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Discussion in 'Goats' started by Karrie, Jun 21, 2005.
When should I stop bottle feeding my nigerian dwarf goat?
We normally wean our Boer goats at three months (males) to four months (females). This seems to work well for us to reduce feed costs, give the kidds the maximum amount of nutrition from nursing without interfering with the herd's breeding schedule and in enough time to avoid undesired breeding.
There are many folks that wean at 30 days and there are good resources that recommend this as a possibility. It seems just a little too early to us. There are many more that wean at 8 weeks and also a lot of good resources will recommend this as a possibility. The 8 weeks might be acceptable to us if we had reason to consider it. I would not say that the 30 days is incorrect or bad. We think that it is probably too soon and have not considered it. We would have to research this more than we have, before we could really form an opinion about the 30 days.
I wean at 8 weeks, but my kids are dam-raised. Dam-raised kids seem to start eating feed earlier and with more enthusiasm than bottle-raised kids, so I think it would probably be a good idea to wait a bit longer.
We wean bottle babies between 8-12 weeks...depending on the size and overall well being of the kid. I also back off from two bottles a day to one for a week or two, then cut the amount of milk down (DO NOT substitute water in the bottle!) and then quit. If the kid seems to be eating well, it's usually not a problem to wean between 8-10 weeks.
I like to wean at 3 months with my kids. Dam raised or bottle raised they get weaned at around 3 months. IF they are smaller or got stressed early in life I keep them on longer.
I feed my kids 3 bottles a day intill they reach 1 month. Then I drop down to 2 feeding a day intill they reach 2 months. Then I drop down to 1 feeding a day intill they reach three months. Thats when I wean. I normally to wean start skipping meals intill they are completly off the bottle.
I have never had a problem with my kids eating hay and grain or drinking water at a early age. Infact some of my bottle kids learn earlier than my dam raised ones. Go figure.