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View Poll Results: How many flakes of hay does your horse get per day?

Voters
129. You may not vote on this poll
  • 0

    0 0%
  • 1 - 2

    5 3.88%
  • 3 - 4

    15 11.63%
  • 5 - 6

    42 32.56%
  • 7 - 8

    28 21.71%
  • 9+

    18 13.95%
  • Horse fed off a round bale

    21 16.28%
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Results 1 to 20 of 63
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct. 23, 2010
    Posts
    179

    Default How many flakes of hay per day?

    I'm curious - how many flakes of hay does your horse get, total?
    In my opinion a horse is the animal to have. Eleven-hundred pounds of raw muscle, power, grace, and sweat between your legs. Its something you just can't get from a pet hamster.
    In The Nick of Time



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug. 23, 2002
    Location
    Prospect, ME
    Posts
    4,565

    Default

    My out door horses are on round bales, and my stalled horses are free choice... probably at least 8 flakes a day for most.
    -Jessica



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct. 27, 2010
    Location
    Nevada
    Posts
    2,561

    Default

    Can't answer as it depends on bale size and flake thickness. My "small" bales in this area are 3 strand twine tied bales weighing 125 lbs and with about 15 flakes to the bale...so each flake is about 8 pounds. With 22 horses here I feed 3 of the "small" bales a day or an average of about 17 pounds per horse (most of them are under 1000 pounds with a couple in the 800 pound range so this is well within the maintenance levels for horses this size). If I use the "big" bales (6 strands of twine on a 3' x 4' x 8' bale...96 cubic feet... and weighing an average 1250 lbs each) then a single flake is roughly equivalent to 6-8 flakes from a "small" bale (depending on thickness).



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 10, 2003
    Location
    Massachusetts, USA
    Posts
    3,503

    Default

    Depends on the weight of the flakes. Each horse here eats about 1/2 - 2/3rds of a 50# bale of hay. So, about 25# - 33# a day.
    --Gwen <><
    "Treat others as you want to be treated and be the change you want to see in the world."
    http://www.thepenzancehorse.com



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep. 6, 2003
    Location
    WA, Land of the damp Thongpend
    Posts
    2,451

    Default

    Flakes are not a good measurement. Pounds are the only way to know they are getting an adequate amount of roughage and it has to be good quality hay.

    Mine eats only cubes, because of the consistency of the quality and only alfalfa because he has issues with any grass hay. He gets them in a one of those Amazing Graze toys to make him move around while he eats them, keep him occupied and keep him from just Hoovering them all up in 5 minutes. When the thing is empty he kicks it out in the aisle and someone puts more in.

    He weighs about 1100 lbs, perhaps more, and gets approximately 11 -15 lbs of cubes a day. That is about 1% to 1.5% of his body weight and that is for alfalfa, easy keepers need less, grass hay would be more like 2% of his body weight. Alfalfa has more calories than grass hay. The cubes have very little, if any, stemmy stuff, so he is able to eat all of what he is fed. If I were feeding alfalfa hay it would probably be more pounds.

    Grass hay flakes typically weigh less than alfalfa hay flakes. Are they big flakes? Little flakes?



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct. 23, 2010
    Posts
    179

    Default

    I forgot how many different types of hay bales there are.
    I'm thinking just the smaller bales, like these:
    http://www.redroosterfarm.com/assets/images/haybale.jpg
    And speaking in terms of regular, medium sized flakes - not the itty bitty ones where there are 15 of them in a bale, but not the ones that 5 make up the entire bale!
    In my opinion a horse is the animal to have. Eleven-hundred pounds of raw muscle, power, grace, and sweat between your legs. Its something you just can't get from a pet hamster.
    In The Nick of Time



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov. 23, 2001
    Location
    Catharpin, Virginia
    Posts
    6,797

    Default

    My horses are fed hay by the pound, not by the flake. After all, "flake" can weigh as little as 2 lbs. or as much as 15 lbs.

    I feed my horses 25 -30 POUNDS of hay per day in the winter -- distributed over the course of a day/night -- so they always have forage in their stomachs.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec. 13, 1999
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
    Posts
    36,085

    Default

    Ditto the others that say flakes are not a way to measure hay. 3lb flake? 6lb flake? More?

    Flakes are not even a measure of volume, let alone weight. 2" flake? 5"? How big is the square?



    The poll would be much better with "how many pounds of hay per day", with "fed free choice" being an option

    I'm like sid - roughly 30lb/horse/day during the Winter, mine peeled off a round bale, and I don't have to feed hay at all from Spring-Fall unless stalled for some reason.
    ______________________________
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET



  9. #9

    Default

    What's the standard pounds of hay per day per weight of the horse?

    My vet said 2% of the body weight a day? Sound about right?



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr. 8, 2005
    Location
    Kentucky
    Posts
    4,432

    Default

    It depends. I go by weight -feel rather than actually measuring. Some flakes are heavier/thicker than others. Most of the inside horses get 12- 20 inches of hay(about 3 flakes) twice a day. The outside gang gets round bales.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep. 6, 2003
    Location
    WA, Land of the damp Thongpend
    Posts
    2,451

    Default

    1% - 2% of their body weight. Grass hay is higher percentage. Alfalfa lower because it is more nutrient dense. Easy keeper lower - hard keeper higher.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct. 23, 2010
    Posts
    179

    Default

    And what is a good range of a horse to be fed per day, exactly? (in lbs.)
    In my opinion a horse is the animal to have. Eleven-hundred pounds of raw muscle, power, grace, and sweat between your legs. Its something you just can't get from a pet hamster.
    In The Nick of Time



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun. 1, 2009
    Posts
    573

    Default

    I wanted to pick 4-5, but went with 5-6 because 3-4 just isn't enough. I've always heard its 1.25-2.25% of the body weight depending on horses metabolism and work load.
    Do not toy with the dragon, for you are crunchy and good with ketchup!



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2001
    Location
    NC
    Posts
    4,431

    Default

    I feed round bales while out during the day, then about three flakes in stall at night. So my ponies eat about their weight in hay all day then get two skimpy flakes at 6 and 10 pm. Skinnies get 2 flakes at 6 and 10. Mine all stand and eat the round bales more than they need to, but what cha gonna do? I hate winter. You have to feed enough to keep things moving along, but most of mine are very easy keepers/ponies and it is hard to regulate.



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct. 23, 2010
    Posts
    179

    Default

    I will admit, I've never weighed hay in my life...
    We've always just fed what they need to keep in good weight. They look a little skinny? Bump it up a flake. Looking chunky? Back it down a flake.

    For those who feed round bales - what do you look for when choosing bales to make sure they aren't moldy/cattle quality only?
    Last edited by justjumpit278; Dec. 27, 2010 at 11:39 PM. Reason: Typo
    In my opinion a horse is the animal to have. Eleven-hundred pounds of raw muscle, power, grace, and sweat between your legs. Its something you just can't get from a pet hamster.
    In The Nick of Time



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov. 20, 2005
    Location
    missoula. mt
    Posts
    1,590

    Default

    I go through about 1/2 of an 80# bale of good local grass hay per day, per horse. That's an estimation. They get hay 3 times/day + a beet pulp/senior feed mash at night. A beet pulp/ strategy mash for my two young ones. I also add some sweet feed and a bit of rice bran for all of them. They all look fat and healthy throughout the winter.



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct. 23, 2006
    Posts
    1,419

    Default

    It depends on how much if any pasture grass I have, depends on the weather, depends on the quality of the hay, depends on how big the flakes are.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Oct. 23, 2006
    Posts
    1,419

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by springer View Post
    I go through about 1/2 of an 80# bale of good local grass hay per day, per horse. That's an estimation. They get hay 3 times/day + a beet pulp/senior feed mash at night. A beet pulp/ strategy mash for my two young ones. I also add some sweet feed and a bit of rice bran for all of them. They all look fat and healthy throughout the winter.
    Your feeding program is almost like mine, except I add flax seed.



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Sep. 8, 2006
    Location
    WNY
    Posts
    5,690

    Default

    Mine are fed off a roundbale during the day. They have small-hole haynets when they're stalled at night, and they never finish it over night. Plus they each get a flake of alfalfa (very skinny flakes, probably only a few pounds apiece, tops) and a pound or so (dry weight) of soaked alfalfa pellets.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jan. 16, 2002
    Location
    West Coast of Michigan
    Posts
    36,321

    Default

    No voting option for "it depends".

    I'm not out there weighing each flake, but I do weigh a dozen or so bales from each cutting every year to get that ballpark figure, then do some mental math and try to stick with a rough weight estimate: about 15 pounds per day, per horse in the summer (less if they're on grass all day) and about 20-25 pounds per day, per horse in the winter. I had a couple of broodmares here who were hard keepers this year, and they got a lot more.

    Since mine all share their hay outside, I just throw the proper amount out there and monitor how much is left in the morning, and the horses' weight. I'm VERY fortunate that my herd dynamics are such that the fattest one is the lowest on the pecking order, so I can count on the boss mare, who works the hardest, getting her fair share and more.
    Click here before you buy.



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