Spring Grass

Discussion in 'Driving Miniature Horses' started by Willow Flats, Feb 17, 2020.

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  1. Feb 17, 2020 #1

    Willow Flats

    Willow Flats

    Willow Flats

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    I always start my horses out very slowly on the lush Spring grass, but have never had a horse that has had any problems.
    When I got Annie it was at the end of summer and everything was dry here, but I was told that she had foundered slightly in the past, and had also just recovered from an abscess when she came to me. The farrier couldn't see any indication of prior problems when he did her first trim here and I told him I would start her slowly as well. I never let them out if we have frost, but He also suggested that I not let her out to graze when the low and high temps were really varied causing increase sugar.

    I tried to research prior threads to see what that temp spread would be because the spread here has been 30 degrees between the low and the high each day even though it's not freezing. I found a thread where Chandab had provided a link to wwwsafergrass.org but their website now just directs you to a facebook page.

    I just want to be extra careful with her, because she is turning out to be a very good driving horse and It would crush me to have problems with her feet.
     
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  2. Feb 17, 2020 #2

    Jeaniene Jones

    Jeaniene Jones

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    I have a PSSM horse that is affected strongly by spring or fall grass. My vet suggested the sugar is highest when the sun or temperatures are high. He thought I should let him graze once the sun went down and bring him in early morning before the sun and temperature warmed up. Not sure a mini could take that much grass. Maybe let her out early morning for a couple of hours until it warms up.
     
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  3. Feb 18, 2020 #3

    plaid mare

    plaid mare

    plaid mare

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    I only allow an hour on green grass. In the winter I allow a free graze because there is isn't much of anything to be had. My mini has always been prone to colic. I have spent many a night staying in his stall, heating pad pressed to his stomach. I bought a metal syringe, so I could force olive oil and water/baking soda down his throat. I will also use tums.I had to be creative because sadly I'm not rich, and vet visits are pricey.My mini has a yard for exercise that has no grass or forage. I take no chances when it comes to graze. I also provide warm water when it's cold, and he's out to graze. A cold stomach has caused problems in the past.
     
  4. Feb 18, 2020 #4

    Marsha Cassada

    Marsha Cassada

    Marsha Cassada

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    It's getting that time of year. In a couple more weeks I will be keeping mine on dry lot during the day and allowing them out at night. I have had no laminitis but sometimes Dapper Dan will show a little separation as he is getting older. Once the spring green rush is over, they will be able to stay out all day. It's a lot of trouble to monitor this, and boy, do they get their horsey noses out of joint being confined!
    I did not know the safegrass site was changed. That's a shame.
     
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  5. Feb 18, 2020 #5

    Cayuse

    Cayuse

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    Will Annie wear a muzzle? My welshie is metabolic and we started muzzling him last year. He tolerated it well and stuck his nose right in the muzzle when it was time for turnout.
    I keep Peanut and Cappy in a semi dry lot, they can get bits of grass but have to work for it.

    Plaidmare, sometimes GasX works really well for the beginnings of gas colic, I give my minis 1.5 extra strength ones as needed. They like the flavor and chew them up like Tums. I think my vet said 1 regular strength GasX/100 pounds of body weight. I give Peanut a dose if the weather is going to change radically or if we show as those things trigger his gas factory :confused:.
     
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  6. Feb 19, 2020 #6

    Willow Flats

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    Cayuse, Good idea, I should probably get her a muzzle. I put her hay in a nibble net because she eats so fast. Is there a brand of muzzle that you suggest?
     
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  7. Feb 19, 2020 #7

    Maryann at MiniV

    Maryann at MiniV

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    Interesting idea about GasX, Cayuse. I'll keep that in mind as we will get a few "funny tummies" when the seasons are changing.
     
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  8. Feb 19, 2020 #8

    Ryan Johnson

    Ryan Johnson

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    Muzzles are great and I am a big advocate for them. I know many do not like them but Id much rather see my minis out running than continuously confined. They can still access grass through the hole at the end, though it greatly limits intake.

    I also have the same issue here when the first autumn rains arrive. I have to be extra careful at this time too. I suffered a founder case a few years ago at this time.
     
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  9. Feb 19, 2020 #9

    Cayuse

    Cayuse

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    I have a Tough 1 Easy Breathe muzzle. I got just the muzzle and not the muzzle/halter unit. I also bought the fleece muzzle gizmo's that velcro on around the nose to pad it and that made a huge difference in comfort and kept the entire contraption a little more stable on his face. He really didn't mind it from day one and I have a suspicion that he probably wore one at some point before I got him.
     
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  10. Feb 19, 2020 #10

    Willow Flats

    Willow Flats

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    Thanks! And yes, probably making it more comfortable and well fitted with the fleece will hopefully deter her from trying to rub it off.
     
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  11. Feb 19, 2020 #11

    Willow Flats

    Willow Flats

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    Ryan, Sorry to hear you had to experience that! After your mini recovered, have you still been able to let it graze in the subsequent years?
     
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  12. Feb 20, 2020 #12

    Ryan Johnson

    Ryan Johnson

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    Absolutely , I just have to extra careful at the start of spring and also Autumn as the new growth here is really high in sugar. I usually increase hay at this time and try to avoid grazing as much as possible until it starts to die off a little. Its better to be safe than sorry , I would hate to see anyone experience founder, so sad. When a horse has foundered they are very susceptible to it again unfortunately.

    I think more horse owners are turning to muzzles these days. They are much more comfortable for the horse than they used to be. :)
     
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  13. Feb 21, 2020 #13

    plaid mare

    plaid mare

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    Thank'you, I never thought of using GasX. I didn't know they came in chewable. Sounds like a better choice!
     
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  14. Feb 21, 2020 #14

    Willow Flats

    Willow Flats

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    I love the beauty of the green spring grass, but besides the sugar worries it sure is a mental distraction this time of year when working them sometimes!
     

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