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Discussion on Tail Biting

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Susan M. Herrick
Member
Username: Quatro

Post Number: 212
Registered: 12-2003
Posted on Tuesday, Dec 13, 2005 - 4:22 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Does anyone out there have any tips for protecting the new horse from having his tail chewed on by my other horse. Poor Clyde has bite marks on either side of his tail where Levi bites at him. They play well together, hang out together, eat together and generally get along, but Levi bites and leaves marks. Clyde will kick at him but, Levi cares not. Is there any thing I can put on his tail to deter my spoiled rotten brat from mutilating poor clyde?
suz
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Nancy Sullivan
Member
Username: Sully

Post Number: 41
Registered: 6-2004
Posted on Tuesday, Dec 13, 2005 - 5:03 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Hi Susan....I have used Bitter Apple for dogs to deter my mare from chewing on wood. I know you can apply it directly to the skin of dogs, so I can't imagine it would affect a horse adversely. I have also heard of using diesel fuel in the tail(hair only where it won't irritate the skin) when all else fails, but would hesitate myself in using it.

Respectfully,

Nancy
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Corinne Meadows
Member
Username: Corinne

Post Number: 169
Registered: 9-2005
Posted on Tuesday, Dec 13, 2005 - 5:42 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Nancy and Susan,
I prize my Arabian's mane and so do the other horses....it seems to be a great little chew toy...I have been using Bitter Apple for six months now...every threes days or so to prevent them from chewing on him....it seems also to work well on his lower jaw, also a place they like to nibble on.
I inquired with my vet about it prior to using and he said it would be fine. If I use it on his face I spray it on my hand...I avoid his eyes at all costs. For his mane I spray it on the brush. He too has been having a bit of chewing on his tail lately...don't know why I didn't think about using it there as well. I will also Give it a try.
Try it....If it's irritating to the tail then stop using it....sounds like a better alternative to something that might get the chewing horse sick.

Get the dog kind it's more bitter....had to use the ferret stuff as a stand by once, I tasted it....didn't taste bad.

The only down fall is that when you don't use it it seems the other know that...

Good luck!

v/r
Corinne
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Shari Robertson
Member
Username: Srobert

Post Number: 91
Registered: 7-2003
Posted on Wednesday, Dec 14, 2005 - 7:44 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

I have had this problem as well. Bitter apple seemed to attract the mane and tail-chewer rather than repel him. So, my solution was to mix hot pepper flakes and anything else noxious I could find (e.g. chili powder) into a tub full of vaseline. I smeared this on the main and tail every couple of days. Made a real mess, but stopped the chewers in their tracks. Didn't seem to irritate the chew-ee either as the vaseline held everything in suspension until someone took a bite of it. I don't know if it was the texture of the vaseline or the hot pepper flakes, but the chewing definitely stopped! I haven't had any problems now in three years. As an added bonus, it kept the flies away AND when I washed it out (You need warm water and soap) the mail and tail were beautifully conditioned - like an expensive deep conditioner treatment!

You could always just try the vaseline by itself - they really don't seem to like getting a bite of that particular substance!
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Sara Wolff
Member
Username: Mrose

Post Number: 1016
Registered: 1-2000
Posted on Wednesday, Dec 14, 2005 - 11:32 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Are the horses actually chewing on the manes and tails, or biting at their rumps?

If chewing on manes and tails, that's usually a sign of something lacking in the diet.
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Susan M. Herrick
Member
Username: Quatro

Post Number: 213
Registered: 12-2003
Posted on Wednesday, Dec 14, 2005 - 4:02 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Hi all, actually sara, it is a chomp, not a happy grooming, Levi can be quite the snot. My new question is, it looks like Clyde got a bit fed up and finally kicked Levi in the chest. He has a pretty good size hematoma. I have to assume this is what it is. I have heard to give him some bute and rub DMSO on him for a few days. Any other suggestions. I sprayed Clydes tail and rump with bitter apple, They are running and playing as we speak, but I don't see any tail biting or kicking yet! Clyde has scabs and fresh marks on either side of his tail, and I have seen Levi in action. He does not just nip, he will grab onto him at times, and Clyde only gets away by yanking his teeth off of his hide. What a bad boy that Levi can be!
thanks suz
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Sara Wolff
Member
Username: Mrose

Post Number: 1017
Registered: 1-2000
Posted on Wednesday, Dec 14, 2005 - 9:02 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Personally, I think with two fairly young geldings, it's a hopeless case! They love nothing better than to play, and their play is usually rough. Good luck trying to keep them looking good and scab/bruise free.

I've used DMSO after cold hosing, and the swelling goes down in a couple of days, If it doesn't, you made need to get it drained by the vet so it doesn't form a hard lump.
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