Mixing big goats and little goats?

Discussion in 'Goats' started by Cygnet, Apr 26, 2005.

  1. Cygnet

    Cygnet Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'm having a heck of a time with this little nigerian -- she can climba 4' fence and will do so because she wants to be close to my packers. My pack goats all weigh over 200 lbs and some have horns. And they're rough, rowdy boys -- two were neutered as adults and are still very "macho" acting and they're just generaly a rough crowd. Blood's drawn from roughhousing at least once a month between them ...

    My little nigerian doe (MAYBE 50 pounds) managed to dig a hole under the fence and get in with them yesterday.She went under a line of electric to do this.No apparent harmdone, except to my nerves. But they were chasing her and butting at her and acting like obnoxious boys.

    Does anyone think I can safely mix ONE adult wether with this doe? I don't want her in with the whole gang, but I'm thinking she may settle down if she had one buddy. My pack goats could care less which pen they're in, they're all pretty used to travel, so moving across the yard to a new pen isn't a big deal at all. I can easily move one to her pen ... how risky do ya'll think this would be? She's about three months pregnant ... if she gets butted, can she lose the babies?

    Leva
     
  2. Croenan

    Croenan Well-Known Member

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    My general thought is that you can and just one might be a good idea, if it works. Although I would probably get her a playmate her own size, but if she's preggers, then that should do it anyway. I am sure that they can loose a baby if they get butted just right or enough, but they probably won't loose it right away, from a few butts. I have a pygmy that is on the bottom of the chain and gets butted badly all the time. As she's gotten more pregnant, shes backing away from them more. She continues to grow, so I am assuming that the baby (s) are doing ok. If the little one gets abused a bit, she'll probably back away from the big one, and then she might even want to be on her own by then.

    Note: My same goat would also hang herself to get back into the main pen with or without the other goats. I have one pasture that she hates and will get caught in the fence if I leave her out there, with the others (any number) or without. You might see if she wants to be in a different pasture maybe one closer to the house.

    Just a thought.
     

  3. Laura Workman

    Laura Workman (formerly Laura Jensen) Supporter

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    Yup, they can hurt her badly, and cause her to abort. Can you make a little area where she can go in and out but they would be too big to do so? or obstacles she can hide behind? She does need to be able to get away from these guys.
     
  4. bethlaf

    bethlaf Homegrown Family

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    she needs to be able to get away, but she also has this need you cant possibly deny, which she is DESPERATELY trying to fill, which is to be part of a herd, now granted ,once she has her babies this will abate, because she will then have her own herd, you do need to get her a buddy now, pick your gentlest packer , and let them make friends , or better yet , find another ND for her, otherwise you just might come home from a packing trip to find a loose morose little nd on the wrong side of the fence, seperated from her babies, etc... i could forsee all sorts of problems ....
     
  5. Cygnet

    Cygnet Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Well, I put her in a pen with my calmest pack goat. He's not inclined to butt because he has some pretty big scurs.

    Sigh.

    She decided he was scary and jumped the fence to get away from him. And promptly ran over to the pen of pack goats and wanted in with them. Go fig.

    This goat is very lucky she's extremely cute and completely sweet with people or she'd go back where she came from ...

    I've got a grow out pen for chickens I'll put her in as soon as I get a chance to get the fiddlenecks out of it. (Local plant with really nasty spines.) She'll just have to deal, at this point.

    I'll get her a buddy if I can find one, but the other goats from the same place were bred later and were due at the end of July and I'll be out of town then.

    Leva
     
  6. Laura Workman

    Laura Workman (formerly Laura Jensen) Supporter

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    So get a couple of pallets. Nail them to a 2x4 top and bottom, leaving a 16-inch or so gap about 20 inches high, big enough for her to get through, but to small for the big guys. Put the "fence" across one corner of the packer pen and roof it with some plywood. She can go there when things get rough, but still come out and visit when she wants. Make sure she has food and water in there. Even if one of the big guys does get in there, it's going to be rather tight for him to do any serious butting, I would think.
     
  7. Cygnet

    Cygnet Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I gave her a chicken.

    I should've thought of this before, I used to board at a stable where there was a lady with race horses and one of the racehorses had his very own chicken.

    Had a lame rooster that was chewed on by a dog, wasn't getting around very well, and was getting picked on by the other roosters. Can't fly. I put him in the pen with her, and suddenly she's MUCH calmer. :):):) She's got company. It might not be goat company, but it's company.

    I'll have to seperate them when it gets time for her to kid, I won't trust a chicken around a baby animal, but for now, she's happier. And the rooster's got a chance to heal up.

    Leva