Help Needed for Newbie in Mississippi

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Mona

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I lady from Moss Point, MS contacted me this afternoon trying to get some help and information. I answered her with my thoughts, but encouraged her to join the forum here. In the meantime, I am posting these photos for her.

She is new to owning horses, and just wanted a couple minis to enjoy as pets. She bought a filly and colt (both unregistered) She was wanting to know if you feel this pasture will be safe to turn her yearlings out on or if it is too lush. They are 5 and 8 months of age I think she said. Her vet said it would kill them because it's too lush??? To me, it looked safe. That is definitley not what we consider lush around here. Lush is thick, tall green grass. I advised her to put them out for a couple hours at a time, morning and night, and increase to a few hours each time in a few days time and keep increasing by an hour every few days. She wants to have them out on it 24/7. They were on dry lot before she bought them. She is feeding them some sort of Purina feed, and hay, and then takes them out for an hour or two to graze a couple times a day. It will only be a one acre sized pasture when she gets it fenced in.

The smaller yard she has them in now is 24'x24' with a run-in shelter, but she doesn't want to keep them in there. She is getting very frustrated with a lot of the conflicting information she is receiving. Anyway, if someone is near her that maybe can help her, maybe become a mentor to/for her, that would be great. In the meantime, I told her I'd post this here to try to gather some helpful information for her.

She has already had the vet out to do shots, stool sample, had the farrier out and I have told her about Quest as well. Here are the photos from her of their current accomodations, as well as the grassy area that she wants to fence in to forma one acre pasture for them. She has 6' no climb fencingas she was told about the importance of keeping any dogs out to avoid having them attacked.

So, hoping she joins in here...









 

minie812

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Most def that is not what I consider lush pasture. She has some of the same fencing we have and is good to keep the predators out. Personally i would put them up at night and out during the day. We worked on letting them out to pasture and Our yearling boys are out for 6 hrs now and then up in their small dry lot with Poppy at night. We feed 2x daily as the boys need that extra protein and are in good weight. We feed pelleted feed and hay in the dry lot.
 

chandab

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Just how lush that is would depend on the species of plants growing on it, but it doesn't look that lush in the pictures. I would go really slow introducing them to the pasture, and I'd put them up at night with some hay (enough to keep them occupied) to keep them safe.
 

Jean A

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Not sure when the pics were taken. Here in the Piedmont of NC our pastures can go from looking like hers (or close to..) to lush emerald green tall grass in just a couple of weeks.
 

Mona

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The photos were taken this afternoon. They have already been grazing anywhere from 2 to 4 hours a day, so it is not going to be a total shock to their system. She might be planning on putting them up at night, I am not sure. I don't recall if she said or not.
 

REO

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That might not be "lush" but a baby that is used to and comes from a dry lot, that is a bit of grass. She's been hand grazing them already. So I'd say let them have an hour a day and slowly let them get used to it. It never hurts to be on the safe side!

Can she take the halters off? IMO it's dangerous to leave halters on.
 

Riverrose28

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I don't consider that lush, but considering they have only been on dry lots, I think your advice is right on. I have three colts on an acre that has more grass then that, plus hay replacer, grain and alfalfa twice a day, 24 hours and they are fine, so I think once they get used to that environment they will be fine as long as that is not all they recieve, as it looks sparce to me.
 

MBhorses

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hey,

we live in mississippi. I would agree with others a hr at a time to get them use to the grass.
 

sunnydazed

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thank you ms mona! i and giving them 2 cups purina miniature horse feed and good horse hay also i didnt git these horses to live in a pen like this! i want to fence in a acre and let them run maybe two acres. i just dont wana have them colic or founder on me! quess im like a new mom!
 

sunnydazed

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im learning something new everyday and this website is awsome! very helpful and full of everyones information and experience large and small very helpful!
 

sunnydazed

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i was told they will eat themselves to death colic and founder on me to get a muzzle for miniature horses
 

dannigirl

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Welcome to the forum.

If you can get them to come back into the smaller area for the night, they will be ok in the larger area for the day time--after working them up a few hours longer at a time. My main reason for getting them in is to keep them safer if you think there may be dogs around and to be able to see them closely every day. If you let them in the bigger pen, you may not see a sore or bad eye or stuff like that and you could see those things and fix them before they get worse. These little guys are like kids that seem to find everything and anything that they probably shouldn't. If you can feed them in seperate spaces or stalls, that would be good also. It is another way to see that they are eating and such. If they both eat together, it is hard to see if one is eating most of it. Last, but definitely not least.........you must get the little boy gelded soon or keep them apart. You don't want these young ones to have a baby. It would not be good at this young age.
 

Charlotte

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""Welcome to the forum.

If you can get them to come back into the smaller area for the night, they will be ok in the larger area for the day time--after working them up a few hours longer at a time. My main reason for getting them in is to keep them safer if you think there may be dogs around and to be able to see them closely every day. If you let them in the bigger pen, you may not see a sore or bad eye or stuff like that and you could see those things and fix them before they get worse. These little guys are like kids that seem to find everything and anything that they probably shouldn't. If you can feed them in seperate spaces or stalls, that would be good also. It is another way to see that they are eating and such. If they both eat together, it is hard to see if one is eating most of it. Last, but definitely not least.........you must get the little boy gelded soon or keep them apart. You don't want these young ones to have a baby. It would not be good at this young age.""

I ditto the quote above from Dannigirl.

Welcome to the Forum! from Oklahoma. It sounds as if the person advising you regarding foundering and colic isn't very experienced with miniature horses. Yes, you need to be aware of those things and how to avoid them, but it's not necessary to over react.

Personally, I like my 'kids' on pasture in the day time and in stalls at night. that way I halter and lead each horse twice per day (good training for youngsters) and like the above quote says it allows me to closely observe each horse.

Your young horses would do well on a feed product designed for young growing horses...just like you would raise a puppy on puppy food till he was mature. Just read the feeding directions on the product and feed according to those directions adjusting amounts up or down to keep an ideal weight for the horse. Get a little kitchen scale that weighs up to 7 or so pounds and measure your feed by weight as that is what your directions on the bag will likely tell you.

BTW, I have anywhere from 5 to 10 mares on a 2 acre pasture in the day time. On this farm that works fine.

Enjoy your little ones!
 

Carolyn R

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I think you will be fine just by increasing the time they are on it the way you are doing so now. My two are dry lotted now, allowing their grassy turnout to rest and grow, after which, I will slowly reintroduce them to it. All in moderation, they will be fine. There are some very experienced forum members and even some vet techs and a vet or two that frequent the forum (awesome place for input!).

Welcome to the world of minis! You have been given some wonderful advice. Some vets are not very savvy when it comes to minis, don't be afraid to ask questions here.

Just some general tips.... Many worm weanlings or colts and fillies under 1 year on a monthly basis, they are more prone to getting parasites. Don't use quest wormer, it has a small margin of error, there have been some cases of severe overdoses and fatal results. Bute is for pain and inflammation, it is appropriate for certain situations, but must be used diligently due change of overdose (powder is easier to measure).
 
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