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I am a first time goat owner and took possession of two 4 month old whethers. We released them from their travel crate and bolted into my wooded 4 acre back yard (fenced in). I have caught glimpses of them but can't get near them. I didn't even get to touch them! How am I going to catch them? I wanted them for pets and to eat all the green vegetation they want. Thanks for any suggestions.
 

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Time and patience. Try sitting out in the fenced area and let them come to you. A little feed helps. But it will take awhile for them to get use to you. They must not have been handle much by the prior owner.
 

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Section off a small area with fencing or cattle panels and set up a feeder inside.
When you put the grain out, make some noise to attract them.'

Bang on a bucket, clap your hands, blow a whistle or whatever.
Do that same sound each time you put out the feed, and before long they will come running to that sound.

While they are eating, sit nearby in a chair and just watch.

Keep a little grain in the bucket near you.
After a while they will get curious and you can start to lure them in with the treats.

Be patient and don't rush them.
They need time to realize you're not going to hurt them.
 

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What BFF said - you're going to need to get them into a much smaller area to socialize them. Create a temporary 'catch pen' with cattle panels and stakes and get them in there without chasing them or frightening them. Goats are prey animals, they have no natural defense other than to run. They don't know you, so they are afraid of you. The good thing is that goats are pretty clever, naturally curious and generally food motivated. If you can sit with them quietly so they realize you are a fixture, not a threat they will calm down. Put a feeder of goat chow down for them, away from you in the pen and just sit with them while they eat. Take the feeder when you leave. Each day move the feeder 6-12 inches closer to where you sit, and just sit. Eventually, they will know you bring a bucket of yummies and they will anticipate you. You will be able to have them eating near enough you can pet them while they eat. When they're calm with that, you can hold some feed in your hand and they will get curious and sniff it out.
 

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As we are talking goats on this thread...have any of you read the wonderful book titled GOAT SONG? Rather small book and don't remember the author but I just loved it! Quite nicely written with wonderful tips on making goats milk cheese. The only way I ever used goats was with a friend who packed them with camping gear to head up into the Sierras. They were gentle and personable companions.

LQ
 
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Take a nap every afternoon under a tree in their pen.

Read a book for an hour every day in their pen.

Put feed out and sit by it for an hour every day. Pick up all but a small amount after the hour.
 
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