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Re: beet pulp

Beet pulp pellets do not HAVE to be soaked, but most people do to lessen
the possibility of choking---even though significant amounts of research
have been done with no choking problems.  If nothing else, they like it
better soaked, usually, and soaking it allows you to hide all kinds of
extra goodies in there, like corn oil or medication.  I have no problem
with feeding the shredded beet pulp dry, but still usually soak it
myself just because I like watching my horses slurp it up.

How much---like any feed, take several weeks to introduce a new feed to
allow gut bacteria a chance to acclimitize.  Harold Hintz at Cornell and
other nutritionists suggest that beet pulp can be used to replace half
of the hay ration, and even more in some situations (like an older horse
that has trouble with his teeth).  So in a normal feeding program, you
realistically can't overfeed beet pulp, and 6-8 pounds a day is
perfectly acceptable.  Beet pulp will not cause the intestinal upsets
such as endotoxemia and laminitis like overfeeding a grain will, so you
don't have to exercise quite the same caution as with a soluble

Good luck,

Susan Garlinghouse, MS
Equine Research Center
California State Polytechnic University, Pomona

Maggie Mieske wrote:
> Researching beet pulp for horses...most of the info I have found is re:
> pellets which must be soaked.  We can buy it shredded and I have been
> told you can't overfeed beet pulp but I am really wondering HOW MUCH
> should I feed and can I feed it without soaking it (shredded does not
> expand like the pellets)?  So far I have only been feeding them a cup or
> so a day to let them get the taste of it...some love it, some hate it
> and I'd like to increase it for those who really love it but want to
> proceed with caution and not upset our feeding program which seems to be
> going along well.  Any suggestions will be appreciated!  Thanks!
> Maggie

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