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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug. 9, 2002
    Location
    Fairfax, VA USA
    Posts
    5,724

    Default Coprophagia in a 4 1/2 month old foal? Cause for concern?

    I've observed my filly doing this on several occasions (most recently today), and wondered whether this might indicate a dietary imbalance of some kind.

    She did it when she was first born (during the first week or two), and I ignored it because I knew it was a natural thing (getting that "good bacteria" into the gut, acquiring mom's immunities, etc.), but I wonder whether this behavior should have faded by now.

    She has been nibbling on hay since she was a week old (obviously couldn't digest it at that age), and has always had a rather voracious appetite for hay; she gives her mom a run for her money when it comes to hay consumption--which is saying something! The BM where I board them hasn't started creep feeding her--at this point she just shares her mom's grain (not ideal, but she will be weaned in about a month, so that should make things easier in terms of getting the "age appropriate" nutrition into her.) She is in good body condition, but is not fat; I can feel her ribs.

    She is very curious and very oral, and licks the boards of her T/O field (but she and her dam are both VERY "licky", they also lick humans--so I don't know whether or not this is significant.)

    Thoughts?
    "Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies."

    "It's supposed to be hard...the hard is what makes it great!" (Jimmy Dugan, "A League of Their Own")



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul. 5, 2002
    Location
    FL
    Posts
    8,344

    Default

    It is normal for a foal to eat mom's manure. In fact when I was raising an orphan I was told by the vets at my university vet school clinic to put fresh manure from a mature mare where she could get to it until she was strong enough to go out with her grandma.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov. 28, 2003
    Location
    MO
    Posts
    4,582

    Default

    I wouldn't worry at all. I've seen foals of all ages do this and it is perfectly normal.
    Courage is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm."
    --Winston Churchill
    https://www.facebook.com/pages/Hills...h/112931293227
    www.HillsideHRanch.com



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug. 9, 2002
    Location
    Fairfax, VA USA
    Posts
    5,724

    Default

    Thanks, this is reassuring
    "Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies."

    "It's supposed to be hard...the hard is what makes it great!" (Jimmy Dugan, "A League of Their Own")



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