question about mini chewing wood

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Mini Gray Heart Mini Horse

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How do you get a horse to stop chewing on wood. As ive notice 2 of my minis chewing on a couple trees.

And what causes this.

Thanks for the help.
 

lkblazin

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They may be board. Its possible they are cribbing. There are horse products to put on the wood that makes them stop. They taste gross so they don't try again. There are other causes like mineral and such but I have only seen it in horses that are board or kept in small areas. Also if stalled for excessive amounts of time. Hope this helps
 

Miniv

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Ikblazen is correct.... Two things -- 1. Do your horses have a mineral/salt block available to chew on? 2. Farm Supply stores sell "no chew" products to apply to wood. Some folks also use a hot sauce, such as Tobasco, but I've heard that some horses actually develop a taste for it! LOL.

When horses chew on wood in their stalls it can mean they are bored.....but chewing on trees usually means they are missing some sort of minerals in their diet.
 

Mini Gray Heart Mini Horse

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Ok they just finished there mineral blocks and there salt blocks so i guess i need to go buy them some more.

The ones that are chewing on the trees are a coming 3y/o mare a 4y/o and some time my yearling.

It only started when they finished there blocks do you think thats why they are chewing on the trees then.
 
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lkblazin

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Most likely. It would be an odd coincidence if not. :p . one of my girls licks the dirt under one of my trees. But only when it is budding. I think the tree releases something in the dirt at that time.
 

amysue

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Wood chewing can be a mineral deficiency as others have mentioned as well as a solution for boredom. Are they are chewing the trees in their enclosure all of the time? Or only after finishing their hay? My donkeys will nibble the trees once the hay is gone so I coiled up garden fence around the base and trunks of the trees so they would stop. I agree that a mineral block would be a good idea and you may find that giving them more hay to eat or even some pasture toys may fix the problem.
 

Reignmaker Miniatures

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I actually cut small logs for my horses to chew on. They are particularly fond of birch because it is sweet. Wild horses often chew on tree bark and that may be because they need minerals (or I have heard it said that they chew willows for pain relief - maybe true, maybe not) but I suspect it is the flavour and variety it offers their dietary choices too. I have often wondered if they chew partly as a way to maintain their teeth as well but I've never read anything on the subject. Even with hay to choose from 24/7 and a good mineral mix my horses seem to want to strip the bark. If it is important to you to not loose these trees then I would do as amysue suggested and put up a barrier so they can't chew on them and damage the bark, continued chewing will kill the trees sooner or later.
 

Marsha Cassada

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Yes. They are browsers. Is the tree an elm? They love elm. Don't worry about it--unless you want to save the trees. Then you will have to fence the trees off. I have a fence around a mulberry. And a lace bark elm is now a shrub because they love it.

Chewing on stalls and fencing is not the same as browsing on trees.
 

shorthorsemom

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watch out what kind of trees they are chewing on... black walnut for example can be very bad.

I have a "beaver" horse here. He chews out of boredom. He always has mineral and salt blocks available. All that works for me is to feed bland busy hay and plenty of it and he leaves the wood alone then.
 

Mini Gray Heart Mini Horse

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They are oak trees they only started chewing them when they finished there blocks. And i think they are doing it out of boredom i think as its in there inclosure. So be throwing more hay for them and going to get them more blocks to.
 

Barnmother

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Two of mine have done this recently and it is boredom. I used Iiquid Ivory Soap and "flavored" it with Cayenne Pepper (from the $1 spice aisle) and it has stopped them stone cold from doing it any more.
 

Mini Gray Heart Mini Horse

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Ok all has stop but one who is a coming 3y/o mare still does it a little as bought them a salt and a mineral block and started throwing a bit more hay but i think shes doing it out of boredom as she had plenty of hay still. So was thinking of throwing a jolly ball out for her to see if shell play with it.
 

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