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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, I noticed the past couple of days, my boy hasn't been wanting to eat our hay. Which is weird, as he loves his hay and dinner, but he just has become so disinterested in it. In worry, I went ahead and checked our hay, peeled the tarp off which has been on while we prepare to get shavings blown in, and checked the flakes I just threw him. There are what appear to be mold spots in the hay? They are like black spots and I noticed "hairs" if you will, with nubby ends on some of the grasses. Now, my concern lies in, is this actually mold? Because I've fed hay similar with the black spots (sometimes worse) to previous horses, and they've never seemed to have issue with it, but now I'm seriously concerned because he's just randomly stopped wanting it. He is always put in at night due to a predator issue (he's a very small Arabian which brings up concern when we have a massive tom cougar running about) and I don't want to need to keep him out on pasture all night. And, I'm wanting to make sure I have hay to feed him so he doesn't develop ulcers...

If it is mold....what should I do? Can I salt it now, or...? Do I need to remove all bales with an inkling of black spot or "fuzzies"? I'm extremely nervous, angry at myself, and sad all at the same time.
 

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If it has molded get rid of it, do not feed it to your horse and remove it from anywhere near where the animal in desperation might try eating bad food.
Black mold is far worse than white mold to me...
To a horse, it could lead to COPD onset, a poisoning of the body...colic.
Its to late to salt a product already spoiled.

The fact your horse happily ate and now will not tells you something is seriously wrong.
Get different hay, and keep it away from the area where this contaminated stuff is till bales are removed and if you are going to try to save any of it each bale needs opened and looked at carefully and still kept separate from a new supply of fresh hay.

WEAR A MASK WHEN HANDLING THE CONTAMINATED PRODUCT TO PROTECT YOUR LUNGS....yes, it is that important and dangerous for us humans when confronting large amounts of mold spores to protect our lungs too!

The tarp you use to cover the hay needs scrubbed with a bleach solution, thoroughly rinsed and hung to completely dry or run the risk of contaminating more bales as mold will live on damp, dark surfaces..

Your horse has common sense and knows the food is bad...
Go buy fresh hay and offer clean, safe to him and see his reaction...bet he's hungry.
Remove all of the contaminated from his environment and feed him in a different location for a few days while you also treat the location the bad hay was placed...lime or lightly spray bleach water solution...you must kill the mold spores.

An expensive lesson learned, but at the risk of seriously sickening your horse...discard the bales.
馃惔..
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited by Moderator)
If it has molded get rid of it, do not feed it to your horse and remove it from anywhere near where the animal in desperation might try eating bad food.
Black mold is far worse than white mold to me...
To a horse, it could lead to COPD onset, a poisoning of the body...colic.
Its to late to salt a product already spoiled.

The fact your horse happily ate and now will not tells you something is seriously wrong.
Get different hay, and keep it away from the area where this contaminated stuff is till bales are removed and if you are going to try to save any of it each bale needs opened and looked at carefully and still kept separate from a new supply of fresh hay.

WEAR A MASK WHEN HANDLING THE CONTAMINATED PRODUCT TO PROTECT YOUR LUNGS....yes, it is that important and dangerous for us humans when confronting large amounts of mold spores to protect our lungs too!

The tarp you use to cover the hay needs scrubbed with a bleach solution, thoroughly rinsed and hung to completely dry or run the risk of contaminating more bales as mold will live on damp, dark surfaces..

Your horse has common sense and knows the food is bad...
Go buy fresh hay and offer clean, safe to him and see his reaction...bet he's hungry.
Remove all of the contaminated from his environment and feed him in a different location for a few days while you also treat the location the bad hay was placed...lime or lightly spray bleach water solution...you must kill the mold spores.

An expensive lesson learned, but at the risk of seriously sickening your horse...discard the bales.
馃惔..
The really crappy part is, my barn is not big. It's no more than three stall long with room on the other side for hay. I don't really have any other place for him to eat and be kept for the next couple day. Do I let the bleach dry? When can he come back in?
 

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Clean that location well...put down some pulverized lime, rake it and cover it with shavings...

Just a layer of horse shavings between where he did eat and now will eat will fix your issue.
Do check your walls carefully where you have been storing the hay for moisture/dampness and if mold is seen, usually white to begin then it changes to black...a car wash brush dipped in sudsy with a splash of bleach kills the ick as you gently scrub...
Store your hay with a plastic barrier underneath, then pallets on top of the vapor barrier, learn how to stack (you tube video is great} so the hay can breathe and then I place several 2x4 across the top of my hay then place a tarp to keep dust, dirt and bird droppings off my hay...
You need to start though with dry bales baled at proper damp ratio or its going to mold.
I don't smoke so have a keen nose and mold of any kind makes me sneeze and can't stop...
Your horse though is your best guide...if he says not eating it...believe him...there is a reason.
馃惔...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Clean that location well...put down some pulverized lime, rake it and cover it with shavings...

Just a layer of horse shavings between where he did eat and now will eat will fix your issue.
Do check your walls carefully where you have been storing the hay for moisture/dampness and if mold is seen, usually white to begin then it changes to black...a car wash brush dipped in sudsy with a splash of bleach kills the ick as you gently scrub...
Store your hay with a plastic barrier underneath, then pallets on top of the vapor barrier, learn how to stack (you tube video is great} so the hay can breathe and then I place several 2x4 across the top of my hay then place a tarp to keep dust, dirt and bird droppings off my hay...
You need to start though with dry bales baled at proper damp ratio or its going to mold.
I don't smoke so have a keen nose and mold of any kind makes me sneeze and can't stop...
Your horse though is your best guide...if he says not eating it...believe him...there is a reason.
馃惔...

Okay...I've kind of been sorting through the ba;es for a couple of hours. I've noticed black speckling on yellow clippings. And then, kind of scattered about, little white fuzzies (sometimes green) across some bales. Then, I also found a bale with a white cottonball looking thing on it, but it was growing on the bale, so I'm 100% assuming that is mold. I've also kind of gone through and "fluffed" the bales to see if dust would come off, and some of them was like it had a mini explosion of white all over. A couple of bales smelled really good on one side, then I flipped it and it smelled sour. I'm not sure if I should get rid of everything that looks moldy, or if it's got the slightest inkling of funk...?

I have the horse and goats all turned out right now so they aren't in there where it's dusty right now. I'm kind of in panic mode because I'm not altogether sure what to do. I've never dealt with mold in hay before. But I definitely know when something is wrong with this horse, as he is super picky when it comes to hay. The goats won't tell you if anything is wrong, they try their best to hide it :LOL:
 

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The mask for the human looking through moldy hay needs to be a properly fitted N95 mask. There are plenty of this kind around due to the mask requirements. Other 'medical' and home made masks have gaps in the fit and the fabric does not effectively keep out mold spores and other particles.

If a person is sweeping up rodent droppings in a barn or other enclosed space they need to have on an N95 to avoid getting exposed to Hanta virus. The N95 is also 95% effective at keeping out SARSCoV2 with caused Covid19 disease.
These are the masks nurses wear when taking care of TB patients.

An N95 fitting you can do outside of a medical facility by twisting the ear loops one half twist and put over your ears. This makes a high and low fit, pulling the mask down over your face and up under your chin. Fit the nose wire carefully to your cheek and nose.Then inhale sharply and you will feel the mask pull down against your face. Do not remove the mask by touching the front where viral particles may possibly be imbedded. Remove it by the ear loops .It can be kept in a paper bag and be used again. Just don't touch the front and also remember to wash your hands after handling it.
 

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With what you are describing...
Ditch it all........
I would not take chances, I just would not.
To me it is not worth exposing my horse to a potential life-threatening ailment introducing vast amounts of mold to his airways nor to his digestive tract and indeed some mold spores in excess combination can poison the animal, others create such digestive issue you will spend 10x your loss in vet bills.
You have a lot of damaged hay...dump it...burn it if you can away from the horse and with winds blowing away from the area of where the horse is kept.
Realize if it is this damp, it is also a combustible fire risk...get it gone!

Open your barn windows and doors, put a fan in it for a bit to exhaust it best you can...and don't close it up tight at night for a few days either.
I get the risk of animal predators, we have them here too...
But...sunlight, breezes are what you need to dry out and dispel those spores.
Good luck.
馃惔...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It's been decided that it is not mold, it's just the fiber of the hay I've been seeing and the type of grass....So, I suppose now it's time to figure a different reason he's halted in munching his hay.... :unsure: Thank you guys though for the helpful advice! At least now, I know how to deal with mold when the real issue occurs!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Don't worry, mold has been officially ruled out (thank you my overactive imagination). But, I'm still in a big predicament. My horse is continually grazing during the day for 13 hours. He receives 1.5 lbs of Triple Crown Lite, Magnesium Supplement (Quieescence), and an ounce of flaxseed in the morning, and another 1.5 lbs TC Lite, FlexMor, Bute-Less, and an ounce of Flaxseed at night, when he's put up. I have been feeding four flakes of grass hay while he's stalled, but suddenly, he's refusing the hay. He will eat everything else, his grain, graze, but he won't eat his hay. It's just a sudden stop as well.

When we first got the hay however, he didn't appear too enthused with it and was a little slow eating it while I switched him over, but he's been diligent to finish every night, or at least almost finish it. But the night before last, he just wanted out to pasture however yesterday morning, he finished the hay. This morning however, I found the four flakes scattered across the stall, and what was still in his manger was just pushed and sifted through. I don't know if he just doesn't like the quality of hay it is (yellow-y around the edges. Some bales have quite a few weeds), or if there's something going on. He does tend to be picky, but when he realizes he receives what he gets, he'll what's in front of him.

But, this issue is highly concerning to me due to the fact I really don't want ulcers to prove an issue. Especially because he went all last night without eating (I also know he laid down because he had shavings all over him - if that's an indicator of anything, but he's laid down every night as far as I know).

I don't really want to let him out to pasture all night either though, because we have a very large tom cougar running around and my horse is only a 14.2 hand 700-800 lb. Arabian :LOL: so I worry. But, if he doesn't want to eat it, I'm not sure what all to do because we still have like a hundred bales of this grass hay in our loft. The goats are having no problems at all in eating it either. Any insight is greatly appreciated.
 

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Check his mouth for cuts and slices of his gum if your hay is so seed head sharp in appearance.
He may have also broke a tooth...
What is interesting is he was eating, then you find discoloration, white and black residue and musty smell at the same time as the horse goes off his food...
Awful lot of coincidence and matched timing... :cautious:
If you don't have a horse dentist to consult with, call your vet and have them come look at the mouth, gums, teeth and tongue for any issue that would put the animal off his food...

Who decided it isn't mold?
Sorry, depending upon who made that decision would absolutely have me :unsure:...
I'm listening to your horse...something is wrong.
Now you need to discover what is wrong and fix it.
馃惔...
 

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If he has pasture to eat who would want to eat old hay when tasty morsels of young grass shoots are calling his name...

What you described in your other thread about the hay still has me thinking mold.
Sight, smell do not lie.
Goats are known to eat junk and garbage horses will walk away from...so to me that is no comparison.
Horses who have been out on pasture for 12 hours may not need to eat more...
Horses do not have to eat non-stop 24/7, they don't.
The horse is being offered a pasture where grass is thriving and growing so they can get their fill and nutritional requirements met...so they are not stuffing themselves endlessly.
You are also supplementing with hard feed and supplements...
Because your horse is not eating by his choice does not mean he is going to get ulcers either...
There is a lot of interpretation to feeding, how much, how often, why and consequences of feeding to much, not enough, to often or not often enough...
I think you would benefit speaking with a equine nutritionist about your horse to quiet your fears and become more informed about nutrition and what makes a animal thrive and healthy. Truth.
馃惔...
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Check his mouth for cuts and slices of his gum if your hay is so seed head sharp in appearance.
He may have also broke a tooth...
What is interesting is he was eating, then you find discoloration, white and black residue and musty smell at the same time as the horse goes off his food...
Awful lot of coincidence and matched timing... :cautious:
If you don't have a horse dentist to consult with, call your vet and have them come look at the mouth, gums, teeth and tongue for any issue that would put the animal off his food...

Who decided it isn't mold?
Sorry, depending upon who made that decision would absolutely have me :unsure:...
I'm listening to your horse...something is wrong.
Now you need to discover what is wrong and fix it.
馃惔...
That's what I'm at right now. He'll get a thorough check here in just a little bit. But the "fuzzies" were just the type of grass fibers (they weren't rubbing off) and after closer inspection the cottonballs were spiders nests. So gross nonetheless. But, yeah, I get way too paranoid when something goes awry. 馃槄
 

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Spider nests???

Yea, my horse would not be offered hay that is showing numerous spider nests either...sorry.
Neither would my goats be offered that....
Nasty is right!!

More the reason the horse needs examined by a professional who knows what to search for if now it could also be insect bites to mouth, lips, tongue or elsewhere... :cautious:
馃惔...
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
If he has pasture to eat who would want to eat old hay when tasty morsels of young grass shoots are calling his name...

What you described in your other thread about the hay still has me thinking mold.
Sight, smell do not lie.
Goats are known to eat junk and garbage horses will walk away from...so to me that is no comparison.
Horses who have been out on pasture for 12 hours may not need to eat more...
Horses do not have to eat non-stop 24/7, they don't.
The horse is being offered a pasture where grass is thriving and growing so they can get their fill and nutritional requirements met...so they are not stuffing themselves endlessly.
You are also supplementing with hard feed and supplements...
Because your horse is not eating by his choice does not mean he is going to get ulcers either...
There is a lot of interpretation to feeding, how much, how often, why and consequences of feeding to much, not enough, to often or not often enough...
I think you would benefit speaking with a equine nutritionist about your horse to quiet your fears and become more informed about nutrition and what makes a animal thrive and healthy. Truth.
馃惔...
Thank you for that! All that I have learned about feeding and such has been completely through online articles, forums, and Facebook Groups, a small talk with my vet, and a couple of different nutrient PDF's. I was thinking of seeing how he does with hay tonight, especially because it looks super good throughout the center and kind of taking it from there. I was actually thinking about contacting a nutritionist to see what they might have to say, but I've not done much to find anybody.
 

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It's been decided that it is not mold, it's just the fiber of the hay I've been seeing and the
There are black spots, white 'fuzzies', the bales make a 'mini explosion' of white dust, and smell sour.... I'm not getting what has 'decided' you it's ok?
 

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If he has good grass and ample pasture time then it may be time to back off the hay. Mine have stopped eating hay at this point. I have a good grass and legume mix that they are turned on for about 8 hours a day and a poor pasture that they spend the rest of the time on. The summer grass is coming in and there are still some patches of rye and clover out there but no where near the other pasture.

I still have three rolls tarped that will go out when the rain stops or slows in frequency.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Yes, I was just discussing it with a couple of people, and they were saying he's likely refusing it because he wasn't the nice green spring grass. Which, makes a lot of sense to me because when he's been finishing his grain, he'll approach the turn out doors first before approaching the manger again.
 

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Horses and cattle in Texas and other places stop eating hay when the grass gets good and strong in the Spring. This is normal. You put out a round bale and they eat it, then the next week only half is gone. Then the stop eating hay at all, they would rather just eat grass. Maybe that's it?
 
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