What's the benefit of alfalfa?
 
 

       The Horse Forum > Keeping and Caring for Horses > Horse Health

What's the benefit of alfalfa?

This is a discussion on What's the benefit of alfalfa? within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Benefit of alfalfa pellets for horses
  • Alfalfa pellets for horses calcium content

 
LinkBack Thread Tools
    05-30-2009, 11:12 PM
  #1
Weanling
What's the benefit of alfalfa?

For all of the nutrition experts on here, what are the benefits of feeding alfalfa over regular timothy / grass hay if you don't need the extra protein? Are there any?
     
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
    05-31-2009, 02:05 AM
  #2
Trained
My logic is that the nutrition in hay is in the leaves, not the stem, and alfalfa tends to be more leafy and grass tends to be more stem-y. Of course, I might be totally off. I've also heard that a horse should always get both alflalfa and timothy. Alfalfa hay and grass pellets, grass hay and alfalfa pellets. It works for my horse. O_O
     
    05-31-2009, 03:00 AM
  #3
Weanling
Feed Name..... Dm%......DE(Mcal/kg)......CP%.......LYS%.......Ca%...... P%...... Na%.......... Cl%................ K%
........................Dry..........Digestible... ....Crude.......Lysine.................Phos....... .........Chloride
......................Matter.........Energy....... .Protein.................Calcium.......... Sodium...............................Potas

Alfalfa...............90.9............2.17........ ...17.0...........0.87........1.19........0.24.... ....0.1.........0.65....................2.0
Orchardgrass....89.1............2.17...........12. 8..........0.25.........0.38.......0.25........0.0 2........0.66....................1.1
Coastal.............87.1............1.87.......... .10.4..........0.36..........0.49......0.27....... .0.17........0.67....................1.8
Oat Hay............85.0.............2.16............9. 1...........0.32.........0.37.......0.22.......... 0.33........0.08..................2.01

From Nutrient Requirements of Horses - Working Doc
Also note that calculator uses kg - which is 2.2 less than lb. So divide your lbs by 2.2 to get the kg. A 1000lb horse/2.2 = 455kg.

I have bookmarked this site and refer to it quite frequently. You may need to play with it some to get the hang of it.
     
    05-31-2009, 05:09 PM
  #4
Yearling
The benefits of alfalfa:
1. It can be used to bring up the overall protein content of a diet, for example if you are feeding grass hays that have less than 8% protein.
2. The elevated calcium content can be used to balance out feedstuff that have an inverted calcium to phosphorus ratio compared to what is needed for horses.
3. The elevated calcium content can also ease the discomfort of gastric ulcers.

Disadvantages:
1. The elevated calcium content and high protein content can lead to developmental disorders in foal and growing horses.
2. The elevated mineral content can lead to the formation of enteroliths (big stones in the GI tract) if alfalfa is fed for long periods as the sole forage.
3. Elevated protein content can cause increase in kidney issues for senior horses who already have some kidney dysfunction.

Just like anything else used in horses' diets, the key is providing appropriate amounts of nutrients in the right balance to provide optimum nutrition for your horse.
     
    06-01-2009, 02:44 AM
  #5
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryle    
1. The elevated calcium content and high protein content can lead to developmental disorders in foal and growing horses.

My 9 month old gets half a coffee can of alfalfa pellets at night, and is on orchard hay. Is that a problem?
     

Quick Reply
Please help keep the Horse Forum enjoyable by reporting rude posts.
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.


Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
From Grain to Alfalfa? cowgurlskikass Horse Health 5 02-24-2009 11:29 PM
Paint horse art necklace benefit auction wildhorsemoon Horse Artwork 1 10-09-2008 02:15 PM
Feeding Alfalfa cubes laceyf53 Horse Health 5 09-30-2008 11:08 AM
Switching to feed alfalfa hotreddun Horse Health 8 08-21-2008 02:29 PM



All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:52 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0