Just bought an 18YO warmblood and the lady said he will eat a salt cake like candy so that is no good! How much salt/other minerals is needed daily for a horse? I think the lady said a teaspoon everyday? Sound right? We give him a tiny bit of senior grain with msm and yucca in am.
Typically, they will consume about 1-2 tablespoons of straight white salt and about 2 oz of minerals per day. Has he been offered a good mineral/vitamin blend? I would try putting out about 1C of loose white salt in a bucket and another bucket with about 2 C of mineral/vitamin blend designed to be fed freechoice and see if he's just needs to replenish his stores. When he cleans the buckets, refill them. If he starts backing off what he takes, than offer it freechoice. If he keeps eating everthing you offer him, just give him a measured amount.
Most horses will consume what they need by licking salt licks.
Our vet does not reccomend force feeding salt. He says their is too much room for error...i.e. Giving your horse too much or giving them salt when it is not needed......which he says can result in kidney problems, blood composition imbalance, and circulatory problems.
We provide our horses salt licks in their stalls and in their pasture, and they lick it when they need it. They lick them alot in the summer, not so much in cooler weather, when the salt is not needed.
Hence the wisdom of using salt licks instead of force feeding most horses: salt intake needed varies from day to day and season to season.
Before certain members start with their combative stance, I will state that this is our vet's advice and makes sense to me personally,and so I follow it. Others may do differently for reasons they think sound, and will say "but i've been force feeding my horse salt for 44 yrs. And he/she had none of the above mentioned problems". That's nice and thanks for the input......but some vets reccomend otherwise for the medical reasons they have found more likely to occur if this is done.
Thanks, helps alot. I still have a problem with the lady saying he would just eat the whole lick and get way too much salt? I think we are going to try it with a small one and see for ourselves. Newsflash: I put him in our "pasture" which has a sand/rock face on one end and he just started licking the rock and didn't stop until I called him off. I think he wants some minerals, huh!
Thanks all. He did not eat his salt lick, just licking it when he wants to, don't know what lady meant? He is doing fine and we are getting to know each other, rode for 20-30 minutes in arena and had a blast! He still licks the ground and I never noticed our other horse doing that but nbd.
I once got my horses a flavored mineral block as a treat and it was gone in a day! I stick to the plain ones now, they are cheaper and they last for a few months. I've actually only seen one of my horses actually lick the salt like so I wonder if the others actually even use it. The one that licks it I've only had for a year, the donkey and other horse I've had for 13 years and they've never had access to one before.