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[RC] when to feed grain? - Marlene Moss

I have heard that it doesn’t do much good to feed grain prior to feeding hay, since grain is processed in the stomach and hay is processed in the hindgut, so the hay just pushes the grain out before it is digested. 


Is this a 100% thing or do you lose 20% or somewhere in between?  I’ve got a 50+ horse boarding facility and we run the grain cart around, then follow with hay.  I’ve got a few people that want ridiculous amounts of grain, and a few that are in for training and either the owner or the trainers want their grain increased to keep them from losing weight when their training levels get more active.  And the ones that bring their underweight horse and expect me to put weight on while they are in training!


I would prefer to just add more roughage rather than feed 6-10 pounds of grain in any case, but especially if it really doesn’t do any good if they’re getting grain just prior to hay.


I am considering changing grain feedings to a single feeding mid day or at least some time after they’ve finished most of their hay.  But this will be somewhat of a pain since that is usually when I’m either out riding or going to town.


The other part of this is that we have a couple old guys that get primarily beet pulp and Equine Sr mixed together because they can’t chew hay anymore.  What is the result of the beet pulp (roughage) being mixed with the Senior?  Am I losing the value of the Senior?


I don’t feed my own guys very much grain at all, so I’ve never really worried about it.  I have one mare that I am riding a lot and she dropped a little weight, so I added some additional beet pulp and Senior and she picked up weight.  I added some more hay, but she’s in a pasture with a tubby, so I am not as able to make sure she gets extra hay.  Since she did pick up weight I figure the Senior wasn’t totally lost.  But I don’t want to just throw lots of grain (my cost) at these arena horses is there isn’t a benefit.  So I wanted to figure out if my best bet was to keep having nutrition discussions with the owners or really make the effort to change our feeding plan.


Thanks in advance for any advice!



Marlene Moss

www.LosPinos-CO.com - Boarding, Sales and More

www.KineticEquineAnalysis.com - Saddle Fitting


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