Hay cost is killing me - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 12:01 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2008
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Hay cost is killing me

I have 3 horses, a 15 yr old QH mare, 15 yr old appendix gelding, and 8 yr old QH gelding. The mare and younger gelding are about 1000 lb, and the appendix 1100 to 1200lbs.

I currently feed 2 flakes of coastal hay am and pm plus 2 lbs of 12% pelleted feed 2x's per day. In addition I add a cup of BOSS to their pelleted feed 2x's a day.

Hay prices have gone up and it's killing me!

I am looking into beet pulp to help stretch my hay. My goal is to cut down to 2 flakes per day per horse, in other words by half.

Is this possible?

If I can add beet pulp, how much do I feed?? What about alfalfa cubes? or even a combo of the two. If I do the cubes...how many cubes per head would you think I need to add? What about oil to boost fat?

I know I need to do whatever I decide to do slowly. It may not even be possible to do so, and if that's the case so be it. I want them to be safe but AND nourished.

I must add that they have always been on round bales as free choice but my barn has discontinued them as the cost of the rounds has now gone over the cost for squares. This is why hay costs have now hit me hard.

The mare and younger gelding are easy keepers. The appendix is a little tougher to keep. He pulls more toward the TB side and can be a bit ribby quickly if not fed properly.

So...beet pulp? How much do I feed and how do I go about backing off the hay , if thats even possible? How many alfalfa cubes should I add?

thanks so much. Any info is very greatly appreciated
loric is offline  
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post #2 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 12:31 AM
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Riverside, CA
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Around where I live, alfalfa is cheaper than our grass hays. You can get 100+ lbs bales for $9 while bermuda is around $12, orchard is $18 and timothy is around $20. If you are OK with feeding alfalfa and can get it, you'll get more nutritional bang for your buck with it I don't know how cubes vs. hay works out price-wise. I figure I spend about $3 day per horse feeding mine orchard/bermuda hay (4 flakes a day), about 2 lbs. Purina Strategy pellets, flax meal. Goodluck to you!

Riverside, CA
danastark is offline  
post #3 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 01:05 AM
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Northern California
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Haha, I thought $9-$10 for a 3 twine bale (100+) was expensive, lol. I am here in California but I am from Texas and where I was in Texas a ton of hay was $35 delivered so yah, for only 110 lbs and it being $10 here is pretty darn expensive. Luckily though at the moment I have 1 horse so I am sorry, I am not sure what to do in your situation only because I have never tried or heard of beet pulp till recently.

"Horses Lend Us The Wings We Lack"

APHA MOMMA is offline  
post #4 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 01:29 AM Thread Starter
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Lol APHA Momma...I'm in Texas. Round bales are about 70 to 90.00. 3 string bales of coastal are running around 17.00, regular square bales are 9.00! It's the drought that's got us!
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post #5 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 01:31 AM Thread Starter
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oh 3 string bales of Alfalfa are running about 18.00 and up!
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post #6 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 01:35 AM
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Location: Northern California
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Wow, I just had my horse there in march but then again I don't know which area you are in. Hay has always been cheap in my little town of Wolfe City, about 1 1/2 hour north east of Dallas. I didn't really know a draught was going on only because when I called a couple of weeks ago my grandmother was telling me she was tired of the rain, lol, hmmmm........... and I was looking on craigslist to compare prices a couple days ago on hay and it was still really cheap compared to here, lol. Dang, I swear Texas is just a different country with many parts to it, lol.

"Horses Lend Us The Wings We Lack"

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post #7 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 01:51 AM Thread Starter
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lol Yes, east Texas has been lucky. I'm in central Texas and everyone around here is hauling in hay from the east. My barn just got a truck load in from Athens today. 8.50 for a square bale (regular 2 string).
loric is offline  
post #8 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 11:05 AM
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Florida
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Hay around here is about 7.00 for a bale but my sister just started cutting the big round roles and is selling them for 35 so i got a few of those.

i have my bloodhound & my horses what more can a girl ask for?
bloodhoundmom28 is offline  
post #9 of 9 Old 09-01-2009, 12:29 PM
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Lancing, TN
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Alfalfa cubes are easily transported and handled by feed stores and are generally convient; however, many times they are very expensive compared to baled alfalfa. Just do the math! $12/bag(or insert your current price) x 40bags per ton = $480/ton for pelleted alfalfa. If you can get baled alfalfa for $400/ton, guess what you are saving money!

Your feelings and thoughts and bathroom scales don't cut it when trying to weigh hay bales. Buy it by the ton on certified scales!
Production Acres is offline  

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