• 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.



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

Feeding grass clippings-is it safe

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Feeding grass clippings-is it safe

    My herd is on grass 24/7 but they always need supplementing --we finially own our own horse property an plenty of lawn to mow--is I raked up the very first clippings from new mower I was trhinking of getting the bag attachment and feeding it fresh--its the same stuff as in the field--no chemicals.

    Is thtis safe practice under these circumstances?

    TIA klr

  • #2
    I've always heard its a no-no...waiting to see what others say. Perhaps after its dried as hay is but I thought there was a problem with bacteria while still damp.
    "My treasures do not sparkle or glitter, they shine in the sunlight and nicker to me in the night"


    • #3
      No. It ferments very quickly and is just not worth the risk.
      McDowell Racing Stables

      Home Away From Home


      • #4
        I too thought it was a no no but that said I know someone who always fed them with no
        problems. With a tractor mower you don't have to deal with exhaust fumes but what about dirt/grit ? When I sometimes run my hands through fresh cut grass sometimes there is lots of dirt mixed with it.
        If the grass feels good, doesn't seem to be mixed with dirt spread it out and try small amounts to condition the horse to it.
        Last edited by Shadow14; May. 5, 2009, 08:53 PM.


        • #5
          no-- freash cut grass isnt the same as they eating grass
          its gets juicy when cut like fresh cut hay one would give it eat until its dried

          you will and can cuase colic if given grass cutting


          • #6
            Not from a mower

            My friend had a mare. The neighbours thought they would be nice and give the "horsey" fresh cut lawn clippings. Mare foundered. I always remember that and would never feed clippings.
            Member of the Standardbreds with Saddles Clique!
            LouLove - OTTB - 1992-2008...miss you my pretty red girl...
            Wilde! NEW - OTTSTB - 2004 Gelding...my heart's new journey...


            • Original Poster

              Thats what I figured

              but now I'm more worried about mowing the field--for now I only have the one field,as soon as its dry enough--currently a swamp--I plan on mowing--what about them eating it then--mowing is supposed to make for better grazing--maybe Ill just be mowing uneaten weeds-but in future there will be much more pasture fenced to mow. does everyone keep horses off fresh mowed fields?

              I remember seeing a tv program years ago about Japanese racehorses living is high rise stables and eating trays of hydroponicly grown grass--but that was roots and all not cut.

              Thank you all for the input klr


              • #8
                Its ok to give it to them in handfuls, but I definitely would not fill up the bag and dump it in. I think the main reason is it can get moldy kind of quickly in the head and ferment.

                I wouldnt worry at all about when you mow. let my horse graze loose on tha lawn, even while my dad is mowing, and he will eat the stuff thats cut (he doesnt have to go through the effort of biting the grass off...hehe). No probs.


                • #9
                  I give my horses grass clippings. The big problem with clippings is they go moldy very quickly, So don't feed more than they will eat in a short period of time. ( You don't want them to come back to the pile three hours later.) Where I may get 4-5 bags full of grass on the mower, My horse get 1 bag and the rest goes in the compost pile.

                  Also some horses will choke on the clippings if they try to eat them too quickly. Since the clippings are small, the horses don't feel the need to chew like they would with long stemed grass. If you have a horse that tends to wolf his feed. Then I wouldn't give him clippings.

                  And yes some horses can colic or founder on a sudden change to a rich diet. My horses are eating green grass all day anyway, So I don't see it causing a sudden change in their diet to give some clippings.

                  I don't see a lot of difference between letting them eat a small pile of clippings vs just letting them graze on my lawn. ( which I do on occassions)

                  You will have to decide if these risk are reasonable for your horses. You will probably get more people advising against it than saying it is OK. And thats because there are probably more horses out there that should not be eating grass clippings for one reason or another. Like most things in life, make an educated decision based on why something is good or bad and not based on old wives tales.


                  • #10
                    No, to feeding the clippings.

                    I would keep horses off the mowed field for a day or two, so clippings dry a little. Horses will prefer live grass to graze, it is more tender, so clippings will have less appeal as they dry out.

                    I leave the clippings on the field, they dry and break down, first acting as mulch on plants, before going back into the soil. This actually benefits the grass in field, with returning minerals acting as fertilizer. A season's worth of clipped grass, equals an entire application of paid fertilizer. So you are getting a FREE application by the end of summer.

                    People who rake off the clipped grass are really throwing away money and benefits to the grass plants. That clipped grass gives more benefit to the yard or field, than if you composted it.

                    Don't cut the field too short, 4-5 inches, is short enough. Longer leaves are more protection to the roots and dirt around the plant. Longer leaves provide more food to the plant, stronger roots grow when trimmed leaves are still feeding them.


                    • #11
                      I wouldn't give clippings from a mower. The small, tightly packed grass particles will just sour quickly. I would (and have) however, if you have a high growing area somewhere, cut off (by hand) some long blades of grass and feed them. Again not a huge pile at once, just the equivalent to a flake or two of hay.


                      • #12
                        getting some long grass cut and fed is not a big deal, been done for stall bound animals for ages, grass clippings, I'd pass, depending on your climate, the stuff starts turning immidiately...I mean, stick your hand in a fresh pile, chances are you can already feel the heat coming on.


                        • #13
                          I mow pastures with the horses in there most of the time, and don't have any problems.

                          The difference with feeding what you collect from a lawnmower and what you mow and leave on the ground is that the stuff from the mower usually sits in the bag all clumped together and the moisture can't dissipate. So then you have issues with mold and fermentation and such. If you look closely at the grass that mowers spit back out onto the ground, it's spread out pretty well and it dries very fast. I mow often, so the cut stuff is dry within an hour or 2.

                          As long as you mow the grass regularly so that you're not left with a thick layer of grass that can't dry, you're usually ok.


                          • #14
                            I think if the clippings are fed IMMEDIATELY to the horse, and not allowed to sit for even an hour, you're okay. That is, if you don't randomly feed a horse unaccostomed to grass 50 lbs of clippings or something.

                            FWIW, my mare has eaten "hand picked" grass (ie, I go out in a field and pick a bunch of grass myself for her, and bring it to her), and fresh clippings from a mower. The stable guy had just mowed around the outdoor arena, and blew a bunch of the clippings into the arena. He said if I wanted to give my mare a treat I should turn her out in the indoor. He's always giving me tips on how to give my mare snacks, it's great.
                            Tell a Gelding. Ask a Stallion. Discuss it with a Mare... Pray if it's a Pony!


                            • #15
                              We will let them in a field that is freshly cut but not bagged, but we cut our fields every other week. They seem to not always eat the clippings, but go for the tender stuff that is easier to get to when the fields are cut. Never bag anything, just leave it out to dry......


                              • #16
                                I blow lawnmower clippings under the fencelines, and I will also feed fresh clippings. My horses are used to grass. If feeding bagged or raked clippings- I spread them out (in a paddock, not a stall) so they can't grab big mouthfuls at once and it also allows the clippings to dry out. You have to be careful with bagging, though, because they start to heat up and ferment really quickly. I've also allowed the clippings to dry on the lawn (like really short hay), then raked them up and fed them.


                                • #17

                                  A few paragraphs down.


                                  • #18
                                    I clipped the long patches of my horse's pasture over the weekend -- he won't touch it. Then, I took the RTV with the heavy rake and raked his field, spreading the clippings and manure piles (four acres with one horse). He's still alive.


                                    • #19
                                      A fresh handful or two? Sure.

                                      A fresh bag full to horses already out on pasture? Okay.

                                      But dumping a few bags of fresh clippings in to horses who have been on dry lot all winter/spring? Bad idea.

                                      Why? Well...for one, they're not used to grass at all period. Next, when horses graze, they don't take in the same amount of grass as they do when it's pre cut and they can just get a huge mouthful. Can we say impaction colic?

                                      A lot of horses might do just fine with it...but it's something I'd prefer not be given to my horses...especially if they're on dry lot. (IR horse)
                                      A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

                                      Might be a reason, never an excuse...


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by WaningMoon View Post

                                        I copied and pasted for ease:

                                        "Even pure grass clippings are unacceptable. The small particle size and high moisture content of grass cut with a lawn mower result in rapid fermentation in warm weather. Feeding lawn clippings and garden refuse to horses can lead to colic, botulism, laminitis and/or death and is not recommended. "
                                        Member of the Standardbreds with Saddles Clique!
                                        LouLove - OTTB - 1992-2008...miss you my pretty red girl...
                                        Wilde! NEW - OTTSTB - 2004 Gelding...my heart's new journey...