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michelled 12-09-2011 03:57 PM

question from a newbie
i i am michelle and me and my 10 year old daughter rescued a 32 year old pony called bonnie think she is a little welsh, anyway when we got her about a month ago she was underwieght and very very miserable but now she has gained weight is really fluffy and enjoying life and food lol

anyway to cut a long story short bonnie is living out during the day and i bring her in at night the problem is she does not like being in as she used to be in a very small stable (she isnt now) ,

i was wondering is it ok for her to live out or not as i worry about her in the cold as she has slight arthritis but she is so happy when she is out i have bought her a new medium weight rug which she likes but she just pprefers to live out the filed has natural shelter but due to her age etc will living out be suitable for her, i go and see her every day to feed her etc but i dont know what to do any advice would be greatfully received.

Creampuff 12-09-2011 04:03 PM

What is her behavior when you stall her?

If she has a nice winter coat, she should be fine outside. The livery horses by me live outside with a run-in shelter for cover... (One shelter is larger than the other -- we have two built near one another.) Sometimes when it rains and then gets cold, some start to shiver. We bring the shivering ones in, on rotation, into stalls to dry & warm up.

My personal horse/training project, Bamber, lived outside (with no shelter that I saw) until I bought him at age 5. I stalled him for the first time... At first he was nervous; paced, called out and followed me as much as he could if I walked by. BUT I let him be -- I didn't make it a big deal or baby him. Eventually he calmed down and began to eat his hay... Now he loves the stall.

Talk to your vet. If she's super-skinny, you may need to find a waterproof turnout for her. A local rescue blankets their skinny horses (they don't have enough stalls for everyone) when the weather gets harsh. BUT if the blanket gets wet & its cold outside, the problem may worsen... making the horse more cold.

bubba13 12-09-2011 04:17 PM

If she has access to shelter and has reasonable body fat and a good winter coat--and has 24/7 access to roughage like good pasture or quality hay--she'll be fine outside.

Corporal 12-09-2011 04:45 PM

Agreed. Just FYI, at age 32 her teeth have stopped growing. Any mastication will wear them down further. Switch to a pelleted feed, and you may need to moisten it. Also, prepare your daugther. At this age, horses are living on borrowed time. You might go out to check on her and find that she's passed on. I just wanted to prepare you. =D

michelled 12-10-2011 04:13 AM

hi thanks for all your replys she has calmed down now and has good weight on her she is fluffy as hell lol an wears a water proof medium turnout rug when she is out she is on sugar beet and alfafa a food with garlic and vitimin suplement which i soak she has constant hay and good pasture in the field and she eats well lol i will try and get a piccie of her up lol she is a moody mare and i just want her live her final days in peace i have had her feet teeth etc done and checked and vet said she was ok just needed some weight on her which she now has lol her is a couple of piccie of her a couple of weeks ago

and eating her breakfast lol

Snizard93 12-10-2011 05:36 AM

I think it's great that youre willing to spend time, money and effort in making the rest of her days happy ones :-) She looks really sweet. Like people above said, if she has good weight on her, has a good winter coat and a good rug she will be ok I think :lol:

iridehorses 12-10-2011 06:14 AM

Welcome to the forum!

A rescue animal can be a very rewarding project for everyone. A first horse, a rescue, and 32 years old - that's quite an undertaking.

Although 32 is quite elderly, if she is in good shape (or getting there), she can live well into her late 30s and even beyond so you need to prepare for the long run.

Does she have company, meaning animal company? Horses, being social animals do best with a companion. It doesn't have to be another horse - a goat works well many times. Has a vet looked her over to let you know if there are some concerns that should be addressed? Has she been taken care of by a farrier? It isn't unusual for an underweight horse to have her feet neglected.

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