You may have heard people on the yard talk about feeding a hay replacer and wondered what exactly that is. In today’s blog post we’re going to talk all about hay replacers and their benefits (they’re not just for veterans!) as well as the long awaited return of Pure Meadow Mash!
What is a hay replacer?
To start off, lets talk about what we mean by a hay replacer. Simply put, a hay replacer is a specially formulated feed, typically a mash, designed to replace or supplement forage in a horse’s diet. They are typically made from a combination of fibrous ingredients such as beet, soya and other fibre sources. Fibre essentially feeds the micro-organisms in your horse’s hindgut, who in turn, then release ‘volatile fatty acids which your horse can use for energy.
What horses need a hay replacer?
Hay replacers are most often used veteran horses who typically have poorer dentition. Dental issues such as diastemas and lost of teeth means some horses can struggle to chew effectively. This means that food isn’t digested effectively, leading to weight loss and gastro-discomfort. Early signs of horses struggling to chew are quidding, foul-breath and long undigested fibres in droppings.
Some horses are prone to respiratory issues, which can be aggravated by the dust, mould, or pollen present in hay. These respiratory conditions can cause discomfort and even compromise the horse’s overall health. A hay replacer can provide a low-dust alternative, reducing the risk of respiratory distress and ensuring the horse receives the necessary nutrition without compromising its well-being.
Hay replacers aren't just beneficial for older horses but a great addition to any competition rider's feed room!
Competition horses may struggle to drink when away from home, especially if they’ve been working hard. This is because the increased workload and physical exertion can temporarily decrease a horse’s desire to drink, as their body prioritises cooling and maintaining hydration through other physiological mechanisms, such as sweating. As hay replacers are often designed to be soaked, they increase the horse’s water intake. This can help prevent dehydration which is crucial for maintaining overall health and reducing the risk of complications.
Hay replacers can also be used when the grass is in short supply to provide an alternative source of fibre, especially if your horse lives out 24/7! This also adds variety to your horse’s diet
Meadow Mash is back!
We’re pleased to announce the long awaited return of Meadow Mash!
Meadow Mash is a carefully crafted hay replacer, that is in high-fibre and boasts a low sugar and starch content. Even better, it is ready in 5 minutes! We’ve ensured that even the fussiest eaters are enticed by including a blend of seven different herbs. This makes it an excellent option for horses that are picky eaters.
Meadow Mash is the perfect solution for older horses or those with poor dentition. These quick soaking pellets form a soft, easy-to-chew mash, providing a nutritious diet. Packed with digestive support, including high-quality fibre and pre and probiotics, Meadow Mash promotes a healthy gut flora and optimal digestion. With a soaking time as short as five minutes, meal preparation is quick and hassle-free. You can also feed the mash in buckets around the stable to mimic natural foraging behaviour.
Whether you have an older horse, a competition horse, limited grazing, or one on box rest, Meadow Mash caters to a wide range of needs.