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Horse licking dirt???

This is a discussion on Horse licking dirt??? within the Horse Nutrition forums, part of the Horse Health category
  • Horse licking dirt

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    07-16-2013, 10:40 AM
  #11
Weanling
This selenium map may help you:

     
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    07-17-2013, 11:14 AM
  #12
Foal
Cool, thank you for the map... I'll definitely have to look into it.
     
    07-26-2013, 09:27 PM
  #13
Foal
Hi, I'm guessing its something they're lacking. I would try feeding loose mineral, some horses don't like to stand and lick so maybe they're intake is lower than it should be.
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    07-26-2013, 09:38 PM
  #14
Green Broke
My mares get 1st cutting hay, 3 different free-choice salts (like yours), and a fabulous loose mineral called, "Grostrong" - it comes in a 25 lb bag. I would really look into getting some, and within 2 wks you may see quite a difference! Meantime, definitely give Sand-Aid or Sand clear pellets for a whole week every month to prohibit sand colic. I'd recommend starting that immediately. Best of luck! :)
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    07-26-2013, 10:23 PM
  #15
Trained
I'd be inclined to think she's has some kind of mineral difficiency. I use Hoffman's mineral as free choice. The first month, my mare ate it like candy and then settled down to a more usual 250 gr or so a day.
     
    07-26-2013, 10:45 PM
  #16
Weanling
I agree with getting her checked for selenium deficiency, because that can have very devastating consequences as I just recently met a mare who had had it. She was extremely unhealthy and unsound, and eventually had to be euthanized because of it. Not trying to alarm you, but get her checked. I also have another theory, though. My dachshunds do the same thing, and I had them chcked and tested and everything, to no avail. Then someone (a biologist) told me that there are myceliums (sp?) in the soil- a type of fungus- that they have developed a taste for, kind of like truffles. No idea if this could apply to horses, but just throwing it out there!
     
    07-27-2013, 09:23 AM
  #17
Foal
I ground up part of the mineral salt block, and have been putting some in the grain, and she has definitely slowed down.
     
    07-27-2013, 10:10 AM
  #18
Showing
Blood work should be done to test for Selenium deficiency. A mineral lick will help. I use a big screwdriver and hammer and break off the corners and break those up into smaller pieces. That's what the horses go for first. Dirt licking can also be a salt deficiency. If you provide a lick, break off pieces or offer loose salt, regular iodized household salt or pickling salt. Pickling is iodine free so a mix is better.
     
    07-27-2013, 12:23 PM
  #19
Foal
Yeah, like I said, after I broke chunks off the mineral block, ground them up, and measured them into her grain, she stopped liking at the dirt. She was nibbling at that area a couple days ago, but a clump of clover was trying to grow there- she was going for that rather than the dirt.

I had her blood work in with the vet for them to check for a thyroid problem (nothing, thank goodness) and I'll have them check selenium.
     

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