Return to Website

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
This Forum is Locked
Sand Colic

Hi Dr Getty

I have a mare boarded at my barn who has had a sand colic twice in the past year. She is turned out 12-15hrs per day in a grass paddock (3/4 acre) the paddock is 95% grass and she eats it to the ground. She likes the new/short shoots of grass and pulls up roots as well. She has been getting sand clear one wk of every month for the past 7 months (since the first colic). She is a good drinker and pooper and I am wondering why she still coliced even with getting the sand clear as recommended. What can we do to prevent her eating too much sand or to increase the elimination of sand from her gut. Should we increase the sand clear frequency? Use a grazing muzzle? If sand clear isn't working to eliminate sand should I continue using? What do you suggest?


Where are you from? Florida

How did you locate this forum? Online

Re: Sand Colic

Hello Patty,

I understand your frustration -- sand colic is difficult to treat and prevent. Continue giving the psyllium for one week each month.

Water and hay consumption will make a difference. It would be better for her if she were not on pasture that is overly grazed. So, if possible, remove her from sparce pasture and give her all the grass hay she wants. But, keep in mind that stress is also a factor, so if moving her will create stress (new environment, isolation from buddies, etc.) then this will defeat your purpose.

Water consumption is also critical -- she should be drinking at least 10 gallons per day. You're in Florida, so the water temperature should not be a factor, but if the night time temps get down below 40 degrees, you'll want to have her water heated to no lower than 50 degrees. Horses will significantly reduce their water consumption when the water temp is below 50.

Exercise is also very important -- she should at least be walked each day to keep gut motility adequate.

Keep me posted!

Dr. Getty

Where are you from? Bayfield, CO