Eating dirt - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #11 of 16 Old 02-19-2012, 05:10 AM
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Orange County, NC
Posts: 6,226
• Horses: 5
Before you worry too much about this, consider that you may have some good tasting roots around your place and that your horse is not 'eating dirt'. Horses do not graze a pasture evenly; they wonder back and forth eating the most palatable grass first, often all the way to the ground...and beyond. It's not unusual for me to even see a horse pawing the ground to dig up the roots of grass/plants that they have found to be particularly tasty.

On the sixth day, God created the Quarter Horse.
On the seventh day, he Painted the good ones.
PaintHorseMares is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #12 of 16 Old 02-22-2012, 06:35 PM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 1,877
• Horses: 0
My horse used to do that and lick my hand, a good ol salt block did the trick. he also has a mineral block
Casey02 is offline  
post #13 of 16 Old 02-22-2012, 06:54 PM
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Branson
Posts: 4,264
• Horses: 0
Horses eat or lick dirt for 2 reasons - either to get minerals or to get clay. I have no idea what kind of soil you have up there, but if you have clay in the soil, that is likely it...lots of animals eat clay, which is good for them...
Faceman is offline  
post #14 of 16 Old 02-23-2012, 04:03 PM
Super Moderator
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: SW UK
Posts: 10,944
• Horses: 0
Consider this!
How much dirt does a horse eat when it is daily grazing?
Eating dirt is perfectly natural although most people will say it is lack of minerals or salt.

I have noticed many times thee things.
The first is that when a horse is injured and has to stay in the stable for a period of time, if you throw it in a tussock of grass with roots and dirt still attached, there will only be stones left, they will eat the dirt.
Secondly, horses that spend a lot of time in the stables with no turn out, when given the chance to graze in hand, will eat grass but will start to lick or bite the soil.
Finally, horses that are continuously stabled will often be very loose in their droppings, give them the tussock of earth and their droppings are fine.

My conclusion is that horses need a certain amount of dirt in their diet.
Foxhunter is online now  
post #15 of 16 Old 02-24-2012, 04:26 PM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 5,286
• Horses: 1
Salt is the first thing that jumps to mind for me. Try offering her loose salt.

The red mineral blocks have a few problems with them- horse's tongues aren't really rough enough to get all the salt they need from them (unless the horse is one of those that really enjoy licking things)

I almost bought a horse a few months ago, and when I was researching the Ca/P supplement she was currently getting, I found that horses will self regulate salt, but not other minerals, so other free-choice minerals are not actually beneficial. You're better off making sure your horse is getting the appropriate amount of ration balancer (or a complete feed) and only supplementing minerals you know are lacking in your hay & grain.

Some horses do fine on salt blocks (plain salt- not added minerals), while some have a strong preference for loose salt. If you do try loose salt, don't be surprised if your horse seems to be eating a lot of it for the first few days- she will level off on her own to meet her needs.

Most feed stores sell loose salt in 50-lb bags, but you can also feed kosher or plain salt from the grocery store if you don't want to commit to that much at once :)
verona1016 is offline  
post #16 of 16 Old 02-27-2012, 05:19 PM
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Loma Linda, CA
Posts: 1
• Horses: 0
Don't know if this would help your horse, but since not all minerals are alike there is another choice of minerals that you could try as a supplement. From all of my research this is the best I have ever found. Only recently become available. Identified after a farmer saw animals eating the dirt in one location, and no where else. Turned out was 15 million year old deposit, that came from the Colorado River picking up pieces of mountains along its 1450 mile length. They were laid of rest over the San Andreas Fault so they were cooked at high temperatures. The 57 minerals are micron size. May be worth a try in some cases because of the high cost of severe cases that could have been prevented.

Type in Ion Charged Horses to find on Amazon:

Have saw do great things. Could try and experiment.

You need to determine for yourself.
BuildingChampions is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Eating dirt! riccil0ve Horse Health 12 07-14-2010 07:07 AM
Horse Eating dirt? Savvy Debonair Horse Health 6 03-16-2010 04:47 PM
Eating Dirt The Canadian Way EveningShadows Horse Training 10 11-25-2009 11:51 PM
BLM mustang yearling wont stop eating dirt SecretHavenFarm Horse Health 11 08-30-2009 10:02 AM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome