Weight gain for mare and foal
 
 

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Weight gain for mare and foal

This is a discussion on Weight gain for mare and foal within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Best mare and foal feed
  • Broodmare weight gain per week

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  • 1 Post By DRichmond

 
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    04-29-2012, 12:40 PM
  #1
Foal
Question Weight gain for mare and foal

Hi,

I am bringing home a mare and foal the end of May. The mare is very under weight, I have been advised to feed Alfa-A Oil, Baileys No.4 Conditioning Cubes and Baileys Stud Balancer. I've also had a few people mention boiling Linseeds to make a jelly. Just like some tips/advice off as many people as possible so I can pick bits to help her the best I can.

Thanks
     
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    04-30-2012, 04:59 PM
  #2
Weanling
Hi,

My thoughts are first, what is/was causing the mare's underweight condition. If she's simply not been receiving adequate feed for whatever reason, or whether she is an aged mare receiving/not receiving adequate feed, with dental issues. Age of the foal another question, since if the foal's under 6 months what you'll be feeding the mare will be shared with the foal.

The next question I have is how underweight she is; if her bcs is below a 3, I would be cautious with putting her on afalfa except in small amounts which you can increase gradually over a period of weeks. Sometimes too much of a good thing isn't a good thing.

Ideally I think it is safer overall to put an underweight horse on good quality grass which isn't too high in protein, and again, depending upon bcs and other health factors it is always an individual situation.

If she's extremely underweight and considered by you to be a neglect case, my own rule of thumb is to keep the refeeding diet as simple as possible, and not to deworm or vaccinate until the horse is stronger and healthier. Deworming for a very underweight horse is something I think is best for a vet to consult with, esp. With a nursing mare, because a heavy wormload will need to be addressed differently.

A horse will gain 1 bcs point a month with the proper diet, and you'll start seeing progress usually within a week or two :) If the foal is still very young, and you're giving supps to the mare, whatever you're giving may not be appropriate for baby which is something to consider.

Another thing coming to mind; if the mare is aggressive at all with her feed because she's needy for the nourishment, baby might be injured accidentally, so beginning with a simpler diet may be safer starting out.

If you think she and baby are ok to have some mare & foal or senior feed at some point, if the mare is aged the feed may need to be soaked into a mash if mama has any issues with dentition.

As for supplements, my own rule of thumb is to keep it simple initially, and just be patient. If you think she's not so emaciated that she can have free choice grass hay without risking colic or other malfunction, and then some alfalfa and gradual supps, ?

If she's been neglected, she may not have had access to any salt/trace minerals too. Some thoughts I'm throwing out there to you, I hope something helps.
benson2008 likes this.
     
    05-01-2012, 11:05 AM
  #3
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by DRichmond    
Hi,

My thoughts are first, what is/was causing the mare's underweight condition. If she's simply not been receiving adequate feed for whatever reason, or whether she is an aged mare receiving/not receiving adequate feed, with dental issues. Age of the foal another question, since if the foal's under 6 months what you'll be feeding the mare will be shared with the foal.

The next question I have is how underweight she is; if her bcs is below a 3, I would be cautious with putting her on afalfa except in small amounts which you can increase gradually over a period of weeks. Sometimes too much of a good thing isn't a good thing.

Ideally I think it is safer overall to put an underweight horse on good quality grass which isn't too high in protein, and again, depending upon bcs and other health factors it is always an individual situation.

If she's extremely underweight and considered by you to be a neglect case, my own rule of thumb is to keep the refeeding diet as simple as possible, and not to deworm or vaccinate until the horse is stronger and healthier. Deworming for a very underweight horse is something I think is best for a vet to consult with, esp. With a nursing mare, because a heavy wormload will need to be addressed differently.

A horse will gain 1 bcs point a month with the proper diet, and you'll start seeing progress usually within a week or two :) If the foal is still very young, and you're giving supps to the mare, whatever you're giving may not be appropriate for baby which is something to consider.

Another thing coming to mind; if the mare is aggressive at all with her feed because she's needy for the nourishment, baby might be injured accidentally, so beginning with a simpler diet may be safer starting out.

If you think she and baby are ok to have some mare & foal or senior feed at some point, if the mare is aged the feed may need to be soaked into a mash if mama has any issues with dentition.

As for supplements, my own rule of thumb is to keep it simple initially, and just be patient. If you think she's not so emaciated that she can have free choice grass hay without risking colic or other malfunction, and then some alfalfa and gradual supps, ?

If she's been neglected, she may not have had access to any salt/trace minerals too. Some thoughts I'm throwing out there to you, I hope something helps.

Hi, she has been on poor grazing and obviously not being fed what she needs to keep her weight and feed the little one. She is 11, never had any dental treatment which I will be sorting when she comes to me. They have wormed and vaccinated her. I think she is very underweight, I will put a pic from 3 weeks ago she has possibly lost more since. The foal is 4 weeks old will be 8 weeks when they come to me. May I add she is loved by her owner its due to too many horses and lack of grazing, hence some being moved on.

8.jpg

P4021039.jpg
     
    05-02-2012, 02:59 AM
  #4
Weanling
Wow, thank you for uploading photos of her. I feel badly for many owners who are treated horridly when their situations and circumstances aren't always understood.

She will look great in just a couple of months, very pretty mare and foal! It's really kind of you to give them a hand.
     
    05-02-2012, 03:46 AM
  #5
Foal
Getting her teeth checked is a great idea and I'm sure it will help with the weight issues.

I like beet pulp and ProForm Step 8 Hi-fat extruded feed for putting on weight.

Here's a link to the ProForm website:

Stepright8 Hifat
     
    05-02-2012, 10:00 AM
  #6
Showing
The foal appears in great shape. I would start her on a good grass hay for starters with plenty of turnout. Foals need 24/7 turnout to develop properly. Once the teeth are looked after I'd add 2lb of seniors to her diet, morning and evening (2lbs at each) It is a good safe feed with probiotics for the gut, beet pulp for weight gain and extra oils, etc. You can gradually up this to 5 lbs (no more) per feeding but the she may not need it. You should start to see a difference within 30 days, don't try to rush her weight gain. As the foal begins to graze that will help her gain as well.
     

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