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May have feeding troubles here

1206 Views 4 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  stacy adams
My winter rye grass is up and is about 6 to 8 inches deep now. I've started letting the goats on it during the middle of the day to graze for only a few minutes at a time. They really dive into it like hogs. I started increasing the feeding time out there for them, but have found that some are not eating their alfalfa very well at evening feeding time. Not complaining about that, because it helps with feed cost that they are getting full on rye grass.......but, I've just noticed since they are stuffing themselves with rye grass, that they are eating 3 to 4 times the amount of baking soda of what they usually do. Do you think I am getting to close to a potential problem, or should I just make sure that the baking soda is plenty available to them, and just let them have at it on the grass. I only open the small field up to them around mid day.....trying to hit half way between morning and evening feedings at the barn.

Thanks for input.....Whim
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As long as it is a gradually feeding time and that they eat the alfalfa hay in the morning before going out you should be fine.
wet , dewy new grass is what is harmful and of course too much of a good thing you will start seeing clumpy poos
I don't let them on it when its wet with dew, frost or rain......well , the rain ain't really a problem here........but all this grass is really fresh, and was fertilized heavily with chicken litter when I planted it......I guess my concern is that they may be getting to much "rich" foods at one time.
Well I would just watch them and see that the baking soda was out for free choice.
The times that your letting them out seem like the best times to me, as you've said the dew is off the grass and their time out is limited. Clumpy poo would indicate that they're on the verge of too much, while wattery poo would tell you to cut their time shorter.. I wouldn't take them off of it all together, as that would just be another change in their diet. I've been letting mine out on winter rye and have only seen clumpy poops in two of the youngest.. I think you'll be fine with how your managing it.. And you goats thank you for the variety!
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