Extra Calcium for lactating mares

Miniature Horse Talk Forums

Help Support Miniature Horse Talk Forums:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


Well-Known Member
Feb 20, 2005
Reaction score
Harwich, MA
My Vet recommends giving our lactating mares 4 fruit flavored TUMS twice daily. We hand feed them and they think they are getting treats......They have a great flavor and are high in Ca. I take them too, but only eat two ( for the Ca ) .

dru crowell
I've never had a vet or otherwise recommend adding a Ca suppliment for mares; did they have any paticular reason?
Last edited by a moderator:
Well we just lost a mare to hypocalcemia due to lactation, vets didn't say anything to us except for it was "bad luck" and told us signs to watch out for if another mare happens to come down with it.. I was discussing our situation with a friend and she actually mentioned TUMS and wondered if they would "hold over" a mare that had come down with hypocalcemia until a vet could arrive or until the mare was taken to a vet, as our vets told us that it can occur quickly and once the symptoms arise you have a small window of treatment and only a 50/50 chance of survival.. We're definitely looking into calcium paste/liquid to have on hand as well
Just keep in mind that too much calcium can be as big as a problem as not enough.

For most horses a good quality hay and or grain will suffice. Mares that get hypocalcemic are related to being in foal. For those instances you do need some liquid or paste calcium on hand.
Last edited by a moderator:
with all that extra calcium were you advised to up the phosphorus? There is a delicate balance between the two.

I second on the good quality hay (have it tested every year so you know what you have), make sure a good loose mineral/vitamin supplement is available to them, free choice, and add grain only if necessary.
We had a bout of Thumps (It was beyond frightening ), in a lactating mare, and that's when the vet advised TUMS. We use it as a preventive NOT a cure! And stop it when we wean the foals.

A cure DOES involve immediate action, and depending on the progression of the problem, IV Calcium!!!

I'll get the amount of Ca in TUMS as soon as I do chores and come back from the barn....my Beet Pulp is soaking in Gatoraid getting ready for our trip to Texas!

There is a mare at my barn that does get Calcium supplement (just the pure white powder from the vet) but she had blood drawn to determine her mineral levels and is prescribed by the vet.

I would be careful supplementing without testing. You could give too much. The other mare at my barn, she started peeing chunky white powder, and turns out she is sensitive to the amount of Calcium in the hay (alfalfa/orchard mix) and has to have her hay ration part Bermuda grass hay now.

I would think the majority of horses lactating are fine just with extra hay and grain for the calories. However, a blood test can determine any deficiencies if you are concerned.


Latest posts