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Older horse needs separate feeding area

This is a discussion on Older horse needs separate feeding area within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    09-12-2011, 03:27 PM
Actually, Alwaysbehind, the problem is in keeping the others from being able to worm their way in. I guess you didn't understand what I've been saying. A bucket on the fence would not work at all. What she needs is privacy - in one pasture with 6 other horses. THAT'S the problem. I still like the chute idea, but I understand the one poster's concern about safety. With horses I don't know, I'd think the same thing. But she doesn't panic when being encroached up - she just surrenders. So it's more about keeping them AWAY from her and letting her munch in peace. A combination of weight stock tank and chute will do the trick. I'm surprised it's not in the feed stores for $1,000! Like I said, I'm gonna' patent this when I figure it out!

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    09-12-2011, 03:45 PM
I think a chute sounds extremely scarey and dangerous. Sorry but I wouldn't do it. Just thinking about the horse's safety, especially left all day.
    09-12-2011, 04:14 PM
Yes, I understand your concern. But I actually accidentally had this type of situation at our old place. We put a round pen in the corner of our field. There was a gradual narrowing where the round pen met the square corner. (You need to visualize this as it's hard to describe.) And there was a little gap between the rounded edges and the hard square, so our little foal was able to get back in that corner all by herself. Mom would go in as far as she could, but she couldn't access that back corner. Viola! Instant creep feeder. I just put hay and foal pellets back in that corner, and little Anna came and went as she pleased. Mom was prevented from going in any further due to her size, so she backed out. (Which, incidentally, this mare backs up just fine and does not have arthritis as previously suggested by someone.) If I'm describing this adequately for you to visualize, the joining of the round pen in a square corner created a "chute." No other horses could enter. Mom's butt was in their faces. No accidents, no panics, no runs, no drips, no errors. I sure wish we were still there. Of course, if we were, we'd have 3 separate pastures, two loafing sheds, and the barn that someone suggested I find more time to be in!
I'll find the perfect solution for my old girl. I've had her since she was two, and the others were born into my arms. I'm going to win this one! Although I suspect they're already conspiring to foil my plan!
    09-12-2011, 04:24 PM
What I have found over my years of owning horses is that the "chute" approach my not work super great.

When horses want grain and they are more pushy then the one eating the grain- the pushy horse will bite and cause all possible annoyance in the world to get the horse eating to just give up. I would be concerned for safety of your older mare.

The foal feeder works just because the foal is smaller then its mother and is able to "sneak". We used to do it with our animals as well.

Beast of luck!
    09-12-2011, 05:24 PM
Can't you just bring her outside the gate while she eats? I feed my show mare every morning - she is in an open paddock with three others. I just put her feed outside the gate and leave her there eating while I unrug the other horses and give them a groom. She's not going to leave because her feed is there and I leave her halter/lead on.
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    09-12-2011, 05:37 PM
The only two obvious choices are 1) to seperate her , or 2) make more time to stand and wait for her to finish. If you make a chute for her to stand in, the horses will also be able to get into it, and could trap her and seriously injure each other. You should also try corn oil on her feed to add calories and fat.
    09-12-2011, 06:06 PM
I would by enough panels to make a 24 X 24 space for her and put her in it to eat in the morning and then in the evening when you can't stay, you could put her in it for the night and NO ONE could get to her. By the 6 rail Priefert type panels and you could hang a bucket feeder and water bucket from the rails, not a worry because their heads wouldn't fit between the rails to horn in.

feeding queries, older horse, thin horse

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