Thursday, August 7, 2008

To Soak Or Not To Soak........


Recently, I've been wetting the flakes of hay given to the girls. Technically not soaking, but spraying them with the hose, usually for their evening feed. I started doing this, because it been so darn hot and sunny, I was worried whether they've been getting enough water. And then watching their poop as usual. Although their troughs are freshened daily and cleaned twice a week and they've been drinking, I noticed a slightly dryer poop, so I began soaking their evening hay and I noticed their poop has been much better. I do this for obvious reasons. They have no choice but to get more water in their diet in this heat. I can't believe that at the level I've been wetting the hay that it removes much of the nutrients as I simply spray it with the hose until it's fairly saturated on both sides of the flake. I notice a difference in the weight of the flake, but it's center is still a bit dry. They eat it too, but it takes them a bit longer to do so. Also good in my book, savor it a bit and not gobble it up and look for more as neither of them need to gain weight. I've added a link with some info of the benefits. Here's the link MyHorse.com . There are a few articles out there both pro and con giving many different reasons to do or not to do, but I actually think this is good for my girls during this heat. I know our friend at White Horse Pilgrim does this for various reasons for his stallion. Does anybody else do this and what's your opinion?

11 comments:

cdncowgirl said...

I think its a good idea anytime a horse needs more water.
My friend's gelding doesn't drink well from a bucket, when we went to finals I suggested the same thing to her.

Mrs Mom said...

I have always heard that for horses with Cushings, and laminitic horses that feeding soaked hay is a great thing (removes sugars in the grasses.). (Along with the horses with pulmonary issues....) Makes sense to me really, to help slow them down (like you said, always a good thing,) and keep a bit of the weight issue under control, and knock any dist down. Good thinking!

Give them a rub from me! And rub Minas belly tooooo!

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

My vets have told me to wet down the hay after the horses have had their teeth floated... something about making it easier to chew.

kdwhorses said...

Right now I don't because we have a round bale in the pasture. But have soaked in the past. I always have a salt block out for them and if I know I will be doing alot of work on the horses I start them on electrolytes to help increase there water intake. You defintely don't want a dehydrated horse!

Grey Horse Matters said...

We have one horse who benefits from the wet hay,he has a respiratory problem sometimes, but most just get it dry. I think if it works for you do it. It might help keep them lubricated and it certainly can't hurt them and if it slows them down all the better. Ours eat it up like it's their last meal before going to the electric chair. You'd think they weren't out grazing all day.

Pony Girl said...

Sounds like a good idea to me, would help keep the hay dust down, too. I will have to check out your link and see what the cons are about.
As I've said before, you always take such good care of your horses! ;)

ばらっち said...

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I often soak hay for my horses. It seems good for them.
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Victoria Cummings said...

I have been soaking my hay because I worry that it's dusty. I'm using up the few bales I have left from last year before the second cutting comes in and mixing it with new first cutting. For whatever the negatives are, my vet encouraged me to keep doing it through the rest of the summer. And the girls don't mind eating it.

Callie said...

Thanks, All,I think the benefits outway any cons that may be out there for my fat girls!

Saddle Mountain Rider said...

An interesting blog... i would think that watering down the hay would aid in reducing the amount of dust the horse would ingest. But i am glad to read the other reasons for it.

ranchette said...

Interesting idea. I had never thought to wet down flakes as a way to increase the water they're getting. J especially is finacky about water sources (surprise for that high maintenance one I know), so I'll file this away for the future.