a Red Cal (and more) "conversation" with Jane


Hi Dr. Dan,

I purchased 5 – 25 pounds of Red Cal for my two Arab mares about two
months ago.  I removed all salt and mineral blocks form their paddock
at that time and put about 2 inches of Red Cal in a bucket inside
their stalls.

The youngest mare licked it for a very sort time (2 seconds) and back
away.  The older mare will not lick it.  They have 24 hour access to
I put some in the palm of my hand to get them to try it.  Again the
younger mare took a small taste and back away…the older mare
wouldn't try it.  I put about one Tablespoon full of Red Cal in with
their oats and Just Add Oats (off to one side but next to the
oats)….neither horse would eat the Red Cal  (they love the Just Add

I have the same 2 inches of Red Cal still in the bucket after two
months time.

At present they don't get any salt or minerals (that aren't in Just
Add Oats).

Both horses use to lick the white…sodium choride block and
red…mineral block quite a bit.

Do you have any advise for me about how to get these girls to start
eatting their Red Cal?  We live in Texas and have a very hot summer
coming soon so I would think they need this.

Thank you,

Hi Jane.

Removing the blocks was the right thing and is one of only 2 reasons why they never eat- the other being too much potassium being available for some reason from surroundings… the "Mineral Wise, Salt Poor" article mentions this. Perfect Pastures is also a good read. Articles are linked via the Red Cal page at:

With that said though, I've got to say that adding a tablespoon pretty much works everytime that I know of. So, do this for me- just add a "pinch" and gradually in crease… maybe a pinch for 3 days that a little more and so on until tablespoon. If it stops somewhere along the way of this gradual increase— go back to a smaller amount and wait a little loinger before the next gradual increase.

This always works with any of our supplements- though usually not needed with Red Cal.

Keep me posted! Thanks so much for your support and patience with this.

Dr. Dan

Hi Dr. Dan
I wanted to update you on my two Arab mares not wanting to eat the Red Cal. 
And, I do have a few more questions I am concerned about.
First of all, I have read the two articles you suggested …at present I don't know if excessive potassium is causing a problem with them not wanting the Red Cal.  The coastal and rye hay I have been feeding the horses is fertilized…this could be a problem.  We don't fertilize our paddocks,  just goat, sheep droppings and composted horse manure are left on.  (The articles were very helpful, educational and interesting by the way)
My girls at this time, are happily eating the (1 Tbs/day) Red Cal in with their oats, oil check, bug check and just add oats.
However, they are also now licking dirt to the extent that they leave small dished-out places on the ground.




I am concerned about a few things.

1st…by them licking dirt makes me think they need more Red Cal….but, I don't know how much they should be getting to be balanced on a daily basis when feeding it with their oats?  They still have free choice access to Red Cal in a bucket but, don't touch it.
2nd/3rd…we live in Texas so we do have selenium in our soil…. Two concerns I have with this are….. that the Red Cal contains selenium ….even though they may need more salts…will they be getting to much selenium which I have read can become toxic if to much is taken in?…..and the youngest mare (5 yr old) is and easy keeper who loves to eat constantly and has just gotten over her 1st case of laminitus (trying to not have another event of that).    Her body score on a scale of 10 was about a 8-9 last year…now about 6-7, due to diet and exercise changes.  Should the younger mare be getting more magnesium? 
It's difficult to know if I am giving them the balance they need.
A comment on the Bug Check and Finally Something That Works…it took about six weeks before I felt that these were making a difference.  I see neighbors horses and cows having a lot of trouble this year with flies but ours are only having to swat their tails once in a while.  Last year before using these my horses had a lot of bites.  This year so far I am not finding hardly any bumps from insect bites.  I feel real good about using these two products.
Thank you for your help,


Hi Jane.

Thanks for the updates and for sharing about Bug Check. Sounds like you're using Bug Check year-round and that's a good thing and will help in results like you are seeing— as you know it's more than "just" a bug product and only healthy to provide year-round and keep in the system. Thanks again for sharing!

I'm glad you liked the articles. I just added a short audio to the Red Cal page of the website that you can listen to also when you have a few minutes. You could maybe provide an extra tablespoon a day but I would much more than that really and of course make sure they have plenty of water. Maybe there's still remnants of the old block around or even leached into the soil- just something else to consider. Just be sure to keep RED CAL available free-choice along with what you are top dressing– so they can eat the extra when they need it.

Rest assured that the selenium used in our products is organic and is not the same as what can cause harm. Ours- they can't get too much of.

Also, I would consider the Hi-Mag version of the Red Cal for the challenge you mentioned the next time you order.

Hope this helps.

Here's the direct link to the RED CAL page for the audio (will start automatically) Thanks Jane!


Dr Dan  🙂
I am relieved to know I don't have to be concerned about the amount of selenium.  The correct amount would be very difficult to determine.   I will increase their Red Cal as you suggested…will keep hoping they will eventually help themselves to it free choice.

Thank you for your cautioning me to provide ample water, and yes 🙂 I am mindful about their water. 

The young mare does drink more than the older girl (but not excessive)…I monitor the amount of water that they drink every day and have clean fresh water for them daily…this and taking notice of their urine and stools helps me to be alerted if something is off with either of them.  I like to give water in the morning (twice the amount of water they will drink in a day) and check the level in the afternoon and evening.
I believe your products are making positive changes in my horses.  🙂

The 5 yr old mare has never before been able to grow out her mane more than half of what her sire and damns is.  It would break off at a particular length about one half that of her parents.  I am seeing her mane getting longer now.  Also her damns mane is darker with more color (she chestnut in color).

The 5 year old also use to have strange ruffed-up looking places of hair on her thighs…this is not typical of a pure breed Arabian who should have short, soft, smooth hair.  My Vet didn't have an explanation for this.  Well, they are gone now!….she had these for her whole life.  My guess is that the condition could have been a mild allergic reaction..like hives..making the hair stick out.  She is also more energetic but at the same time both girls are calmer.  Sure some of the more emotional collection is due to me playing with them everyday but, it is more than that.  I believe getting them off of pelleted feeds, about three months ago, and using Just Add Oats, Oil Check and Bug Check have made the difference.  Now that they are on Red Cal daily I'm looking forward to continued signs of health.

Noticed my neighbors cows just 20 feet from my horses, pestered by flys and my girls only had a few on them  (5 or 6 each)…and some of the flys behaved as if they couldn't find a place to land…meaning to me that they are being repelled.  Finally Something That Works truly does.

Well, I just had to say all that.
I will keep all your suggestion in mind and Thank you ever so much…I feel I am finally on the right track in helping to give my girls a happy, healthy life.

Warmest Regards………Jane

Thank You Again Jane!

Dr. Dan