What age do you wean your foals? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 47 Old 09-15-2008, 01:16 AM Thread Starter
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What age do you wean your foals?

Hi Guys,

After chatting with friends of mine, we were discussing weaning age of foals.

So what age do you wean?

i've heard of some people letting the mares wean their babies, others weaned at 5 months, others wean at 7 months.

Just curious. obviously circumstances can have an impact as well, but i'd really like to know your thoughts.


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post #2 of 47 Old 09-15-2008, 01:19 AM
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I heard that some can be wean at 4 or 6 month old
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post #3 of 47 Old 09-15-2008, 02:52 AM
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We just weaned our colt at 3 and half months. I would have liked to wait longer, but mom was really struggling. Also, he was very big, very strong, very independent, and neither he nor mom cared in the least when we separated them. Though he does occasionally try to check out our gelding's sheath... maybe there's milk up there :) :)
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post #4 of 47 Old 09-15-2008, 02:38 PM
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I weaned at 4 months when my riding mare was starting to get pulled down with having a baby, working, and trail rides.
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post #5 of 47 Old 09-15-2008, 07:01 PM Thread Starter
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So, from what i've read, it really comes down to circumstance (ie mare doing well feeding, or struggling and how the foal is doing) rather than a set age.

We do the same with puppies, especially as our girls tend to have large litters, 10 pups isn't unusual.

if my girls have big litters, i supplement and start weaning at about 3 weeks.

thanks for the responses guys.

now for the next question:

Do any of you let the mare wean her baby, as they would in the wild?

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post #6 of 47 Old 09-15-2008, 07:34 PM
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A mare will wean her own baby if she is bred back. She will naturally start to push off the old baby when the next one is due. If she isn't bred back then the foal will continue to nurse as long as the mare allows it. I've seen them at a year or older still trying to nurse so its best to give them a helping hand. We've weaned at 4-5 months usually when the mare starts making a fuss about the baby nursing.

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post #7 of 47 Old 09-15-2008, 11:21 PM
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I wean all my babies at 4 months old.
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post #8 of 47 Old 09-16-2008, 08:31 AM
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3-5 months, depends on if the baby is eating and drinking well on its own, also if the mare is struggling with her weight or healt,h and the baby is doing ok on its own we will wean earlier. It really depends on the individual horses.

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post #9 of 47 Old 09-16-2008, 02:18 PM
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It's really foal dependent really. My rule of thumb is normally anywhere from 5-7 months on. When I used to breed minis, unless the mare was showing I didn't even bother weaning them myself. They always did the job themselves and that way I like it better because they do it when they are ready. The mare usually gave them the boot as they became to teethy :)
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post #10 of 47 Old 09-16-2008, 03:08 PM
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Well Poppy is 5 and a half months now, and still with mummy. I hoping to wean her off at the end of the month. She'll be 6 months then.
I didnt realise you could do it as early as some of you had said. Mum hasn't really shown any signs of being fed up etc, but then Poppy doesn't suckle any where near as what she use to.
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