My Goats Hate Me...

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by rodriguezpoultry, Oct 11, 2017.

  1. rodriguezpoultry

    rodriguezpoultry Langshan Lover

    Jan 4, 2009
    Claremore, OK
    I recently acquired (3 days ago) some Nubian wethers to help mow down the brush all over a property I rent. The breeder told me that the goats were not friendly but were not mean. That worked for me because the end result, after the brush was cleared, was for meat (hence the wethers).

    This was great, until we put them into the pen and I found out they were as tame as wild-caught deer.

    They are not friendly, but downright stand-offish. Only one will approach me when I have food or goat crack (animal crackers and marshmallows). I actually touched them yesterday with an open palm along the flank, so progress?

    I will need to move them to another area shortly (they are doing a REALLY good job at clearing brush), but I would also like the ability to check them and be able to administer medications as needed. Should I "manhandle" them and teach them that I am the boss? Somehow, I doubt that will work well for a prey animal.

    Or, should I just continue the slow process of building a food-love relationship with them?

    The Nubians have horns. I understand that collars are not the best option with horned goats, but I have no other way to hold onto them. Would a halter or a collar be a better option for them to wear until they start to calm down?
  2. moomoodiddy

    moomoodiddy Songster

    Jun 7, 2012
    Union County, NC
    You could order some of those break away plastic chain collars, but I do not know how well they hold up if you're trying to catch them. I would just keep on what you are doing, spend an hour or so a day during feeding time with them for association. It is going to take longer than a few days, but goats are curious animals so they will not be able to resist.
  3. Junochick

    Junochick Songster

    Jun 10, 2017
    Globe arizona
    Food, treats when they learn your the food person they will start trusting you more. Lots of patience. Just don't tell them you are going to eat them later.
  4. Peaches Lee

    Peaches Lee Songster

    Sep 19, 2010
    I'm no goat expert, and my one and only goat passed away in June (to be forever missed :( ) but I think time and consistency are your friends! They need to build trust with you and that doesn't happen overnight. Keep giving them delicious treats and it should all work out!
    Fields Mountain Farm likes this.
  5. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Rolling Down The River

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    From my experiences you are wasting your time trying to tame them. I have a few that were dam raised and they will run you over if you attempt to catch them. They are basically feral. I haven't had luck changing them either. Being bottle raised and handled during those first few months of life makes a huge difference.
    ShannonR likes this.
  6. Fields Mountain Farm

    Fields Mountain Farm Enabler

    Jun 6, 2017
    Dunlap TN
    I've had some pretty skittish goats a time or two. I have found that spending a few minutes various times of the day just sitting in their area, quietly ignoring them with treats at your feet, a short distance away to begin with, gets em interested. They are curious creatures but naturally nervous. take a book or something out with you and relax. Might even nibble some animal crackers ( convince the goats you aren't interested in
    They'll come around. And unless there's a serious need to handle them it's best not to scare them.
    Anyway, I hope you win their trust and are able to enjoy them before they become dinner. ;)
  7. cassie

    cassie Crowing

    Mar 19, 2009
    Just curious. By any chance were these goats Toggenburgs?
  8. oldhenlikesdogs

    oldhenlikesdogs Rolling Down The River

    Jul 16, 2015
    central Wisconsin
    That's exactly what they are. They are are a dangerous pair, and I should have left them to be eaten by the woman's husband, who had plans for them. Never again. Is it common to the breed?
  9. cassie

    cassie Crowing

    Mar 19, 2009
    In my experience it is. You can sometimes tame dam raised kids of other breeds, but not Toggs. At least I never could. A friend of mine had a dairy and one Togg doe in the herd was dam raised. She would come into the milking parlor all right, but if you were in the alley when she was leaving the barn she would run you over. I mean knock you flat and run right over the top of you. You about took your life in your hands when you had to do anything with that goat. Another friend of mine had a dairy primarily of Toggs and she dam raised all of her kids. I milked for her ONCE when she had to go out of town. It was like dealing with a herd of deer. Never again. Another friend of hers took one of those does to a show. The goat got loose on the fairgrounds. It was days before that goat was caught and corralled. It was a miracle that she got caught at all.
  10. Zoomie

    Zoomie Songster

    Dec 6, 2015
    Mora, NM USA
    You've only had them three days - give them a chance, you will be able to tame them. They are all individuals, so maybe some will be tamer than others eventually, but they will get there - just keep doing what you are doing, and mentally, give it two weeks. Come back and update in two weeks. My guess? They will be perfectly tame by then.

    As far as collars go, just keep an eye on them. I actually worry more about the horns getting caught in the fence. Again, just really make sure you can see them all, and that none are suspiciously in the same place for very long. One trick I've done with really wild goats in a relatively small area is to let them drag a small piece of rope. As I slowly approach I would stand on the rope, instead of making a wild grab at them, and then feed them. Within a week, they were great (these were Boers) and I had no trouble handling them. BUT, it was a small area, AND my goat pens are right by my house with huge windows on that side, so I can keep an eye on them all day long. (At night they are all put into a stall in the barn and kept in for the night.) But if you could touch them after only 3 days, I think you are making excellent progress and you should be just fine the way you are going.
    Ursuline Chick and res like this.

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