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Feeding alfalfa in the last month of gestation

Equine-Reproduction.com Bulletin Board » Miscellaneous and Suggestions for a New Topic Category » Feeding alfalfa in the last month of gestation « Previous Next »


Author Message
 

Linda Bauer --
Breeding Stock
Username: Llazyt

Post Number: 379
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 11:06 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I was taking to a friend who used a full service breeding facility in Colorado to foal out her mare last year and they told her they only feed alfalfa in the last month of gestation, no grain, because for some reason it prevents colic before and after foaling. Has anyone heard of this, is it true?
 

Diana Gilger
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Kdgilger

Post Number: 4117
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Tuesday, January 10, 2012 - 11:15 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've never heard of it, but, I certainly wouldn't do it without proper supplementation. In the last 90 days gestation, I give the mares time and a half what they usually get, as they need the extra nutrition. I don't know about the logistics of this
 

Linda Bauer --
Breeding Stock
Username: Llazyt

Post Number: 380
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2012 - 12:38 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I was thinking that myself. This is a pretty big facility they do embryo transfer, breeding, foaling so I thought it was kinda strange.
Hey Diana, how many you got this year
 

Diana Gilger
Senior Stallion or Mare
Username: Kdgilger

Post Number: 4118
Registered: 01-2008
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2012 - 08:45 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I have only 3 coming this year...and we're starting mid february. All mares will be on cam at http://www.mysticrockminis.com/LiveCams.html
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Admin

Post Number: 3455
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2012 - 10:38 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Having never seen a serious colic associated with pre-foaling/foaling I am pretty skeptical. Alfalfa is high in calcium, and is good for horses with ulcers, but I don't think that particularly has any bearing in relationship to pre-foaling mares.

I will accept that late-term mares tend not to eat large meals (as there's not much room inside for the feed!); I will also accept that an immediately post-foaling mare that is fed a large meal is at greater risk of colic, especially from caecum torsion; but again, I don't feel this bears any particular relationship to feeding only alfalfa unless the farm only feeds once a day.

I too would have grave concerns about lack of correct nutritional balance with going to a just alfalfa diet all of a sudden. There are ration balancers specifically formulated to balance different feed plans, such as the Buckeye Grow 'n Win for Alfalafa which we use, and if that was fed in addition to the hay, it would be fine - but you don't indicate if that is being fed as well, and I suspect not, which would concern me.



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