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New horse - colic question

This is a discussion on New horse - colic question within the New to Horses forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    • 1 Post By stevenson
    • 1 Post By PaintHorseMares
    • 1 Post By rkn

     
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        08-02-2013, 08:33 PM
      #1
    rkn
    Foal
    New horse - colic question

    Hi all, I'm new to the boards, and somewhat new to horses.

    We are in the process of buying a nice mare to be a family horse. (She will be alone - but not for long, I don't like the idea of keeping a herd animal as a solitary animal).

    When I went to visit her today, I noticed that where the horses were kept, they were being fed a hay only diet (no grass).

    Where I would have her, there are pastures abound, and they're all quite full of grass. I am under the impression that if she goes from hay straight to grass and over does it, she could get colicky. Any opinions? Am I wrong? What can I do to ensure she stays good and colic free?
         
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        08-02-2013, 08:45 PM
      #2
    Green Broke
    There are a number of things that can happen., colic, founder / laminitis. Is there a dry lot pen next to the pasture ? If so, give her hay then let her graze the grass only after she has eaten all her hay, so she wont be as hungry, let her out for a while , then bring her back in. You should be able to get her off hay and onto straight pasture within a month possibly less .
    IF no pen, and if its possible , toss hay out daily , she will gradually wean herself from the hay.
    If you have portable panels you could set up a pen for a little while, make sure she has a water barrel.
    rkn likes this.
         
        08-02-2013, 08:48 PM
      #3
    rkn
    Foal
    Thanks for the response.

    So, there isn't a dry pen, but if I throw out hay, which I absolutely did plan on doing, her chances of getting colic are slimmer? She's not just going to scarf down the grass and say to heck with the hay?
         
        08-02-2013, 08:55 PM
      #4
    Green Broke
    She very wellmay ignore the hay . Mine ate the hay , then the grass. Some still get a small amount of hay, and at feeding times are up begging for the hay. ITs not the ideal way , and there is still a chance of colic. They don't seem to graze as much in the heat of the day,mid afternoon. I see them graze more in the evenings, they don't graze constantly, they eat a little go stand in the sun, take naps, lay down, eat a little , go stand in a different corner, take a nap, come in and get a drink.
         
        08-02-2013, 09:02 PM
      #5
    rkn
    Foal
    Ok, so maybe I should find a way to section off some of the pasture. The grass is very dry, so maybe I'm wrong in not worrying as much about the laminitis? Lol, I just want this transition to go smoothly, both for the horse's sake, and my blood pressure's...
         
        08-03-2013, 04:59 AM
      #6
    Green Broke
    Just like people, some horses tolerate changes in diet a lot better than others. Always try to make diet transitions, even changes in the type of hay, over about a week to minimize any problems. Horses like what they are used to, so they typically will still eat at least some of their hay even when you introduce them to grass.
    If you can, when you bring this mare home, buy a couple bales of hay from the current owner so she has the exact same hay she is used to during the transition.
    Our mares are 'low maintenance', they'll eat just about anything, and we've never had a problem even in the drought years where we had to feed different types of hay trucked in from the north.
    rkn likes this.
         
        08-03-2013, 12:46 PM
      #7
    rkn
    Foal
    Thanks for all of the replies, I really appreciate it. It's very important to me that I am prepared for whatever may come!
    EvilHorseOfDoom likes this.
         

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