free access to pasture

Discussion in 'Goats' started by Faithful Heart, Jun 30, 2006.

  1. Faithful Heart

    Faithful Heart Well-Known Member

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    I'm asking this a bit early, but wanted to be prepared with a plan.

    I've got a 2 month old billy in a pen with no grass right now. He gets a bit of grain 2x a day, free access to coastal hay, and is being weaned from his bottle. I take him out to the pasture daily on a lead, generally getting 1 hour each afternoon. When we get the pasture fence done, do I need to gradually give him time on the pasture? Such as an hour added each day for a week, every morning after his grain, so he doesn't over eat and get colic? Or do I not need to worry about it since he is getting some grass/forage daily right now?

    Same question goes for when we get a doe. Most likely just about anywhere we get a doe around here she would have been in a somewhat feed lot situation. It's been really dry, and many people who have goats around here have them over stocked and have no pasture left. So I'm a bit concerned about just releasing a doe like that straight onto a lush pasture/brush area.

    So what advice would you suggest?
     
  2. KSALguy

    KSALguy Lost in the Wiregrass Supporter

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    the worst thing that will happen if you put a goat that has NOT had access to green feed and put it on a good lush pasture where it can eat all it wants is it will get the runs pretty bad for a while,

    what you can do to avoid this is slowly introduce them to the brows, let them eat for an hour or so the first two days, then add an hour for two days and so on, till a week and some chainge has gone by then then just give them free access, let them get all the free food they want and you should be fine
     

  3. Faithful Heart

    Faithful Heart Well-Known Member

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    Thanks..... that's what I'll do then. It'll be easy enough to give them limited time on the pasture since I have this other pen to use. I'm hoping that whatever doe I get can be trained to a lead also the way the billy is. I figured she'd go in the small pen with him and get lead training for a bit when I first get her any way.

    So, we'll take it slow.
     
  4. KSALguy

    KSALguy Lost in the Wiregrass Supporter

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    rather than letting them loose for an hour get a couple of the tie out stakes and keep them on a lead so that you dont have to run and catch them when its time to come in, and its alot less stress on you and the goat,
     
  5. Faithful Heart

    Faithful Heart Well-Known Member

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    Good thinking. The little buck does fine on a tie out. He cries some, but after a bit quits. I've never left him out there unwatched, but have done it some if I have a touch of work to do. Usually I just put him on the tie out and sit in a chair near him. Or I hold the lead in my hand. I'll have to get the doe I get used to a tie out.