Goats in Troughs

Discussion in 'Goats' started by BiGtImEfArMeRs4, Jan 16, 2005.

  1. BiGtImEfArMeRs4

    BiGtImEfArMeRs4 Well-Known Member

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    We have some goats that get in their trough and go to the bathroom in them. Yuck! Does anyone know a way to keep the goats from getting in the troughs, or a way to make a trough so that goats can't get in them?
    Thanks!
    BiGtImEfArMeRs4
     
  2. Freeholder

    Freeholder Well-Known Member

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    This is normal for goats. It's not only yicky, it is also a good way for them to get worms. And, they will spoil a lot of feed, because any feed that they've walked on or soiled in any way, they won't eat. You need to build a feeder that they can't get into. There are several ways to do this. I've built two different types for my goats. The does have what is called a 'keyhole' feeder. I built a manger, but the front of it is a solid sheet of heavy plywood with 'keyhole' shapes cut into it. I nailed a board several inches up from the bottom of the plywood. They stand their front feet on this board in order to insert their heads into the upper portion, the larger part, of the keyhole slot. I think the lower part of the keyhole is three or four inches wide, while the upper part is about seven inches wide. It's big enough that they can stick their heads through it, anyway. Then they step down to eat, and when they are done they have to step back up so they can get their head out the larger part of the keyhole. This keeps them from backing out of the manger with a big wad of hay, most of which will get dropped on the floor and wasted.

    The other feeder, in the buck pen, is simply a hog panel upside down so the larger holes are at the bottom. I have Kinder goats, which are smaller than the standard breeds, and they are able to stick their heads through the holes in the hog panel. It doesn't necessarily keep them from pulling hay out and wasting it, but it does keep them from getting into the manger and walking on the hay there.

    There are other types of feeders that will work. Which type you decide to use may depend on whether any of your goats have horns or not, as some feeders, including both of mine, won't work with horned goats.

    Look for the Fiasco Farms website. She has a lot of good goatkeeping information there, and I think she may have plans for a goat feeder. If not, I know she has links to other sites, and one of them ought to have plans. Goats are clever animals and it takes time to get to know all their ways and learn to outsmart them! :eek:

    Kathleen
     

  3. BiGtImEfArMeRs4

    BiGtImEfArMeRs4 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks! Your ideas sounds good, but a couple of our goats have horns. I will go out and check out the Fiasco Farms website. Thankfully our goats dont bother with the hay, just the feed. Thanks again!
    God Bless ya!
    Heather
     
  4. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

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    Building a keyhole feeder just a bit higher and wider to accomodate those horns won't work. Your goats under a year old will be able to worm into the feeder itself and will think it's the best bed ever. :rolleyes: (who can blame them? breakfast in bed is always a good idea)

    I put down big plastic bowls for my guy's alfalfa pellets and then pick them up when everything's polished off. I used some field fencing to make a feeder for the hay - small holes on the bottom so they can't pull out big wads and play with them. They still waste some of it, but not that much. The hay that falls on the ground I just add to the straw bedding they sleep on.
     
  5. Milking Mom

    Milking Mom COTTON EYED DOES

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    I have 2 hanging metal horse hay racks that mount to the wall or fence that I have "lined" with a piece of 2" welded wire fence material. They stand and pick bits through the wire and don't waste near as much of it as they used to and they can't get in it at all. Their feeders is a narrow long trough with brackets on the back side of it that I bought at the feed store that hangs over a 2x4 board. It really isn't big enough for them to get in and stand in, they just don't bother messing with it. They eat out of it and thats it. I don't know what kind of set up you have, but maybe if it is free standing, you could push your trough up against a wall and take a piece of plywood and cut holes (just round holds about 10 inches around) and about 10" apart and lean it diagonally from the wall down to the edge of the trough and nail it in place. Even the ones with horns can manouver their heads in there and back out but not be able to jump in it and poop. If they still get in the ends you can put some more plywood and cover the ends up.
     
  6. debitaber

    debitaber Well-Known Member

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    Our feeders are mounted. However, some of them jump into the feeder, so to keep a goat out of the feeder, is hard to do. they will find a way, evrytime to get in that feeder, I think . our water is mounted also.