Newbie wants goats, need info

Discussion in 'Goats' started by poultryprincess, Mar 1, 2005.

  1. poultryprincess

    poultryprincess Well-Known Member

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    Howdy y'all! I really want to get some goats.....we are on 2 acres,but surrounded by 200 acres of brush. I thought a small breed like Dwarf or Pygmy would be best for handling & space. I was hoping for 2 or 3, but no buck. I am lactose intolerant so some milk would be nice. A neighbour has a mom with 2 kids (month old) that are a nubian mutt mix.They look about 100 lbs, & 30 inches high full grown. He asked for $125. which I thought very reasonable. BUT - **1) are kids that young very needy? They are not debudded, & I don't think that it even bothers me (but I am a newbie, so maybe there is a really good reason they should be done?) **2) I have never milked Anything, & he does not milk his herd of goats.< he said they really don't have much milk except for their kids> **3)What is a good age to get kids? I wanted to bond with them & their mom, so they could have some freedom - maybe even come when they are called. He has them all free range & they are used to alot of freedom. I would be locking them up at nite. **4) I guess I am trying to figure out if I should grab these ones which are a great deal, & they are from a happy home OR wait til spring <I have been waiting for a few years already, & don't want to miss another year!> I await your most divine wisdom :worship:
     
  2. Mrs_stuart

    Mrs_stuart Well-Known Member

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    Poultry Princess,
    first, if you are lactose intolerant, you may still be lactose intolerant with goats milk too, so before i started, i would find someone with fresh goats milk and try it for a while and see if it works for you before you invest in goat and then find out that you cant handle that milk either.
    second, If you want goats for milk, i probally wouldn't get a mutt breed that has no milking history. You could get something that just doesnt produce milk well. I would get a nice dairy goat from someone that has milked goats before and that knows you will get a good milker.
    As far as the price, i would probally not pay $125 for a goat that you dont even know will milk well. I think you could find a nice grade nubian for that price.
    The kids are not real needy but they will need attention. Especially bottle babies. If you want really tame goat, you will need to get them young, bottle babies or just weaned. And you are right, you need at least 2 so they are not lonely. Goats are herd animals.
    When you find a place that has bottle babies, you can probally have them teach you to milk. It only takes a few tries and you can get the hang of it. If you cant find a farm to teach you, call the local 4-h group, there will probally have someone who could help you learn to milk.(most likely some 4-h kid who knows it well) .
    I would get some books from the library or such and read up on goats before you made a snap decision on these goats. But even if you do take these goats, some reading up can help. When we first started with goats, we thought that we were only a few that had any around here...because we didnt know anyone else had any but the more we talked to people, we realized that there were lots of people close that had lots of different goats and they were a wealth of info.
    Anyhow, good luck.

    Belinda

     

  3. manygoatsnmore

    manygoatsnmore Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I, too, am lactose intolerant, but find that I can handle more of the goat milk before showing <ahem> "symptoms" :eek: I buy the Wal-Mart brand of Lactase (Dairy Digestive Supplement) and it really helps, too.

    Are you getting the 3 goats for $125? That's really not a bad price for brush goats. Has the doe ever been milked? That's something to consider. One of my first goats was a Nubian cross that was impossible to milk. 5 point restraints and she still did the Flamenco on the milk stand :mad: It didn't make for a pleasant experience for either of us, and she really didn't give enough milk to make it worthwhile.

    Is it possible to get her in a stanchion or on a milk stand and try milking her before making a decision? That will give you an opportunity to not only see how gentle she is, but also to taste her milk and see if you like it. Not all does have the same flavor to their milk. Taste it warm and see if you like the flavor. If you don't, either pass on the goats, or just plan on using them as "brush hogs" until you find a good milk goat, then sell these. If you do like the taste, she milks easily, and you don't need a lot of milk, this doe could tide you over until you find that nice milker. One caution, though. She and the kids will probably grow on you, and it might not be that easy to sell them when you upgrade. LOL

    One more thing...PLEASE, please, please consider having them dehorned/disbudded for your own safety, as well as the goats'. A goat doesn't have to be mean to hurt you with that set of horns. Just moving her head in the wrong direction can injure YOU accidentally. Horns also get caught in fencing, mangers and things you never even thought of...goats get themselves into trouble without ever meaning to, and there is nothing more gutwrenching than finding your favorite goat strangled. A horned goat can also use those horns as weapons, and it's more likely that weapon will be used against her fellow goats than any predator.
     
  4. chma4

    chma4 Wolverton Family Farm Supporter

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    if i were you, id get a bottlefed baby, but of coarse you would have to breed her to get milk. Iv found bottlefed goats to be about 1000 times easier to deal with than free range mom fed kids. The bottle fed goats are like puppies, they fallow you around and are really lovey!
     
  5. poultryprincess

    poultryprincess Well-Known Member

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    THANX everyone, you have given me some things to think about. This guy has maybe 20 goats & most have kids.....but None of them get milkied. Some of them have come from the local petting zoo. They are free range during the day, & only get locked in the barn @ nite with the sheep & other critters. He said he never milks them. * He said $125 for the mama AND the 2 kids. There were a few mamas I could choose from. I thought a milk goat to be useful......but if I am really Honest, I would take a deaf,dumb,crippled & blind goat @ this point. I think they are beautiful animals. ( just need to convince DH there is a GOOD reason for us having goats) Well, back to the goat books, Thanxxxx for your input - it was very helpful! :D