamp
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Postby msscamp » Sat Oct 14, 2006 8:50 pm

Alice wrote:
msscamp wrote:JoLy, have you had her teeth checked? If she has teeth problems, the type of feed isn't going to matter much. If you haven't already done so, you might try soaked beet pulp or mashes that don't require actual chewing. Another good source of fat is oil's, such as corn oil - there is another one, but I can't think of the name of it. Have you tried googling 'senior horse and what/how to feed'? http://WWW.Equisearch.com has some very good information for this type of situation. I fully understand what you're trying to deal with, we have a 25 year old mare that has arthritis. I honestly don't think she will make it through the winter. We had several cold days earlier in the week, and they took a pretty serious toll on her - I expect she will be put down when winter arrives in earnest. :( That will be a very sad day, because she is one helluva horse!


Msscamp, I hate to hear that about your 25 year old mare. A good animal like that is hard to come by and doubly hard to part with. I'm sorry.

Alice


Thanks Alice, I appreciate your response.
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Postby skidboots » Thu Oct 26, 2006 7:08 am

As usual MSSCAMP is right on the money! She spoke the very words of advice I would have.
I also have a 25 yr mare I bought when she was 12. She is permantly fondered in the front, and was the picture of skin and bones horse. I asked the previous owner what she looked like fat...he said he'd never seen her fat. Well, today she is still not fat per se, but there are no ribs or hip bones showing, and she rides.
WE floated teeth each yr for 3yrs. After you worm them, start feeding Strongid to her everyday on her feed, and you should begin to see a difference. It takes several months though.
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Skinny Horse

Postby A6gal » Thu Oct 26, 2006 8:44 am

I had an older horse in bad shape I posted about over a year ago. She was pitiful when I got her. I fed her along with my horses and she was gaining weight, but slowly. I then fed her seperately with alfafa hay and purina senior equestrian and she doesn't even look like the same horse today. She is fat and sassy. I gave her to a friend who had grandkids wanting to learn to ride. They've kept her on the same feed and she's doing great.
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Re: Skinny Horse, Nothing Working

Postby Alan » Thu Oct 26, 2006 11:10 pm

JoLy wrote:My family has 3 Arabian Mares. One is 15 yo, the other two are 14 y.o.s. The two bays 15 and one 14 y.o are both sleek, healthy and happy. Then there is Angy, a sickly looking thing with screaming ribs and hip bones. She was the result of a neglectful breeder who fed Angie's momma "calf lick" or something like that during the pregnancy, basically no real feeding supplement. She has horrible conformation, and was going to be put down right after birth, but with the help of some friends, we rescued her, after all, she is the half sister of one of our other horses.
We feed the bays and Angy the same feed, worm regularly, and have a mineral block and water available at all times. Yet her health has deteriorated until now she is literally nothing but skin nd bones. We have been giving her Weight Builder and red Cell for several months now, and we have seen little to no results.
Has anyone seen anything like this before? Any ideas? Even though she can never be ridden, she is a great conpanion horse and I've had her since she was a weanling, I would hate to see her suffer anymore than she has too if I can do anything


Just because you mentioned she had bad foaling care, and was bad enough to be put down at birth. I would have a Vet take a blood sample and check kidney functions as well as everything else. It may be a internal problem, it may be fixed with a special diet, or not fixed at all. Could be just needing a diet change, but I would elimanate an internal problem first.

JMO,
Alan
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clampitt
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Horse wont gain weight

Postby clampitt » Tue Oct 31, 2006 8:51 pm

May not apply here but I have had couple of horses we bought one was in bad shape the other crippled in the front end both legs..I never buy a thin horse unless i know them.But took a chance pretty good bread and had been rode.The crippled horse was a good calf horse.Never could get one to look good.I have an older sure nuff horseman friend what is wrong and why cant get em fat.Looked at the horse pulled on his skin and said hes hide bound,what is that,all the fat was used up by the horse trying to survive and the skin has stuck to the bone,and you wont ever get him fat untill you get it broke loose.Took a coke bottle and started rolling it up and down his rib cage and pulling the hide , I could hear it tearing loose.pulled his skin over the shoulders all over every where he could and rolled the bottle over him.Took a few months but he put on weight and looked good.The other horse a really nice calf horse but was crippled and nobody could figure him out,vets,others,Xrays all nothing.Horse shoer comes over were talking about him.Let me see.Feels around his shoulders goes to pulling like the other and could hear it tearing loose he said he's hide bound and cant move his front end it hurts to move it.We pulled on him from up on his neck to his withers.He was soar for a few days,turned him out where he had to move to get water and graze.He got sound in a while and was fine.just a few thoughts vets don't have.Some thin horses that you can't get fat give it some thought.Kinda strange but it worked here.
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Skinny Horse, Nothing working

Postby Jake954 » Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:56 pm

Definitely pull blood… Liver, Kidneys, the Big C(cancer) come to mind… We breed horses for a living… it has been my unfortunate experience that when you have a sickly baby, you have a sickly horse. That is not to say we have not had some bounce back, but this one has obviously not bounced. Beet pulp, Red cell, B-12… they are all temporary fixes. Low fiber high calorie content is the only way to go. If you can get Strategy( feed),,, it is a pellet that is low fiber high everything fattening, and it will not give your horse too much energy. 14% I think… haven’t looked at the bag for a long time. This is also a great feed for horses that have colicked. It dissolves fast in water and goes down easy. The teeth would be a concern, but in your description sounds to have always been a poor doer. Sounds like a horse you love, and that is worth keeping just for that reason. Love on it, keep it out of the cold and just remember if you were the horse that’s how you would want to be treated.
Jake...
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Postby smart_slider » Thu Dec 14, 2006 9:46 am

i know what you're going through... although we don't know why, a little pal. pony we have is just like that! he is older than the hills, and he is such a pickey eater...it drives us crazy! he would rather die than eat senior feed and hay... we got him from a lady who fed him very little, and didn't seem to understand that he had to be fed more than once a day. anyway, he looks ok, but he's got so much fur that you can't see anything. he is bones underneath the coat... it's sad i guess, but he isn't in any pain, and as soon as he is, we ARE putting him down...
ss
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kjones
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Postby kjones » Thu Dec 14, 2006 11:19 am

How old is this horse, and have you had a vet look at it?
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test for cushings

Postby mustangkoda » Wed Dec 20, 2006 12:32 am

have the vet check the horse for cushings. (dibetic horses). my mom had a 28 yr old mini stallion who had cushings, had to watch sugar contants and watch how much grass he got and everything else. there are cushing sites to go to for more information, i'll have to get that from my mom, but Poco was a walking bag of bones when he died. unfortunately, from what i've heard, horses diagnosed with cushings ussually only live another few years, my mom got about 6 yrs out of Poco, but with her being diabitic herself, she was extra careful with his feed and grazing.
i'd get a full health check on your horse and ask for cushing exames, they would do a blood check on Poco every couple months to keep an eye on how the meds was working.
good luck with your horse
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