Concerned about my horse, looking for some input.
 
 

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Concerned about my horse, looking for some input.

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  • Why has my horses behaviour change on grass

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    05-30-2013, 02:26 AM
  #1
Foal
Concerned about my horse, looking for some input.

Hi there my name is Mel, im 28 yrs old and live in British Columbia, Canada. I have had my half Arabian gelding since he was born, he is currently 11 years old. He has lived for the past 9 years on my parents farm. He had a few different companions through out the years but lived alone for approx 6-9 months before the move. Due to unforeseen events they had to move. I moved my horse to a boarding barn with 12 other horses. My horse went from a 5 acre grass paddock into a tiny turnout... The person who owned the barn had their horses down on grass fields while mine was up alone in dirt. They don't turnout any horses together, they don't like herd bound animals. His behaviour became so neurotic. He was constantly calling, pacing the fence, even running himself sweaty. It got to the point that he had dropped about 100 lbs. I moved him again after about 1 month to a different boarding stable with larger grass fields, where he gets turned out with other horses (which he loves). He seemed to be settling in well and I was relieved. Now after a couple weeks he is pacing the fence line, calling again, while turned out with another horse. So again I find myself worried sick... This is a horse who has been mr mellow since he was born. He loves people and has a dog like personality, he has never been an "uppity" horse. Any input or feedback on this extreme change would be so appreciated. If any other info is needed let me know. I just don't know what to do. He hasnt put weight back on and this extreme behaviour change has me so concerned, this is not my horse! Is there anything I can do to help stop this neurotic behaviour before it gets to bad? Thanks so much for any help.
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    05-30-2013, 02:30 AM
  #2
Started
First of all, what are you feeding him right now to deal with the weight issue? It might have something to do with the neurotic behaviours you're seeing. How big is his turn out?
     
    05-30-2013, 03:05 AM
  #3
Foal
I changed him from a cob type feed to just a pellet and he gets a grass local type hay and a bit of alfalfa, which he has always been fed. He gets turned out on about an acre and 1/2 with one other horse, every morning and only in a smaller turn out off stall throughout night.
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    05-30-2013, 10:57 AM
  #4
Green Broke
No such thing as "just a pellet"- they can be very healthy or just as high in sugar as wet COB. Do you know the NSC content of the one you're feeding? How much is being fed daily?
     
    05-30-2013, 12:10 PM
  #5
Foal
I never said just a pellet I said he is on an all purpose pellet, standard horse pellets... my problem is 100% NOT due to his feed... He is 11 and been fed the same food for his ENTIRE life... It is a neurotic stress type behaviour, I believe, just don't know what to do to curb it before he is a total basketcase.
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    05-30-2013, 12:19 PM
  #6
Green Broke
Your last post says, "just a pellet." Do you know if the feed has molasses in it? You say he was on COB then switch to a pellet, but then say he's been fed the same feed his entire life? I'm just a bit confused. Who does he get turned out with? Is it the same horse he's stalled next to at night? He could prefer his stall buddy to his pasture buddy if they are different horses.
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    05-30-2013, 12:48 PM
  #7
Yearling
Yeah what kayella said, that confused me too. I agree with her on the preference to another horse thing, he might be calling to his best friend.
     
    05-30-2013, 12:54 PM
  #8
Weanling
Even the most mellow horse can form an attachment to another horse and only want to be with that one horse. You might find out which horse he's being turned out with and if it is always the same or not. I have a mare that is very attached to a young filly that is not hers. She flips just like a mama would if we get that filly where she can't see it.
     
    05-30-2013, 01:19 PM
  #9
Started
It could be a feed issue, yes. You said yourself that you recently switched her feed and as others have said a 'pellet' can mean a lot of things. Even the same type of general pellet from different brands can have different levels of sugars, etc. that can drastically affect a horse. So what's the brand of your feed?

You should hope it's something to do with her feed, then it's fairly easy to correct.
     
    05-30-2013, 01:42 PM
  #10
Foal
Ok what I meant was this, clearly there is a communication issue... He was fed Cob his entire life, I have switched him to a blander food, the pellets are not high calorie or anything. I wish the issues where food related, but I know that they are not it... He has been moved twice recently as I stated above... He can't be attached to the other horses as he has only been at this barn for 2 weeks... As I previously stated the behaviour changed began with the initial move and got so bad I had to move him yet again... He is turned out with his stall mate... Its horrible to see him this way, but I don't know what to do to make the stress easier for him or help him settle better. And like I said his behaviour is getting more and more neurotic since moving him from his lifetime home.
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