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Old 09-02-2010, 09:15 PM   #1
Nana
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Default alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

I am getting conflicting information. Is alfalfa good or not so good for Alpine dairy goats. I have heard it can make the weathers have kidney stones. I heard that they should just be eating grass instead. Please help clear this up.



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Old 09-02-2010, 09:21 PM   #2
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

For milking does an unqualified YES- alflafa is the best.

There is some school of thought that feeding Alflafa to bucks or wethers can cause urinary calculi but I know many who have fed alfalfa to their bucks for years with no problems.

It depends what else you feed them has something to do the the overall Calcium/phosphorus ratio that probably one of the experts on here will chime in to explain.



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Old 09-02-2010, 09:54 PM   #3
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

I feed my bucks and does alfalfa hay. Wethers, well I dont keep them around long enough to worry about feeding them.

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Old 09-03-2010, 12:53 AM   #4
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

Our does get alfalfa pellets, alfalfa hay, mixed grass pasture and a grain mix when they are on the stand for milking or when we are feeding them 100 plus days bred. Our bucks never get anything but alfalfa hay and pasture.

Urinary calculi is more of a problem in wethers eating a grain mixture.

Marla

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Old 09-03-2010, 01:10 AM   #5
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

Are alfalfa pellets an acceptable substitute for alfalfa hay if no hay is available?

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Old 09-03-2010, 01:15 AM   #6
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

Quote:
Are alfalfa pellets an acceptable substitute for alfalfa hay if no hay is available?
Certainly and there was a thread on her not to long ago about this. Some feed only pellets - I prefer them to at least have some sort of hay fee choice as well for now but may try straight alfalfa pellets in future. If you are feeding them alflafa pellets you can certainly get by with a lower grade hay.
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Old 09-03-2010, 02:04 AM   #7
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

Linda, yes, pellets are an acceptable substitute but watch the protein level. I had nowhere the results with 14% pellets (that were quite dusty) like I do with 17% protein alfalfa pellets from a different supplies. I went completely to pellets free choice.

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Old 09-03-2010, 03:27 AM   #8
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

My bucks get alfalfa pellets with alfalfa/orchard hay. The hay doesn't have much alfalfa in it though. I have fed them straight alfalfa before.

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Old 09-03-2010, 05:22 AM   #9
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

We get a wonderful grass/alfalfa mix this time of year and switch to pure alfalfa in the winter. The bucks all get meat goat pellets that contain AC in them and calf manna. I have also used pellets when we didn't have as good of hay as we do now. We used Standlee brand and nothing else because all the other pellets looked like crud and smelled like crud. If we were ever to lose our hay source I would be seriously be looking into pellet feeders.
Tam

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Old 09-03-2010, 06:22 AM   #10
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Default Re: alfalfa Yes or NO for Goats

In another thread it was said that it is the phosphorous that causes the urinary stone problem so alfalfa with it's calcium is fine.



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