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horse happy 12-30-2010 09:44 PM

Question regarding an undernourished filly's response to proper nutrition?
Hi and Happy New Year everyone! I've got a question :-) I have recently heard of a very nice filly (2.5 yrs) which is a Percheron/?cross. She was found about three weeks ago and sadly was very undernourished and unkept. She is now with a rescue and is being brought back very gently with proper nutrition and care and is doing very well. She is responding very well to the excellent care and is filling out nicely. She also seems to be growing in height though it almost seems not to be possible in a short month's time. At this time she is approximately 14.2 hands. My question is this: would her lack of proper nutrition at the time that she was developing cause her growth to be severely stunted? I have been told that Percherons may continue to grow into their seventh year. This being said I realize that she is a cross and also she has not had the good nutrition that she should have had as a foal. I guess I'm wondering if it may be possible for her to still grow to perhaps 15 to 16 hands. Thanks for any light that you could shed on this question!

luvs2ride1979 12-31-2010 11:17 AM

I rescued a coming 3 yr old Appaloosa filly back in 2001. She was just a few months before her 3rd birthday. She was 14.1h and 700 lbs. She grew and filled out until she was 6 yrs old. She ended up 15.2h and 1,100 lbs. I found out her sire was 16h and dam was 15.1h, so it doesn't appear she was stunted from her 1 yr of poor care. She's my avatar ;-).

Drafts and draft crosses can and will continue to grow and fill out until they are 7 yrs old. As long her malnutrition didn't cause any bone density problems, she should be fine.

cakemom 12-31-2010 11:58 AM

Flicka was four when we got her, she's grown a full hand and gained 400 lbs at least.
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faye 12-31-2010 12:14 PM

I ought Reeco at 3 years old, he was 14.3hh he is expected to make 15.2hh.

I would think that she would continue to grow now that she has good nutrition she proably wont make as big as she should have however I see no reason why she shouldnt make 15.2hh ish by the time she finishes growing.

Hunter65 12-31-2010 05:35 PM

I adopted a malnourished Hunter when he was almost 2, he was also stunted. In the last year he has made heaps of improvement and is almost horse size. Lol
He is almost 3 and a half and still growing so we hold out hope.

She should still have lots of growing to do.

horse happy 12-31-2010 06:17 PM

Thanks so much friends for your helpful information! I will hopefully get some pics soon keep you posted on her progress!

Cat 12-31-2010 08:19 PM

She could very well catch up and be right on track after getting the proper nutrition. Horses are amazingly resilient and usually bounce back once they get proper care. If she is stunted it may only be by an inch or two. Thankfully she is a draft and still has a lot of her growth left to go.

If you want to get a rough estimate about where she should stand when fully matured - measure from the middle of her knee straight down to her cornet band. inches = hands. So if she measures 15.5 inches then she should be 15.2 hands. That will give you an idea of where her potential is.

Now my husband's horse is a draft cross and was about 14.2 hands when we started him under saddle as a 3 year old. He is now 5 and measured exactly 15.2 hands this summer. I'm expecting his height to be done and more widening out to happen - which should be interested since he is plenty wide! LOL.

horse happy 12-31-2010 08:27 PM

I will try that measurement application later next week when I stop in to visit her and see what her measurement is. Thanks for that tip Cat!

Cat 12-31-2010 08:30 PM

No problem. Just try to get her to stand square while you do it for the most accurate result.

horse happy 01-22-2011 07:51 PM

I now have my Perch cross home and I've named her Beauty (because in my eyes she is:). I've got her as my avatar but I'm not sure how to attach pics to my posts LOL I am feeding her 4.5 heavy scoops of senior feed, one cup calf manna and two oz cocosoya per day divided between three feedings. I am also giving her alfalfa cubes because my vet suggested that would be a good addition. SHe is the sweetest horse I have ever had the pleasure of working around and I do hope she will get to be at least 15.2 hands. I'm pretty sure that she will. Cat, I did measure her knees to the coronet band and she measured 15.2! I measured her today and she was a comfortable 59 inches so I am thinking she is almost 15 hands, am I right? She looks shorter than that, I guess because she is still so underweight and really has no topline. She still has the look of a yearling/foal so I don't know if it would be too soon to break her out to ride this summer even though she will be three in May. Of course, if she is still underweight that won't happen anyway. Any ideas on that? Thanks for all the input friends!

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