Question on goats

Discussion in 'Goats' started by celadon, Aug 30, 2006.

  1. celadon

    celadon Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    277
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Hello everyone. I am a new member here. I love reading this site.

    I bought two nubian goats in May.They were born March 31st. My grandaughter and I are enjoying them so much. These are my first goats. How do the goats do in the winter. Is there anything special they will need? Do they get a winter coat? Right now wthey are in my back yard in a lean to so we can enjoy them but for the winter I was planning on putting them in a stall in the horse barn. Ifeed them goat feed and good hay and also have a goat salt block for them. What is the best way to keep them warm in the winter? Thanks, Andrea
     
  2. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    15,303
    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2006
    Location:
    northcentral MN
    What state are you in?

    I'm just as new to goats as you but others have said that loose goat minerals are better because the goats don't get enough from blocks and it wears their teeth down prematurely.
     

  3. nduetime

    nduetime I am a Christian American Supporter

    Messages:
    2,973
    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2005
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    I have found that goats do well in the winter as long as they can get out of the weather ( they hate getting wet). Keep their hay dry as many will not eat it wet and you have to keep water on hand. I use a heated bucket and check it twice a day but it is really not cost effective. If you are willing to go out 3-4 times a day and bring them water they will learn to drink their fill when you are there. I like the loose minerals too as I have heard they do not get enough from licking. I only bring the moms to be into the barn when they get close, if and it is very seldom we get animal weather warnings I bring all the goats into one stall in the barn to keep warmer.
     
  4. GoatLove

    GoatLove Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    896
    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2006
    Location:
    Maryland
    Welcome to the goat world! I would definately not put coats on them, they will grow a winter coat by themselves. They are hardy creatures. Definately get them some loose minerals and have baking soda available to them at all times. Are these wethers, does or bucks?
     
  5. celadon

    celadon Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    277
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    They are does. I do have loose minerials and also baking soda in with them. I was just worried about them for the winter. I have horses with heated buckets so I will use a heated bucket for them. It gets very cold up here in Michigan. I noticed that these girls do not come out of there housing when it rains or in the morning with the early dew. They do not like to get a drop of water on them. LOL We are enjoying them so much.I hope to have babies from them in the future. Is it better to use straw for the bedding? We use saw dust for the horses. Thank you for the information.
     
  6. moosemaniac

    moosemaniac Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,662
    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2003
    Location:
    North East, PA in Northwestern PA
    I'm in Pennsylvania, near Erie. It gets pretty cold here. Lots of Nubians in the area though. They do just fine.

    Ruth
     
  7. Sweet Goats

    Sweet Goats Cashmere goats

    Messages:
    2,023
    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2005
    Location:
    CO
    Welcome to the form. I would use straw, not saw dust. I know my goats would eat the dust, plus straw is warmer.
     
  8. pokyone42

    pokyone42 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    121
    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2006
    Location:
    Near Bath NY.. dumb name for a town, huh?
    hi there! Congrats on your goats!
    I use straw for bedding.. my girls grow a nice thick winter coat. I am in the southern tier of NY.. Also, in the winter, I use an old slicker brush (dog brush) on my girls..a couple of times a week, or more, if I am bored and they are, too. lol.... they LOVE it, and they all clamour around me to be brushed... It give us the "quiet time" that sitting in the pasture or taking them hiking in the summertime, does...have fun with them!!!!!!! If nthing else, they sure do make ya laugh and keep life interesting!!!!
     
  9. mygala

    mygala Member

    Messages:
    9
    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2006
    Location:
    My Nubians grow a nice winter coat too. However, knowing they are not bred for cold weather tolerance, I lock them in the heated barn when the temps get below zero. I think they'd probably be fine, but I worry about frostbite at the tips of those long ears. ...don't want to make the look like La Manchas!

    bob
     
  10. xoxoGOATSxoxo

    xoxoGOATSxoxo when in doubt, mumble.

    Messages:
    2,025
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2006
    Location:
    Saginaw Bay area, Michigan
    I'm new here (July 2006!) but not to goats. I live in Michigan too!! :)

    I have mostly Saanens and one Alpine, but she's just a pet.

    I know everybody has said this already, but don't put coats on them. My goats all get bushy in the winter, anyway. :) I have some barns, but for you I would recommend ( if you have the time and money) building a small, separate, goat barn. If you insulate it it should be quite warm, but our goat/sheep barn is not insulated. The animals make their own heat. If you only have 2 goats, again, insulate. Of course, if your stall is a big box stall with free access to the outside. then why not keep them there? :) My goats have learned how to open and shut their door to the goat yard. In the winter, the goats usually go outside and stand in the sun. They trample the snow down. This only works for a few days, until it snows again! If it's below freezing, they stay inside by themselves, without me having to lock them in.

    Are your goats 80lbs or above? If so, you can breed them whenever they're in heat. The gestation period is something like 145 to 155 days with the average being 150, so, if you breed them in the beginning of December you should get kids somtime in late April or early May. This is my favorite time for goats to kid, but it is awfully late in the season. Breed anytime from late august to early December.

    Good luck wintering with your goats!!
     
  11. Dee

    Dee Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    470
    Joined:
    May 11, 2002
    Snicker....sometimes things asked become like the game of telelphone... From, "will they get a winter coat?" Becomes, "don't put on a coat, they will grow their own" I'm sorry, that just struck me funny.

    I will allow my manure to build up during the winter to keep them warm. (and let me tell you, there is a noticable difference from outside to inside) I will add layers of sprinkled down wood pellets (my choice over sawdust) and uneaten hay. The wood pellets are really great, breaking down any ammonia and the hay, keeps them clean. (my vet went to do the down to the ground level smelling and commented that it didn't smell at all) During the winter, I may pull a 6-8 in layer off every now and then so it doesn't get too high. Yes, spring clean out is a pain but this works for me.

    I also found that although I can close the doors to keep them in, they did alot better having one door open for ventilation, even if it got below degrees. The wind usually doesn't blow on the door side.
     
  12. celadon

    celadon Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    277
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2006
    Yes, I bet us newbies do ask funny questions. I found that if I go back on the pages alot of my questions are answered. So I have been exploring all the pages when I have time.

    I live among the amish. The ones that have goats say just put them out in the field for the summer and when winter comes throw them some hay.Like there was nothing to raising goats. Well, if you make pets out of them and they are like your dogs you treat them as such. Plus one of mine got very sick and we almost lost her. We have horses and we do put some blankets on the ones that do not get a heavy coat. We worm them once every two months. They get all the hay they want. I have very healthy horses Now, I am trying to learn all I can about goats. Next I would like to get some chickens.

    I went out today and brushed the goats for the first time. They loved it and stood perfectly still. They were very upset when I left.

    Can goats be potty trained like dogs? Another funny question but was wondering.

    I am not going to breed these girls till we get our house built and have a very good enclosure for them. We have alot of coyetes. I was planning on putting up a 6 foot fence for them in the dogs yard to keep the coyetes from getting them. Hoping the dogs will keep the coyetes away from the goats. But the 6 ft. fence will keep the dogs from getting the goats. It sure can get complicating trying to keep everyone from eating each other. I just had to put the dogs in another area because they were trying to kill my barn cats. Just can't win. Why can't eveyone just be friends. LOL Well, you all have a great evening.
     
  13. AllWolf

    AllWolf We love all our animals

    Messages:
    1,402
    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2005
    Location:
    VA, KY & TN Line
    celadon
    Welcome to the goat world. You sure will enjoy your goats. I started with mine last year and boy have I learned a whole lot about them. I just a few months ago started milking and I really enjoy it. :)


    Good Luck.
     
  14. goatkid

    goatkid Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,133
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2005
    Location:
    Montana
    I live in Montana, where the winters can get cold. I have Nubians as well as other breeds. My goats have shelters facing away from the winter winds. They are not heated or insulated. In warm weather, I bed the goats with pine shavings. In winter, I put straw on top of the shavings for warmth. The adult goats do just fine. If they kid in cold weather, I make sure the babies are totally dried off and that they get lots of colostrum. Some of the does actually prefer to sleep outdoors in winter so long as it is not snowing or real windy.
    As for potty training goats, I did potty train one kid I adopted in winter, but even if you train them to potty outdoors, goats do not make good house pets. They climb all over the furniture and get into everything. I keep newborn bottle babies in the house for a week or two in large rubber totes, but they go out to the baby pen as soon as they get out and start climbing on things.
     
  15. xoxoGOATSxoxo

    xoxoGOATSxoxo when in doubt, mumble.

    Messages:
    2,025
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2006
    Location:
    Saginaw Bay area, Michigan
    I've never heard of potty training goats! A most interesting question. To goatkid, how on earth did you manage it??? wow!

    celadon, about your fence. You could put a couple of lines of electric fencing along the outside of the fence you're going to build for your goats. That'll probably work unless you're overun with very determined coyotes. Last winter a couple of coyotes actually got in with the sheep, but the goats were luckily in the sheep pen that day and as we went out were actually beating up the scruffy things. They seemed rather insulted, how dare those stinky coyotes disturb their peace and quiet! We got rid of those coyotes. The sheep were rather ruffled, and their feeders were all tipped on their sides, but there were no injuries at all. I don't think goats would make good protecting animals, but that day they really came through for us and the sheep.
    Now that the fences are all electrically reinforced, we havent had trouble.