How to make your goats friendly
A perennial favorite in petting zoos, their curious and friendly nature make them fun companions. There are a wide variety of breeds available but the dwarf or pygmy varieties are probably the most commonly kept as pets. There are over distinct breeds of goats. They are one of the oldest domesticated species around the world and are used for their milk, meat, fur, and skins.
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9 Truths About Raising Goats
A perennial favorite in petting zoos, their curious and friendly nature make them fun companions. There are a wide variety of breeds available but the dwarf or pygmy varieties are probably the most commonly kept as pets.
There are over distinct breeds of goats. They are one of the oldest domesticated species around the world and are used for their milk, meat, fur, and skins. A Boer breed buck can grow as large as pounds, while smaller goats are between 45 and 60 pounds.
Pygmy goats are much smaller. Goats are herd animals, so they need at least one partner. They like attention and can get jealous if you favor one vote over another. Goats are herd animals, so they should not be kept as solitary animals. A pair or more of goats will make a good addition to the right family.
If you live in a city, bylaws may prevent you from keeping goats as they will likely be classified as an agricultural species. You must be prepared for a long-term commitment to having goats.
They need attention like any other pet. Pet goats tend to like attention, being petted by their owner, and will even eat out of your hand. They can get jealous if one goat is favored over others. Smaller breeds of goats, such as pygmies, need at least square feet per goat. Larger standard goat breeds, such as Nubians, need twice that per goat, so plan accordingly. The square footage of the space needs to be multiplied by the number of goats you have since they need room to move around each other.
Fencing at least 4 to 5 feet high is also a necessity for all goats since they are very agile and good jumpers. The living space will need areas that provide part sun and part shade as well as protection from winds.
You will also need a shelter or barn that is ideally draft free. This area will provide cover, a sleeping area, and protection from predators and extreme weather. If the enclosure or barn has windows, they should be higher than the head of the tallest goat when it is on its hind feet. Otherwise, the window should be covered with a screen or bars to prevent the goats from putting their head through the window or potentially trying to climb through.
Inside the enclosure, a mother goat doe will need a smaller stall if she is raising kids. Despite their reputation, goats are picky eaters. They prefer to eat food that has not been soiled or fallen on the floor. Use a feeder that is off the ground. They tend to browse, but the standard backyard will not have enough foliage for the goat's entire diet. Supplement their diet with hay, grains, and greens, and will eat grass, weeds, shrubs, and flowers in your garden. If you are going to keep a garden and goats, be sure to avoid roses and other toxic plants like azaleas, rhododendron, mountain laurel, and ferns.
Goats eat a huge volume of food every day. Be prepared to haul the heavy hay bales. They also require higher protein grain and supplemental minerals, especially copper. This is often provided as a loose powder or a compressed brick salt lick. Goats also need plenty of fresh water. Consult with an exotics veterinarian on the best food for your goat and don't assume that foods labeled for other barn-yard animals are good for goats.
Find a veterinarian who will be available to treat your goats. Vaccinations and routine preventative treatment for worms and other parasites are necessary for all goats and you should consult your local vet for what is required in your area.
You will need to check your area's regulations to ensure that pet goats can be kept within the city limits. There may be restrictions regarding goat size or weight. Also, some municipalities regulate how close animals can be kept to dwellings or neighboring properties.
If you are in close proximity to your neighbors, check that they will be tolerant of pet goats, which can be very loud. Get your goats from a conscientious breeder that practices good preventative medicine. It is always best to visit the breeder so you can see in what sort of conditions their goats are kept and to ask to see test results for CAE and other diseases.
Prior to committing to getting a pet goat, think about whether you can meet its needs and what your expectations are.
Goats can make great pets for the right people, and you can have fun naming them. Otherwise, check out other exotic pets that can be your new pet. It is also highly contagious to other goats. Caseous lymphadenitis CL : This is a disease that forms pus pockets called abscesses around the lymph nodes. When they burst they infect other goats, and it is highly contagious. Coccidiosis: This is a parasite that infects the intestinal tract of goats and other species and causes diarrhea.
This can block urination and be deadly. These stones are often a result of a dietary imbalance. Sore mouth orf : This is a disease that causes blisters in and around the mouth and nose of a goat. It is caused by a virus and can be passed on to humans. Enterotoxemia: This is a bacterial imbalance in the goat's rumen and it is preventable by vaccination. It can be caused by sudden diet changes or anything else that may cause a digestive upset.
Goats as Pets
Owning goats is a big commitment and can be very time-consuming and expensive. Before getting any goats it's important you consider if you have the time, resources, commitment, knowledge and facilities to care for them. Goats are not gardeners - An overgrown garden or hedge is not a good reason to get some goats. Download our booklet: An introduction to goat welfare and ownership PDF 1. The following pages include some important considerations for anyone considering or already keeping pet goats:.
I learned very early on that goats are comical, smart, loving, determined and very stubborn. When I first got my goats I was as green as could be and I had absolutely no clue where to start. As usual, winging it was my first course of action. Some goat breeds are easy to train and others…well not so much.
How to Attract a Goat
Why do you want to get goats? This is the first question we ask people who want to buy goats from us, and this is the most important thing to ask yourself before you get your goats. The answer to this question will help you decide which type of goat that would be suit your needs and which sex would be best for you. First, you need to know that goats are not lawnmowers with legs. Although a goat's digestive system is similar to that of other ruminants, such as cattle and sheep, who are "grazers" and eat grass, goats are more related to deer, who are "browsers". As browsers, goats are designed to eat, and prefer, brush and trees more than grass. Though goats will eat grass, if you are considering getting goats to be lawnmowers, you are going to be sorely disappointed, because they will eat your trees and roses before they will work on the lawn. Goats could be used to help reclaim grasslands that have been overgrown with brush.
How to Raise and Care for Baby Goats
You always wanted to keep dairy goats. You wanted your own fresh — and free — goat milk, goat cheese, goat milk yogurt and maybe even goat meat without having to worry about antibiotics and hormones in the milk. In this blog series, we share with you things we wish we would have known before getting into dairy goats. We hope our experiences will help you, whether you have two or fifty goats. We are not perfect, we are not veterinarians, and we definitely still have a lot to learn, but if we can help you avoid some of the mistakes we made, we have achieved our goal of keeping not just ours, but your dairy goats healthy and happy, as well.
Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links from which I will earn a commission. Then you can be a weird goat person like me! And just think, next year you can send out Christmas card photos of you and your goat.
21 Things You Should Know About Goats Before You Start a Goat Farm
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Raising goats teaches valuable lessons. Goats are a versatile animals that can provide, milk, meat, and weed control. Some breeds of goat are raised for fiber, that is spun into yarn. They are mostly easy to keep, friendly and comical additions to the family farm. And, goats can be a handful!
How To Easily Train Your Goats
If you're a farmer or just want to raise goats , sooner or later you may have baby goats to care for particularly if you're raising them for milking. Providing a baby goat, or a "kid," with the right care, such as managing the birth, learning what to feed it, and how to maintain its shelter, is critical to help it grow into a healthy, hearty adult goat. Immediately after the baby goat is born, you should be present. This helps the baby goat imprint on you so it starts to get accustomed to human contact. There are three main actions to take after its birth:. Care for the umbilical cord: Allow the umbilical cord to break naturally, and only trim it if it is longer than four inches. You will want the cord to be about three to four inches in length. If you need to trim the cord, use a sterilized pair of scissors, then clean the cord with iodine, and allow the stub to fall off naturally.
Interested in raising Pygmy goats? In this complete guide we walk you through everything you need to know: where they come from, what they can be used for, where to buy them, and much more! The Pygmy Goat is a small, hardy, adaptable goat breed that is increasingly popular in the United States. Their small size and good nature make them attractive dairy goats, where they require less space and feed than larger goats, and are suitable for smaller farms in urban and suburban settings.
Raising Friendly Goat Kids
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Goats are intelligent animals -- sometimes too smart for their own good. If they decide you're trying to catch them for reasons they won't like, they won't come to you, period. While a timid and semi-wild goat will never become entirely tractable, there are a some things that can help you tame that skittish behavior and bring your suspicious goat close enough to handle. Start things out on the right foot at the beginning -- that is, from birth.
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