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Topic: First Time Goat Owner  (Read 12542 times)
TinTin92
Bottle Babies
*
Posts: 43



« on: May 12, 2011, 10:56:56 AM »

I'm adding two baby Nigerians to my family, Shotgun and Trigger. I don't have them yet because they are only a week old and therefore still at the breeder. I've done a bunch of research on the little guys, but i was wondering if i could get more information on feeding wethers. How much/often should i hay and grain them. They will have roughly half an acre of land and about three quarters of our property is brush, brambles and sparse trees.
And another question, i found collars that i want to get for them, but i don't know how big their necks will be or get. Will a 7-12" work for kid and adult hood? or will i have to get a bigger one later?

Information of any kind will be very much appreciated Smiley
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imalilbirdie
Herdmasters
Goat Genius
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Posts: 19147


Texas


« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2011, 11:14:11 AM »

Howdy TinTin!!  Welcome to Goatbeat.  Nice to have you with us. Smiley

Your about to venture into an awesome additive treat!!  Once a goat is under your skin and in your heart, they are there to stay, no matter what! 

First off, yes, we do grain our boys (bucks and wethers)..you won't have to feed much 1 cup of grain each twice a day should do them well with plenty of forage and dry hay.  Goats require a minimum of 14% digestable protein..the crude protein on the back of the bag is not digestable..take 4% off that crude protein amount and that's what they will digest..so if you're feeding a feed that's 14% they are only digesting 10% of the protein and that's not enough to keep them healthy.  A good 16% horse sweet grain is ample enough for wether boys and if you're in a selenium deficient area, then topping it with just a few Black Oiled Sunflower seeds is ample to control that.  Goats need mineral designed for goats, not goat/sheep mineral.  Goats need copper and sheep can not have copper so we want to get a "goat" mineral..a nice loose mineral works best. Smiley

Your browse will need to be gone through and the toxic plants removed before you turn them loose into it.  Some toxic plants will kill within 6 to 8 hours of ingestion.  So I'd check the poisonious plants list and make sure you have all those out of there first and foremost.

Collars aren't necessary on loose goats, especially those with horns.  Your boys will be plenty tame enough to only put them on when needed, such as trimming hooves or leading them outside the pasture area.  I never suggest any one put collars on their goats and leave them on full time.  They can easily hang themselves on a branch or fence post. 

With our wethers and bucks we want to keep a bucket of apple cider vinegar out to them..a 2 and 1/2 gallon bucket with a big blob of apple cider vinegar in it kept fresh will help them in a lot of ways..it's used as a preventative for U.C. (it helps to break down the calcium deposits in their urine), and it also helps to keep bugs off them (lice, mites, ticks, bitting flies and so forth).

Worming is your biggest issue..they will need to be kept on a good worming schedule.  Worms are the worst parasites these guys can get, and if they are over loaded with worms it can kill them or throw them into anemia which kills faster than the worm overload does.  So a good worming schedule, using goat safe wormers is a must.

I hope this has helped you some. Smiley  Ask any and all the questions you want to ask.
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~ Birdie ~
Sally P
Goat Genius
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Posts: 8923


New Sharon, Maine


« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2011, 02:18:55 PM »

Ours wear their collars all the time.  Even if your goat has horns---I would never catch a goat by the horns.  That can be painful to them and it's just not necessary.  Get ocollars that have enouogh expansion in them so that you can loosen them as needed.  7 to 12 inches will work but I bet you'll have to  lengthen them as they get older.
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TinTin92
Bottle Babies
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Posts: 43



« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2011, 02:23:25 PM »

alright, thank you Smiley and yea, i was thinking on letting them wear them full time for if i needed to grab them i'd have something to grab ahold of. and they are disbudded so grabbing horns wouldn't be an option lol.
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imalilbirdie
Herdmasters
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Posts: 19147


Texas


« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2011, 03:48:47 PM »

oh good grief Sally..if you have a tame pet goat, wethers no less, there's no reason to have a collar on it all the time.  Yes, they can hang themselves with collars on and in timber/woodland areas it's very dangerous to the goat.

Our goats were all horned, and if we had to hold them by the horn we did, it didn't hurt them at all.  We don't torture one when we hold one.  We didn't have to rough house our goats, as they were tame, and I would imagine TinTin's goats will be more like dogs than goats.
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~ Birdie ~
Sally P
Goat Genius
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Posts: 8923


New Sharon, Maine


« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2011, 04:27:09 PM »

Sorry---but around here collars are normally worn by both dairy goats and minis.  But few goats here have horns which can also get caught on a fence, in a tree, etc.  I realize that in the meat goat world things are different.  Does your dog wear a collar?  It's really no different putting collars on goats.   
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Sunshine
Guest
« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2011, 04:42:00 PM »

I dont have any horned goats and I keep collars on all of them.  Even my most tame needs a collar to grab on to occasionally. I have never had them hang up on anything but I have had another goat with horns hook a collar and it broke the other goat's neck. That would be why I dont have horned goats at all now.
 7-12" should fit a Nigerian dwarf up to adult.
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Sandie
Guest
« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2011, 06:48:15 PM »

most of my dairy goats have collars and they wear them all the time except during breeding season, things seem to happen then, so when they go in with their billy the collars come off.  i have had a kid get its collar caught in a fence and get its neck broke so it can happen. i have also had a horned kid stick its head through the fence and get its neck broke. i have  had a horned goat catch the collar , twist it around, and choke the goat to death, so that can happen too.  the 'break away ' collars are not any safer than the regular ones as the one that got choked was wearing the supposidly safe break away collar.  i don't keep collars on my angoras because it gets tangled up in the mohair badly. and if the angoras with horns are penned with the rest in a small pen then everyone has the collars taken off, if they are in pasture or our big pen where they have room to get away from each other then the dairy girls keep theirs on.  i do keep them on my bottle babies until they are weaned including the sheep.  they learn to lead and stand tied while they are young which is much easier than when they are older.  but once they are weaned the collars come off.  if we had brush and trees that they could get caught on i would not leave collars on them. 
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imalilbirdie
Herdmasters
Goat Genius
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Posts: 19147


Texas


« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2011, 07:28:31 PM »

Sorry---but around here collars are normally worn by both dairy goats and minis.  But few goats here have horns which can also get caught on a fence, in a tree, etc.  I realize that in the meat goat world things are different.  Does your dog wear a collar?  It's really no different putting collars on goats.   

No Sally, my LGD's didn't wear collars.  My indoor dogs do wear collars here in the park, but back home, no they didn't, and a dog is not a livestock animal..they aren't made to have collars on their necks and hung by a fence post or tree limb or another goats horn.  it's not a natural thing for goats to have collars on. I don't see how you could possibly compare the goat to the dog..totally different world Sally.
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~ Birdie ~
Oregoats
Goat Genius
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Posts: 1753



« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2011, 09:03:44 PM »

 Well, I live right near a busy highway and my girls all wear collars all the time.
Just in case someone manages to slip out, I need something to grab onto.
I buy the ones that clip on, if they snag on something too hard, they come off.
Although I have no brush or trees (or horns) to catch on. Most of the breeders I know
near me have collars on at least some of their goats.
 
  Mine have bells on them. I can hear them in the barn. If something upsets
them and they start making LOTS of music, I go check. I can also tell where
they are in the "back forty" by listening to their bells.

  In our county, dogs are required to wear collars. And have a rabies tag on them.
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Unthinking respect for authority is the greatest enemy of truth- Albert Einstein
dragonlair
Herdmaster
Goat Genius
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Posts: 9319



« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2011, 09:32:44 PM »

My goats have always worn collars from birth until death. They have tags hanging from the collars with their names in it. All my goats had them from tiny Nigies up to the biggest Boer and Dairy goats, horned or not. Never had any kind of problems with them getting caught or hung up in 30+ years of owning goats.
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DragonLair Farm and Kennel in Central Maine with Nubians, Lamanchas and Oberhasli. Of course, combinations of 2 or more breeds happens also.
Sunshine
Guest
« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2011, 10:29:28 PM »

My herd queen has a bell and I know when I hear it going like crazy something is up because she rarely gets in a hurry!
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dragonlair
Herdmaster
Goat Genius
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Posts: 9319



« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2011, 09:30:27 AM »

My dogs also wear collars 24/7 and I'm glad they did because they were needed for rescue the night of the fire.

Up here out dogs have to be licensed and are supposed to wear both the rabies tags and the state license tags.
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DragonLair Farm and Kennel in Central Maine with Nubians, Lamanchas and Oberhasli. Of course, combinations of 2 or more breeds happens also.
imalilbirdie
Herdmasters
Goat Genius
*****
Posts: 19147


Texas


« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2011, 12:36:24 PM »

same here in LA Dragon..ours are suppose to wear the parish license and the rabie tags as well.  Here I have just the Czech Shepards, so they go out on leashes, so yes, they have collars on all the time here..when we get to the country they won't wear them.

back on our farm my dogs didn't leave my farm..the vet came to me, not me to them..our dogs nor our goats wore collars. 
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~ Birdie ~
dragonlair
Herdmaster
Goat Genius
*****
Posts: 9319



« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2011, 02:59:49 PM »

The breed of dog I have can never be allowed to run loose, so collars 24/7. When I can afford it, I am going to have them all microchipped.
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DragonLair Farm and Kennel in Central Maine with Nubians, Lamanchas and Oberhasli. Of course, combinations of 2 or more breeds happens also.
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