This morning at feeding time I was missing our older 19 year old mare, Dolly. She always comes in for breakfast even on 3 legs. I could not find her in the pasture until my husband arrived. She was standing but not walking. She has fluid coming out of her nose and mouth. We called the vet and decided to force her to walk up to the trailer. It took a while. We hooked up the trailer and got her to the vet. He said it was choke, a blockage of pellet feed in her throat. He sedated her and tubed her to flush out the blockage. She sneezed and got me and the vet coated in goo. After the blockage was removed he flushed out her tummy with H2O. She felt better instantly.
Lesson learned: Pellet feed must be ingested slowly in an older dominate mare. She ate fast with a new horse bugging her and it got stuck. Older horses also tend to not chew the pellets with older teeth. She needs to have the pellets watered into mush first. And I keep the new horse out of the stalls at dinner time. She lost a lot of weight over the winter since this photo last summer. She needs all her calories now.