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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2002
    Location
    Maryland
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    3,953

    Default Soaking Beet Pulp and Bacteria risk?

    So a friend of mine just told me that the equine nutrition book she is reading states that soaking beet pulp for long periods of time (like overnight) runs the risk of multipying bacteria (espcially in warm weather) and making your horse sick?
    Anybody ever hear this or experience problems from this?

    My guy is currently getting beet pulp and the easiest way for the barn to do it is to measure out the beet pulp and add the water to be fed at the next feeding when done with the current feeding (so in the morning after everyone is fed, the beet pulp is measured out and water added to soak for the evening feeding).
    I am not overly concerned since this has been my guy's protocol for a while and he is doing well on it but curious if anybody has heard this or been told about it by their vet (and yes, I will ask mine )
    There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.(Churchill)



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    MI
    Posts
    11,489

    Default

    I have always just hauled warm water to the barn to soak mine. If it's warm enough out and left long enough, it will ferment. Even the molasses free pelleted type, although without the extra sugar from the molasses, it can probably stay good longer.

    It only took about 10-15 min for pelleted BP to soften with 1 part BP to 2 parts water for me--even in the middle of frigid MI winters. I just started the BP soaking when I first got there, did some chores, and it was ready by the time it was time to feed.

    I have not had any first hand problems with soaked BP but I've never left it long enough.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  3. #3
    Join Date
    May. 6, 2007
    Location
    Napanee ON
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    5,080

    Default

    I usually soak mine over night, I have never had a problem. Barns are dirty no matter how actually clean they are, I wouldn't worry about it.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 14, 2004
    Location
    Left coast, left wing, left field
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    6,868

    Default

    It is probably true. Is it worth worrying about? That I'm not sure about. Horses come in contact with tons of bacteria all the time.

    I use the sniff test and to be honest I try not to use beet pulp in the summer. If I do, I'll make it with our very cold artesian well water in the morning and use that night, keeping it in the darkest/coolest area possible. But I'm in western WA where it doesn't get blazing hot very often (and dark cool places stay that way year-round!).

    Bottom line, if it smells good to me and I've exercised reasonable caution, I'm not going to be concerned about what might be starting to grow.

    Quote Originally Posted by BuddyRoo View Post
    It only took about 10-15 min for pelleted BP to soften with 1 part BP to 2 parts water for me--even in the middle of frigid MI winters. I just started the BP soaking when I first got there, did some chores, and it was ready by the time it was time to feed.
    I've tried this and it just is not true of the brands available here. Our pellets take at least 2-3 hours to soften, even with warm water.
    Last edited by JoZ; Dec. 20, 2012 at 02:49 PM. Reason: added comment about BRoo's comment... :)
    Arrange whatever pieces come your way. - Virginia Woolf

    Did you know that if you say the word "GULLIBLE" really softly, it sounds like "ORANGES"?


    2 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep. 15, 2008
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    1,470

    Default

    I soak mine at every feeding to use at the next feeding. The only time I noticed a problem is when it is really hot and humid out. If I let is soak during the day in these conditions it smells moldy by the next feeding. If you leave it too long in the heat it will start to mold at the bottom.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep. 2, 2005
    Location
    Upstate NY
    Posts
    14,323

    Default

    I have to agree with Joz on this one.

    We are talking about animals that push around on the ground to eat and if there is a manure ball on their hay they eat it anyway.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun. 9, 2012
    Posts
    483

    Default

    We soak 4 oz of beet pulp and it fills a full standard water bucket after soaking completely over night. We're feeding my horse and the BO's horse on it - 3 scoops every day for each - and it lasts about a week before fermenting.
    In the summer it ferments a lot faster, though.

    Emily



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun. 9, 2012
    Posts
    483

    Default

    We soak 4 oz of beet pulp and it fills a full standard water bucket after soaking completely over night. We're feeding my horse and the BO's horse on it - 3 scoops every day for each - and it lasts about a week before fermenting.
    In the summer it ferments a lot faster, though.

    Emily



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2002
    Location
    Maryland
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    Default

    Thanks for the feedback guys and basically confirming my initial thought that, yes, it probably increases the bacteria but not really something to worry too much about. I may ask them to soak for less time when its super-humid in the summer
    There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.(Churchill)



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec. 13, 1999
    Location
    Greensboro, NC
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    37,126

    Default

    The key words are - soak, long hours, warm weather.

    That sets up fermentation which yes, can make the horse sick.

    But seriously, beep in warm weather, even with cold water, takes *minutes* to soak. In cold weather, with warm water, *minutes*.

    One does not need to be soaking for hours, though an hour of soaking does plump up the beep more than 5 minutes and allow you to force more water in, if that's a concern. But 5 minutes of soaking is plenty soaked and all but eliminates the choke risk (which is a factor of how dry it is).

    I won't say it doesn't happen, but I just can't imagine a week without fermenting, even in cooler weather. I have accidentally left beep soaking overnight in the Summer, and by the next morning, omg it was nasty.
    ______________________________
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  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
    Location
    MI
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    Default

    Agree with JB, and I'm totally not trying to be a weirdo, but I just don't know what you guys are feeding as far as pelleted that is taking that long! I have fed various brands in multiple states over the last 10 years. I've never encountered a BP feed that required hours worth of soaking. I'm not saying you're making it up, I'm just...well, gobsmacked. It never took more than a few minutes.

    Now granted, I wasn't trying to get it into total mush form....I just wanted it softened. Think of it like making bran muffins. I need the bran to soften but it doesn't have to disintegrate.

    So I don't know what kind of crazy stuff you're dealing with--and I'm SORRY you have to because for me, it was never even a little inconvenient even in the below zero MI weather. I did it twice daily with warm tap water hauled from either home or work, never had trouble.

    In TEXAS, I did have trouble with senior feed fermenting if not eaten up right away, but that had molasses in it.

    I woudl toss out any BP (or any soaked feed for that matter) that smelled like it had turned. FWIW. It might not hurt the horse, but I doubt it would help.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



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