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I have a tiny herd of two does (and a buck.. but hopefully he'll be out of the picture). Anyway..

I need one girl to consistantly get on the milkstand for grain, and I'd like the other to eat from her bowl on the floor.

Unfortunately, opening the door to their stall is stampede time. If their grain is out, they'll both go for one bowl. If it's not, they'll try to get into whatever they can find in the barn. These are not good manners!

I'm thinking there has to be a better way. I know other folks manage to let one doe out at a time, milk her, then get out the next one. My question is HOW? Both goats know their own names, so do I start by teaching each one to come to it? And how do I get the other goat to stay in the stall until her name is called? (or better to teach outside?)

I know I've let them get away with this, but short of muscling them around, I'm not sure how to get it to stop, and to get them to act more orderly. I've even tried haying in the stall first- thinking that would distract them so I could choose, but that didn't work either because they KNOW I have grain SOMEWHERE.

Complicating this- dh didn't do a very good job hanging the stall door, and it's a HUGE PITA to get the thing to close, then to get it locked (ARG!). So even if I manage to only let one girl out to go on the stand, I'll spend 20mins trying to lock the thing behind her. (I'm heading up to try to fix this in a moment)

BTW- I can get the one doe onto the milkstand, that isn't a problem. it's the rushing through the open door before that which is driving me CRAZY.

Meghan
 

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Can you get in there without them getting out? Maybe you can get a collar on one and tie up in the pen while you get the other situated and then go back for the other one. Or you could squirt one with a squirt bottle to get her back off while you get one out...:)
 

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Welcome to the wonderful world of milk goats! I'm so sorry, but I was laughing as I read your post as this is what we've faced 10.5 months out of the year for multiple years and we've NEVER learned how to teach one of our goats manners. A dog maybe, a goat, notta chance. Fortunately we are now down to just two does (three due fresh this spring), so it's a bit easier for the THREE of us to avoid getting trampled twice a day. Dunno how people do it with multiple does...

So sorry that I can't offer any sound advice. When you open a stall door in our barn it's like shooting off a starting gun, even for the bucks. The finish line is the milk stand and if you're standing in the way you're toast.
 

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Pook's Hollow
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First, fix the door. ;) Then, make sure that you do things in the same order every single time. My girls know their names, and they know who goes first. I call the name of the doe that I want before I open the door, then I just open it enough to get my hand or foot through, in case someone else thinks they're going to get pushy. If you get hold of them under the chin, you can shove them back easily - not a chance if they get their heads down! :viking: If one does manage to shove her way out and get on the milkstand, she will be forcibly pushed off and marched back to the pen (I shut the door before I go to grab her) and given a smack on the rump as she goes back in.

The only time I have much problem is when I've changed the routine - somebody's dried off or somebody new has come into milk. Then it's a bit chaotic for a few days.
 

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my 2 current milkers and 3 doelings are all in one pen. i go into the pen, they are all rushing all over, the excitement of it all! oh boy! i am talking to them by now, saying hi girls, goaties-goaties! they start to settle a bit, one by one i tie them to a place, same goat to same tie each time. they often are waiting for me by the time i get to tying them up, at their spot, anxiously waiting. the only one who's not tied is the old gal i want to milk first, she is not real good on her feet (previous owner seriously neglected trimming) so it takes her a bit to climb onto the stand. by the time she does, all others are tied. i feed her in the stand, then go give the others their share. then i switch old gal with the other milker, tying up ethel and letting kate jump onto the stand. by the time milking is done, all the girls are finished eating, i let them loose.

this is nice as well, having them 'contained', if i need to do feet, bring in a bag of feed, etc. at first the younger ones really tossed around, didn't like being tied, but now they handle it just fine. and now i know too, that if i need to take them somewhere, they are more leash broke then before too. the younger ones dont' really need much grain, but i like doing this as a way to be certain they each get handled every single day.

somewhere on fias co farm site there was a photo of many goats, all tied in an alley-way, standing nicely. its a good thing!
 

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I tie two up on the fence while I milk the nanny. Otherwise it's total chaos. They've learned to follow me over there. It makes things so much easier.
 
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