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Common Problems in an Old Horse - Facts and More!

13th November, 2018 1508
As a horse grows old, there are many health concerns that might bother you as an owner. Owing old horses can be very upsetting at times and more so when you see your jolly old companion weakening and fading away. However, today the horses can live happily while retaining their health for a long time. Some horses in the world today are 30 and they are still doing fine. The credit definitely goes to the horse owners who have taken such good care of their horses even at their old age.


A horse is considered to be geriatric at an age of 20, according to veterinary bodies and NCR. Generally, a horse becomes senior right after the age of 15 years. In fact, there are many horse owners who give an extra diet and specially made the feed to their ageing horses to keep them healthy. However, that is not all you should be doing. There are many more steps that you must take in order to keep your old horse healthy.


You must start following the guidelines as soon as your horse becomes 15 to 16 years old. You, as the master, should start paying extra attention to the condition of the horse so that it maintains a healthy weight and stains in good shape as well. It is very important to maintain the consistency of the health of an old horse in order to help the horse in keeping fit. As the horse attains 20, the body condition will deteriorate, and that needs to be taken good care of. Some of the commonly encountered problems with old horses are:

  • Feeding an old horse is a great problem it often becomes challenging for the master.
  • Dental problems are also very common as a horse grows old. As the horse grows old, the teeth tend to wear off some might as well fall off. Decayed teeth and problems in chewing food are commonly experienced by horses post 16 years of age. This will lead to impaired functioning and might cause problems in absorbing food and essential nutrients. Dental problems often lead to bad breath, rotten teeth, nasal discharge and chalking tendency. These are some of the common symptoms that you should take care of.
  • Worm infestation is a very commonly occurring problem with old horses. Although it applies to horses of all age groups, it is more prevalent in ageing horses. Horses at their old age require worming within 6 to 8 weeks.

  • The digestive disorder also becomes common as horses fail to break down food effectively due to reduced esophagus functions and salivation. Calcium absorption is affected at this stage and there is a significant decline in the level of phosphorus and fiber digestion.
  • The immune system becomes weaker with age and horses fail to fight illnesses as efficiently as they normally do. This exposes a horse to increasing risks of health complications and illnesses.
  • Arthritis is a very common problem in horses when they are ageing. This might restrict a horse from grazing and walking. Arthritis in horses also needs treatment.

Old Horses Common Problems

Old Horses Common Problems - Common Problems in an Old HorseA horse is considered to be geriatric at an age of 20, according to veterinary bodies and NCR. Generally, a horse becomes senior right after the age of 15 years.

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