Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

Last post 03-18-2012 6:37 PM by riorider. 16 replies.
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  • 11-13-2009 8:54 AM

    Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    Just two nights ago, my around 30-year-old senior mare colicked.  My vet administered some Banamine, and she's fine now, but he said she's slightly dehydrated.  I've been trying to get her to drink more.  Although I'm not watching her 24/7, I know for sure she drinks very little--when I separate her from the herd and give her some water, it's usually hardly touched in the morning, if she touched it at all.

    She has plenty of salt.  I had provided her with a salt block, and I'm looking for a container to put some loose salt in.  She gets 2 tablespoons of salt thrown over her feed, morning and evening.  It doesn't seem to be working.

    I tried two methods I found on the Internet, one was squirt a mixture of applesauce and salt in her mouth and she should drink within a few minutes, and the other was squirt some corn syrup (or in my case, vegetable oil) into her mouth and she should drink within a few minutes.  Of course, neither of them worked.

    My mare's water is the cleanest water I think I've ever seen, and I scrub it out twice a day.  I am trying to find my water heater so I can offer her warm water in one bucket and cold water in another, but since I am having trouble finding it, I try and offer her warm water after each meal.  None of this is working.  My other three horses drink gallons and gallons of water a day, so I know it's not poor quality water she just doesn't like.  She's the leader of the herd (amazingly), so I also know she can get all the water she wants if she decides to.  The water is very easy to get to.  It's somewhere around 100 feet from the big round bale she's usually eating at, so it's not too far either.

    The only other option I can think of is to manually squirt water into her mouth with my 2 ounce syringe, but in order to get 8 gallons into her (about 1 percent of her body weight) I would have to squirt 170 syringes full of water into her mouth, three times a day.  Although I'll do just about anything to get my mare her water, I don't really have time to do this.

    Help!!!!

    "Make the wrong thing difficult and the right thing easy" ~Clinton Anderson
  • 11-13-2009 9:39 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    Electrolytes.  You can get em just about anywhere.  And in the meantime, get her to the vet and have her checked out as to why she's not drinking, she could have an abcessed tooth that hurts when water hits it, or any number of things.

  • 11-13-2009 9:43 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    Here in Miami, we worry a lot about our horses drinking enough. By far the best "trick" that I have come across is a product called Horse Quencher. It's a packet of flavored grains that you put in the horse's water bucket. And, trust me, horses go insane over the stuff! They gulp the water down and then lick the dregs at the bottom of the bucket. You can either buy individual packets of Horse Quencher or whole buckets, and they are available at tack/feed stores and online. Here's their website -- http://www.horsequencher.com/home.asp -- and they're also on the Vallet Vet site. I'm not sure if you'll be able to get some in time to help your mare drink this time, but it would be a good isea to have a few on hand should she become dehydrated again some time down the road. Good luck.

  • 11-13-2009 9:44 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    Have you tried different flavours of gatorade in her water?  Some go for that.



    Solaris -- 16 hh Appendix Quarter Horse = MY DREAM COME TRUE!
    We Are Flying Solo
  • 11-13-2009 12:05 PM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    I was just gonna say we add different flavors of Gatorade, lol, apparently thats not the secret I thought it was.. Also, if you put her in a stall with one of those "licky buckets" they will lick and lick the molasses (its a blue bucket with all kinds of nutritional stuff in it, but also some aweet stuff) and then drink, then lick, then drink. Our filly would drink down two water buckets in a couple hours, and the licky bucket keeps her from pacing in her stall too.

  • 11-14-2009 7:54 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    My 28-29ish gelding can be the same way this time of year.  He colicks frequently, and unfortunately this winter (and the lovely storm) are hitting him hard enough I am not sure how he is going to make it through the winter....

    Anyway, let me stop blubbering and tell you what I do:  My boy gets 1-2 tablespoons of salt in his meal am and pm, and i super soak his alfalfa cubes.  I also add about a tablespoon of mineral oil into each meal just to keep things slidin' on through.  He still doesn't drink quite as good as he should, but since I make a soup (it is wayyyy past the mash stage at this point) that guarntees water intake.  Also, if you add too much water to the cubes, the water still ends up with some nutrients.  I also try to give him a bucketful of gatorade (he prefers orange) once a week or so, and a bucket of Metamucil (again, orange) every so often to ensure he stays cleaned out(not necessarily for dehydration, but it your mare starts acting like Mo, it can be a difficult battle to keep them from colicking) 

    If he does go ahead on into a colick episode I use a 60cc syringe and squirt water nonstop, though a turkey baster can work as well.  It is time consuming, but as you said,  in that case you do just about anything you can to get the water in there!  Good luck with your girl, and I hope for your sake and her's that she gets through this and perks on up and slurps some water down!


    Mojo, 1980?-10/1/2010. RIP Mo-man. I know your life had many bad times in it, and I sincerely hope I made your last few years here on Earth happy and comfortable, with as much love and yummies as your huge heart desired. I love you bud, have fun running in the pastures of heaven. Until we meet again...
  • 11-14-2009 8:53 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    {I'm not sure if you'll be able to get some in time to help your mare drink this time, but it would be a good idea to have a few on hand should she become dehydrated again some time down the road.}

     

    I haven't heard of this "Horse Quencher" but it sounds like something we all should keep in mind if this same situation arises, 

     I'm sure if you called Valley Vet they could "over night" ship it to you. 

     

    Life ain't certain. Ride your best horse first--(on a mirror at the Sweetwater Tavern, VA)
  • 11-14-2009 10:42 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    Good tip, Frizzle! I just ordered an asst. pack of Horse Quenchers. I have electrolytes in my horse 1st aid kit, but the Horse Quenchers sound like a sure thing. I'll put a couple in my trailer just in case.
    Megan


    "The horse you get off is not the horse you got on. It is your job as a rider to ensure that as often as possible, the change is for the better."

    Anonymous




  • 11-14-2009 11:47 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    Yep, those Horse Quenchers are amazing and certainly a good idea to have around just in case. They come in a bunch of different flavors, so it's easy to find one that your horse will like. I was just introduced to them this year and I wish I had heard about them earlier! More tack/feed stores should carry them (hint, hint).

  • 11-16-2009 3:50 PM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

     I was also going to suggest Gatorade. You could also freeze it make a large ice cube and then put it in her water. Maybe if it encourages her to play in the water she might drink more? I might also suggest some flavored tea to put in the water. It might help.

  • 12-08-2009 8:28 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

     Gatorade, Powerade, Electroylite My horse sometimes wouldn't drink at the first few shows we took him to and he was sweating and We went the consessions and bought like 5 things of gatorade mixed them with water and he drank it really well. Now we carry the Elyectrolites and the gatorade the is powdered and you mix with water to shows. 

    The wind of heaven is that which blows between a horses ears ~Arabian Proverb

    In riding a horse we borrow freedom. ~Helen Thomson

    You know horses are smarter than people. You never heard of a horse going broke betting on people. ~Will Rogers

    If you don't want to stand behind our soldiers who are in danger zones, please stand in front of one.

  • 12-09-2009 8:30 AM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    I don't really have any additional thought to add to this, but I do have a question...Do you give just plain Gatorade or do you mix it with water, if so how much?

  • 12-14-2009 2:19 PM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

    you need to  purchase a tub of JUG. it is an electrolyte paste and works the best out of any electrolyte paste Ive used.



  • 01-07-2010 4:31 PM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

     I don't know if it has to be we just do it so that he doesn't decide to stop drinking water and will only drink Gatorade. 

    The wind of heaven is that which blows between a horses ears ~Arabian Proverb

    In riding a horse we borrow freedom. ~Helen Thomson

    You know horses are smarter than people. You never heard of a horse going broke betting on people. ~Will Rogers

    If you don't want to stand behind our soldiers who are in danger zones, please stand in front of one.

  • 01-07-2010 5:28 PM In reply to

    Re: Help Needed Getting Dehydrated Horse to Drink

     

    My mare doesn't like to drink at shows so I soak beet pulp for about 12 hours and then pour more water in so that it is like a soup. This helps get some water down her since she is such a chow hound and thinks she is just getting to eat more.

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