I have 4 baby goats, 3 are a month old and one is 1 1/2 months. Im still feeding them milk with a bottle, but started leaving hay and a little grain for them. They also eat greens out side. I walk them daily in intervals so they dont over eat and leave prickers in there pen outside, because those are there favorite. As of yesterday i noticed i cant even give them as much milk aas i normally do there stomachs fill up extremely quickly and i dont want them to over eat. My doctor said to feed them at least 13% of their weight so they get about 32-38 oz a day, plus they are growing. But now that they are eating other foods should i be cutting back on the milk already. I have for the past couple days though they still want milk but their tummies are full. Sometimes after they eat they look huge. I just dont want to over feed and have something happen. This is my first time with baby goats, and if any one has any advice please let me know thanks. Also when is a good time to take them off milk? Ive been watering it down little by little to eventually wean them off.
Feeding 1 month old goats
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Too soon to take them off milk completely. A lot of people keep them on the bottle for three months. Some wean earlier, like at two months. All the literature I've read is that they shouldn't be weaned before two months of age. But it is a good idea to not overfill them with milk. I'd suggest not watering the milk down, just giving less if you are concerned.
Are they a small breed like pygmies or Nigerians, or a big breed like a boer?
Edited by Stacykins - 5/11/12 at 6:50pm
They are all LaManchas so yes they are a bigger breed. So you say two omths then, ive been trying to learn more about it and ive read different ages between a month and three months so i was iffy about choosing. They are eating quite a bit though so i should just cut back on milk then right? I normally give about 10 oz and i think they may only need 6 if that there tummies get too full and they look bloated.
I have Nigerian Dwarfs and when I have had to bottle feed, they would easily drink 6 to 8 ozs about 3 times a day at that age. By about 6 weeks I am getting tired of the routine! I usually wean after they are 8 weeks old and I am sure they are eating well and drinking water. My babies usually start trying to eat mom's food within the first week or so.
I would probably cut the 6 week old down to a morning and night feeding if it is eating and drinking well. The 1 month olds, I would feed about 3 times a day at this point. I only feed every 3 hours for the first few weeks, then start cutting back to 4 feeds, then 3, then 2. I have had does though that would nurse their kids until they were over a year old. One would even get up on a stump so her daughter could nurse because she was too big to get under the mom. LOL!!! We also had one that wouldn't stop nursing so we separated the babies with a fenced off section of the yard and we caught mom lifting her leg so they could nurse through the fence. Gees.
Anyway, there is no 100% perfect or right way to raise goats. If you think they are too bloated cut back on the amount for the frequency of feeds. Being La Mancha's I would think they are way bigger then my dwarf kids at this age and would require more milk per feed, but I never raised full sized goats so I don't know. I never let my little guys have over 8 oz at a time though as that is when they would look like they were going to explode! HTH.
Maybe the feeding portion of this guide will be of help.
"A 1 week old kid won’t take as much milk as a 2 mo. old kid, obviously…you gradually increase the amount given until they peak at around 20oz for standard kids, 12 oz. for mini kids, 3 times per day."
I feed my Nigerian dwarf kids 12oz of milk at each feeding. Not at first, hah, they got worked up to that amount. They drain every drop. Since they are two months old, I am feeding them 12oz twice a day. They certainly never appear bloated after getting their milk. They do eat some hay and grain, not much yet.
You can feed it twice a day. A 20 oz bottle of milk, not replacer, morning and night should do it. The kid should also have access to a calf starter grain and some good hay. It should also be vaccinated for entertoxemia and tetanus ASAP if it isn't already..
The obvious takes a little longer.
The obvious takes a little longer.