New to LSB from Waikato

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8 years 5 months ago #36750 by Hagabel
Hi guys,

My husband and I have purchased a 1 1/2 acre plot and are currently in the process of getting ready to build a house for us and our family.

I am planning on eventually getting a horse and am familiar with the needs for this as I had 2 horses before overseas. I also have a friend with a much larger block whom I can use for supplemental grazing if I needed to.

Planning on 3 or so chooks and possibly a beefie or 2. I am looking at the smaller Dexters and wondered if our block would be too small for 2. Plan to use one for meat and other or company, ie let kids name it etc and not use that one.

Any suggestions and advice warmly received.

Thanks.

2 crazy boys, 2 lab puppies, 1 Dexter Heifer and her calf, Angus.

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8 years 5 months ago #478507 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic New to LSB from Waikato
Far too small I would think. Won't the horse need company of an equine?

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8 years 5 months ago #478534 by igor
Replied by igor on topic New to LSB from Waikato
In my childhood we had one elderly retired horse. He wandered pretty much wherever he chose on the home place. It never occured to us to wonder if he was lonely.
Hagabel, LR is likely to be right in questioning the amount of stock you are considering on the land area you have available although you might get away with it if the land is not too wet in Winter and you are prepared to buy in a lot of supplementary feed.
Don't worry about naming the meat animals. Our children usually know who they are eating and don't have a problem with it.

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8 years 5 months ago #478561 by terralee
Replied by terralee on topic New to LSB from Waikato

LongRidge;481938 wrote: Far too small I would think. Won't the horse need company of an equine?

Nope ..my Mo is an only child these days and she is fine on her own ...it is great as she no longer preforms leaving a paddock mate behind and has decided the sheep are OK company [^]
She also loves my company even more now than when she had equine family with her[;)]

Cheers

Leonie & Zoo!!! :silly: :woohoo:

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8 years 5 months ago #478612 by EV
Replied by EV on topic New to LSB from Waikato
Some horses will cope being on their own, but it's not the best situation for many horses.

I've had a couple who have been on their own for short periods - one never lay down to sleep, then when he eventually had a paddockmate again he spent large amounts of time lying down sleeping (catching up I guess). The paddockmate had also been on his own so they took turns sleeping while the other one watched.

The other horse was so bored (despite regular care and attention) that he chased and attacked any sheep or chooks that were in his paddock (we quickly took them out), and eventually made best friends with the dogs and would lay down in front of their kennels to sleep.

It will depend on the horse you get - it might work okay or it might not. Having other stock around will help, but I don't know if you have enough land for that.

If your whole section is 1.5 acres, by the time you have build a house and fenced off any gardens and the drive you will likely have only 1 acre effective grazing area, which is the bare minimum for one horse (let alone other stock). Are there any sheds or sheltered areas where you could put down lime or some kind of mud-proof footing to keep the horse off the grass when it's really soggy?

It takes close management to keep pasture in good shape with one horse on only an acre - be sure to strip graze, back fence and poo pick.

When you kept your horses overseas, were they stabled? Are you expecting to stable them here?

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8 years 5 months ago #478677 by LongRidge
Replied by LongRidge on topic New to LSB from Waikato
Horses love playing games of chase. The neighbours horses never "attacked" other animals, but it really looked like the sheep were being attacked when they ran after them with teeth and feet trying hard to bite and kick the running sheep. Our donkeys thought that playing football would be a good game with Yellow 2 when she was a lamb .... with the lamb as the ball :-(. One very sore lamb after that game with both right legs broken.

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8 years 5 months ago #478786 by Hagabel
Replied by Hagabel on topic New to LSB from Waikato
Thanks for the replies. Regarding the horse, yes I realize land is small and would strip graze, poop pick and supplement feed.

Our horses overseas were on a much larger plot of land, 5 acres and not stabled. They had a run in shelter. The horse is going to be down the road a couple of years and there is a 36 acre farm that I am going to approach for possible grazing, and I also have a good friend with 30 acres who has said I could graze there any time.

I would like to get a beefie even it is before the horse. I was just looking at the Dexters as they require less land. Can you have a cow as company for a horse?

So, thinking have a few chooks for eggs, maybe a Dexter or 2 (without a horse) and then maybe just 1 Dexter with horse.
Excuse the ignorance of these questions. I am very familiar with equine but not bovine.

2 crazy boys, 2 lab puppies, 1 Dexter Heifer and her calf, Angus.

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8 years 5 months ago #478790 by kaybe
Replied by kaybe on topic New to LSB from Waikato
Hi Hagabel, welcome to the forum. I've heard the stocking rate is one beefie or 4 sheep per acre. I'm not sure how much less a Dexter needs, being a smaller breed. You might be able to manage it if it's half an acre per beast. Maybe contact a Dexter breeder from the Rare Breeds Society for advice? I don't know where in the Waikato you are, but I know there's a Dexter breeder on Newell Rd in Tamahere on the southern outskirts of Hamilton.

Tomorrow is the day I will stop procrastinating.

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