Draft Animal Power – Draft animals and sustainable land stewardship › Forums › Draft Animal Power › Mules › Feeding straw to mules and donkeys
- October 20, 2010 at 8:05 pm #42011RodParticipant
Our two donkeys and one mule love to eat and are beginning to show it. I do limit feed them but when on pasture at night after waiting all day they pack it in. And seem to be hungry all day while waiting to be let out.
I have some oat hay and gave them a wad to chew on today. They loved it and are “Mule and donkeying” it down. Is their any problem feeding some this for something to chew on during the day and to send them to pasture with something in their stomachs?October 23, 2010 at 6:41 am #62467jacParticipant
Rod I havnt fed oat straw but my grandfather would cut a sheaf of un threashed oats into the stall at night or if any youngsters were being out wintered a few would be cut over the fence…
JohnOctober 23, 2010 at 8:36 pm #62465dominiquer60Moderator
Horses survived the Ukrainian “famine” on straw and what little other fodder that was given to them. I don’t see the harm in a little, it is just fiber.November 14, 2010 at 3:04 pm #62466ricenmorParticipant
Maybe I don’t know what I am talking about, but to me Oat hay is when you mow green oats with the grain heads intact. On the other hand oat straw is when the oat stalks are processed after the oats have ripened and were combined for the grain, so the straw has little or no grain heads in it.
So to me I would be leary of feeding much oat hay because of possible foundering. I know some people claim a mule won’t founder, but the vets don’t agree with that.
My best guess is that oat staw has low nutritional value, but I imagine that they could survive on it if needed.
I just limit the amount of hay my mules get as they will eat until they are fatter than hogs otherwise! My opinion of mules is that they are a little bit like goats they can thrive on weeds!
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