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Alpine Addict!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
OK, so I have a question......:chin:
Is there a "best" type of hay for dairy goats? I'm currently giving mine coastal.::p:

What do you feed?:whatgoat:

I'm shopping around right now for some hay (almost out of mine :| ) and have seen soooooo many different options my head is in a whirl :dazed:
So, what do you guys feed? Coastal? Alfalfa? Timothy? Haygrazer? Clover? Wheat?

So far what I've found 'round here is:
Coastal (LOTS of it! :-o)
Alfalfa (VERY expensive, currently not my 1st choice :/ )
Timothy
Haygrazer
Clover

What would be your 1st choice? Clover would be nice, but I've heard it's not always good for them long-term. Coastal is very abundant, but not their favorite (well, I take that back. Frosty LOVES it). Alfalfa is very, very, expensive and they just waste soooo much. Timothy, I've never tried, but sounds good. It's also fairly cheap.
Haygrazer is really good, they all love it, it's not dusty, has OK protein (or at least what I got in the past did, not sure if this stuff will), and is pretty cheap.

So, opinions? Thoughts? Rants?
Whatever, thanks!!:cart:

 

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Dave (TDG Farms) S.E. Washington State
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This is a loaded question as everyone has their own opinion but if you go by the facts. Alfalfa is the best. It has more nutrients, minerals, vitamins and is higher in protein (protein being the most important for milk production) then any other hay feed. Large scale dairymen do not feed their cows or goats grass hay but a mixture of alfalfa and other things to help boost production and to maintain weight.
 

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We feed alfalfa but lately its been pretty stemmy and tons of waste from it now , so we switched to a Canada second cut grass hay mix that they absolutely love , its like crack to them ! I never saw them eat like that before , even the best alfalfa ! It was really gorgeous hay , but we can't get it anymore :(:(:( So we tried another grass hay mix from a different farm and they hate it , absolutely hate it ! They pick through it and leave about 85% of it in the ground. Now all we have is two bales of HITS left which I still have to give them mixed in with what we have left of the Canada hay. Cant fool them though , they full well know we are out of the good stuff , lol. Now I will be forced to get the stemmy alfalfa till they get a shipment of Canada hay. Im glad I can fall back on the alfalfa at least. But yes , its expensive !
I wish I had gotten a shipment of that hay , but I put it off because it was a bad rainy day and i didn't want to have it delivered. So we got as many bales as we could in my truck the following Saturday , which isn't too much when you have a herd of hungry goats and sheep , lol.
I say get what they like the best and supplement with alfalfa pellets if needed. Thats what I'm doing now till i get better hay.
 

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Alpine Addict!
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
TDG-Farms: Thanks so much for your thoughts, I would love to feed Alfalfa but so far, at $20 a bale, I just can't afford it But I hope to be able to do so in the future.

Laura: That hay sounds awesome! I bet the goats were totally upset when you switched :D The truck method is what we always use LOL. Works every time! Or, almost every time..we've had a verrry hard time making it home before....
The stems and waste are the main reason why I can't feed Alfalfa right now...that and the cost.

Thank you all for your opinions and help!!!:mrgreen: :rainbow:
 

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Look for me in the barn...
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I feed second-cutting clover -paying $2.50/small squares - and alfalfa pellets right now - but the guy I get the clover from is almost out and I found a good source for no-spray brohme for $3.50/small squares and alfalfa for $4/small squares, so I'll be switching to that and just mixing it myself in the feeder.

Do you have another calcium source since you aren't feeding alfalfa?
 

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I agree, Alfalfa is best and I know it is costly but what I do if I am on a budget is, feed oat hay or something like that in the morning then, Alfalfa in the evening.

It works out pretty good.
We have done the oat/alfalfa before and it worked great!! Currently we are doing straight alfalfa. Where we are at its about 17 a bale but our neighbor grows it so we get the alfalfa for 14 a bale.
 

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I can't speak enough of the reaction my goats had to Perrinial peanut hay. It is similar in quality to the alfalfa hay and is cheaper. I pay $8 a bale and the goats love it. I had to do a google search and found a feed store about 40 minutes away, but so worth it. I just bring my trailer and stock up when I go.
Check out this video on it, it's very interesting.
 

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I use mainly Bermuda and chaffhaye here
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Do you have another calcium source since you aren't feeding alfalfa?
Yup! They get Alfalfa pellets as well as a little bit extra calcium with their feed.:smile:

Toth-that sounds like it would work well. I'm gonna look around some more......:clap:

I wish I could do Peanut hay.....but I've heard of horrible results to animals on it if it isn't cut right (according to Pat Colby's Natural Goat Care, at least:book:). I'm also severely allergic to Peanuts.

Thank you all so much for your input! This is exactly why I love this forum. :love::love::greengrin::sun:
 

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Toth-that sounds like it would work well. I'm gonna look around some more......:clap:
Glad to of helped, I know how sometimes the budget doesn't allow us to buy a lot of Alfalfa. :thumbup:
 

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Yup! They get Alfalfa pellets as well as a little bit extra calcium with their feed.:smile: Toth-that sounds like it would work well. I'm gonna look around some more......:clap: I wish I could do Peanut hay.....but I've heard of horrible results to animals on it if it isn't cut right (according to Pat Colby's Natural Goat Care, at least:book:). I'm also severely allergic to Peanuts. Thank you all so much for your input! This is exactly why I love this forum. :love::love::greengrin::sun:
Perrinial Peanut doesn't have any peanuts in it. It's something completely different. Im not trying to sell it, just had amazing result. Good luck! :)
 

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Alpine Addict!
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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Perrinial Peanut doesn't have any peanuts in it. It's something completely different. Im not trying to sell it, just had amazing result. Good luck! :)
And I didn't think you were :) I'm probably wrong.....like I am on sooo many things, LOL. Thank you for telling me how much you like it!!

Toth-thanks again!
 
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