Board Manager feeding wrong hay - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 14 Old 06-11-2019, 11:18 AM Thread Starter
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Board Manager feeding wrong hay

Board is a collection of small irrigated grass fields. The 3 horses in my field, all owners, me including, have insisted our horses only get grass hay. The board manager agreed.
But he continued to feed alfalfa in the mornings. I caught my horse eating it one morning a month ago when I needed to rebandage a wound. I told the board manager "no alfalfa for my horse please" and he said okay.
I was hanging out with one of the other boarders yesterday and we were talking. She said she caught him feeding it again last Thursday! She confronted him about it and he said he'd been feeding them alfalfa for months. That if he puts grass hay out, the horses won't eat it because they prefer the pasture. She told him "no alfalfa".
The board manager is a nice guy but this is EXTREMELY annoying. I've even noticed my horse's white hoof had pink pigment of inflimation a while ago. Gee I wonder what caused that?
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post #2 of 14 Old 06-11-2019, 11:27 AM
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You've asked more than once and the manager hasn't changed things. Either move your horse or accept he's going to get alfalfa, unfortunately. Those really seem to be your only options.

If I were in your situation, I'd put a big sign on the fence saying "No Alfalfa for the horses in this pasture!" and if it happens again, find a new barn. He's probably right that the horses won't eat just the grass hay if there's pasture. So why are they getting hay? Is not feeding hay until the grass stops growing an option?
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post #3 of 14 Old 06-11-2019, 11:30 AM
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And if they prefer the pasture to grass hay, then put less grass hay out. If they were hungry, they would eat it. What does that have to do with alfalfa? lol
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post #4 of 14 Old 06-11-2019, 03:32 PM
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From the sounds of it, I'd start looking for a new place to board. If the owner isn't listening to your concerns, it's time to start looking around...

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post #5 of 14 Old 06-11-2019, 05:03 PM Thread Starter
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The field is an irrigated grass field, so yeah if they were hungry enough they'd eat the grass hay provided. And they only eat the alfalfa not because they're hungry but because it's delicious! I love the sign idea 😂😂.
I know for sure he has little to no expense on running the facility besides hay. He uses irrigation water in the troughs and doesn't have to pay anything for the property because it has farm status. And all the fences are old metal or wood.
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post #6 of 14 Old 06-11-2019, 06:22 PM
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I'm sorry, but I'm not understanding your adverse response to your horse being fed a high quality forage like alfalfa over a lower quality hay that could be higher, significantly higher in carbs...
So many are carb/sugar conscious today with our equine friends.

From your post I am not understanding why you are so annoyed that alfalfa is offered over grass hay...
I have not read anything that I can remember ever saying alfalfa causes inflammation, specifically hoof inflammation...
Photo-sensitivity, yes for some animals it can make them susceptible.

The fact the horses are on a grass pasture irrigated and still the facility owner goes to the expense and trouble to purchase and feed alfalfa hay sounds nice to me.
Whether the farm is established or not, trust me...owning horse property costs in both time and money spent.
Older fences still need maintaining regardless of what they are constructed of.
It costs to irrigate those fields and fill water troughs by machinery...
And it takes time and effort to feed those horses and not just let them graze, or actually probably over-graze the field if they are out much of the day or all day and the field is less than 5 acres with 3 full-sized animals grazing it every day...
Farm status or not, the property still has land taxes of some sort needing paid.


I must of missed where you said your horse should not be fed the better quality forages and why.
Would you post it again please so I better understand the issue at hand..
More than that, I too feed alfalfa and would like to not encourage inflammation to the hooves..
So, could you also give me a article, something to read or reference so I can also learn pitfalls of feeding alfalfa since my vet specifically said to feed it as it is very healthy for horses.
Thanks.
...
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post #7 of 14 Old 06-11-2019, 06:33 PM
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I am thinking along the same lines as horselovinguy. While the pasture owner should respect your wishes (no excuse for that), alfalfa isn't nearly as scary as fresh green pasture. I have never heard of a horse having problems with alfalfa, other than maybe being too fat. Nearly every horse in Arizona is eating alfalfa hay and I have never heard of a horse getting laminitis from it. Grass on the other hand......I wouldn't know how to manage a horse on grass! I guess it's all what you are used to feeding and have a comfort level with.
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post #8 of 14 Old 06-13-2019, 01:49 PM Thread Starter
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First of all, on average alfalfa and grass hay have approximately 12% non-structural carb content, grass is higher in fiber, while alfalfa is higher in protein.

Secondly he gives his boarders the choice of feed. I chose grass only. I don't want my horse on alfalfa, he doesn't need it. I provide him purina senior and molasses free beet pulp. Also he has enough energy as is and don't need him being a hot head.

Thirdly, he is doing it AGAINST our wishes, which is not respectful or very buisness-like.

I'm not against alfalfa, I just don't want it for my horse. Some horses are fine with it. But unexpected change in diet can cause inflimation.Feel free to check out the ECIR facebook group
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post #9 of 14 Old 06-13-2019, 02:19 PM
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I guess based upon your last post then you have sealed the deal and need to move to another facility.
This though says it all...
"Thirdly, he is doing it AGAINST our wishes, which is not respectful or very buisness-like."
You have valid points as a owner, he has valid points as a barn owner/manager too I guess for doing what he does...
Talk to him...again state your preferences and just tell him if he can't or won't feed as you request to please let you know and you will take the horse elsewhere...then make arrangements, find another barn and go.
I would listen to what he says and why he says it though...

The writing is on-the-wall already though...
Time to find a new barn, one that you can dictate to what you want and not want.
Good luck.
...

The worst day is instantly better when shared with my horse.....
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post #10 of 14 Old 09-19-2019, 02:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CountMeTwice View Post
Board is a collection of small irrigated grass fields. The 3 horses in my field, all owners, me including, have insisted our horses only get grass hay. The board manager agreed.
But he continued to feed alfalfa in the mornings. I caught my horse eating it one morning a month ago when I needed to rebandage a wound. I told the board manager "no alfalfa for my horse please" and he said okay.
I was hanging out with one of the other boarders yesterday and we were talking. She said she caught him feeding it again last Thursday! She confronted him about it and he said he'd been feeding them alfalfa for months. That if he puts grass hay out, the horses won't eat it because they prefer the pasture. She told him "no alfalfa".
The board manager is a nice guy but this is EXTREMELY annoying. I've even noticed my horse's white hoof had pink pigment of inflimation a while ago. Gee I wonder what caused that?
Although this is an old thread, pink pigment on a white hoof is not inflammation. It is usually a dietary change, could be even when you wormed the horse, or different types of grasses grew in the pasture. But inflammation? Nope.

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