It is well known that forages are an essential element of a horse’s diet. They provide the horse with adequate fibre to keep the hind gut of the horse healthy. There have been studies to show that the forage quality can have serious effects on horses’ health and performance. There are many different feeding practices that have been used to counteract poor quality forages. The aim of this experiment is to look at the effects of steaming and soaking hay on the nutrient content, respirable dust concentrations and microbial growth. Good quality and poor-quality hay were used. All hay types went through three treatments; 1) dry (control), 2) steamed for 60mins (in a Haygain™) and 3) soaked hay (submerged in tap water for 10mins). Following treatment nutrient analyses (DM, OM, Ash and CP), bacterial and fungal culture and respirable dust count (0.3, 0.5, 0.7 and 1.0micron at a L/min) was determined.


The content in this post was supplied to EquineShow247 by Nicola Boylan