Help Your Animals Adjust to a New Location by Feeding Familiar Foods

  One of the challenges your livestock face on a daily basis is picking out something safe to eat without the benefit of food safety labels, or any labels at all for that matter. They've solved this dilemma by eating what those around them eat. But when we haul them to a pasture with forages they've never seen before, or drop them off at the feedlot to fatten up by eating a strange looking total mixed ration out of strange troughs, things can get a little dicey. In pasture, they may choose the wrong forages, or just quit eating for awhile until they get things figured out. And in feedlots, well we've all heard of cattle losing weight or getting sick when they first arrive at the feed yard. When it comes to choosing what to eat, Instinct doesn't apply. So why don't animals just use "instinct" to make good food choices?  The answer is that though it's instinctual to WANT to eat, none of us is born with the knowledge of WHAT to eat. We learn from our mothers, peers, and others what to eat an

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2 thoughts on “Help Your Animals Adjust to a New Location by Feeding Familiar Foods

  1. Betsey and I always lead our few cows into new paddocks and walk the perimeter with them and tell them how fortunate they are to have all this good food. They usually follow, take a nibbles and pay us for the guided service by plopping a donation on the ground or a offering a urinary libation.

  2. Perfect illustration at top and analogy!

    McDonald’s probably won’t continue to fund onpasture.com after being compared to locoweed and lupines. 🙂 But you may pick up Tim Horton’s.

    I think I “get” it: If you usually eat at McDonald’s don’t eat Big Macs at Tim Hortons? OK, that’s not exactly the analogy but I can’t think of anything else except. . . don’t order McDonald’s chicken if you are at KFC?

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