Winter Goat Housing????

Discussion in 'Goats' started by Milk n' Honey, Oct 31, 2005.

  1. Milk n' Honey

    Milk n' Honey Well-Known Member

    Aug 14, 2005
    Central Indiana
    This is our first time getting goats through the winter. We do not have the barn ready yet. It is a horse barn and we have some alterations to make. My main questions is this....since I am supposed to keep the stalls draft free, how do I design the door that goes into the barn stall? I figured I'd make it just big enough for them to fit through but how do you keep the draft out? My barn isn't the kind that the goats all run into because it is a horse barn and is shared by two ponies. I'm quite confused on how to do this. I just know that I need to get something done before winter is here. I already feel they need to be getting inside some because the night temps are pretty nippy. Any help would be appreciated!! Thank you!!
  2. Jillis

    Jillis Well-Known Member

    Sep 11, 2005
    Northeast Kingdom of Vermont
    It might be enough to keep the barn draft-free. Meaning, are there large cracks and holes through which an icy breeze can blow? Goats are pretty hardy in the cold, except, I have heard Nigerians Dwarfs might be less cold-hardy than, say, Alpines. Here in Zone 2 people keep all sorts of goats in some very brutal weather in normal barns. Just plastic the windows and cut drafts that are animal level. There needs to ventilation, such as cracks in the area between the roofing and the walls and etc. Some people have even kept goats in a 3 sided shelter and hung old carpet over the fourth side to cut the wind. The goats push their way out through the hanging carpet. Not my choice of shelter, but it does seem to work.
    Be warned! I am not that experienced yet! This is info I have gleaned from others, not from personal experience yet! I have a nice little goat barn with a kidding stall that has a heat lamp because I bought 2 babies that were born out of far it is noticeably warmer in the barn than out of it when the door is kept shut.
    HTH! Blessings, Jillis

  3. Teacupliz

    Teacupliz Well-Known Member

    Nov 20, 2003
    Barker NY
    I have lamancha, Nubian and Nigerian goats all are winter hardy. You can open the door in the day and many time they stand out in the snow. Draft would mean that when in the barn looking for a slepping sot that they would not be a cold breeze over them. When we had kids I take a box and turn it over for a nice cozy spot for them to sleep.

    Teacup Farm
  4. mpillow

    mpillow Well-Known Member Supporter

    Jan 24, 2003
    You can also use a 4 ft 2*4 tacked to wall about 4ft from floor....then take a 6ft sheet of chipboard (osb) or plywood and screw on end to the 2*4 on the wall leave the other end on the ground so you have a triangular dog house...goats will snuggle together in it.....we also make lower, smaller version for babies in the Spring.
  5. tatanka

    tatanka Well-Known Member

    Aug 3, 2004
    We have mini Nubian goats(Nigerian X standard nubian) and we live in the middle of North Dakota where it regularly hits -60 or below with wind chills. When it gets really cold and snowy my goats live in the barn. The barn has three doors that are closed off and stuffed with straw to keep the wind from blowing in around the cracks. One of the big doors has a goatie door to allow the goats outside access when they want it. That particular door faces south but the wind and snow blow in off the lake from the east and straight into that door so I made the opening to the west to keep out the wind and snow. It is just large enough that Big Momma (our largest goat) can access it even when she is fully bred. When the weather is horrendous I do close up that door also. Our goats bed on straw or spent hay that by winters end is usually a packed foot deep. They all snuggle together on the coldest days and nights and do great. We milked all winter last year and didn't have any problems.
  6. GoatsRus

    GoatsRus TMESIS

    Jan 18, 2003
    Zone 6 - Middle TN
    We have two big slider barn doors...once faces south the other the west. When the weather isn't too bad, we leave the south side open continually. When the weather turns bad we close both big doors and the goats use their goatie door that we cut into the west wall. The hole is opened all the time, but has those plastic strips that hang down like in a walk-in freezer - but are cut to size. The know enough to push through to go either in or out. Even the week old babies learn how to get in an out.