Is dusty hay ok? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 08-17-2010, 03:18 PM Thread Starter
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Is dusty hay ok?

I am getting some square bales of hay for Berdi. I found somewhere where I can get bales for $4. Usually they are $5 or $6. Only catch is some might be a bit dusty. They were rained on however they were baled dry. I talked to the people and they said that they are perfectly suitable for horses and have very little dust if any. What do you think? I need quick answers as I'll be calling them back tonight probably! Thank-you! :)

Last edited by Equus_girl; 08-17-2010 at 03:20 PM.
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post #2 of 6 Old 08-17-2010, 03:24 PM
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It depends, is it mold dust? or just, well... Dust? I'm thinking if it's just dust than you can water it. And if it's moldy than you can toss the moldy and feed the good stuff off the bales.
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post #3 of 6 Old 08-17-2010, 03:25 PM
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Personally, I am super suspicious of dust. Dusty hay was fed to my mare, and now I'm fighting a serious nasal infection, and I'm not convinced it wasn't from that hay.
Some people rinse, some flake it out and dust it out, but I'm wary.
I've been buying hay that was round baled, then they unroll it and bale it while I wait, and can see to make sure it's not dusty. $6.50 a bale, beats the $21 a bale paid for the two bales of pristine western coastal three strand I used while she was sooo snotty.
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post #4 of 6 Old 08-17-2010, 03:48 PM
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If we get a dusty batch of hay we soak it in a bucket of water, and then hang it up to dry for the rest of the day. Some horses are fine with it, mine has never had any problems, I soak as a precaution really. My friends horse is very sensitive to dust, she has to get specially treated hay for him and still soaks it.

You might want to consider the environment around them too, I imagine if you feed it out in the open air it might not be such a problem, but in a stable with (potentially) dusty bedding could make it worse.
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post #5 of 6 Old 08-17-2010, 05:12 PM
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Around here - ALL hay is dusty - at least to a certain extent. Even the hay we cut and bale ourselves - so we KNOW there is no mold, has dust. I think it mostly comes off of the dirt roads and plowed fields. If it's really dusty, I just water the bale a bit. We feed round bales - and I don't water it enough to really get it wet, just to settle the dust. I may have to go out the next day and water it again because the horses have eaten what I watered the day before.

That can be a problem for horses that are sensitive to the dust. I haven't had that problem, but a neighbor did and had to resort to feeding bagged hay - pellets, cubes, ground, chopped or whatever, but it had to be bagged. It was expensive, but he loved that old horse.

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post #6 of 6 Old 08-17-2010, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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Thank-you for all the replies! The hay has no mold in it - just some dust. I think I will get it and just soak it or shake it if it seems dusty.
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