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Discuss Bermuda hay at the Horse Health forum - Horse Forums.

What do you know about Bermuda hay? I'm thinking of getting some and starting to ...
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    Bermuda hay

    What do you know about Bermuda hay? I'm thinking of getting some and starting to feed it to my horses... maybe still give them Orchard in the morning and Bermuda at night... or 1/2 Orchard and 1/2 Bermuda AM and PM...

    Is it good for horses? I thought I heard something about it balling up in their stomach? Would it be ok for a foundered horse to have it?

    It would really help if I could do this. I've just found a feed store where I can get my Orchard hay almost 5 DOLLARS cheaper than where I usually buy it (it's $19 where I used to get it and $14.50 at the new place) and the Bermuda looks good and it's only $10.50.... so it would cut my feed bill a bit
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    Coastal Bermuda hay tends to be finer and some people believe that it can cause impaction colic. I think the jury is still out on this. It is a grass hay and could be fed to your foundered horse... to be on the safe side you could have it tested or soak it to remove any excess sugars as how and when it is baled (the conditions) might push up the levels in the hay. I have some links saved on bermuda and colic..let me dig them up.
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    http://www.cvm.ncsu.edu/docs/PDFS/ileal_impaction.pdf

    http://equisearch.com/horses_care/fe...qhaycolic1752/

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/q...&dopt=Abstract

    http://www.dvmnewsmagazine.com/dvm/a...l.jsp?id=94473

    soaking coastal
    http://www.safergrass.org/full%20art...SoakReport.pdf

    sugar content (re the SE though)
    http://www.enviromateinc.com/coastalhay.htm

    Katy Watts had excellent info on her site...you might want to take a look... she also has a cd series for sale about feeding the carb intolerant horse that I have .... great info.
    http://safergrass.org/
    Madness takes its toll.
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    My TB, and 20 other horses at any given time over a 15 year period ate nothing but Coastal Bermuda, and there were a very small handful of impaction colics in that time period.

    Quality in this area really does count, as poor quality Bermuda is worse in general than poor quality Orchard or Fescue or ...
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    I honestly think it is a false statement about bermuda causing impaction colics.

    We feed it as a WHOLE pretty much here in Texas and we have no major issues. It seems Florida Vets have that thought. Either they are growing some weird Bermuda, or us Texans are just lucky! (More horses in texas too.....)

    Anyways, LOL Bermuda Coastal is pretty decent in nutrition, My horse loves it to death. Will eat it till his hearts content and maintains his pork chop appearance when fed free choice and no work.
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    BW, it's not exactly false So much of it depends on what part of the country it's grown (like with alfalfa, some parts of the country grow it so that it can be fed free choice, other parts of the country produce alfalfa so rich you can't do that), and when it's cut, how quickly you change a horse over to it, and how the horse tends to chew up hay. Because it can be very fine, some horses will just never chew it properly. If it's not cut at the right time, it can be VERY tough and some horses won't chew it properly. Any hay can fall into this category, but Bermuda seems to be the worst of the worst when it's not quality.
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    True, I should have stated it better.

    Bermuda isn't the only hay to be blamed in impactions. But it has a very bad rap in Florida as THE hay to cause colics.

    Which I have yet to really find out why their vets feel so strongly about it, when many vets here shake their heads in bewilderment. (at least the ones I've spoken to)
    Nothing like seeing nature from the back of a horse!

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    You have to keep in mind one of the basic tenets of tests, measurement, and scientific research....

    Correlation does not imply Causation!

    It may be associated or correlated with impactions.... it has not been proven to cause them.
    Mitigating factors may be quality of the hay, dentition of the horse (ability to chew), mode the horse is fed the Bermuda- round bale vs. square, horses fed on the ground as Florida has very sandy soil, type of Bermuda....(one of the Tifton varieties, coastal, etc), and it is a very popular commonly fed forage here....
    As for Florida vets thinking something different than other vets...I have lived in Florida since 1976- owned horses since the early 80's and I have not found this to be true at all. They may be reporting what they see in their practice...again that does not mean they are saying feeding bermuda causes colic. Only that there is a relationship between the two.
    Madness takes its toll.
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    The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
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    And miles to go before I sleep.
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    Good thread. I started one similar to this a couple of years ago. I am one of those FLoridians that was told alll my life to steer clear of coastal bermuda. THat was down in South Fl. I am now up in North Central FL where the mindset is quite different. It took me a little bit of hmmming and hawwwwing and talking to a few different vets up here to finally make up my mind to switch mine to coastal bermuda. I have been feeding it for almost a year now with no problems. The problem that I have been told is that during the cooler months, horses are not consuming as much water, therefore the risk of colic is greater.
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    Thanks for all the info guys!!! It's really appreciated. I just talked to my mom about it though and she doesn't want to feed it. In her mind nothing bad has happened for awhile and she thinks if we change anything something bad might happen. Our 9 year old mare is really suspectible and founders easily, so I better not change anything.
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