When sheep are out in a field, they eat grass or hay. They can also be fed grains, such as corn, oats and soybeans. Sheep can also eat invasive plants, including privet and honeysuckle.Continue Reading
Sheep are ruminants, which means that they re-digest their food. Sheep do not chew their food very well, but it passes through the esophagus and down into the rumen. This part of the stomach ferments the food after it has been reduced to a smaller size. This process generally takes eight hours or more for mature sheep. Once the food is broken down and fermented, it passes into the true stomach, where digestion occurs, and into the large intestine for further fermentation.
Because sheep are able to eat a wide variety of foods, they are used as targeted grazers for landowners and entities that need an economical and environmentally-friendly way of managing invasive plant species and overgrown properties. Sheep feed on ivy and kudzu, and can stand on their hind legs to feed on taller plants. Sheep are able to work in areas that feature poison ivy and briars because of their thick wool. They are also able to graze on rocky, forested or steep properties on which using heavy machinery may not be practical.Learn more about Barnyard Mammals
Horses eat grass, hay and grains with the occasional carrot, apple or sugar cube as a treat. Meat products or too many sweet treats can cause indigestion or colic. Horses also need supplements that contain salt and minerals such as a salt lick.Full Answer >
In addition to grass, cows eat grains, such as corn, and harvested forages, such as alfalfa and grass hay. This applies to cows in a cattle farming facility. Generally, cows prefer to eat vegetative gras, as their digestive system is more suited for grass compared to grains.Full Answer >
Cows and sheep chew their cud because they are classified as ruminants, which means that they cannot properly digest food the first time. They must regurgitate the food and chew it again several times until it is broken down enough to go through the rest of the digestive system. During the process of rumination, various micro-organisms from the cow or sheep's gut are also regurgitated, and this helps break down the plant matter further.Full Answer >
Donkeys eat dry matter and fibrous foods such as straw, hay, bark and shrubs. Although they eat grass, they should not overfeed on either it or clover.Full Answer >