What do you use

Discussion in 'Goats' started by cdann40, Oct 31, 2006.

  1. cdann40

    cdann40 Member

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    I'm trying to weigh pros and cons between meat and dairy goats, so what kind of equipment do you use for dairy goat production and what do you use for meat goats if any?
     
  2. susanne

    susanne Nubian dairy goat breeder

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    i depends on what scale you want to have your operation.
    for example for five animals no matter which breed you need the same equipment. (hoof clippers)
    how many animals do you want to milk and how many you are willing to milk by hand? to many and you might need a milking machine.
    how much time are you willing to spend or have available? dairy operation takes more time.
    how/where is the market for your future product? doesn't make sense to raise meat goats if there is no market or produce milk if your state doesn't allow to sell to the public.
     

  3. cdann40

    cdann40 Member

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    I'm leaning towards milking by hand and plus from what preliminary research I have done raw milk/ goats milk seems to be an untapped market around here. But how do I tell it is untapped or there just isn't a market? Would national associations have that kind of data and stats? Why do you trim the hoof? Being male the thought makes me still cringe, but castrating, is it hard?

    Chris
     
  4. TexCountryWoman

    TexCountryWoman Gig'em

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    Before you decide on anything, get a basic understanding of goat husbandry. The question of why do you trim hooves shows that you need to learn a great deal about the fundamentals of goat care.

    Visit as many goat operations as you can. Talk to the most successful breeders about their farms. Look for advice from those with healthy, robust animals and tidy conditions. Read everything on the internet and library you can. Take your time and prepare.

    Meat goats, to me, are much easier to raise as they do not require daily milking. A dairy goat prduces more milk than her kids can consume (if she is a good dairy goat which is what you should be raising), therefore she would need to be milked for months and months after she kids. It cannot be skipped and is not "easy". If you have several or quite a few milkers, it is quite an undertaking for a beginner. You should be knowledgeable in all aspects of breeding, delivery, lactaion, milk handling, diet, disease prevention....along with simple routine things like hoof trimming. castration is a MUST for half of the kids your goats will produce as they will be male and it only takes 1 good male out of many, many males born to carry on the species. There are a host of reasons why they should be castrated which I won't go into here. . If you are squeamish, you need to buckle down and get over it, or find an assistant who can do the things that you are not able to do. (Many are not able to dd thier own castrations at first).

    I hope this post didn't come across wrong, I just want you to get off on a good start. Goats are wonderful and lovely animals and I only want your future goats to have a terrific life. :)
     
  5. fishhead

    fishhead Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Start small. Maybe you could offer to lend a hand at someone elses farm before you get any animals.
     
  6. susanne

    susanne Nubian dairy goat breeder

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    i disagree on the castration. i don't castrate any bucks that are born on my farm. they get butchered at about six weeks to six month. of course they are raised separate from the does and i have a good customer base for the meat. if it is a big dairy operation and no market for bucks, they are destroyed in a human way when they are born.
    hoof trimming is a must. you have to have someone that can show you how to. this is very important as you can easy cripple a goat if hoofs are neglected or trimmed the wrong way.
    i want to see the person that starts with goats and is an expert in goat husbandry. opposite is true. most people are getting a goat and learning along the way.
    find someone that has healthy looking goats and ask lots of questions.
    get two dairy goats and see if you like the daily routine and the taste of the milk.
     
  7. cdann40

    cdann40 Member

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    I actually just finished a book on goats and I now understand why hoof trimming is important but in the book the author was saying that the industry to get into eith goats is meat, very heavily emphasizing that it is very much in demand. True or untrue?

    Chris
     
  8. susanne

    susanne Nubian dairy goat breeder

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    you can find out very easy. go to your next sales barn and see what goats are sold for.
    if you have a lot of ethnic people you might get a good price for it.
    i have friends that don't have the market for meat at all and gasoline cost for transporting the animals is by far more more than what they would get for meat kidss.
    southern states like texas with all their mexican people have a much higher demand for goat meat.
    another friend of mine is in NY and has a creamery. people are crazy about her cheese.
    you need to find your market first.