CARE OF YOUNG HORSES

QUESTION: How much hay do I give weanlings and yearlings? As in pound of feed per horse? I don’t feed grain. I think they are too fat already without the grain. Also their manure is quite runny. I’m guessing it is worms, so how much dewormer do I give them?

ANSWER: These are young horses not mature adults. Young growing horses need more feed than mature adults in order to maintain growth and develop well. I feed all the roughage (hay) to young growing horses that they can eat. In fact it is best to have hay in front of them 24 hours a day in a feeder (self fed). I do not know what the breeding is of your horses but "Self Feeding" is a good "Rule Of Thumb" except for some pony breeds which may indeed get to fat.

How much feed DEPENDS totally on the Quality and Type of hay. Is it Grass hay or Alfalfa? What is the protein content? It is first cut or second cut? Was it cut and baled at the correct time of growth or left standing to long so it is mostly stalks and stems without much nutritional quality left? Grain SHOULD be given also if the hay is not of the best quality. They also need a salt block and a Mineral/Vitamin block or supplement. Some Mineral/Vitamin blocks or supplements have the necessary amount of salt added to them so then you would take away the salt block. And very important is good clean water available to them, 24 hours a day. And a shelter or barn to protect them from the whether.

Manure can be runny for several reasons. Although worms could be the cause, generally it is the type of feed causing it. Occasionally it is disease or illness.

Use a good brand of Paste dewormer that is given Orally. Without seeing your horses, it would be pretty hard for me to be accurate on their weight. Ask around until you find a known breeder of horses the same breed as yours and telephone them to find out the approx. weight. Or even better is use a "Weight Tape" around their body, just behind the withers which gives you an approximate weight right on the measuring tape. Most feed and tack stores, even some Vet Clinic's can sell you one of these weight tapes. I think I paid $1.99 for my last one.

Deworm then again in exactly six weeks time to kill off the worms that in certain stages were not killed the first time around.
 

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