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Topic: Some thoughts on Goat Management!!  (Read 3209 times)
Sally P
Goat Genius
Posts: 8923

New Sharon, Maine

« on: June 30, 2009, 07:21:49 PM »

From:  "Breeding and Kidding Management in the Goat Herd"
By:  Lunginbuhl, Poore, Mueller & Green

Deworming, vaccinating and Hoof trimming.  Animals that have a rough hair coat and general appearance, that stay think and do not gain weight, may have a high worm load.  Such animals will not breed well.  Therefore, it is a good practice to deworm the breeding flock (does and bucks) prior to flushing or/and the introduction of the bucks.  Does should not be dewormed during the first 20 to 60 days of pregnancy because the stress associated with handling and deworming may cause the animal to abort.  In addition, some dewormers may induce abortion.  Cases of abortion have been reported, by not proven, with levamisole (trade name: levasol, tramisole, ripercol).  Albendazole (trade name: valbazen) should not be used during the first third of pregnancy and oxfendazole (trade name: benzelmin) should not be used at all in pregnant animals.  Does should also be dewormed 2 to 3 weeks prior to kidding or at kidding because the doe hormonal changes will induce gastrointestinal parasites to produce a lot of eggs.  In turn these eggs will be excreted in the feces and contaminate pastures and the animals' other surroundings.

The breeding flock should be vaccinated against enterotoxemia (over-eating disease) and tetanus.  Adult breeding males should be vaccinated once a year.  Breeding females should be vaccinated 4 to 6 weeks before kidding, so that some immunity will be passed to their offsprings.  An additional vaccinating of breeding does could take place 4 to 6 weeks before breeding.  Following birth, kids should be vaccinated agains enterotoxemia and tetanus at 8 weeks of age, followed by a booster at 12 weels of age.

Trimming the hooves of breeding animals is another practice that will increase reproductive success.  Limping does may not let bucks breed them and bucks with hoof problems may breed only sproadically or even not at all.

When to kid and when to wean?
Kidding season and weaning age depend on several management and marketing factors.  However, kids born in very late winter and early spring (March-early April) when grazed with their mothers on lush high quality small grains or cool-season forages, will grow faster and will be halthier than kids born during the heat of late spring and early summer when forages mature and worm burdens increase.

Letting kids nurse and graze with their mothers for as long as the doe stays in good enough body condition so as not to impair the success of its next breeding season is a sound management practice that will ensure rapid growht of the goat kids.

Weaning is a very stressfull period for kids and coccidia infestations generally show up at weaning.  It is important to frequently observe weaned kids.

These are exerpts from a longer article printed in one of our goat club publications.
« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2010, 12:06:35 PM »

Great info...thanks
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