Senior on Food Strike
Very picky 25-ish Arab mare periodically goes on a food strike, but currently doesn't have weight to lose. Dainty 14.1hh, 750lb goal weight, weight tape shows her at 725lb with her thick winter coat. Heart murmur & several melanomas but otherwise deemed healthy for her age at her physical/dental appt in October, no ulcers or Cushings.
Still energetic and frequently galloping about the pasture, still chatty when the feed is dropped, but only consuming around 1/4lb of concentrated feed, the leaves of 2 two-string flakes of alfalfa (ignores stems so I don't know actual consumption weight) and nibbling at mediocre grass hay each day. Ideally she'd be eating 4lbs Triple Crown Senior/1lb Calf Manna (split in 3 meals,) and all her alfalfa each day. Currently in the dry lot/no grazing due to N Texas rain, no extreme cold or stress, run-in shelter/not stalled, one pasture mate who gets tied up at feeding time so this senior can eat.
Won't touch damp or wet food, won't touch food if vegetable oil is added, little interest in dry alfalfa pellets or cubes. No signs of teeth or gum soreness. Some success following her around the paddock and repeatedly shoving the grain bucket under her face when she stops, lol.
What would YOUR next step be? I don't feel like this still-sassy mare has "given up" yet, but as a friend mentioned, "She's an Arabian and they don't always play by the rules."
~Reserved Cash, 2011 AQHA gelding~
~Lark, 20-something Arabian mare~