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Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition

   Welcome to my forum. 

Here you will find more than 6 years of questions and my answers. It is searchable and offers a great deal of information. 

Currently, I am discontinuing new questions. This may change in the future, but in the meantime, please know that It has been a true pleasure serving you. 

Take a look at my Nutrition Library and Tips of the Month for a variety of answers on selected topics. Be sure to sign up for my monthly e-newsletter, Forage for Thought

I also have a growing number of recordings on "Teleseminars on Nutrition Topics that Concern You" as well as the new, Spotlight on Equine Nutrition Series -- printed versions of favorite teleseminars.

And finally, look for my articles in a variety of local publications and online newsletters, as well as the Horse Journal, where I am the Contributing Nutrition Editor.  


All the best,

 Dr. Getty 


Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition
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orphaned foal diahrrea

I am getting an orphaned foal this week that has been taken from his mother from the start, he was supposed to go to a slaughter house. He is now four weeks old, he is being fed replacement milk from a bucket, Buckeye Milk Pellets and hay. He seems to be very alert and cantering around and playing, but he lifts his tail and has projectile diahrrea. I don't know how long he has had this and the people who obtained these foals said it will eventually go away. I need to know what to do from the start. I don't know how long he has been this way. Thank you, Stacy

Where are you from? Delaware

How did you locate this forum? Searched the web under orphaned foal diahrrea

Re: orphaned foal diahrrea

Hello Stacy,

Thank you for saving this little fella – what a sad situation.

Diarrhea in foals can dehydrate them rapidly, which can be life threatening. Foals that are with their mothers often develop “foal heat diarrhea” when the mare comes into heat, 7-9 days after delivery. This type of diarrhea is not dangerous and generally stops on its own. But, since this foal was immediately removed from her, it doesn’t sound like the same situation.

So, a few recommendations:

First, if he still has diarrhea when he arrives, contact your vet immediately. Once medical conditions are under control, you’ll want to give him a two products: Foal Response (Vita Flex) and Rejuvenex (Vita Flex). The Foal Response will provide microbials necessary for him to digest his feed. The Rejuvenex will help boost his ability to fight infections.

At this stage in his life, he will not eat a large amount of solid feed or hay. If it is possible to find a surrogate mare or even a goat for him to nurse, that would be ideal. If not, continue feeding him with the Buckeye replacement products.

Also, provide a plain, iodized salt lick and fresh, clean water at all times.

Please keep me posted on his progress. I wish you the best.

Dr. Getty