Pat with questions about feeding his 30-year mare

I have a question about feed for older horses. My mare is now 30, her teeth are worn enough so she can't grind the hay well, and she's hard to keep weight on.

She had a very mild episode of colic yesterday, and the local vet suggested moistened timothy/alfalfa pellets, with senior feed pellets mixed in.

She was very slow to eat tonight...nibbling then walking away… Her mother died last year at 39, and I'd like to think she'll be with us for another 5 to 10 years, too.

Have you any suggestions for enticing her to eat more?

Thanks in advance, Pat D.

Hi Patrick, please check out www.WhatToFeedYourHorse.com, which will be the basis for all I will say regardless the age of any horse, so with that said I recommended Oats regardless of age. Oats are awesome. I don't like senior feed which is so full of very bad processed fats etc. You would simply soak the oats overnight to soften them. I also suggest whole vs. crimped. To the oats- you add our "Just Add Oats" product and also our Weight Check Oil. (start at 2 oz per day of the Oil but increase up to 8 oz depending on how she does). Then provide "free-choice" to her- our RED CAL salt/mineral block replacement. You can see more about those 3 products at the "what to feed" site I mentioned.

I would also add the following… our "Gut Check" supplement to get enhance the above process and program so she gets even more good from what she does manage to eat, and add our "Joint Check" supplement becuase of her age. Keep in mind that Joint Check is much more than just a joint product too being full of antioxidants and more!

Colic often occurs when there is a weather change causing too much potassium during these times. If providing salt/mineral blocks, throw them away and have our RED CAL available free choice at ALL TIMES. At the same WhatTo FeedYourHorse.com site, there are links to two articles- "Mineral Wise and Salt Poor" and "Perfect Pastures" explaining how changes in weather affect such. They can also have periods of high potassium from the hay etc. (especially fertilized hay and pasture since all that is in fertilizer is nitrogen, potassium  and phosphorous). The latter might be applicable in your situation.

You can see more about all our products and more articles, audios and videos at our website and even in our online magazine at the links below.

Thanks for asking Patrick. Keep me posted!

TheNaturalVet

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