BLM mustang yearling wont stop eating dirt

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BLM mustang yearling wont stop eating dirt

This is a discussion on BLM mustang yearling wont stop eating dirt within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    08-21-2009, 02:58 PM
BLM mustang yearling wont stop eating dirt

I have Sage about a month now. The first time I put him out he just eat dirt, so I brought him right back in. Talked to some people about his diet.

He gets 1 flake of alfalfa/bermuda hay in the am and another in the pm. Each flake weighs about 8-9 lbs. He is getting 2 big scoops of Ace Hi mare and foal ( I honestly don't weigh it). A teaspoon scoop of Probios with his night feeding. I also put out a mineral block for him. I am trying to find a place to buy loose minerals.

He is still eating the dirt! I am getting frustraited. I can't turn him out. His stall is a mess because he in it 24/7 unless im working him. I got a grazing muzzle hopeing it might help, nope! Got an insert for the muzzle to close the front hole, didnt work he found away to sccop dirt into it. Im at my wites end.

Should I just let him do it? And hope he dosent get sick? Feed him a ton of oil? If its not a deficionce why is he doing this? I don't know what do, I hate having him stalled 24/7.
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    08-21-2009, 06:06 PM
Green Broke
I would consult a vet. Make sure he doesn't hae anything wrong with him that might cause him to eat dirt (like an iron deficiency).
    08-22-2009, 01:15 PM
You definitely don't want him to colic from sand impaction, so it's good that you're not truing him out for the threat of that, however, I feel bad that he isn't being turned out! I agree with luvs, call a vet.
    08-22-2009, 07:45 PM
I thought they did that when they needed salt, but I'm not sure. Maybe if you give him a blue salt block? That's what I've always been told.
    08-22-2009, 08:05 PM
Green Broke
Free choice minerals might do the trick, though I'd still have your vet pull bood to see what he might be deficeint in. Mineral blocks don't really provide many minerals to horses. You're better off with a plain white block.
    08-22-2009, 08:50 PM
Super Moderator
I agree with luvs2ride. I think he's needing something, put a mineral block out and then I would probably give him a week of sandclear just to be on the safe side...
    08-23-2009, 03:41 PM
He's definitely chowing down on the dirt? My 2 year old Mustang likes to taste our dirt to check it out - his nose is always dirty but actually eating it... I agree to check with the vet. He probably needs something in the dirt that he isn't getting from his feed. I don't know about oil, but we give our horses syllium to prevent a sand impaction. It never helps to do something preventetive while you get it figured out.
    08-23-2009, 05:46 PM
Green Broke
Originally Posted by farmpony84    
I agree with luvs2ride. I think he's needing something, put a mineral block out and then I would probably give him a week of sandclear just to be on the safe side...
She already has a mineral block for him and it's not doing much. Free choice minerals like Buckeye Grass Plus, Dynamite 2:1, LMF Minerals (for horses in western states), or Kent's Equine Mineral product. I know there are others, these are just the products I am familiar with.
    08-29-2009, 10:16 AM
Secret Haven,
I also have a Mustang that had issues with eating rocks after I brought her to my farm. He may have mineral deficiency problems, and he may also be bored. Try the loose minerals, and be ready for the horse to consume a lot of them the first few weeks. It is a new thing to play with, and a new taste. As it becomes 'not-so-new' he will eat less.

Jamie Jackson has written books about the natural life of Mustangs, and the differences with domesticated life. I highly suggest reading them. The horse may need to move more, may need turnout with another horse, and may need less rich hay and feed. Be aware that the Mustangs have a 'frugal' or 'easy keeper' gene. They are prone to becoming insulin resistant when fed grain or alfalfa, or kept too fat. Try giving a lower quality grass hay spread around the paddock. Also put out some toys that the horse can manipulate. A branch, ball, toy that drops treats if moved, or short length of nylon rope with knots. How about a plastic weave feed bag containing crushed aluminum cans?

I agree with the others - call a vet. However, I'd call a vet that has had experience with Mustangs. They tend to have different issues with transitions than domestic bred horses. Stalling the horse 24/7 may make him more neurotic.
    08-29-2009, 11:14 AM
EPMhorse: What are the titles of Jaime Jackson's books on Mustangs? I'm considering adopting one within a few yrs and I would like to read more about their differences with domestic horses. Thanks!

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