Thursday, March 3, 2011

Busy Busy COLD day...Chickens, Feeds and Computers...Oh My!

It is only 10:30 am and it is 22 degrees..compared to yesterdays 53 it feels frigid!!

I am off to collect whole oats for the horse..I got an extra bag for the chickens because they seem to like them so much, and also will get some chicken feed.  No one uses whole oats any more so I have to special order them, and there is only one place here that will do it. 

Seems everyone just wants the "ease" of animal fast/junk food!!  Pre-made etruded is like packaged foods we can buy in the store..while they tell HUMANS this is junk and to try to get away from it..companies keep pumping more and more items to tempt us is what people generally feed their animals...

WHY it should cost more to make whole foods, which means less processing, and less chemical additives, I don't would think it would be cheaper..

Whole oats still have the germ and oils in them.  I have heard people say that when they feed whole oats to horses they pass them right through..first of all check the teeth...they might need floating.  But generally the reason is because they don't soak them.  When you soak oats they swell and soften, I soak mine over night, and along with the swelling, the enzymes in them start to change.  I have a horse that has been riddled with health problems since she was born, and no vets ever helped her.  I had to do my own research to find out what I could do to help her stay alive..she has several life threatening experiences...I have contacted breeders, bio chemists, and homeopathic Drs, and natural Vets.. (Dr Dan the natural Pet Vet is the best!) and this is what I came up with whole oats and grass hay..unlimited as much as they can eat...and vitamins..human vitamins (as recommedend by a breeder of her breed) Easy Peasy...

Her health problems have turned around.....I am happy to say..she still sports a bad injury to her front foot ( which happened while she was in training, when she was 3 years old, by someone who should have known better) so it makes riding her probably something we won't be able to ever do, but she is healthy and fun...we can do things on the ground with her...

                           she takes my breath away when she is walking across the corral..

Chickens and feed....  It is very interesting that I have noticed lately the chickens pick through their scratch grain and leave the cracked corn.  I found out that they use genetically engineered (altered) corn in scratch and the chickens won't eat it...So I did some research on that, to find out if it was true.. and many people have said that when the corn in scratch grain is altered the chickens won't eat it...makes sense..too bad humans aren't as smart...I am going to check and see if I can get whole wheat, and barley, for them and maybe if I can find the other grains in scratch grain bags, (flax seed is good too) just mix up my own....when I give them some of the oats I seem to get more eggs..I think it is just because they are eating something whole...(? my guess anyway..probably not scientific) that combined with letting them roam the property when the garden isn't new and just coming up (they can make a mess out of the garden when it is just seedlings)

Although they are still getting layer pellets and that is a commercial mixed feed, so maybe negates everything I just said, but I give it to them free choice so if they need it they eat it...

Last night I kept dreaming about the whole process of starting chicks, and when and how to move them to an already established chicken house.  We have done it many times, I was running through the process in my head..funny how the brain works.

Some fresh spring flowers on the geranium in the back of the is about 5 or 6 years old now...there are quite a few stems waiting to bloom...

Plants waiting to go back outside in the late spring....


A little pot "buddy"...I got a couple of them at AC Moore's one year..cute.. hour after I first started this.....I was interrupted by a rather long phone call NOW I am off...

See you later,



  1. No one I know feeds their horses oats around here... pelleted with sweet feed suppliment is the method around here.

    And in some places it's very common. Interesting! I would imagine it has something to do with having to soak them before more step.

    I'm actually nervous about starting chicks.. I've saved baby rabbits, kittens, you name it.. and raised many animals - but never chickens, and for some reason the thought is intimidating me.. I'll be taking the advice of all you experienced chicken people, that's for sure.

  2. Funnily enough, I'm not surprised about the oat situation. Fast food seems to be the way with all pet food. We find the same with our dogs. It's preferable to cook up batches than buy commercial. Love your plant photo's.

    Lisa xx

  3. Beautiful horse and Geraniums are my FAVORITE!!!

  4. Karen, I guess chicks can seem intimidating because they are so delicate. (and they are!) I have found that if they are warm enough (but not too warm) and kept clean, they do fine. I try to get mine sort of into the spring so it is already a bit does mean I might not get eggs until late or even the next spring, but it does make it easier. And they are OH so much fun to watch, never tire of that!
    As afar as oats go, they don't need a lot. Maybe people think they aren't feeding them enough. You can tell when you are giving them too much because instead of making them hot, they become lethargic. I think a lot of people don't realize they need to soak them...and then feel like they aren't getting nutrition when they pass them right through. But if they are soaked they don't pass through. Soaking isn't a problem. As soon as I feed in the morning, I start soaking the oats for that evening, and as soon as I get her dinner ready, I soak for the next morning.
    And get this..the recommendation for feeding (according to the horse) is 1 1/2 cups per feeding (2 times a day) to 3 cups per feeding. That's not a lot by any means. I happen to have a easy keeper (she gains weight easily) so I give her 1 1/2 cups in the morning and at night. So much easier and so much more natural. (Horses do NOT eat grains per say..left in the wild they eat grass and whatever grains or seeds they may pick up with the grasses and wild flowers.) So oats, and as much grass hay as they can eat is the most natural diet..of course one using a lot of energy will need more hay and more oats..and vitamins.

  5. Janie , Thank you for you kind words , I sorry you lost you husband too. A friend told me right after my husband died , when I asked her if it gets better , no it never gets better , but you get used to it.

  6. That's about it Sharon..Thanks