What to know about hay pellets for horses
Always talk to your veterinarian and equine nutritionist to see if hay pellets are appropriate for your horse as part of his diet or his whole diet. They work very well for many horses out there!
- I’ll also add that horses have a way of humbling us…and in this case, I have been very humbled! For many years, I had a grudge against hay pellets. How on earth could they be better than long-stem forage in a bale?
- Let’s just say I have eaten a whole lot of crow in this department – I now own a horse that can’t eat any other food besides hay pellets. These little tiny bits of hay actually saved his life.
They are small – much smaller than hay cubes. And just as tasty!
The benefits of hay pellets
- Consistent, dust-free, weed-free, bug-free, squashed snake and bird-free, twig-free, metal-free hay product.
- The guaranteed analysis on every bag. No need to send samples to a lab if you need to know what’s in your horse’s forage.
Same size as other feeds. Easy to store, easy to move around. And much more maneuverable than a bale of hay!
- Even easier to weigh and feed, with no wasted hay out the back of the wagon. It all fits in a bucket!
- Even easier to eliminate wasted food, nothing blows away, gets peed on, or smashed by hooves.
- Lots of varieties are available all over the country.
- Moving your horse to a new barn, city, or even state can be made safer by using pellets instead of switching hay when you land in your new home.
- Easy to store, transport, and keep rodent-free. I use these amazing vaults with giant screw tops that no rodent has been able to bust through.
Love these food vaults!
- Easy to feed during trailer rides, with no worry about hay bits floating around the trailer.
- Great for senior horses with chewing issues or digestive issues. The consistency is much easier on sensitive digestive systems.
- Pound for pound equivalent with hay, so no crazy math skills are needed to calculate how much you should be feeding.
You can add supplements and medicines to hay pellets. Spritz with water and stir.
Downsides to hay pellets and what you can do about it:
- Some horses will scarf them down. This can result in choke. To avoid this and increase “chewability”, wet the hay pellets lightly, or soak them into a hay mash. Hay mashes are also great for horses with dental issues.
- You can also pick up a slow feeder designed for feeds and pellets, they come in a few sizes!
This is the Pre-Vent feeder.
- Most horses will eat five pounds of pellets faster than five pounds of hay. Using a slow feeder or providing smaller meals more frequently will remedy that.
- If your horse is not chewing as much, you may find him wanting to chew other things…so be prepared with ideas, toys, exercise, friends, etc. to keep him busy.
Easy to store, easy to measure, easy to transport!
You may not want to use hay pellets all the time unless necessary, but it’s good to know you have options if needed.
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Other sizes available, too!
2 sizes of this slow-feeding hay toy - snack size holds a few flakes, and the half size holds 1/2 bale.