To Shed or Not?

Discussion in 'Goats' started by Marjorie Dickso, Oct 27, 2006.

  1. Marjorie Dickso

    Marjorie Dickso Well-Known Member

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    I just bought a beautiful Nubian buck. I wanted a Lamancha, but couldn't find one. Anyway, this buck is BIG and has a very shiny coat. I know his breeding as it is from my vets buck. Yes, I'm lucky to have a goaty vet!

    I wanted to see the goat shed, they don't have one. Stay outside, sleep under some cedar trees. I read on this board that goats have to be kept dry so I'm wondering if maybe we are losing "hardiness" in goats by careing for them too well?

    I am by no means a goat person. I have one Lamacha doe & 2 Saanen/Alpine does. I have wormed them, they get to run loose to browse. Absolutely will not run off. Of course I haven't let the Billy out yet. He isn't tame like the girls are. They have a shed, but it isn't big enough for feeders. They don't get hay at night, just water. They all seem to be thriving.

    When I see the long list of meds, etc. that should be on hand for a goat, it makes me wonder why we do this to ourselves. lol. Don't have a supply on hand yet and better get on it as the Lamancha doe has been bred. I give them free choice soda, mineral salt block and loose mineral that is for goats, sheep and cattle. We have a "dairy" mix made up at the elevator that is mostly corn with some vitamins in it. This feed works well for goats, cows, horses and chickens altho I see the goats go for the corn and not the yummy stuff in it. I also have goat feed.

    My question on feeding is this: You have to have them in good condition for breeding, however, you surely can't feed them up during pregnancy? Should I cut back to hay and water? During the winter, should they get some alfalfa for warmth? Assuming that feed makes heat for them like it does for horses?
    I just pulled a calf that was way to big for a springer heifer and don't want that with a goat.

    Looking forward to your comments and suggestions. Thanks!

    Margie
     
  2. Jillis

    Jillis Well-Known Member

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    I can't answer your other questions, especially since you don't indicate the climate where you live...but I would give the goats a mineral specific for goats. Goats need copper, which is toxic to sheep...therefore the minerals that are okay for sheep will not have enough copper for goats. This has led to problems for lot of us.
     

  3. Gailann Schrader

    Gailann Schrader Green Woman

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    You HAVE to give them shelter from rain. The cold isn't a problem. Pneumonia is quick and deadly.

    The shelter doesn't have to be heated or totally enclosed.

    Copper and selenium are two really important ones...

    Uber feeding does before breeding is called flushing. Tends to cause multiple births. Good luck!
     
  4. TexCountryWoman

    TexCountryWoman Gig'em

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    Yes, where you live makes a huge difference in how you need to manage your goats. Is it the frozen north or the warm and green south? Is it arid or humid? As far as free-ranging your goats, they will do well until predators take them. I have had that experience in the past. Now mine are fenced in and I have Great Pyrenees dogs to preotect them. Your goats will attract predators, whether it be wild animals or stray dogs.
     
  5. Marjorie Dickso

    Marjorie Dickso Well-Known Member

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    Well, I can't find a goat specific mineral. Anyone have a name for it so I can find it? I live near Topeka, Ks and I believe the grass is rich in selinum. It is still very mild here but I know zero and snow will be here in December. It was good to know (from this board) that they need warm water in the winter. Does a tank heater I use, get warm enough for them?

    Uber feeding? Was that a mispell? I just want an easy birth as I am a very nervous person at birthing.

    Before I bought the Lamancha, she was a pure pet and ran with horses. Altho the goats don't roam far from the house, when they do go out it is with cows an horses. I have a big ole mean Mastiff. House dog that don't protect anything cept the house. GRRRR I looked at a LLama, decided I didn't like the way he looked at me :) I also have chickens, geese, guineas and a lone duck so I know about predators. Anyone want to trade a house dog for a guard dog? :) I know I have to put up a goat proof fence and build a bigger shed for them. ugh, the work never ends! My poor hubby is not doing well now for the last year. I am not at the stage where I want to give up having animals but may have to. I milk 4 cows, have a few customers but sure can't make a living off them. I don't live on a main road so the customers I do have aren't regular. Thinking of making cheese with the goat milk next spring. It is the way I want to live, but since we can't advertise, I can only put up a sign at the driveway and on realmilk.com., It will take a while for the word to get out.

    Thanks for all the advice and looking forward to anything else you might add.

    Margie
     
  6. Rowdy

    Rowdy Well-Known Member

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    As for shelter... I really think it depends. I'd feel guilty not providing my goats some type of shelter, but about the only time I actually see them in it is when it is pouring down rain. Most other times, even during a drizzle, they just stay out underneath the trees.
     
  7. AllWolf

    AllWolf We love all our animals

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    Where I live you have to have shelter because it gets so cold here at times and sometimes rains alot during a certain time of year. The shelter needs to be dry and draft free but still can breath and let some fresh air in. Baby goats need to be kept warm and dry if live where the weather gets down right dirty. Heck even if I lived in TX I would give my animals shelter that is just me.. I would not want my goat to come down with Pneumonia if can help it because Pneumonia is a fast killer.

    When go breeding a doe or does to have babies. You need to be sure to de-worm them before they are bred and lots of people give the does Bo-Se before bred too. Goats need loose minerals all the time. Goats are fun to have but they can be a real challenge at times.

    Should I cut back to hay and water? My answer to that is NO they need hay and water all the time. That is very important for them. Hay and browse gives them nutrient they need plus vtamins

    During the winter, should they get some alfalfa for warmth? Assuming that feed makes heat for them like it does for horses? I feed my goats a mixture of feed it contains: Cracked corn, oats, calf manna, alfalfa, wet molasses, soybeans, sunflower seeds and beet pulp. I also have goat minerals for them all the time. I do not know if you mixture is the same as mine.


    Winter time a goat needs grain to keep warm and strength up to fight the winter weather. Protein and other things in feed are very important. Yes Hay is very important and so is other minerals and grain. Unfortunately many doe goats, are unable to get enough nutrients from browse or hay alone to meet their needs so that is why you need grain added to their diet..

    On wethers or bucks you need to be giving them a medicated feed to prevent UC also known as urinary calculi. It can be very painful for a buck or wether to have. It can also kill them. The medicated feed needs to have ammonium chloride in it.

    On the medicine list it best to have it than not to because if a goat gets down you better have what you need right then because some problems on a goat means life or death and that is almost 100% all the time.

    One more thing if a goat gets to much selenium it can kill them. Selenium is toxic and not enough selenium in a goats diet then it will get what they called Selenium deficiency and you do not want that either. Just remember goats need all the nutrients and Vitamins to make it also.

    Good Luck with your goats. :)
     
  8. ozark_jewels

    ozark_jewels Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Warm water is not a must during the winter(though they like it), but shelter of some sort is unless you live where its warm and dry all winter. My girls only use the barns to stay dry in the rain and off the wet ground in the winter. They have to drink cold water all year round as I cannot haul warm water to 150 goats. :) You will need to feed hay to your girls at night during the winter, as eating is what keeps them warm during the cold nights.
    And deep bedding on really cold nights.
    I don't keep lots of meds around, but there are certain ones that can mean the difference between saving and losing a goat. Those, I keep on hand. :shrug:
     
  9. HilltopDaisy

    HilltopDaisy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    When it comes to meds, I'd rather have them and never need to use them, than need something at 10 o'clock on a Saturday night and have no way to get it 'til Monday. I have plenty of stuff I've never used but I'm glad I got it it.

    My goats all sleep in their shed, every night, even in the summer. We get temps down to -30 in the winter, but maybe down in Texas it's not such a big deal.

    I sure wish people would fill out the spot that tells what state they live in.
     
  10. PygmyLover

    PygmyLover nigerian & pygmy breeder

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    Ditto!

    I keep Penicillian, LA 200, wormer and cocci med on hand. I don't think a lot of the "other" stuff is that important. My goats have been healthy for 12 years.

    I keep minerals and baking soda out free choice but both of those are new things that I just started - though I wish I had known about them sooner. If you can't get goat minerals get cow minerals. OR order minerals online. I use sweet lix meatmakers.

    grain isn't as important as hay and water. NEVER take those two away from a goat. The hay will be what will keep them warm. I never heat my water up, to much work and they don't need all that pampering. Ijust try to think what they would need in the wild and do only one step better (minerals and baking soda).

    Hope this helps
     
  11. Marjorie Dickso

    Marjorie Dickso Well-Known Member

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    NE Kansas
    Ok..I've looked and searched for copper. No luck because we have plenty of selenium here and I can't seem to find it without that mineral. Does anyone have any idea of what I can use/buy? Thanks again
     
  12. ozark_jewels

    ozark_jewels Well-Known Member Supporter

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    If you are not supplementing selenium by giving Bose or something, then no matter the level of selenium in your ground, you will not harm your goats by feeding a complete mineral, selenium and all. You can buy a good goat mineral(sweetlix is a good one), or you can buy a good cattle mineral. They will contain copper and selenium. You won't overdose on selenium unless you are giving a selenium supplement AND high selenium feed, AND high selenium mineral. And maybe not even then. Most minerals do not have enough selenium which is why most of us have to supplement it by giving Bose.
    Get a good mineral and feel good about it. :)