Feeding orphan foal - a question

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Feeding orphan foal - a question

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  • Feeding the two month foal
  • Feeding foal orphaned at 2 months

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  • 1 Post By Dreamcatcher Arabians

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    11-04-2012, 06:20 PM
Feeding orphan foal - a question

Hello, I am a horse owner of 21 years. I've raised many foals but only one other orphan foal, which drank milk until slowly weaned to feed at 6 months.

Here is the background. 2 months ago I received an orphan foal. She was only a month old at the time and had been orphaned for 2 weeks before I received her. They hadn't given her any milk or supplements. They had just put her out with other adult horse and feed her the same as them.

She was severely underweight. She was all skin and bones; only weight 157 lbs. She was so weak that they brought her here in the back of blazer.

So Once I got her she wouldn't drink milk. She would eat Feed (pelleted with a thick milk mixture over it to soften it); as well as soft hay. At a 2 months, I introduced alfalfa pellets - Eating a total of 6 lbs of pelleted feed, alfalfa hay, and 1 lbs of alfalfa pellets.

Here is my question. Should I lower her grain intake now that she has picked up all of her weight? Like I said earlier this is only my second orphaned foal. I would really like some advice here.
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    11-04-2012, 08:48 PM
What is the pelleted feed she is getting? Is she cleaning it up? The alfalfa pellets are probably redundant with the hay and of lesser quality than the hay.
    11-04-2012, 10:11 PM
type of feed

She is getting Southern States 14/6; it is like equi-stages or Strategy. It is 14% protein and 6% fat. She now weighs 327 lbs. The 14/6 is a complete feed. It has all the vitamins and mineral in it she needs.
    11-04-2012, 11:08 PM
I would not call the 14/6 a foal feed. First off it's a complete feed. The nutrients are diluted with forage so a higher amount has to be fed to get a full complement of vitamins and minerals. Most foals will only eat a small amount so it needs to be chocked full of nutrients with no fillers. The other part is lysine is not listed in the guaranteed analysis. Lysine is a limiting essential amino acid that is necessary for foal growth and development. Before I'd change anything, I'd want to know where she stands with that.
    11-04-2012, 11:12 PM
I would look at your feed store and find an equine milk replacer. Foal Lac comes in powder and pellets, so if she won't drink milk, you can feed her replacer pellets. I'd also add a pro-biotic and switch her to a foal feed like Omolene 300 or another brand's equivalent. That and 24/7 grass hay would be pretty good for her til she's about a year old and then she could go on Junior til she's 2.
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