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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. 

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All the best,

 Dr. Getty 


Ask the Nutritionist: Dr. Getty's Forum for Equine Nutrition
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Drying up a mare

Let me explain my situation. I've got a mare that I've had to separate from the herd. she came into a strong heat cycle and the gelding we keep with the mares kept mounting her. He is injured on his hind, so this wouldnt be conductive to his healing, LOL. Anyway, she has a 5 month foal by her side, that we decided we would just wean (he's eating everything). We separated her in a dry lot paddock, to 1. stop the mounting and 2. to dry her up.

She's been separated for over 2 weeks and she's still producing milk and having some swollen teats. Now, on to my question (bout time right)
We've had some extream rain, and the dry lot, is now a mud lot. I've been fighting thrush on her, as well as scratches, so I want to turn her back out with the herd. How long till she's dry so the foal doesnt start nursing her again?

Thank you,


Where are you from? boise, idaho

How did you locate this forum? search web

Re: Drying up a mare

Hi Angela,

Your mare may have trouble drying up if she hears her foal whinnying for her. And, in my opinion, 5 months is too early to wean a foal. There is plenty of research to substantiate the development of bad habits, aggressive behavior, or very timid behavior in adult horses that have been weaned early and in a "cold turkey" manner through complete separation.

So, perhaps you could put them back together for another couple of months, and very slowly separate them for gradually increasing amounts of time. This will allow her to naturally become accustomed to weaning her foal on her own and she will dry up much more quickly.

Right now, she is in a lot of pain, and she is also very stressed. And, it is obvious that you care about her -- so take it a little more slowly and nature will take its course.

All the best,

Dr. Getty

Where are you from? Bayfield, CO