Could feed/treats cause a horse’s sides to sink in? Like, right where the quarters and the stifle are sinks in. Is this normal? She’s an older horse, I didn’t know if it had to do with age or too many treats or just too much sugar?
– Thanks, Savannah
Thanks for an interesting question! Because I’m not so sure that feed or treats—given appropriately—could cause a horse’s sides to sink in, I’m going to advise you to have your mare examined by a veterinarian to make sure nothing serious is going on.
Since she’s an older horse, I’m concerned that she’s thin or rapidly losing weight. Do you know what her body condition score (BCS) is? This is a scale is used by the horse industry to assess the degree of body fat in relation to body muscle. Scores range from 1 = emaciated to 9 = obese with 5 usually being considered ideal. I’m also concerned that at her age she may have a disease like Cushing’s, liver or kidney issues, dental abnormalities, or some other medical issue that could quickly cause her to deteriorate. Finally, I’m not exactly sure from your description where on your mare’s body she is sunken in, but I wonder if dehydration or lack of gut fill could be a factor. Because of all these concerns, getting a veterinarian out to look at her would make me (and probably you) feel a lot better!