Never really thought about this before because my horses forage for whatever little grass is in their pasture, and are supplemented twice a day with hay and alfalfa for my mare..but my husband just got done mowing some of our property and was asking why couldn't we dry the grass he just mowed to supplement and use a bit less hay (which is sometimes hard to get out here). I hand walk my horses so they can just eat the grass on their own frequently, but what are your thoughts about my husband's idea? My input was that because the grass cuttings are smaller than what is baled for hay, it could cause choke...but I am not sure that is a valid argument. Thoughts?
Do not feed your horse lawn clippings, it can cause impaction and colic.
I have read this too but never thought as to why??? Like if it was not hot or moldy and it was dry, would it hurt them to eat it?? I was cutting my lawn today also and the horses are out in the yard. I thought to myself. I hope they do not eat any of this because of what I read. Will they know better not to??? What about it causes colic??
It's most of all Indie eats during the summer is cut grass, or pasture. You just gotta make sure no gasoline or oil gets over it and no trash that sometimes gets caught up gets in the feeding stuff.
I never put it in one pile, as it can cause choke because some horses try to bolt it; instead if you have a clean area like a rubber mat or some concrete just spread it thin over the ground, or put it in a hay net and let them pick little pieces at a time. If you are keeping it for a little while instead of straight feeding it- make sure you cure it first. Lay it on a tarp and let the sun bake it and make sure you rake through it often so that all the sides get baked and it doesn't just mold.
It's a lot of work, but it does save some hay and isn't so bad if you are only feeding one horse :P
I never understood the colic thing either. They are both used to the grass here. But I am concerned about the choke issue. Maybe tomorrow I will pick up some of the clippings (all clean) and put it in a hay bay mixed with some regular hay. Would be great if this would work. Maybe someone could explain the colic issue better. I understand if they "inhale" it, it could cause choke or even impaction...but if I take precautions to avoid that, should be fine. Just not getting the colic thing.
You are also risking laminitis, as trimmed grass is extremely high in sugars - if safely dried it would still be very very rich. Trimmed grass beings to decay *very* quickly, so you'd have to spread it out over a huge surface quickly and would require a lot of work to dry safely. Personally I don't think it's worth the work and the risk.
I don't want to save it and feed it. I just wanted to make sure it would not hurt them if they ate it while/after I mowed.
When I cut our grass, it's usually really long. As soon as I fill the bag I bring it to the horses, right from the mover, and dump it out. Then I'll spread it out some. They forage thru it and it's usually gone by morning. I see it as no different than them grazing on the same grass before it was cut. It just takes less effort for them.
If I was to leave it for a while before they ate it, then I was see it as bad because it will have started to decay.
As for any garbage that might end up in it, it would be the same as what we get in hay. Yes, they could eat it but they don't. People around here get hay from ditches. Most of what I find in hay is cans and plastic bottles. I've also come across a license plate besides other things.
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I guess this is where I am really confused. I don't intend to save it...only give it freshly cut. I don't get the difference between them eating it freshly cut, or if they eat it themselves. How is this risking laminitis or colic? I am just not understanding this.
I think some feel that way because they don't have to "graze" for it and can just chow it down. Similar to a horse getting colic from eating too much grain in one sitting.
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