Weaning foal early!!! - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 16 Old 09-14-2007, 12:00 PM
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The one foal I have had, I weaned at 3 1/2 months on my vet's advice. The mare was getting very skinny and the baby was getting fat. She was eating all of Mom's hay, trying to steal her grain AND still nursing! The foal did fine and Mom's weight came up quickly.

A few years back, I also purchased a 10 week (yes 10 WEEK) old TB filly at an auction that the a-holes sold separately from the dam. The dam went to the killer buyers We started her on a junior type feed with extra supplements and added some powdered milk replacement meant for orphaned foals to her grain. I'm sorry I can't remember what it is called, but it is made to be mixed with water and bottle fed to orphaned foals. We just put a few scoops dry over her grain. She matured to 17 hands so I don't think she was stunted at all! She was very a very healthy horse.

My point is try not to stress too much about it. No, it is definitely not ideal and the owner is being a jerk, but you can still take steps to make sure your baby is healthy and happy. Good luck!
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post #12 of 16 Old 09-14-2007, 04:06 PM
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Wow! He's gorgeous!! Nurse is right... it's not the best situation, but he'll be fine. ;)
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post #13 of 16 Old 09-15-2007, 09:24 PM
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He'll be just fine. Although I don't like to do it, I myself have weaned foals at 3 months, due to the dam loosing just too much weight. You are putting him on a very good feed and since he is not eating from mom much it shouldn't be any problem. It will probably be harder on you than him!

Remember, some foals are orphans and never have had mama to nurse from. (we had one of those unfortunately) and they usually turn out fine. Our orphan is now 2 1/2 yrs old and over 15hh and about 1200lbs. He's a cross between a paint and a belgian and is gorgeous! His name is Diesel.

Good luck!
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post #14 of 16 Old 12-07-2009, 04:55 AM
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Thanks

Hi guys I just wanted to say I found the information and discussions on this topic really helpful. I have a three month old foal (she'll be 3 at the end of december) who I need to wean as early as possible due to the mare being very very nasty and biting me on the arm leaving me with a hematoma.

The mare also shows agression to all who enter the paddock and we have been doing our research and found that in order to stop the filly from developing the same bad habits that weaning early is a wise place to start. The mare when we brought her was under weight and as a result the filly when she was born was also malnourished. The previous owner didnt know she had been running with the stallion and didnt realise she was 10 months pregnant at the time when we brought her (so she says).

Never the less we have been blessed with a beautiful pinto filly who we called dakota. We are currently looking to rehome the mare with a rehabilitation centre in an attempt to not let her end up at the dog food factory.

Any comments from anyone will help alot!



First pic of the attachment is dakota at 1 day old
2nd is 2 months old
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post #15 of 16 Old 12-07-2009, 09:45 AM
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weaning at 3 months is not ideal but doable. Like they said you will have to feed him and grain him and teach him from right from wrong. I had no choice but to wean Caddo earlier than what I like as well. I had one foal at 5 and half months and caddo at 4 months. He did just fine. He is actually bigger than his half sibling Maggie. He stands right now at 12.2 hands and Maggie is 12 hands. Maggie's dam was bigger than Caddo dam. Starting him on jr. Will help greatly. I feed my weanlings that and they will be fed that until their 2 year old year. Good quality hay and grain will help him out. Worm him at 6 months.
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post #16 of 16 Old 12-07-2009, 09:54 AM
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very old thread lol.

Some people are a little over reactive on this issue. Foals start loosing the ability to digest milk at 3 months, so they are draining the mare of nutrients when they don't even digest all of it. You can wean a foal at any time. It has been done. But you need to make sure you are feeding it well enough. Its not that different from someone adopting a baby that they didnt birth. My baby was weaned at about 3 months. He's pretty big for his size so far.
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