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Koolio 06-27-2011 08:42 PM

Caring for Senior Horses
 
Tomorrow I am picking up a 20 year old gelding that I owned many years ago. Although he is now 20 and in good condition, does anyone have any pointers of do's and don'ts, tips, and things to watch for when caring for a senior horse? I know the basics, ie feet, teeth, diet, but wondered if anyone had any other good advice or tips. Thanks!

evanthomas 06-27-2011 08:46 PM

the only experience i have with seniors is my 28 year old arabian mare. i have her on a joint supplement, keep her barefoot and keep up on trims, keep up with teeth and vet checks. some are easier keepers than others my mare has no problem keeping weight and is very sound only recently beginning to drag her legs slightly.

PaintedFury 06-27-2011 09:01 PM

My biggest suggestion would be to keep him on a diet of roughage, as long as his teeth will allow, and lots of it. Have is teeth checked regularly, as they usually start loosing teeth around age 24, so my vet has told me. If he can not eat regular forage, like hay and grass because of his teeth, you can replace it with beet pulp or hay pellets or cubes moistened. There are several feeds that are formulated for older horses, but I can only personally recommend one, and that is Purina's Equine Senior. It is formulated to easily break down into a mash by adding water. It works best with warm or hot water though.

My greatest piece of advice would be to work closely with your vet to ensure him the best care that you can manage for the rest of his life. At 20 years young, he's earned that at least.


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