Alfalfa Pellets?

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by Amos, Nov 11, 2010.

  1. Amos

    Amos New Member

    Oct 2, 2008
    Minnesota
    Does anyone here feed alfalfa pellets instead of hay? Not as a supplement but strictly as a source of hay?
    We have a Saanen and Nubians.. all lactating. I know generally how much they eat in terms of flakes of hay but does anyone have an idea of a conversion? How much should get eat?

    Also.. Are all alfalfa pellets created equally?
     
  2. AlaskaBoers

    AlaskaBoers New Member

    May 6, 2008
    Wasilla Alaska
    i've known people who only feed pellets, works fine for them!
     

  3. OhCee

    OhCee Yak Lady

    609
    Feb 26, 2010
    Western MT
    I tried it down in AZ- I clearly offered WAY too much, my goats were all fatties :) They thrive on more roughage from browse and hay up here now. I don't know the proper conversion- sorry! One breeder I got a doeling from does feed pellets- she had 8 does and kids and she was feeding three of the 3 lbs coffee cans BID... seemed like a lot to me, but I dunno- half the does were in milk. They also got grain on the milk stand.
     
  4. myfainters

    myfainters New Member

    Oct 29, 2009
    Lancaster, CA
    You just have to be careful to switch over from feeding hay to alfalfa pellets slowly. (like one half feeding of pellets in the morning and a flake of hay in the evening) otherwise they will bloat. :) Mine love the pellets....but we do still feed hay as well.
     
  5. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    For full sized does you'll probably use a minimum of 3lbs/goat/day. Some may end up needing slighly less but most fall into the 3-5 lb/day catagory.

    I only fed pelleted hay for a few months when I was having trouble finding good alfalfa one year--that doesn't happen often. Mine definitely prefer regular hay as long as the quality is good...but they did well on the pellets and I would feed them again if good hay wasn't so cheap here. I can get a 75lb bale of dairy quality alfalfa for about $4 and a 40lb bag of 17% alfalfa pellets is $12!

    Some brands of pellets are definitely inferior...when you open a bag it should smell like fresh alfalfa and dust should be minimal. Make sure that the only ingredient is alfalfa. Also make sure they are 16-17% protein...there are lower protein pellets available but milking does really do best on the higher protein ones.
     
  6. Mon Reve Farm

    Mon Reve Farm New Member

    612
    Jun 25, 2010
    Southern DE
    That's what I was going to add to the thread... You can definitely tell the inferior brands as soon as you open the bag. If it has a "musty smell" it is poor quality and more likely to have other ingredients.
     
  7. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    I have used Producers Pride Alfalfa pellets...TSC carries them @ $13 per 50#, I liked them because they were small...like rabbit feed and my goats had no problems with eating them, they had a good smell to them as well...another brand I used is Stanlee, these are bigger pellets bright in color and good smell, a bit more expensive though...$14 for 40#. I make these wet because of the size, I've had my pygmy doe choke on them, wetting them makes it easier for her to eat.
     
  8. Amos

    Amos New Member

    Oct 2, 2008
    Minnesota
    Thanks a bunch everyone!!