Why Use Hay Nets?
Hay net (slow feeding) is now noted as the best feeding method for most grazing animals with limited access to pasture or stabled horses. Although slow feeding benefits all grazers, the advantages for equines are mainly substantial.
Foraging behaviour for the average equine is about 13 to 15 hours a day when allowed free access. Horses have small stomachs made for small but regular meals. When access to pasture or forage is limited, we put them at risk for health and behavioural issues. The "two flakes of hay, twice daily" does not satisfy the grazing needs of equines.
The stomach of a horse is constantly producing hydrochloric acid. When a horse chews and eats, saliva is produced (up to 30 litres per day). In addition to lubricating food, saliva's role is to neutralize the effects of stomach acid. When fibre is not consumed, saliva production stops, resulting in acid buildup in an empty stomach. Ulcers can form and bring about symptoms like cribbing or colic and behavioural symptoms, such as bucking, rearing, and ear-pinning.
"I wish I had bought these sooner!... I've been using Nag Bags slow feeders for about 4 months, which is so great!! It really saves me time and money! No more soiled hay on the ground to scrape and pick up! And my horses are so calm because they don’t have an empty stomach!"
Benefits seen in animals
- Mimics natural grazing
- Healthier digestion & consumption
- Bronchial & inhalant allergies are reduced significantly
- Improves quality of life for grazing animals
- Regulates insulin levels
- Curbs cribbing & other stall vices
- Prevention of ulcers & colic
- Obese horses lose weight & hard keepers gain weight
- Horses are never without forage
Benefits noticed by owners
- Saves time, money & hay!
- No more wasted hay
- Eliminates time spent on cleaning up
- Horses are always performance-ready
- Provides up to 24/hr forge - no rushing home to feed
- Less behavioural & health issues
- Less worrying
- Happy healthy animals = happy owners
Hay nets slow down the intake rate at which grazing animals consume their hay, thereby allowing appropriate digestion and improved nutritional uptake; this translates to a healthier digestive system, better weight control and improved quality of life.
In addition to improved horse health and behaviour, hay nets benefit owners, managers, and breeders by saving both time and money. Feeding frequency can be cut down to once-a-day feeding, or in the case of round bale covers, as little as once per month, depending on your herd size. When you're away for the day, there is no more rushing home to feed. An added benefit is that horses are always ready to perform or play, which means more riding time. Nag Bags can reduce your feed costs by 30-50% with the elimination of wasted hay.
To keep your animals' foraging longer, we have many sizes to fit your animals' needs. Whether you feed by the flake or big bales, we have you covered.
Know that when you utilize a Nag Bag to slow-feed your grazing animal, you will be using the most effective feeding method for keeping them healthy and happy. It can take a few days for your animal to adjust to using a slow feeder, but 98% will choose it over loose hay after becoming accustomed to the net. They know what makes them feel good!
Be sure to visit our FAQs section to learn which Nag Bag is suitable for your animal. If you find that you need a little help getting started, please give us a call – we would love to be of assistance!