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Is this enough Hay? Too much?

This is a discussion on Is this enough Hay? Too much? within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • How much hay to give 11hands horse
  • Is 12 pats of hay too much for 2 horses

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    12-21-2011, 01:25 AM
  #11
Yearling
My horse gets one flake twice a day and alittle grain just because he gets supplements
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    12-21-2011, 01:35 AM
  #12
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by nyg052003    
i had a guy today say his horse and small pony went thru a round bale in 2-2 1/2 wks. I have heard others say it last their horse about a month. I also heard others say that you can control feed the way
This isn't quite true.

Horses are grazers and need constant access to forage like grass or hay in order to keep their hind gut working.

If you ration your horses hay and then give them a round bale, they will over feed for a few weeks as they aren't used to the constant access. Then they will sow down and trickle feed as they should once they realise that hay is constantly available.

So the first month or two is more expensive until they settle. Most people go back to rationing though as they think it's too expensive.

If your horse is stabled then, IMO you are underfeeding it hay judging from the pictures.
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    12-21-2011, 06:59 AM
  #13
Weanling
Horse will eat between 1.5 and 3 percent of their body weight in dry matter daily depending on age. A 1000 pound horse will require up to 30 pounds of hay (should always be about 2/3 in hay) and grain daily. Hay typically weighs roughly (give or take) 5 pounds per flake so 4 flakes of hay would weigh roughly 20 pounds allowing for up to 10 pounds of grain daily (again depending on quality of hay and horses condition) so you do need to know how to recognize what the horses needs are based on its condition. You should also weigh the grain so you know you are not overfeeding.
In some cases good quality hay is all a horse will need to stay healthy, in others grain is very neccesary so again you need to know the difference, and feed grain in moderation to a healthy horse so you do not overfeed. You should always ask the previous owner what feeds the horse was receiving prior to purchasing so you don't upset the horses digestive system with feeds it is not accustomed to.

A good rule for a new horse and new to horses owner is to get your vet out and allow them to give you advice with a feeding schedule.
     
    12-21-2011, 07:28 AM
  #14
Started
Round bales will also depend on the size... I have bought them that weigh as little as 800lbs and big bales that way in at about 1600lbs. Which one do you think they eat faster. My horses have 24/7 access to hay. Grain is a treat for them and they get very little.
     
    12-21-2011, 07:46 AM
  #15
Yearling
My 3 have their faces buried in 2 giant round bales of mixed grass hay and I suppose they are still finding some grass because I see them grazing out there where it isn't snow covered yet.
The round bales have lasted me a little over a month now.

Grain? Not a real comparison because I use a ration balancer top dressed on hay pellets and a little pelleted rice bran. One of my horses is a 37 year old, 11 hand curly and she is an air fern. The grass pellets allow me to make sure her sweet old bones get plenty to eat without her weight gain going off the charts. The other is a small horse/large pony that is also an easy keeper. The third is a 16 hand mare that I've only recently been given. She was a walking skeleton. She gets a little senior feed and some extra rice bran along with her grass pellets. I stand guard out there to make sure the pony doesn't get into her extras.

Good clean hay is all a lot of horses really need. Plenty of good hay. The grain is just vitamin and calorie insurance.
     
    12-21-2011, 09:10 AM
  #16
Weanling
Thanks for all the replies. I will be taking my scale out there today to weigh the bucket and see how much I was off. I will get him weighed when I take him to the vet but I will just for now go ahead and give him at least 10 lbs per feeding of hay and cut back on the grain. He also grazes too , have some rye grass planted and gona put him on that this weekend. In the area I keep him during the day, he has all that pretty much aten down so not really much at all to graze on.

At nite he goes back in the stable/stable yard which is a 30x30 paddock but he is either in the front or back pasture during the day
     
    12-21-2011, 09:38 AM
  #17
Showing
If you are riding hard every day, then the amount of grain you are feeding is OK - otherwise it is too much. I would cut back on the grain and increase the hay. If you are not feeling ribs, then you are certainly not under feeding, but I would just change up the proportions.

I have always fed by weight not volume. My 1,200 lb horse, Bonnie, gets only 1lb of feed x2 per day, the rest is nightly turn out and a couple of flakes of hay during the day in the paddock. We ride once or twice during the week and a long trail ride on the weekends.
     
    12-21-2011, 10:07 AM
  #18
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by iridehorses    
If you are riding hard every day, then the amount of grain you are feeding is OK - otherwise it is too much. I would cut back on the grain and increase the hay. If you are not feeling ribs, then you are certainly not under feeding, but I would just change up the proportions.

I have always fed by weight not volume. My 1,200 lb horse, Bonnie, gets only 1lb of feed x2 per day, the rest is nightly turn out and a couple of flakes of hay during the day in the paddock. We ride once or twice during the week and a long trail ride on the weekends.
I really only get to ride on sundays or saturdays right now and 2 hours so far at most in the 5 months I have had him.

I'm assuming when you guys say flakes that's from the square bales? I get the round ones and just pull off it
     
    12-21-2011, 10:47 AM
  #19
Yearling
Flake is kind of meaningless. It depends on the tension on the baler. For years I got nice hay from an old gent who's baler was a little persnickety. Some bales had big flakes, some had little flakes and everything inbetween.
     
    12-21-2011, 11:24 AM
  #20
Banned
Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe4d    
put hay out, when it is gone add more. It isnt rocket science. People tend to way over think this. If you put out hay in the AM and it is all gone by the afternoon you didnt put enough out. If there is a bunch left and they are just picking through it getting the good parts you put out too much,
Unless you have a bunch of easy keepers that are chow hounds, then this does not apply. No matter how much people want to tell you it does.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SueNH    
Flake is kind of meaningless. It depends on the tension on the baler. For years I got nice hay from an old gent who's baler was a little persnickety. Some bales had big flakes, some had little flakes and everything inbetween.
It used to drive me crazy when kids feed and they can not accommodate the difference in flake sizes. They have been told Dobbin gets 3 flakes. When the bale is giving flakes that are only an inch thick Dobbin is not getting enough hay. Dobbin really likes it when the flakes come off and are 9" thick and the feeder girl still gives him 3 flakes.


Glad you are getting your scale out to the barn. There really is no way to know if you are giving enough hay if you are not weighing it.
     

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