Beet Pulp Pellets vs Shreds

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by smithurmonds, Jul 3, 2011.

  1. smithurmonds

    smithurmonds New Member

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    We are supplementing with beet pulp and the feed store was out of shreds last time so we purchased pellets. Is there anything to take into consideration with pellets vs. shreds or is it essentially the same product?

    Also, we're working to get one of our bucks into show condition without piling on the grain. We've upped the alfalfa and added beet pulp and he's putting on condition beautifully. I don't see any references to beet pulp being an issue with bucks, but thought I'd triple check that I'm not in the process of creating a problem for myself. Beet pulp is ok for bucks, too?
     
  2. skeeter

    skeeter Member

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    I feed my wethers and bucks beet pulp pellets everyday and have never had an issue with it at all. I like the pellets because I can mix them with their alfalfa pellets and they don't contain molasses.
     

  3. smithurmonds

    smithurmonds New Member

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    Thanks Skeeter! I've never come across anything in my reading suggesting they're a problem for bucks, but thought I'd make sure. We've been really happy with the results so far and so are they: they think they're getting grained. :lol
     
  4. nightskyfarm

    nightskyfarm New Member

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    I use shreds because that is what the horses eat, so I get that for all. I didn't know there were pellets. Would you soak pellets too, like I do the shreds for the horses?
     
  5. helmstead

    helmstead New Member

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    I always fed shreds to horses unsoaked, only ever worried about soaking the pellets.

    I ASSUME that goats chew the pellets well enough to avoid soaking those - not to mention my goats would never dream of eating something mushy =P However when we used beet pulp for goats, we bought the shredded variety 'just because' I'm a worry wart.
     
  6. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Both the shreds and pellets have molassas as an ingredient out here. I feed them soaked in hot water for the old girls and feed them straight unsoaked to the goats. Jennifer the big ole single stomached horse being fed beet pulp that turn into a sponge in horses and can impact a gut isn't even a consideration in a goat/ruminant. But boy do the girls love their hot soaked beet pulp water and shreds!
     
  7. helmstead

    helmstead New Member

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    Vicki, come talk to my goats about eating their mush, would ya? =D They just sniff mashes and stare at me like I've totally lost it...
     
  8. skeeter

    skeeter Member

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    I've never soaked the pellets, just put them out as they come in the bag. No one has ever choked on them, not even the littles that scavenge the crumbs. I have never seen any indication that they would be prone bloat on them and as I understand it, the whole "swelling up in their stomach and bursting it" thing is just a wives tale.
    I've been very happy with the condition my boys stay in using beet pulp. They seem to put on more lean muscle mass than before and I'm seeing better endurance on the trails.
     
  9. smithurmonds

    smithurmonds New Member

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    I had intended to get the shreds, but they weren't available. Although, I will say, the pellets are taking up a lot less space where we store feed. Storing 200 lbs of the shreds would have been a challenge for us!

    Both the shreds and the pellets contain a "small amount" of molasses, according to the manufacturer, because it's part of the drying process when the pulp is processed but it's not added when they make the actual feed. What a small amount might be I haven't a clue. Maybe that's why they're gobbling them up so! :D

    Kate, we are feeding them unsoaked as well and they do seem to be chewing the pellets.
     
  10. dragonlair

    dragonlair New Member

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    I prefer the pellets because they are easier to store and cheaper. My animals like them better. The molasses is like 1% or something like that because it is part of the process, as was mentioned, not added. I feed it to my goats and horses, but I soak it. The shreds are easier to soak. None of my critters will eat them dry, so I set them to soak the feeding time before I need to feed them, so they are ready when I need them. That stuff was a Godsend for the older animals who couldn't chew hay and it kept my bucks in great shape even during rut.
     
  11. Tracy in Idaho

    Tracy in Idaho New Member

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    Vicki, it doesn't even really affect a horse like that --

    http://shady-acres.com/susan/beetpulp.shtml

    I've never fed the pellets to the goats without soaking them.....they didn't seem interested in them at all. I may have to try again :) I like soaking them with cold water in the summers though - keeps them nice and hydrated...
     
  12. freedomfrom4

    freedomfrom4 New Member

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    We fed our beet shreds soaked. My goats loved the water and anything left in the bucket after feeding the horses. Now we are on a smaller property and don't have horses so they aren't getting any, but thought they would be good to start feeding towards winter when it is cold. Warm soup sounds good to me on those days and I figure would to them too :)
     
  13. MF-Alpines

    MF-Alpines New Member

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    I've seen beet pulp out here without molasses, but like everyone said, the molasses that is in the common beet pulp is really minimal. I've seen the pellets, but our feed mill doesn't carry them. I was hoping to use pellets in our Sondra Mix because by the time they're done mixing the grains using shreds, the shreds are a powder and the goats don't like it (the powder). Now I just buy the shreds and mix it into the milk stand grains.

    For horses, I still soak them.....just in case. But the two we have now are such easy keepers that they don't ever need anything extra. I swear they could survive and thrive on air.
     
  14. Caprine Beings

    Caprine Beings New Member

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    We tried pellets, I guess the does felt they were unpalletable :sigh even soaked. But the shreds...man they go nuts for it just the way it is :)
    Tam
     
  15. freedomfrom4

    freedomfrom4 New Member

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    Can you leave them out free choice or should they only have so much?
     
  16. Anita Martin

    Anita Martin Senior Member

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    I've found that you can leave the pellets out all the time without worry. My goats really don't care for them like that though.

    A month or so ago I was running low on feed, and so to extend my feed a few days I added some of the horses soaked shreds to their feed and mixed it up. They LOVED it! So, in yet another effort to save money I started adding beet pulp to their diet daily, soaked. I was thinking that because it was lower in protein than the grain it was replacing that it would lower production (we simply do not need 6 to 7 gallons of milk every day) and help them gain weight while keeping their calcium levels up.

    I will say that even feeding less grain, I've not noticed one single drop in production:( But, I've saved money and the girls have not lost weight yet.

    And then....I got this other idea...since I'm feeding a wet mash two times a day... I was making kombucha for my lame horse with the hoof issue in the hopes that it might help....I had planned on adding vinegar to my water this month to see if I could increase my doeling percentages with the higher PH. I'm not sure what the PH of Kombucha is, but since I have so much of that, and it's way cheaper to make than buying vinegar, I've been glugging that into their feed buckets twice a day and conducting my own experiment for increasing doe kids.

    I started out with beet pulp shreds, but switched to pellets as they are cheaper and seem cleaner. The drawback is that they need to be soaked longer. You can get around that by adding boiling water over the shreds in a five gallon bucket and put a lid on it. It soaks up the water much faster. I don't have anything against feeding it dry, but I have to soak it for a gelding with weight and teeth issues and the goats love it so much more like that, plus I can add things like herbs, kombucha, etc. and they just gobble it all down. It lets them have more eating time too, feeding it soaked, and adds more water to their diet.

    Unless we notice problems down the road, we'll probably keep feeding this way from now on.
     
  17. smithurmonds

    smithurmonds New Member

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    I did read that using hot water to soak it can destroy some of the nutrients.
     
  18. skeeter

    skeeter Member

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    Hmm, guess I'm lazy. During the winter I just mix 3 parts alfalfa pellets to 1 part beet pulp and feed free choice.
     
  19. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    High heat is used to make the product, so not sure how using even boiling water is going to harm anything in it after the fact. Vicki
     
  20. smithurmonds

    smithurmonds New Member

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    That's a very good point! I'm pretty sure I read that on the manufacturer's website, but that sounds like a reasonable argument to me. I fed soaked alfalfa cubes for a while to the goats because I was worried they weren't going to get enough long-stem fiber when I was feeding the alfalfa pellets free choice. They sure liked them soaked in hot water on cold days! :) I was so pleased to read about folks' success feeding pellets as the sole source of alfalfa since good alfalfa hay is so hard to get here in the South and won't worry so much about the fiber in the future. With the humidity being so high here in the summer it's virtually impossible to keep hay fresh in our current set-up. I digress... Thanks for all the feedback on the beet pulp everyone! We've been really happy with the results so far and will continue feeding them. :)