Another vote for rejuvenaide or Buckeye Foal paste rather than injecting these foals. There are numerous experienced breeders on this board who have used one or the other of the first two products for years with great results. Why subject shy and poorly handled babies to something that is likely to make them trust their humans less?
Why subject shy and poorly handled babies to something that is likely to make them trust their humans less?
Why? I can give you a couple of reasons.
- Rejuvenaide has exactly 6 components: Copper, Zinc, Selenium and Vitamin A, D and E. Hemo 15 has a much more comprehensive list of components: Vitamin B2, B3, B12, inositol, biotin, iron, copper, cobalt, plus the amino-acids glycine, lysine and methionine. It basically has every limiting nutrient, which means it allows your horse to grow to its full genetic potential.
- Rejuvenaide is a paste. Maybe you can do it better then me, but everytime I give a horse a med in form of paste, some of it always ends up on the floor. Which means the horse isn't taking the full dose, just what you manage to get into his mouth without him spitting it. By giving a med IM (or IV, you can give it both ways), you make sure every single drop is being used.
- You only need to administer Hemo 15 once. The foal won't be hating you for injecting him ONCE. If you had to do it every single day, it would be different, but you don't. He'll be just as upset with you putting something into his mouth tthat's uncomfortable.
The most reputable breeder I know routinely gives Hemo 15 to his foals, just before weaning. It gives them the extra push to help them through this stressful time. And he has been breeding some very expensive horses, who go on to win in the dressage ring.
While I agree it's a better product, it only works if you have a foal that you can get near enough to handle and catch in the first place.
Foal Rejuvenaide Plus comes in liquid form and it is a vitamin/mineral supplement meant to be fed in addition to nursing and/or solid feed. It can be dropped in their water source which means they can drink it every day - this is more wasteful and not very accurate, but it's a good start. Or you can dribble it over grain if the foals are nibbling at grain. I've never really had any foal refuse Rejuvenaide. They seem to like it for some reason.
When you have a squirrelly, unhandled, half-wild foal, there is no way in the world you are going to get it (a) Caught, (b) Haltered and (C) standing still long enough to get jabbed by a needle without putting up some sort of fight and fight is exactly what you do not want at this point in time. You want them to learn to relax around people. And if you do happen to get it done the first time, the second time they see you coming they are already thinking they're going to get jabbed. The OP clearly said, they are unhandled foals. We get unhandled foals around here all the time. It means they are untouched by human hands and are more likely to go running to the farthest corner of the paddock the second you show your cheery face at the gate. It's only later, they learn to get curious, maybe start taking a few steps toward you and much, much later you can actually touch them.
The OP's friend has a completely set of different circumstances to what our well-handled mares and foals experience. With my foals, I can handle them extensively within a week of life. But there are some breeders who do not touch their foals. Period. Those foals coming from that situation know nothing about people and aren't exactly sure if they care to learn something about people and you have to work at convincing them you're worth being friends with. Until then, they want NOTHING to do with you.
It is far easier to try to get them to ingest the Rejuvenaide willingly via their feed or water source. Meanwhile, the owner works on gentling the foals and getting them unfreaked of the human presence. And at point when there is some trust and gentling done, it's then that it would be a good idea to give a dose of Hemo 15.
GUARANTEED ANALYSIS (per 5 cc dose) via 100% chelated minerals for ease of absorption:
Calcium min 200 mg
Calcium max 250 mg
Phosphorus min 180 mg
Copper min. 3.2 mg
Zinc min 9.3 mg
Selenium min. 0.25 mg
vitamin A min 3500 IU
vitamin D min 350 IU
vitamin E min 100 IU