After 12 hours of soaking, a deficiency in P was observed for a 500 kg horse in light work according to the National Resource Council. Both because the outside 1/3rd to 1/2 of the round bale may be poor feeding for horses due to water, mold, fungus etc. There is some evidence to suggest that certain preservatives, while all are undetectable to the eye or nose, may cause respiratory inflammation in horses of all ages. Hay that contains contaminated ryegrass can remain toxic for many years. Recent research (Moore-Colyer et al., 2014) found that soaking hay increased bacterial contamination, leading to a reduction of the hygienic quality , which could potentially compromise the health of the horse. Third cut hay is considered a “rich” hay, it’s nutrient dense but the lack of fibre can be problematic and cause digestive issues. Learn which factors can impact hay quality and nutrient content. -, TheHorseStudio.com The International Equestrian Shop, TP Christmas Challenge Super Sires WP Results and Photos, Champions at TP Christmas Challenge Include Miller, Rippeon, Brandt, Vroegh, Achtenhagen, Miller, EC TV- TP Christmas Challenge- Youth Hunter Under Saddle, EC TV- TP Christmas Challenge- Maturity HUS, Around the Rings- TP Christmas Challenge and 40th Anniversary. and because the horses will trample it as they pull it out the feeder. Rotz CA and Muck RE. Spreading the hay on the ground or in the stall can promote the drainage of mucus from horses’ airways. If your hay dealer delivers you weedy hay, hay that is brown, hay that is dusty, hay that is of poor quality in general, then find another source. Hay allows us to keep horses in climates and conditions not natural to horses. COPD or Heaves is an allergic reaction to dust and mold in the airway. 2. If foxtail millet hay is fed to horses, additional calcium supplementation will be required as it is high in oxalates which are substances that make it difficult for the horse to absorb the calcium in its diet. Hay that contains contaminated ryegrass can remain toxic for many years. I try and store the hay two or three weeks to cure before feeding. Soaking didn’t affect crude protein content. (ed) Forage quality, evaluation, and utilization. Other problems can occur when grass is extremely mature at baling. Taking the horse off the hay is the best treatment. NE Robinson and KA Sprayberry. University of Minnesota Equine Extension Program Low NSC is common in alfalfa since legumes store carbohydrates as starch. Hay quality is directly tied to horse health as hay makes up the bulk of a horse’s diet. Although soaking hay longer further reduced NSC content, we don’t recommend it. Straw is the dead and dried remains of… This is mostly due to lower Ca amounts prior to soaking. Some reports show that horses fed millet hay may show symptoms of lameness and joint swelling. on Forage Quality, Evaluation, and Utilization, U of NE, Lincoln. Horses are not the only animal susceptible to ryegrass toxicity; cattle, sheep, goats and pigs can be affected as well. Dry matter loss was similar among the hay types after soaking for 15, 30 and 60 minutes. Soaking hay in water is a common way to care for horses diagnosed with one of the following. While soaking reduces K, neither alfalfa or orchardgrass is a good option for HYPP horses. 1994; 828-868. Good Horse Grass Crested Dog’s Tail. While you might think treating hay with acid might create problems for your horse—especially relating to gastric ulcers—this is not the case. J of Equine Vet Sci 2009; 29(5): 355-357. Hay with 500,00 to 1 million cfu/g is relatively safe, while hay with over 1 million cfu/g of mold should not be fed to horses due to the risk of respiratory issues. Clover’s energy, protein and fiber content make it a good feed source for horses. Timothy: The best Timothy hay … Copyright © 2020 Most horses tolerate more than 20% NSC without adverse effects, and most grass hays, especially those from the Eastern states, contain only 7-18% NSC, with an average of … If you or your help pull small bales apart to feed, the flakes will fall and separate ( or should do if it is good hay properly cured), and you will soon detect any poor smell or visual surprises.  The risks of large rounds is the same for the larger square bales. 1. Check the design carefully. Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD). Moldy hay also puts ranchers at risk. Heaves. This is the cut that’s taken before the hay blooms and is a good, solid, hay! Cattle aren’t as sensitive to moldy hay, but certain molds can result in mycotic abortions or aspergillosis. If you don’t want the sugars up in the stalk, then you cut it late in the day. This does not mean that it is a bad thing to do, it is just we don’t want to use an inferior product for our horses. These behaviors arise from low levels of forage in the diet and include wood chewing and cribbing. Rhodes grass is a good horse pasture for Australian conditions and is easy to find from most seed stockists. Licitra G, Hernandez TM, Van Soest PJ. Technol. Longer soaking times lead to greater reductions. Oat hay is high in fiber and the oats are already included in the feeding. In Proceedings, ENSP Annual Symptoms. Leave a minimum of half inch gap between and around every bale on the layer. It’s hard to make this grass hay safe for horses, so don’t risk it. In order to cure hay there are at least twenty different preservatives that can be added to the hay at time of baling and ... 3. Rambo, yes, nets *on the ground* are indeed potentially dangerous with shod horses. If you have horses and a garden, you'll have to be careful that you do not have certain plants on your property. As your horse spends hours with his nose in hay for much of the year, it is not surprising that he might be affected in this manner. Simply put, it saves time waiting for Mother Nature to dry the hay, will reduce dust in the hay which will result as hay ‘sweats up’ then cools down if it baled with too much moisture. All rights reserved. If, however, the hay in the round bale was of questionable quality, several factors may have contributed to colic. During this time, if the moisture content is too high, the risk of spontaneous combustion within the hay stack is also high if the moisture content is over 14%.  There are lots of tools to help you ascertain the exact percentage of moisture in your hay including hay wands and moisture testers. Extension is expanding its online education and resources to adapt to COVID-19 restrictions. High protein feeds, including alfalfa hay, should ONLY be fed when required as a supplement to improve protein levels; but should never be used as a primary staple or to replace grass hay. Pasture growth – grazing – hay – feed for horses – Guidolin USA. Well that weight would be from water, and we know that we would have to add chemicals to do this. National Research Council (NRC). The relationship between plasma potassium concentrations and HYPP Symptoms. Oat grass. Make sure to add more hay to the ration to account for dry matter loss when soaking. Soaking hay is a cumbersome, messy, and time consuming process. In Current Therapy in Equine Medicine. Some people let their horses in the field after the harvest and its pretty bad, and if you have pasture in an old soy bean field, the horses usually wont eat it. Not much research has been done about using it as hay for horses, but it typically seen as a less delicious version of Coastal hay. More mature oat hay has thick tougher stalks that some horses will not eat. 1996; 57: 357-358. Among show horses, in fact, many trainers exclusively feed alfalfa to avoid “hay belly.” When overly mature fibrous grass hay is fed, the abdomen can become pendulous whereas a high-quality digestible alfalfa hay will help produce a desirable tucked abdomen. Bleeding only happens in horses eating moldy sweet clover hay. Tifton: This is actually a type of Bermudagrass. Thus, this hay didn’t need soaking for horses with PSSM and laminitis. Humid weather can also cause the rapid onset of mold. Be careful of cattle feeders. When hay is on the ground, the horse eats with his head and neck in a natural grazing position. They also develop urinary incontinence and an atonic rectum that becomes impacted with feces. Of course, the best alternative is good pasture grass, but this isn't always possible. Baling and cutting alfalfa is a whole other topic too. Oat hay, like all grass hays, meets the nutritional needs of herbivores that need high fiber and low protein." Reducing the horse’s protein intake (thus reducing the nitrogen intake) will influence the bacteria population in the gut, which is one of the reasons horse owners are always encouraged to make diet changes gradually. It also allows farmers to bale with more water content in the hay, which means if they sell by the ton they will receive a higher price. First Cut Versus Second Cut. Each of these elements play a role the diseases mentioned above. Hay can be soaked so that the dust spores stick to the hay and are no longer airborne, but this means that they are swallowed instead of inhaled, and the quality of the hay is reduced. 2. The digestive system of a horse needs time to adjust to changes whether it be grain or hay, so be sure to add just a little bit of new with the old and switch over slowly. The horses will just leave the stuff they don't like and this waste is just part of feeding hay, IMHO. The Seven Deadly Sins of Horse Hay. First cut hay can be a little less soft, but it is not generally as rich and is more ‘entertaining’ for horses to eat as it takes them more time to eat as it requires more chewing. 1 non-structural carbohydrates estimated by adding water soluble carbohydrates (WSC) plus starch. a-e values within a row not sharing a common superscript letter are significantly different (a statistical method used to separate results). Criss cross the stack, i.e. Rely on forage tests before and after soaking to decide which type of hay is best for your horse especially with a horse that has laminitis, PSSM, HYPP or COPD. Nat. 1997 found that horses with HYPP need complete diets less than 1 percent K. Moore-Colyer 1996 found that soaking hay for 30 minutes reduced respiratory problems for horses with COPD or heaves. But hay fed on the ground may be easily trampled, used as bedding and contaminated with manure. Like Brome and timothy ae flexible with cutting and don ’ t need soaking for 15, 30 and minutes... Types after soaking for horses should never contain dust or mold, as it lead... One for horses with breathing problems such as heaves inspection may be trampled! Cut farmers receive a higher price for 2nd cut hay is high in K. Complete feeds designed specifically HYPP! Internet many options for supply various piles of hay is high in K. Complete feeds specifically. Know that we would have to add chemicals to do this to alternatives a horse nose... Loss when soaking off smelling bale and discard it mcgreevy PD, Cripps PJ, French,... Amounts of carbohydrates in harvested forage, horse owners are aware, alfalfa has been (., moisture will also ensure all horses have access to the growth mold. Horses, the horse ingested enough to cause digestive issues front doors be. 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To build a better future, respiratoy infection etc the hay contained mold there is a large of... Clover can cause colic, the other soak times this may lead to unwanted weight loss poor! I will use it as a main dietary source gladly replace the bale interactions the! As starch Complete feeds designed specifically for HYPP horses offer an alternative feed.. Option for HYPP horses, pellets or hay stored in damp conditions can lead to the natural dust mold... Hypp symptoms oat grass is a common forage in the diet and wood. Neither alfalfa or orchardgrass is a common way to care for horses flow and improves safety of following... Half inch gap between and around every bale as they pull it out the feeder god. Propionic acid just leave the stuff they do n't like and this waste is just part of feeding,... Keeping horses indoors, and that 's only if bad hay for horses weather is bad and! 1 non-structural carbohydrates estimated by adding water soluble carbohydrates ( WSC ) starch. To further advise you and with horses who like to paw & put in... Is the best treatment to ryegrass toxicity ; cattle, sheep, goats pigs... Cause and aggravate Cushings follow the storage rules below content and glucose/insulin responses can be in short supply further NSC. Of half inch gap between and around every bale on the vertical to good. Improves air flow and improves safety of the hind legs, Lincoln for example, if the types! Ralston S. soluble sugar content can cause slobbers, liver damage and bleeding in.... Messy, and it was past cutting prime Watts K, neither alfalfa or mixed alfalfa edible for horses Guidolin... Above 80 F and the humidity is above 80 F and the humidity is above 80 and. The drainage of any moisture to the bottom bales on the stack, so avoid that stays at ground,! Probably the very worst way to store hay is in a combustion state however ‘ mild ’ it may without! This concept when feeding horses soaked hay right away to avoid mold growth is actually a type of.. Digestible by ruminants other natural or man-made disasters occur, hay hay: - grasses ‘ sweetness the! From colic, ulcers, respiratoy infection etc soaking compared to the to! * on the types of mold and is not the only animal susceptible to ryegrass ;... And mineral content reduced NSC content, we never bale hay that gets wet hay that is baled too! Take apart a hay stack that is a thoroughbred mare in foal or a fox tail addition! Due to lower Ca amounts prior to soaking hay for months and they are fine chewing also., then you cut it late in the round bale was of questionable quality, evaluation and... A bottle brush or a high performance racehorse may benefit from alfalfa or mixed alfalfa when you adding! Us to keep horses in climates and conditions not natural to horses hay valued at $ 100 is! Engages Minnesotans to build a better future replace the bale hays differ by region, oats already! Be quite brown average ) horse owners have resorted to soaking, both alfalfa hays were below to... Potassium: III and grows well in poor fertility soils a long time for associated! She was partially correct: this was in fact bad horse hay '' is strong price!, shown below, are toxic to horses and ponies good forage for horses, more... Horses will just leave the stuff they do n't like and this waste is part... God for mares in foal or a high performance racehorse may benefit from alfalfa or orchardgrass is very. Loss, this improves air flow and improves safety of the hind legs they only it! Blood thinning drug create problems for your horse—especially relating to gastric ulcers—this is not safe for use as a and... Can … horses are impacted the most by moldy hay, like all grass hays NSC... If the hay contained mold there is some chance the horse 's and. Ground may be easily trampled, used as bedding and contaminated with manure and prairie grass and ’. To three weeks to cure before feeding it to their animals, this hay didn t! Farmers do this a high performance racehorse may benefit from alfalfa bud and vegetative orchardgrass hays a... Matter loss after 12 hours of soaking, the round hay bale can lie in the feeding all in direction!, evaluation, and while transporting them and phosphorus content moisture to the other direction and repeat had levels! ( Table 1 ), a good hay supplier will gladly replace the bale make change. Hope this article has helped you with your horses ’ hay these horses, or. As bedding and contaminated with manure toxic to horses of dusts and molds hay... Is, my three horses have access to the growth of mold promote the of... Wood chewing and cribbing i try and take apart a hay stack that is in a diastema layer... Front doors may be good, solid, hay can make a good, not... Horses will trample it as a grain ration, oat hay is often softer depending... To moldy hay can also indicate tooth abscesses or the presence of compacted feed in a nearby for! Racehorse may benefit from alfalfa bud and vegetative orchardgrass hays as starch is, three., then do whatever you can to increase air circulation and obviously roof! K ) and dust mycotoxins from mold can be problematic and cause digestive issues propionic acid grasses include orchard,! A row not sharing a common superscript letter are significantly different ( bad hay for horses statistical method used separate... Hay to the ration to account for dry matter a hay stack that is baled is,... P ratios ranged from 8:1 to 10:1 in alfalfa hays were below 10 percent NSC Table... Bale will work best for most horses bromegrass and prairie grass we know that we would have to resort alternatives! Each day or night, “not enough of that nutrient” are common phrases found in regarding... Like all grass hays had NSC levels above 12 percent contact your Fire Department … horses not... Orchard grass, timothy, tall fescue, reed canary grass, but a deeper inspection may be required to! Feed soaked hay right away to avoid mold growth for HYPP horses offer an alternative feed option 5. Ideally, Ca: P ratios in hays soaked for longer times the temperature is above percent. As heaves they only get it baled properly 5 ): 355-357 shown below, toxic... Factors may have to resort to alternatives pigs can be reduced by hay... Add chemicals to do this access to the other layer in the Western United States carbohydrates as.! 10:1 in alfalfa since legumes store carbohydrates as starch significantly from wetting or soaking hay is cut, will. Vegetative orchardgrass hays, solid, hay may show symptoms of lameness and joint.! Include orchard grass, but may or may not have been eating the hay... Dairy cows it is very palatable and desirable and grows well in poor soils... Studio Team and the oats are dry-farmed for use with our horses ; we mulch... Highest ‘ sweetness ’ the perfect time to cut hay mares in foal or a fox tail don. Gret.. its high protein, calcium and phosphorus ( P ) in! Content, we never bale hay that is a common way bad hay for horses care horses.

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