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Candice

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Our new little filly is a sand eater. She chows it. I don't have a turnout area that is sand free so I've been vigilante but the little snot is fast. I talked to the vet about it tonight and all he could suggest was putting her on a halter and lead line while Mom was turned out. I'm not real keen on doing that with a foal this young. She's not even 24hrs old yet.

I was trying to think of a way to make some type of muzzle but I am drawing blanks. Does anyone have any ideas or suggestions that might work.
 

muffntuf

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Do you have a mineral block she can lick? Sometimes they are eat dirt and sand to try to get something they are missing. My little girl and mommie ate dirt last night, which surprised me since they get a great balanced diet. But apparantly something is missing.

Tonight she found the mineral salt block in their stall and licked that for a little bit.
 

evedex

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I have put up the directions for making a muzzle on our club's website BUT I would NOT put it on a baby...they have to nurse regularily.

She might just be trying out new things....all babies like to put things in their mouths, but I would be a bit worried too. Offer her a mineral block in the stall and ask the vet if they think you should be using any sand clear product and/or feed her some probiotics.

Anyway, for the muzzle directions, just go to www.mhco.ca and click on the Grazing Muzzle button on the left side. You can make them with the tiny grazing hole or without a hole at all, if you need to keep a horse from eating alltogether. But again, I would never put one on a baby.
 

Bonny

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I read an article once that said horses that lick the dirt need salt. I am wondering if your little one needs a bit of salt? Maybe you could try to give her a bit of salt and some water. Course ask the vet first.
 

Reignmaker Miniatures

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I've got one of those this year too. She eats EVERTHING. I blamed it on her being an orphan so she can't use her mother's guidance to decide what is food, thus she tastes everything. Yesterday it was a small rock (wasn't quick enough to get it out of her mouth. She is always picking up things (bits of hair sticks etc) from the ground. I'm trying to decide if the little thing needs something her diet is missing or has ulcers or is just a very oral foal.
 

Candice

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She's something!! With it being so HOT out I'm restricting her turn out anyways (I hate doing that), but I supervise her. There are a lot of things I'm not getting done, but its the only way I can stay on top of this. She's gotten smarter though and now she'll grab a big old mouthfull and take off running with it. I do have a salt lick in her stall and I offer loose mineral. She turned her little sand chewing nose into the air for both. She's a pistol. I pulled a big old leaf out of the back of her mouth today. Her brother was a trash eater last year. Sticks and leaves and what not. I'm hoping she'll outgrow this. If not the poor thing is going to be an "indoor girl". Her mother is about to loose her mind. I think she's watching her mother grazing. She'll sniff at the grass and its of little interest, but Mom is eating something so she's trying the sand. Just a theory.

Wish me luck. Inspite of all the chasing, pinning down, restraining and mouth cleaning I've been doing she's still friendly and seems to like me.
 

HGFarm

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I would not muzzle her either, and I agree, she is looking for something in her diet.. I know my new babies hit the mineral salt blocks hard after they are born for a few days.

Ha, she sounds like a little imp! How fun! Perhaps give her a couple of days 'inside' with no turn out and see if she gets 'caught up' on food and maybe forgets about doing that? Have never had a newborn eat sand/dirt...

Sounds like a cutie though! Keep running, LOL!! (P.S. I would not muzzle a new foal either)
 

Margo_C-T

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After having to have colic surgery on a very young foal who was one of those little 'ground vacumns', my then-vet recommended that I give psyllium on a regular basis to any foal who behaved the same(and I had several over time...some never even THINK of nosing along the ground, picking up everything they encounter, others seem to do nothing BUT that!) Yes to white salt block and free choice loose minerals, and full access to fresh cool water at all times, of course, but as you said, that doesn't 'appease' some.

It is a chore and isn't 'fun' to do; it's messy and time-consuming, but I did it, and never again had an 'accumulation' colic in a foal. I agree, too--No muzzling of such a young foal.

I used a fairly large dose syringe (about 35 cc; you can order those through any of the livestock supply catalogs, or buy one from your vet), and cut the tip back some to enlarge the hole in the tip-the 'mix' is THICK, and can't be 'pushed through' the tip of a 'regular' syringe. The total dose was about 1 T., crushed to a powder, if your psyllium product is in pellet or crumble form(use a high quality product, that is 'all' psyllium, not a lot of 'fillers'.) You can only 'dose' with about 1/4 to 1/3 of that Tablespoon at one 'go', do NOT add water; on vet's rec, I used a sugar-free 'pancake syrup'. Add enough to make a runny 'paste' (I used an old chopstick to reach down into the syringe and stir-holding a finger over the tip, of course; you have to pour the ingredients in from the 'plunger' end). When mixed, CAREFULLY insert the plunger while GRADUALLY removing your finger from over the tip to release the air pressure as you GRADUALLY turn the whole thing 'upright'--then give to baby a BIT at a time; place far back in mouth and only a bit at a time, allowing them to mouth and swallow each bit. Do this SLOWLY, so as not to cause the foal to choke.

As I said, it's MESSY, and SLOW/time-consuming, for safety. I felt it was worth it--and I never had another foal have an accumulation colic--so REALLY 'worth it', IMO. Ask your vet about it--I found it useful.

Margo
 

Candice

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Thankyou Margo,

I will definitely run that by him. Another friend suggested metamucil. Yesterday I took the white salt lick out and replaced it with a mineral/salt lick and that seems to be her new pacifier. She had no interest in the loose minerals or the white block. At this mornings turn out she nosed around as she's getting bolder and more curious, but she didn't make any attempts to eat anything she shouldn't.

The muzzle idea came from my vet. He also told me that for turnout I needed to put a halter and leadline on her. When I brought up the fact that she wasn't even 24hrs old and I didn't feel comfortable doing that with a baby that young he got irritated and told me "Well you're going to have to do something"

I'm still watching her closely. So far so good.
 

Margo_C-T

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Yes, Metamucil = psyllium. Although you can 'get by with' using the human formulas (like Walmart's 'equate' generic version), the human formulations do use sugar or sweetener, and other additions, mostly for flavor---I'd get a specific equine formulation for a foal...JMHO.

Best of luck with your little 'vaccumn'!!

Margo
 

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