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What's the best way to feed hay to a horse outdoors with COPD/Heaves?

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  • What's the best way to feed hay to a horse outdoors with COPD/Heaves?

    Like the title says - what is the best way to feed a horse hay with COPD/Heaves outdoors? Without much waste? Also keeping in mind that we get a cold, snowy winter where I live?

    Forgot to mention that my horse lives out 24/7.

    Is it better to wet or soak the hay?
    Feed in haynets? Feed in haynets on the ground?

    Feed it freely on the ground?


    Thanks in advance!
    Meet me at the Rainbow Bridge Harley
    May 21, 2004 - February 28, 2006

  • #2
    Small-hole haynet, preferably with wet hay (if it's not so cold it'll freeze solid quickly). Either hang on fence (as low as possible) with bottom tied so it won't flip around too much, or you can rig the haynet to be a "ball" on the ground.
    Equus Keepus Brokus


    • #3
      Going thru this problem too.
      As above poster I use small holed haynets which I hang up in the run-in shed.

      I don't like feeding on the ground, it gets trampled, dirt gets in there, even when in a haynet. Wet hay picks up more dirt then dry hay, so I vote for hanging up.

      The thing I struggle with is figuring out how much. His consumption varies from day to day, I like a little leftover, means he had enough, but when I have half a haynet left, which I have to throw out, then I don't feel so happy about that.

      For dust/spore reduction, wetting is sufficient, as long as it's properly wet. I put it under in a wheelbarrow filled with water, but I don't necessarily soak it for any length of time.
      There was an article about this in horse.com I believe, saying thoroughly wetting is good enough for the respiratory horse, no need to soak.

      Cold, frost, no advice, hope horsey likes crunchy hay .


      • #4
        I have a restaurant floor mat on the ground to feed soaked hay. I soak the hay in The Soaker (www.justsoakit.com) with a crate, and set the crate on the mat. My horse does pull some of the hay out, it just goes on the mat. Keeps it on the ground and stays pretty clean.


        • #5
          I would soak and put in a small hole hay bet. I use and recommend freedom feeders as they are very user friendly. You could either get something like an extended day and tie it to the fence or get a small or large bale net and anchor it in a water trough/rubbermaid and feed it on the ground.


          • #6
            Jlazevedo, I was looking into that product the other day.
            Have you got a picture of it? I'd be curious to see what it looks like.
            And how much dry hay can it hold?
            I'm looking to find something that can hold 20lbs of dry hay.


            • #7
              I put his hay in a Rubbermaid water trough, and as long as I don't make it too full, he doesn't flip it out.

              I can't wet it down or he won't eat it, but he does dunk his hay like crazy himself.

              So, he has his trough of hay next to his trough of water.

              ETA: I don't like to use hay nets because I don't want him breathing in the dust. I can't hang nets low because he is shod.


              • #8
                I saw these at an expo last weekend:


                It can be secured so it doesn't roll around. It has a small trough in the bottom so sand and dust settle below the hay. Seems very well made and is way easier and faster to load than hay nets. They are not cheap.


                • #9
                  I had one that needed soaked hay in the barn, but it's cold here too. I put the hay in a 16 gallon heated tub which was secured to the wall in the corner of the stall, then filled the tub with water. I ran the plug through the wall and plugged it in outside the stall. I think the same thing would work outside.

                  Damrock Farm