My horses are on, basically, a dry lot. Very little grass. The horses are fed grain and hay during the day. When I move them I'm going to confine them to a 1/2 acre lot at first but there is 5 acres of nice grass at the new house.
Can I just throw them out on the grass? Or should I stall them and slowly let them get used to it? Gradually increase turn out.....? Should I continue to feed them hay and grain? Or just grain since they will be on grass now? I don't want to sound stupid, I've never had horses on my property before.
Is it rich, green grass? I think they should be fine since its just about summer the grass will be a little bit drier
It depends on the rich-ness of the grass, and the kind of grain your feeding. If the grass is green, you need to introduce them gradually. Imagine you lived on nothing but plain buttered toast for years and then the day came when you pigged out on a much richer food, like a steak. You wouldn't feel very good. Start small, 15 minutes, half an hour, an hour, two hours. If the grass isn't that green but still green, you can start out longer and make bigger leaps, it's just the really rich stuff that you gotta watch out for.
As far as hay and grain goes, they will have to be on a LOT of grass to warrant dropping hay. When my grass pasture gets up to par and I put my horses on it, they are only on it during the day and I only feed hay at night because I bring them into my "dry lot" over night. I feed grass hay and alfalfa pellets in the summer, and alfalfa hay and grass pellets in the winter, and supplement as needed.
Definitely do a slow change like you would do with any change of diet.
Thanks for the info. There is A LOT of grass.
These picture were taken a month ago. The grass has grown a bit since.
P.S. We haven't cleaned the pasture out yet. It will be cleared before the horses are put out.
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