What does my horse licks the metal fences and gates? Does she need some type of supplement? - Sherry N.
I wish there was a definitive answer for you but the truth is that licking metal could be an indication of any number of things. However, nutritionally speaking, it could be a lack of minerals in the diet. Or, your horse may simply be bored or even just like the taste and feel of rusty metal.
Many of today's pastures are deficient in minerals which is due to a number of reasons. In fact, all 50 states have reported mineral loss in the soil, so the chances are elevated that your horse can be mineral deficient as well. Consider adding trace minerals to your horse's daily diet. Excellent sources are fresh water microscopic phytoplankton and ocean seaweed. Kelp is also high in trace minerals as well.
Whatever you do choose to feed, do not feed isolated minerals as it encourages imbalance by creating a deficiency in another mineral. Just remember that minerals work together, so look for both macro minerals (calcium, magnesium, phosphorus) and micro minerals (selenium, iron, manganese, zinc) to help your horse assimilate nutrients.
Truthfully, micro and macro mineral support should be a regular supplement for all horses to maintain internal stability. Visit www.enviromin.com or www.4source.com if you would like to introduce minerals to your horse's diet.