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A question for you horse peeps

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Whitewing

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I was looking at the website of Anderson Hay & Grain and they tout their Timothy Hay for having a low protein content.

Timothy hay is the most digestible of all hays and is one of the most popular hay feeds for horses. The hay is a late-maturing high fiber bunchgrass with a relatively low protein content. Horse owners have found that Timothy hay promotes a shiny coat, good digestion, bowel regularity, and a healthy weight. It is also excellent for colic prone, protein-sensitive, and obese horses.

While I understand the problem with obese horses, I was under the impression that when one purchased bales for their horses, they wanted high protein material.....more bang for the buck so to speak.

Someone please splain me this.
 

Faster horses

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WW, I'll take a stab at explaining why horse people prefer timothy.

Horses don't need much protein unless they are bred or working hard.
Alfalfa hay is really an overkill for horses in most situations. Any
excess protein passes through the system. Alfalfa (first cutting) will
range from 15-20% protein. Timothy hay is 11-12% as a general rule
(depending on when you cut it. Cutting any hay later results in
loss of nutrition.) For horses with weight problems, laminitis, or horses
not being worked too hard, timothy is an excellent choice.

The risk of timothy developing mold or leaf shatter is much less
than that of alfalfa. And that's a big deal to horse people.

Timothy offers more chewing time which is very important to horses
that are stabled, like race horses. Also horses on timothy hay are
less apt to colic. We had a fella come clear from
Louisiana to SW Mt. to buy timothy hay for their race horses!!

I'd much rather see horses fed grass hay as opposed to alfalfa, as
there are less problems feeding it. A little alfalfa is ok, but not
(IMO) good to feed it straight.

Hope this helps!!
 

Hayguy

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I'm going to watch this thread with great interest, it seem's that around here it depends on what someone happened to read that month. When someone phones and ask's if I have "horse" hay, i say you come tell me. Harness Racer's wantsecond cut alfalfa, thourbred guys want no more than 50%. show jumpers are all over the board as are recreational horse owners. Going back 70+ years timothy hay was the hay of choice for the heavy draft horses. Over the years I've supplied them all, good clean dust free of whatever still seem's to sell . alot depends on what else they are feeding along with the hay

and oh by the way, I don't own any horse's , they eat too many $ :lol: :lol: :lol:
 

Faster horses

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hayguy said:
I'm going to watch this thread with great interest, it seem's that around here it depends on what someone happened to read that month. When someone phones and ask's if I have "horse" hay, i say you come tell me. Harness Racer's wantsecond cut alfalfa, thourbred guys want no more than 50%. show jumpers are all over the board as are recreational horse owners. Going back 70+ years timothy hay was the hay of choice for the heavy draft horses. Over the years I've supplied them all, good clean dust free of whatever still seem's to sell . alot depends on what else they are feeding along with the hay

and oh by the way, I don't own any horse's , they eat too many $ :lol: :lol: :lol:

The guys who have horses in stalls like alfalfa because they don't poop
so much. :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

...and they are working those horses pretty hard, so they need the
extra protein, IMO...

hayguy, you sound like a good person to buy horse hay from. "no dust"...
some people sell 'horse hay' and have no clue what makes good horse
hay. Horses sure can't stand much dust!
 

Whitewing

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Thanks for the comments guys.

Now, for some more questions....and I ask not because I'm too lazy to do the research myself....I ask because it's almost impossible to do anything on the net using this remote hookup I've got. :evil:

What exactly is Timothy? Perhaps a decent link would be the easiest as opposed to writing about it.

Also, how do Timothy and alfalfa compare to bermuda? Here, bermuda is Number One with the horse folks. It's what they all want. There are other grasses that they accept but definitely not their first choice.

Thanks in advance for your responses.
 

Silver

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I like the dusty hay. Tends to last longer, and they don't get too fat :shock: :lol:
 

Hayguy

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Big Muddy rancher said:
My BIL used to supply Timothy that had been combined for the seed to the PMU horse barns.



something about protein changing the estrogen level in the urine
 

Faster horses

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This link explains the differences:

http://www.atascaderofeed.com/hay.html

Now, I just called a friend who trains horses in Texas. He prefers
Coastal Bermuda that comes from Texas and Oklahoma because,
when cut at the proper time, it is very fine-stemmed and palatable
and the horses really like it.
Now if it's cut late, it's like any hay, loses it's nutrition and palatability.

Do you know what kind of Bermuda you have, White Wing?
Is yours pretty fine when cut in the early stages?
 

Whitewing

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Faster horses said:
This link explains the differences:

http://www.atascaderofeed.com/hay.html

Now, I just called a friend who trains horses in Texas. He prefers
Coastal Bermuda that comes from Texas and Oklahoma because,
when cut at the proper time, it is very fine-stemmed and palatable
and the horses really like it.
Now if it's cut late, it's like any hay, loses it's nutrition and palatability.

Do you know what kind of Bermuda you have, White Wing?
Is yours pretty fine when cut in the early stages?

My bermuda is a hybrid, from what I can tell, Coastal.

I cut every 32 to 35 days when rainfall is sufficient to give proper growth. At that stage it's about 12 to 14 inches high, dark green and "tierna" (tender) as they say here.

From what I've read the protein levels are at their maximum during this timeframe. I typically put about 100 kilos of urea per hectar about 21 days before harvest. Again, depending on rainfall.

My neighbor lets his bermuda grow much longer.....it gives more bales but with the plant as long as one's arm, I don't think it makes nearly as attractive a bale as mine and certainly not as palateable.
 

Big Muddy rancher

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Faster horses said:
This link explains the differences:

http://www.atascaderofeed.com/hay.html

Now, I just called a friend who trains horses in Texas. He prefers
Coastal Bermuda that comes from Texas and Oklahoma because,
when cut at the proper time, it is very fine-stemmed and palatable
and the horses really like it.
Now if it's cut late, it's like any hay, loses it's nutrition and palatability.

Do you know what kind of Bermuda you have, White Wing?
Is yours pretty fine when cut in the early stages?

Say Faster Horses, Do you get Coastal Bermuda from ocean front property in Oklahoma? :wink: :D :D :lol:
 

Faster horses

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Whitewing said:
Faster horses said:
This link explains the differences:

http://www.atascaderofeed.com/hay.html

Now, I just called a friend who trains horses in Texas. He prefers
Coastal Bermuda that comes from Texas and Oklahoma because,
when cut at the proper time, it is very fine-stemmed and palatable
and the horses really like it.
Now if it's cut late, it's like any hay, loses it's nutrition and palatability.

Do you know what kind of Bermuda you have, White Wing?
Is yours pretty fine when cut in the early stages?

My bermuda is a hybrid, from what I can tell, Coastal.

I cut every 32 to 35 days when rainfall is sufficient to give proper growth. At that stage it's about 12 to 14 inches high, dark green and "tierna" (tender) as they say here.

From what I've read the protein levels are at their maximum during this timeframe. I typically put about 100 kilos of urea per hectar about 21 days before harvest. Again, depending on rainfall.

My neighbor lets his bermuda grow much longer.....it gives more bales but with the plant as long as one's arm, I don't think it makes nearly as attractive a bale as mine and certainly not as palateable.

That is a common problem, Whitewing, people go for quantity and not
quality. I know we try to cut our hay early--in this country it can dry
up fast. We do a lot of hay analysis for people and cutting early really
make a difference in quality. Even hay barley, etc.
You keep on keeping on, doing what you are doing.
 

MsSage

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As a "horse in the backyard" I rather feed coastal but finding it around here is next to impossible. You dont have to feed as much, less likely to colic, and as others have said the horses love it.
I have and have right now 3.5 round bales of native grass hay. Biggest problem I have is you have to feed more....now when your hand forking it over the fence......... :cry: It is dusty. But I am grateful to have any at all right now.
I got these after having 4 round bales and 40 small bales of alfalfa. Since I don work my horses alot I was scared about how they would deal with the high protein. I found out...Nov I had bad case of colic then again about a month and half ago. I was glad that was the last of the alfalfa. Yes they are "fat and sassy" and dealt with a couple winter storms that started out rain then went to snow.
What I want is hay that is easy to feed, little to no dust ( I dont like coughing), lower level protein, and something my horses like. yes I am just a 2 horse backyard pet owner. I also figured out I need a trailer so I can get the hay I really want even if that means I have to spend more on picking it up.

OK so much for my 2 cents worth.
 

Faster horses

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You can water down that hay, Mssage, so it isn't dusty. You need
to do it 24 hours ahead of feeding it. Once a horses lungs are damaged
from dusty hay, they'll be damaged forever.

If it is dusty, it's best not to feed it in a feeder, but rather on the
ground. That way they don't inhale so much of the dust. FWIW

I hope you are able to get some 'horse hay' (no dust). Good luck!
 

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