Putting Horses on Pasture - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 26 Old 04-10-2010, 01:27 PM
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 272
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One of my mares nearly choked to death just from nibbling up grass clippings that my stepfather had mowed into the paster. (he had the blower facing towards the pasture). By the time the vet got there she was nearly dead, couldn't breath. It was absolutely terrible.

As for the grass... 3 of my horses are out practically 24/7, so we don't have to worry about them. If you're actually around, you can probably leave them out longer than a half hour the first time. A lot of times they're just gonna run around like crazy and not eat any grass, and the next day go out and gorge themselves. Make sure they at least eat some before you bring them in.

It sucks that you have to be so careful, wouldn't it be a perfect world where all horses could just be horses?

"Animals are not our whole lives, but they make our lives whole."
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post #22 of 26 Old 04-10-2010, 02:51 PM
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: ontario, canada
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Originally Posted by My Beau View Post
You did. "we cut grass and feed the horse that way". That makes it sound like grass clippings. But I gotcha now, I know you can feed fresh chaff/haylage type grass, but I thought you meant lawn grass.
If you own a large farm with alot of horses the best way for them to graze fields is to have large hay fields and every day using a tractor and mower that blows the cuttings into a wagon is to go into the field and just blow a wagon full of grass and then take it to the horses and fork a certain amount into each field. That way the horses eat grass dialy but don't trample large amounts of good hay. You also don't need fencing, shelters, water in these large fields. They produce 3 crops of good feed without being trampleted to death.
Again it is called Zero Graze.
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post #23 of 26 Old 04-11-2010, 04:23 PM
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Watertown, MN
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Originally Posted by RiosDad View Post
How do you condition say 25 horses or even 40 horse with that method???
Cutting hay, hand feeding with a fork is the only way to do a large number of horses quickly and efficiently.

I have great grass clippings off my lawn. I have a bagger and I fertilize once a month so I have lush growth. But all clippings contain dirt, look closely at the clippings and fine dust and dirt are mixed it. Gritt.
That is the reason I don't feed my lawn clippings. I fill a large pick up truck weekly with gorgous green clippings and just dump them.
It is a shame but I fear for the horses.
I didn't say it was "managable" or easy for that matter, but it's still the recommended way to do it IF you are going to graze horses in the traditional manner.
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post #24 of 26 Old 04-11-2010, 04:49 PM
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Eventing Country
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Never feed lawn clippings, that is a quick way to have your horse choke. When Nelson choked a year ago, that is all I heard from people when they could associate their horses choke with mine.

Lawn Clippings. I heard from my vet as well while they were working on Nelson's choke, that they had a few already in due to lawn clippings.

After I heard stories apon stories of choke incidents, I wont feed Nelson grass clippings.

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post #25 of 26 Old 04-12-2010, 06:41 PM
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: WI
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I start mine with 15 mins the first day, and add 10-15 mins on each day till I get to 4-6 hours than they are left on for 12 hrs during the day (8 am to 8 pm)

Also when I start them on pasture I wait until the afternoon/evening, as the sugar content is said to be lower.

I am very cautious as I had a barn owner let my horses out on pasture ALL day for the first time of the season and my Gypsy Cross coliced pretty bad, vet thought he might need surgery, luckly he didnt. AND she knew he was prone to colic on rich feed as he coliced as a foal as a boarding facility decided to throw him 3 huge flakes of alfalfa hay the first day he got there....*rolls eyes*

So go slow, and the shorter the grass the richer it is.
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post #26 of 26 Old 04-12-2010, 07:35 PM
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Decker,Indiana/relocated from Texas
Posts: 9
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In the spring the grass is lush and full of water, which the horses love but can cause them to founder since the grass is so rich.

When my horses lived on a pasture at a friends house with his horses. I went out and locked them up on a dry lot at night with some hay. They where fed more hay in the morning before being let out to graze again. We would see them take a break from the grass and come up to the barn to munch hay during the day.

Every year his horses foundered because he left then on the 10 acre pasture 24/7, I did not want that to happen on my watch. We never had any health problems with this method.

I think it was during the summer when my horses moved there, the grass wasn't lush so we just turned them out and started the nightly feeding ritual. Where they where out all day and we locked them up at night. During the spring rains we left them on the dry lot and turned them out for the afternoon, bringing them up in the evenings.

Feeding the hay helps the horses feel full, where as just the lush grass wouldn't do that. Leading to founder or colic.
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