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Norah

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Hi,

I read on the Hay pillow page that because there is mesh involved in the design that it is dangerous if left on the ground. I thought this product was designed to be left on the ground ? is this just a CYA statement , and there really is no danger or risk? I am thinking about buying the mini pillows , maybe 3 of them , I have 2 minis and 2 ponys , but their hooves are pretty big, If anyone is using them , is the 1/2 inch mesh safe enough for 32- 42 inch minis ? do you use it as it was designed , on the floor?

thanks for your imput,

kristen
 

chandab

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I have 4 hay pillows, two in use at this time (and sometimes a third for the yearlings, depending on the hay they are getting). I've used them with foals to adults (foals were with their dams eating out the pillows and they thought they were fun) and so far, no problems with hooves getting stuck. I have two mares that I have to hang theirs or they fling it out of the pen before they are finished with their hay, the rest eat from them off the ground. I prefer the 3/4" fine twine pillows (can't remember which number the fine twine is), my horses seem to get pretty frustrated with the 1/2" mesh and thus did manage to put a couple holes in that pillow.

Here is Misty's method of removing hay, note hoof holding down pillow:

Misty - 1 - foot.jpg

Topper isn't thrilled with it, but he eventually decided it wasn't bad:

Topper - sept 27, 2012 - 2.jpg

Here's Caddy, she's one that I found I have to hang it or its flung out of the pen (although the flinging could be her daughter):

caddy - 1 - for e-mail.jpg

And, here's Dolly (Caddy's daughter):

dolly with pillow - july 21, 2012 - for e-mail.jpg

I really don't see how they could get their hooves caught in the mesh, especially since minis are typically barefoot, I could see the possibility with shod horses, as a nail might be able to snag the bag, but not bare hooves.
 

Norah

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thank you
I needed the photos to see for myself ! they look great , good info about the 1/2 inch vrs. the 3/4 ... thanks !
 

chandab

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I've also found, at least to start, you don't want to put their whole hay ration in the pillow, but leave a little bit loose that they can readily eat and get past that typical your starving me first few bites of hay.
 

FurstPlaceMiniatures

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How tough is the webbing? My guy would SO get frustrated and destroy it... Anyone have that happen?
 

chandab

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Yes, my horses did put holes in their 1/2" mesh pillow. Once I started putting part of their feed in the pillow and part of it loose, then the destruction of the mesh pretty much halted; they were able to freely eat part of their hay meal thus satisfying their "I'm starving" dive into their hay upon getting their meal and when they got to the hay in the pillow they were ready to pick it out. If you catch the start of a hole, you can repair them with baling twine per manufacturer.
 

sfmini

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I kind of liked the idea, but find them way overpriced, and wouldn't be convenient for us to have to crawl through the fence, collect, fill and put back out. We feed the hay on the ground and put the grain on top of the hay. Works well for us, we are very generous with hay so slowing them down isn't an issue. Since they are used to having loads of hay, no hay bellies to worry about.
 

Norah

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hmm, about those hay bellys, is that why you see some horses with hay bellys , because they are not getting enough hay? I also feed my kids a lot of hay, yes they are plump , but healthy in my eyes.
 

chandab

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Depends on the horse and whether its actually a hay belly or a lack of protein in the diet issue. Usually a true hay belly is caused by coarse and/or hard to digest hay sitting in the gut while the microbes try to digest it. [its coarse and/or difficult to digest so it takes longer to move through the digestive track.] I have no idea if something like probiotics would help in this case, but better quality hay likely would.
 

sfmini

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Some of the show horses are fed so little hay that a bit extra can make them really gassy. Then, when they are at shows, they eat shavings trying to get the roughage and bloat with gas as well. I was always taught to supplement hay with grain so our horses are used to plenty of hay and nobody is fat, all are at good weights, and never bloat at shows.
 

Minimor

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I'm with sfmini--our horses get plenty of hay so they don't run out of 'pickings' between feeds. Right now most of ours have free choice hay--3 rounds for a group of 9 or 10--1 round for a group of 3--and when we go to a show I can hang a full hay bag for each horse and not worry about any of the horses looking bloated.
 

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