My Horse has a drinking problem...Ideas - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 10:46 AM Thread Starter
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My Horse has a drinking problem...Ideas

Hello All,
I have been coming here for quite a while and decided to sign up...hello all..

Here is my problem:
I have a 7 years old Belgian who has always been my one horse that has been the healthy one. This is the first winter I have here here in Florida. We recently had a cold snap below freezing a couple of nights in a row and Sarah stopped drinking and had a minimum bout of Colic. My Vet came out right away and we did an oil treatment and she responded very well. The weather got warmer and all was good. We ran into another cold snap and I watcher her closely and she stopped drinking again. So here is what I did....

I added electrolytes and started soaking her hay. This seems to be working really good and she made it thru the last 4 nights of cold temps and is doing fine. I also am keeping her water warm. I tried to mash her pellets but she will not touch them if there wet.

If anyone has any additional ideas I would like to hear them. Its early in the season and January and February can see some cold weather here and I want to avoid any more of these types of issues.

I live in Florida and I know many of you are dealing with really cold weather but my girl didn't respond good to the cold. Her whole temperament changed, she is normally very active and happy. During the cold snap she was very depressed hanging her head and laying down. As soon as it warms up she is back to normal.

Thanks for any feedback

Sarah Bella my 7 Year old girl
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post #2 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 10:51 AM
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Is she staying warm enough ?

We have a lady at my barn (I'm in wi) who recently moved from texas. Her horse was acting different for a few days and then we realized it was wearing just a rain sheet in negative temps.
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post #3 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 10:55 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by gypsygirl View Post
Is she staying warm enough ?

We have a lady at my barn (I'm in wi) who recently moved from texas. Her horse was acting different for a few days and then we realized it was wearing just a rain sheet in negative temps.
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She has a very thick winter coat and most people I talked to including my Vet said a blanket wont really help. At night I leave the stall doors open for my horses so they can seek shelter if they want. I have even thought about heating the barn but I just think that may be overkill....dont know.

Sarah Bella my 7 Year old girl
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post #4 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 03:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BelgianDream View Post
She has a very thick winter coat and most people I talked to including my Vet said a blanket wont really help. At night I leave the stall doors open for my horses so they can seek shelter if they want. I have even thought about heating the barn but I just think that may be overkill....dont know.
I would try putting a blanket on her to see if that helps, i hear heated barns are actually bad, i don't remember the exact reason why tho
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post #5 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 03:39 PM
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If her coat is dry, she shouldn't need a winter blanket.
You can add salt to encourage drinking, but I don't know anything about really helping her depression/lethargy unfortunately.
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post #6 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 03:47 PM
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Lulz... I suggest AA? :) Nice title :)

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world. ~Harriet Tubman
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post #7 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 03:48 PM
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How many times did you try to get her to eat a mash?

Somethings, like a sudden change in feed texture, take a little getting used to by some horses.

While the weather is behaving I would work on getting her to eat wet food. If you have to add extras (carrot shavings, apple sauce, maybe a little molasses) to get her started (and then reduce the amounts of extras) that is fine.

Her being willing to eat wet food will help from time to time.

Next time the temp is dropping you can make her meal into soup, she will have adjusted to eating soup by then, and then you will know she is getting her water.


Not that it helps you much, but a horse having colic issues associated with extreme weather changes is not uncommon.
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post #8 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 07:29 PM
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I have read that feeding well soaked beet pulp can provide a horse with a lot of water. The other idea is to add a salt block with the idea that the salt will encourage your horse to drink. Last idea is to put the water in a cooler instead of an ordinary bucket. It might keep the water warmer and not feel so different to your horse in terms of cold.

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post #9 of 14 Old 12-16-2010, 11:10 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Alwaysbehind View Post
How many times did you try to get her to eat a mash?

Somethings, like a sudden change in feed texture, take a little getting used to by some horses.

While the weather is behaving I would work on getting her to eat wet food. If you have to add extras (carrot shavings, apple sauce, maybe a little molasses) to get her started (and then reduce the amounts of extras) that is fine.

Her being willing to eat wet food will help from time to time.

Next time the temp is dropping you can make her meal into soup, she will have adjusted to eating soup by then, and then you will know she is getting her water.


Not that it helps you much, but a horse having colic issues associated with extreme weather changes is not uncommon.
Thats a good suggestion....I only tried mashing her pellets for a couple of days. The weather broke and is warmer now so I will try adding some apples and carrots. I will try it for the morning feeding to start and see how she does....thanks for all the suggestions

Sarah Bella my 7 Year old girl
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post #10 of 14 Old 12-17-2010, 12:33 AM
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We have a mare at our barn who does the same thing and will not drink cold water. The best thing you can do is keep the water warm and monitor her pooping and water intake.
As they say, you can lead a horse to water...

They say money doesn't buy happiness -- well happiness doesn't buy horses!
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