• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Anyone feed alfalfa exclusively?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Anyone feed alfalfa exclusively?

    Just got a new horse in and he's a picky eater (assuming ulcers because of other symptoms and will be giving UlcerGuard a try). He's meh about our grass hay and has barely eaten anything since he got here. Tried beet pulp and timothy pellets and he was also meh. Just got back from the feed store with alfalfa pellets and rice bran and hit the jackpot - he gobbled up a bucket (2 lb AP, 1 lb RB) right away.

    I'm thinking of giving straight alfalfa hay a try for him to at least jump-start his appetite and get some weight on him. I'll continue with the RB and add supplements as he'll eat them.

    Does anyone feed this way? Any cons I should know about? When I used to board, many of the barns fed alfalfa cubes exclusively and I didn't like it because of the cubes-only-twice-a-day factor, but I've never done alfalfa hay only...
    "A horse's face always conveys clearly whether it is loved by its owner or simply used." - Anja Beran

  • #2
    I have a horse that is meh about grass hay, too. I have fed him straight alfalfa for years--no problem.

    Now that he's older, I have found an alfalfa/bermuda pellet that I soak and serve with BP and he eats them with no problem.

    Comment


    • #3
      We feed alfalfa to all of ours and have for yrs. mostly becaue we have alot of broodmares and we are trying to stay away from the grassier hay's but they all get it. broodmares, babies, retired's and the regulars...

      twice a day is all they get.... add a flake in the winter one flake maybe in the summer depending on the grass situation...

      i also had a colt that didnt want to eat at all when i first brought him to the farm, he would eat a little and then walk off.... it worried me... after a week or two he suddenly just gobbled it all up like he had never eaten before.... go figure since he hadnt eaten for two weeks basically... never had a problem since.... eats like a hog now...

      maybe your guy just needs to settle in..... did you find out what he was eating before?

      Comment


      • #4
        West coast alfalfas are assoc'ed with very high levels of alkalizers (sorta like buffers only pH actually increases) and enteroliths are the rare but associated condition there.

        But to anwser your question has anyone ever fed straight alfalfa? Yes I have. It was not that many years ago my herd was very old and rather than pay thru the nose for Sr pellets I opted to keep diary quality alfalfa in front of them 24X7 to keep their weights up during our less than lovely winters. They lived long, healthy and with full and happy tummies!

        Pick a ration balancer or other feed specific to be used with an alfalafa diet and the horse should be fine. And always remember dilution is the solution to pollution. Meaning start adding tiny bits of the other feed "hidden" in the alfalfa pellets and increase slowly with time.

        Comment


        • #5
          We used to for pretty much all our horses. Alfalfa was common in the part of the midwest where I lived, so all our hay was a heavy alfalfa mix, if not straight alfalfa.
          http://ridingthroughthefear.blogspot.com/
          www.facebook.com/ThaliaFarm

          Comment


          • #6
            We live in dairy country and many deliveries for our 40+ horse farm are mostly alfalfa. We have learned that if fed with corn, the protein is not too high,and also if a grass hay is offered in another corner the horses balance their ration themselves. Our horses mostly live out and they look amazing in the dead of winter...my show horses are in stalls and they thrive as well.
            "Over the Hill?? What Hill, Where?? I don't remember any hill!!!" Favorite Tee Shirt

            Comment


            • #7
              Yep - straight alfalfa for my older gelding for at least 2 years now. No issues whatsoever!

              Comment


              • #8
                Here, for mature horses, we have fed alfalfa only for a good, I would say, 100 years.

                We added oats to broodmares and horses under two and horses in heavier training, the rest all got only alfalfa hay and thrived, if not we would have fed other.
                We probably had a handful of colics in a century and our vets tell us that feeding alfalfa is one reason why.

                Now, all alfalfa hay is not the same, it has to be managed properly.
                You have to feed the right kind for the animals you feed it to.

                We have had horses fed alfalfa only and our native short grass pasture for years, green in the summers, cured dry in the winters, one passed away two summers ago at 30.

                Every time I ask our vets if we should change to big bales of other hay, they say "why change what is working so well, our horses look great, leave it be".

                Now, I have known ONE TB that was truly allergic to alfalfa, got dime sized hives if he was fed any, but he was not here, was somewhere else and no, we would not have fed him any alfalfa, of course.

                I would not get too hung up on what to feed, but feed whatever is available locally that is agreeing with your horse/s.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Yes, I feed alfalfa to everybody but they're always tbs.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I do think that alfalfa is different from region to region.
                    That being said, my TB's get alfalfa. It's being shipped in from Indiana and Ohio.
                    No problems and I noticed that they drink more on alfalfa hay.
                    ************************
                    \"Horses lend us the wings we lack\"

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'm in Texas right now for awhile and my hay choices are limited to say the least. I can get decent/good alfalfa and not-so-decent/crappy coastal. That's it. Period.

                      My horses WILL NOT eat the coastal even when I left a flake in the stall for 3 days with nothing else.

                      So, I felt I had no choice, but to feed straight, free-choice alfalfa.

                      They look GREAT and are show horses, so out in public every weekend. Get lots of compliments on how well they look.

                      But, the alfalfa is all they get. I don't feed grain. One gets a handful of a fat supplement for her coat and feet.

                      Been doing this for a few years now and, for me, it's working great (except for the price of the hay).

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I LOVE alfalfa and would happily feed as much of it to my horse as he'll eat, if I had some straight alfalfa on hand. He loves it and does well on it and I think it keeps his weight up better without feeding him as much grain (he's a furnace and tends to blow use every calorie he gets!). As it is, he gets a mixed hay...and since I'm the one who feeds everyone, I always give him the most alfalfa-y hay I find, day to day

                        But, yes, I have fed straight alfalfa, but only to one horse. He was always a picky eater, then got very sick and spent 2 weeks in the hospital. They found that he ate alfalfa very well, so when he came home, I had my hay guy bring some. For a long time he got nothing but alfalfa and a ration balancer...at some point I added a couple of pounds of a high fat feed when his work load was high. He thrived on it, and actually ate the alfalfa. Before he was sick, he would only pick at and trash the beautiful timothy I gave him.
                        Amanda

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          We always fed straight alfalfa to our TB broodmares, weanlings, yearlings and 2 year olds with no problems. Some people said they worried that it would make them "too hot" but we didn't have that problem. We had a large portion of alfalfa mix in the paddocks as well for when they were turned out, but when they were in their stalls they always received straight alfalfa. My horses were always in good health and good flesh.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Half our barn gets alfalfa and RB only. Mix of show/pleasure horses. All are fat and healthy.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              My ottb's get straight alfalfa and do great. I believe it's the best thing you can do both for their gut and their weight. Now my fatties can't come anywhere near the alfalfa but one is a connemara/tb and the other is some sort of mixed breed that both blow up on air. They eat a RB and timothy.
                              http://www.benchmarksporthorses.com/

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X