alfalfa pellets - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 05-25-2012, 08:26 PM Thread Starter
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alfalfa pellets

can i use alfalfa pellets be used as a substitute for alfalfa hay? as long as i have some other hay like orchard grass?
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post #2 of 4 Old 05-25-2012, 08:55 PM
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Cubes would be better than pellets. The pellets are so finely chopped that they dont provide the same sort of roughage. I personally feed soaked cubes at each feeding to help offset the amount of hay I feed. I'm in Texas where the drought last year hit the hardest. Good hay is not only really hard to find, but extremely expensive when you can get it. My trainer feeds Hay-Rite cubes as a total replacement for baled hay and is having nice results. I'm a little skeptical to completely cut baled hay from their diets though.
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post #3 of 4 Old 05-26-2012, 12:25 AM
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I agree, I would use pellets more for an addition to their regular diet of hay/cubes to help gain weight. Hay and hay cubes have whats called "long stem" fiber which not only gives the fiber a horse needs, but it satisfies their need to chew and it takes longer to digest. The hay in cubes is chopped up to be an inch or so long, whereas hay pellets are much like a healthy type of grain really, with finely chopped hay- a bit like comparing flaked parsley verse a leaf of parsley. Pellets help gain and maintain weight but never should replace hay/cubes itself.

However, since you would use it instead of alfalfa hay, not as an addition to their diet to help with weight, I would go either with soaked cubes or stick with the hay.

“Good things come to those who wait… greater things come to those who get off their ass and do anything to make it happen.” - Unknown

Last edited by caseymyhorserocks; 05-26-2012 at 12:27 AM.
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post #4 of 4 Old 05-27-2012, 12:38 AM
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Yes, if you're feeding plenty of grass hay, but want to include some additional alfalfa (to gain weight, for example) it's not a problem.

If you're not feeding at least 1.5% of the horse's body weight in grass hay (or pasture) already then it would be better to use alfalfa hay or cubes as mentioned earlier.
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