warning about Flax seed

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Well-Known Member
Dec 13, 2011
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I am postng this only to help people , and warn them about too much flax seed. At this time of the year i give my horses ground Flax seed, like many of you. I left the bag in the tack -feed room shut the door and went on to clean stalls. My 39 year old Donkey got into the tack room and helped himself to a variety of feed, no problem except he ate a few mouthfuls of whole steamed Flax seed. The following 6 hours was a complete nightmare for me and Der Willi , here is our story ( and it wasnt a lot of seed either)

willi was coughing, choaking, farting , and flax seed was comming out his nose. Ears flat, body shaking , and he would lye flat out on the ground like he was going to die ( he is a little dramatic) I decided the best help was a farmer down the road that knows Der willi personally, and studies homeopathic medicine for livestock. While i waited for him I used a syrenge to flush as much seed out of his mouth as possible. The seed became sticky, and was under hip lips, and stuck way up in his gumline. It was obvious he was in pain, and something was wrong, i thought maybe it was stuck in his throat , and it would cut off his airway, or that he got seed in his lung. The farmer arrived with a crew of children, and a handful of sticks. The sticks were Hollander, just under the bark is a serum that tasts bitter, it makes the horse or cow druel, cough, and swallow. Naturally willi being a donkey , he knew those sticks tasted bad , and refused to bite down on them , so they were twirled , and rubbed against his teeth , for about 30 min. This made him cough out most of the rest of the seed and 3 large balls of it that were stuck together and very hard . We mixed 5 little pills in water and gave it to him , and then I sat with him while he coliced over the next 3 hours. Donkeys are smart, he knew exactly what to do for his colic, he walked the entire time , and would take 15 min naps by resting his head in my lap, then back to walking, so I didnt have to do anything but be there for him. By about midnight he seemd a lot better , head up , gums pink, ears up , and head butting , so I knew he was over the colic.

This moring he is fine ...

I did not realize how dangerous whole Flax seed could be for horses, especially older horses that are not chewing. Please keep your flax seed where there is no possibility that your horses could get to it, and use it sparingly , after its has been grounded to a powder. This was very scary for us , I dont want anyone else going through it .




Wow that is interesting. So glad all turned out well and a big
to your farrier friend and his "sticks".

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