Deciding on Haylage vs hay for your horse is complex!

Hay and haylage can have different water content levels.  Haylage will generally have a higher water content and therefore a lower dry matter (non-water component) than hay, as a result you may need to feed more haylage compared to hay.  However, it is rarely that simple and other factors should be considered.  The DM of haylage will differ according to the time of year and weather conditions when it is made.  Ideally the haylage you are feeding should be analysed so you know what the DM is and therefore how much to feed in order to meet your horse’s forage requirements.  Haylage can be cut earlier in the year when plant stems are more digestible and therefore may have a higher nutritional value than hay, as a result your horse will do better on it and this this may mean that it is not ideal if your horse is a “good doer”.

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