Are alfalfa pellets necessary?

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by logansmommy7, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. logansmommy7

    logansmommy7 New Member

    Nov 11, 2009
    Shenandoah Valley, VA
    I was just wondering if alfalfa pellets are necessary in ND goats diets. I currently feed mine plenty of quality mixed hay and one handful each of goat sweet grain daily. They have free choice loose minerals and baking soda at all times with lots of fresh water. I have one potentially bred doe and will up her grain in another couple of months-we are only on day 28 with her. Please let me know the value of alfalfa pellets...the hay I feed them has some alfalfa already in it.

    Thanks! :ponder:
  2. ProctorHillFarm

    ProctorHillFarm New Member

    They arent neccessary in a regular diet- but we noticed a difference feeding alfalfa for milk production/protein levels in the milk during milk test.

    So if you are drinking the milk- and wanting lots of it, I would reccommend it! :)

  3. pelicanacresMN

    pelicanacresMN New Member

    I agree with ProctorHillFarm. Your goats will be just fine with what you have but the better quality hay is what really matters for milk production.
  4. toth boer goats

    toth boer goats Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Jul 20, 2008
    Corning California
    I agree with the others.... they are correct.... :wink: :greengrin: :grouphug:
  5. SDK

    SDK New Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Yucaipa ca
    yes though not necessary they do boost milk production and they help keep hay costs down..i can buy a 50 pound bag of pellets for 7.50,, but the cheapest quality hay is 11.50
  6. RPC

    RPC Boer Goat Breeder

    WOW SDK your hay is 11.50 in your area!!!! I live on a farm and we do custom baleing and our expensive hay(alfalfa) Is 5.00 We are not the most expensive but I think the top prices in the area are only 6.00. I really know why you feed the alfalfa pellets. I just feed the hay because it is way cheeper for me.
  7. ProctorHillFarm

    ProctorHillFarm New Member

    Alfalfa is VERY hard to come by in this area- I guess its just too hard to make around here. Which is why most people feed the pellets in this area.

    That being said I DID get in 30 bales of alfalfa to try yesterday that came out of new york- but its $8.50/bale and the bales are very light- like 30 lbs or so. We will see if the girls clean it up well or not once I start supplementing it to the milkers.

    If they don't clean it up- I will stick to the pellets since they are around $14/bag for 50 lbs and they eat every last bite of the pellets
  8. SDK

    SDK New Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Yucaipa ca
    yea most hay here in socal is 11.50 - 19 a bale.. but its usually a 110 pound bale, and i never buy more than 4 bales at a time anyway. but yea

    luckily we have tons of alfalfa options around here.. but i think i'm going to try and buy the top/bottom bales that they sell for cattle... if i remember they sell those for 7.50-8.00. which may work. in the summer i feed rye hay, they loooove it
  9. RPC

    RPC Boer Goat Breeder

    I dont know about where you live but the top bales if kept out of the rain will just be blecked out by the sun so those are no problem to feed but the bottom bales that we feed to the cows are usually moldy and you dont want to feed that to the goats. Just my 2 cents
  10. SDK

    SDK New Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Yucaipa ca
    im in socal bordering desert on 2 sides.. so like .. no rain, but i've been going to the same feedstore for 9 years.. i kinda get special priviledges
  11. Sweet Gum Minis

    Sweet Gum Minis New Member

    Oct 6, 2007
    Easley, SC
    Wow, I bought my hay for around $4-5 per bale and its coastal burmuda and alfalfa pellets here are $15 a bag.
  12. SDK

    SDK New Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Yucaipa ca
    but how heavy are your bales??
  13. Trace

    Trace New Member

    Dec 28, 2008
    the bales I am getting this weekend are 10.00 per bale - and the bales weight anywhere from 45 to 55lbs.
  14. WOW....those prices flip me out!
    I'm paying 2.50 a bale for timothy hay, now keep in mind, We have to take the dump truck and pick it up from the field after it is cut and baled.
    I'm feeling blessed
  15. pelicanacresMN

    pelicanacresMN New Member

    So are the pellets sold as just alfalfa pellets or is rabbit feed a type of alfalfa pellet? I've seen alfalfa cubes at our supply store but I have to crush them up with a hammer for my nigerians otherwise they won't eat them.
  16. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Rabbit pellets are not a substitute for alfalfa pellets/ too many more additives in the rabbit feed and it can cause upsets in digestion gor goats.
    The local Tractor Supply just started to carry alfalfa pellets last year, before that, I bought the cubes and broke them up.

    Producers Pride is the name on the sack, and it is in the horse feed section of the store.
  17. nutmegfarm

    nutmegfarm New Member

    Dec 22, 2009
    NE Ohio
    This isn't great for everyone, but at my farm we get round bales, roll them into the goats pen {we have one large senior doe pen thats 12' x 24'}, put fencing around it so they don't waste it, and they eat off of it for 1-1 1/2 months. Its convienent if you have a large number, and you don't have to feed hay everyday by hand, then they have constant hay!
  18. pelicanacresMN

    pelicanacresMN New Member

    So do you do whatever kind of lower quality hay & a certain amount of alfalfa pellets? Do you just mix some pellets with their feed or what is the best way to use the pellets & how much per goat?
  19. ProctorHillFarm

    ProctorHillFarm New Member

    I still feed the best hay I can find- right now they are getting a second cut timothy mix whic is pretty nice- but good hay has been sort of hard to come by around here the past few years- too wet during hay season.....

    When I supplement the pellets to my milkers- I usually use a cup of alfalfa pellets Am and PM for each of them- sometimes they clean it all up, sometimes they dont.
    I also feed them their grain up on the stand mixed with the alfalfa pellets and usually add beet pulp too.
  20. farmgirl42

    farmgirl42 New Member

    Jan 2, 2010
    Eastern Ohio
    What is the benefit of beet pulp? I saw it at my local Tractor Supply last night (first that they started to carry it), and remembered that I had seen it mentioned on here - so now I'm wondering?