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Old 04-14-2008, 09:39 AM  
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Refusing to drink

I move my horses from my house, to a farm near by. The geldings have settled into their pasture ok, except they don't want to drink out of the trough but get brought in twice a day to eat and drink then, and I am fairly certain they will drink when they need to.

Stormy, my mare, is in a field with 8 other mares and a gelding. 3 of the mares have made friends with her, but she still misses her boys and calls to them. She has not drank since Friday night. She won't go down to the creek and she won't drink from a bucket in the stall...what can I do???? I am going to fill up a trough in the mare field so I at least know she can drink from it if she wants, but I am worried she is going to make herself sick from not drinking....

Advice please!!!
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Old 04-14-2008, 09:47 AM  
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Not sure it will work but I have heard either put a salt lick in their stalls or rub salt in their mouths. We have tried it with my show cattle and it works. They dont really drink a lot but atleast its something. How close is the farm they are at now from where they were? I know that we have had trouble getting our animals to drink when we take them to shows because of the clorine or something in the water. They just dont like it and we have them spoiled with well water. Could there be a change in their water?
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Old 04-14-2008, 09:54 AM  
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My house and the farm both have well water, and the boys aren't being snotty about it. They didn't want to drink out of the buckets at the farm tho, so I brought buckets from home and they drank and are over themselves now. She is just refusing...I may try adding some mortons to her feed and see if that encourages her, maybe she is going to creek, and the grass is so green it has water in it so I know she is getting some. I am a total worry wart tho....
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Old 04-14-2008, 10:01 AM  
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You could try adding apple cider vinegar to her water bucket. It may have a different taste than she is used to.

I bet she is drinking from the stream when you aren't there though. I think that is an aweful long time to go without water.
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Old 04-14-2008, 12:00 PM  
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But she will drink if she is thirsty enough? I just worry that she will go without and end up colicing....I have already lost one horse to a bad colic, totally different reason, but it still happened and I practically panic over it.
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Old 04-14-2008, 12:11 PM  
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Give her the pinch test. Pinch her neck and see how quickly the skin pops back into place. If it's slow she's dehydrated. If she's too stressed to drink you might try putting a lot of water in her food and maybe giving her a bran mash with salt or electrolytes. Do not continue to feed her dry food if she's not drinking enough. She should be drinking several gallons a day. If she doesn't look sucked up and passes the pinch test you can wet her food for a few days until she adjusts just to be on the safe side. I have a mare who won't drink unless her water is warmed but yours sounds like adjusting to a new environment.
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Old 04-14-2008, 01:06 PM  
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Thanks lbequ- I'll get bran and give her a mash tonight....I had totally forgotten about that. Funny how we forget simple things when we are in worry panic mode...
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Old 04-14-2008, 01:37 PM  
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I had an Arabian who would not drink when we first moved here. She didn't like the taste of the water until it had run for about ten minutes. It took us a few weeks to get her over that. She would not drink no matter how thirsty she was. There will definitely be signs like drawn up in the belly and weight loss after a bit.
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Old 04-14-2008, 02:19 PM  
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If she likes carrots try chopping one up and letting it sit in a pail of water for about 10 min, with only a couple of gallons in it. She'll soon learn that when she drinks the water there are carrots at the bottom.
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Old 04-14-2008, 03:14 PM  
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If you grain her with anything add 2 ounces of salt and wet the feed so the salt sticks to the feed. That should make her thirsty enough to start drinking.
We have a guy that decided this past winter he no longer wants to drink cold water!
He coliced because of it so we added 1-2 lbs of wheat middlings and salt to his grain. He was fine after that and drinks enough too.
If there is no salt block I would put one in the field or stall for them also.
I buy loose white salt from the feed store. Pretty cheap for a big bag of it.
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Old 04-15-2008, 07:26 PM  
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rosewood- i had the same prob with the cold water. I bought one of those heated buckets from Jeffers and my girl drinks when it's cold. I think it hurts her teeth or something but that bucket is a lifesaver
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Old 04-15-2008, 08:36 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lbequ4002 View Post
rosewood- i had the same prob with the cold water. I bought one of those heated buckets from Jeffers and my girl drinks when it's cold. I think it hurts her teeth or something but that bucket is a lifesaver
I am glad you caught it before something happened! I love those heated buckets we have the pails and the 16 gal ones they are wonderful.
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