How do you know, in general, how much natural sugar and starch is in hay? Our EPSM horse has decided he does not like bermuda grass anymore. I dont blame him and would like to switch him to orchard or possibly timothy but is that safe for him? He is already getting alfalfa, alfalfa pellets, and beet pulp to keep weight on. He loses weight easily it seems.
Proud owner of a very pretty but completely useless horse.
You have to have your hay tested - usually several samples from the middle of different bales. If your hay comes from various sources, then each new load would need to be tested as different fields and grass mixtures have different sugar content.
As others have said, you won't know for sure without testing it. But in general, warm season grasses like bermuda are lower in sugars than cool season grasses like orchard or timothy. It all depends on when the hay was cut so this is why the testing is so important.
"Farming looks mighty easy when your plow is a pencil, and you're a thousand miles from the corn field." --Dwight D Eisenhower