Digestion - sand eaters
All horses ingest sand from time to time. This is not a problem as long as the quantities absorbed are minimal. In summer and autumn, when the grass is short, the horse grazes on the grass with its roots and the sand (or earth) which is attached to it.
It's almost inevitable. But we can limit this sand consumption by providing the horse with additional fodder when the grass begins to fail. Also check whether the horse is receiving enough minerals (to avoid geophagy due to mineral deficiency) and do not put the fodder on the ground. Of course, sandy soils pose a greater risk than clay soils.
Horses that go out into the paddock or that are released into the arena/ringing arena may “nibble” sand out of boredom. Sand is not part of the horse's feeding regimen. It can produce many harmful consequences. Sand damages the stomach, accumulates in the intestines, interferes with the absorption of nutrients and damages the digestive tract.
Colic may result, as well as discomfort, diarrhea, with sweating, adypsia.
In the event of diarrhea and weight loss, it would be useful to check whether your horse has absorbed too much sand. Dissolve a few droppings in a bucket full of water and check the next day if there is sand at the bottom of the bucket. If so, it is obvious that the horse is regularly absorbing sand.
The principle of the Sand-Gard presentation is that of a food rich in fiber which cleans the intestines and evacuates sand. Not all fibers are suitable, so oats and bran have too low a solubility percentage.
Psyllium (plantago ovata) is a 100% natural fiber that absorbs water in the intestines and transforms it into gelatinous mass. The contents of the intestines increase in volume and move more slowly, taking the sand with them.
The action is twofold:
*intestinal movements will be stimulated, so the sand will be better evacuated;
*the gelatinous mass sticks to the sand and eliminates it.
Psyllium obtains the best results in a 7-day course, possibly repeating a course every 4 to 6 weeks.
By using it longer, the intestines get used to the presence of the gelatinous mass and the stimulating effect on intestinal movements will decrease.
What to choose?
We recommend San d -Gard when sand needs to be removed, or as a preventive treatment. This product is intended for horses that are known to periodically absorb sand.
It is also recommended for horses with problems such as colic, diarrhea, etc. The product contains psyllium, but also antioxidants and plants to “heal” the intestines. With gluttonous horses, it is recommended to do a treatment every month. With horses that only periodically absorb sand, it is sufficient to do one treatment during the spring, one in the fall and another after the grazing season is over.
If your horse regularly has sand problems, he risks having his intestinal flora unbalanced. In this case, we advise you to also give him a course of Biotics combined with a course of Equi'drink Drainage .