Nigerian Dwarf Goats wasting lots of hay---

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by nicefarmer4U, Feb 28, 2014.

  1. nicefarmer4U

    nicefarmer4U Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 21, 2014
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    Hello, nice subscribers to BYC,
    I am now facing another issue, always related to knowing more and more about raising goats. As some of you might know, I have 4 Nigerian Dwarf Goats (three does and one wether). The problem now is the amount of hay they waste. I have to admit that this is about me paying the price of my freshman year at the Ā«Raising-Goat-Learning ProgramĀ», so there we go..
    I recently increased the amount of Timothy Hay a few weeks ago. I decided to use 4 medium size plastic buckets which I attached to the wall inside the barn, but there's a problem definitely in connection with the wrong containers I decided to use to feed them.
    I have noticed that these guys have not been doing the right thing : every time they get in the buckets, they stick their head all the way down to the very bottom of the bucket, pull their head out, and start chewing the food. The problem is that when they pull their mouth and head out of the bucket, big chunks of hay are also dragged out of it, which makes a lot of food wasted as it is true that once the food reaches the ground (wooden platform as part of their sleeping shelves) they won't eat it. To solve this matter, I just purchased two Hay Bags Tote with Poly Net, which are basically designed to feed horses (if anyone have heard of these bags, then you'll know what I'm talking about) as these bags have a sort of net in the center which would let part of the hay stick out enough so that the goats get only what they need and will stop them from wasting food. I haven't done anything with such bags yet, but I'm now sensing that these goats are going to start yelling at me like "Hey!, you don't have to change the containers out of which we've been eating so far! What's going on, man? We are now going to refuse to eat from these nasty bags ! "
    So, perhaps I will come up with some further ideas later on, maybe I will build some containers made of wood... or maybe you guys come up with some better ideas, in particular those of you who have already come a long way in dealing with goats.


    Thanks, in advance, for your nice feedback on this concern.
    nicefarmer4U.
     
  2. Shan30

    Shan30 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Hello,

    I currently do not have any hay eaters other than rabbits. However we raised horses, cows, sheep, etc. when I was just a kid on the farm.

    We used built in hay racks connected to the walls. Basically just wooden slats angled out from the wall with only enough space between the boards for their muzzles to fit between. We are looking into Nigerian dwarves too and I saw this wire version and will probably use it. http://cynography.blogspot.ca/2010/07/tightwads-goat-hay-rack.html?m=1
     
  3. Coupe

    Coupe Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Plus 1 on the hay racks! I also use to use a container (Rubbermaid) for hay..got sick and tired of all the wasted hay...so I asked the BF to weld a rack up for me! It was amazing! I mounted it in the goat hut, and the little guys took to it right away! The secret is to make the holes in the rack only big enough for the goats to fit their mouths in!
     
  4. Bunnylady

    Bunnylady POOF Goes the Pooka

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    Knowing goats, I'd expect them to tear up the bags, or find a way to get tangled in them.[​IMG] A hay rack would be my way to go, too. We have used welded wire mesh. The tricky part is getting good wire. There is cheap stuff out there with welds that "pop" if you just look at it hard - goats will tear that up in a heartbeat.
     
  5. Stacykins

    Stacykins Overrun With Chickens

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    1 person likes this.
  6. nicefarmer4U

    nicefarmer4U Out Of The Brooder

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    Jan 21, 2014
    Leicester, NC
    By replying to Stacykins, I am also going to address the other comments that I just got for help on this issue. First, Stacykins, I must say ..you're awesome! The pictures whose links I just clicked on are more than impressive & "persuading" to me as for putting this idea into practice, in particular the Rubbermaid plastic container put up on the wall. Furthermore, smart as these Nigerian dwarfs goats have become, I should say this Rubbermaid-built Hay Feeder is precisely what I'm going to do as it is evident that they're not going to have it as easy as before in terms of wasting the tons of hay they used to. But on the other hand, I can't deny that the slow hay feeder showed in the first picture (designed for horses originally) is also appealing to me. The more I read, the more I realize that it all boils down to how inventive and/or ingenious the goat breeder/farmer is, a talent which is basically to be developed along the way after long mornings and afternoons of dealing with these nice, cute and yet annoying guys (Nigerian dwarfs). Bunnylady, you couldn't be any more precise. For that reason, I temporarily changed the method: Hay Nets instead of Hay Bag Tote with Poly Net. I am aware this could be a little riskier than the first idea, but the thing is that I've been watching them now and then throughout the day and trust that nothing wrong o terrible will happen while I come up with a better project. Coupe, I agree: the key to success consists of making the holes only big enough so that the goat head can fit in... Shan30, the wooden rack is another thing I had also considered right after I finished posting this thread a couple days ago.
    Thanks a bunch, you all (ya'll) for your valuable help ! It is definitely sth unpredictable about whether or not another need will arise derived from raising goats
    . Smart as they are, they just kind of push me into turning myself in an innovative guy every day...

    nicefarmer4U.
     
  7. Kaitie09

    Kaitie09 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have 2 Nubian/Boers and I built a hay feeder like the one in the first link. The holes are 2x4 so they can't get more out than a mouthful at a time. They still waste a good bit and I'm considering rebuilding it, but with a bucket type system attached such as these:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  8. nicefarmer4U

    nicefarmer4U Out Of The Brooder

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    The first picture above looks a good idea, although my Nigerian Dwarf goats would not hesitate, not even a second, to jump on to the wooden platform containing hay (which I guess is hay collected from the one falling off the rack... they would just stand on it to reach the hay in the rack, place their poop and/or urine on top of the platform (not sure if I'm putting my point across) and would not obviously eat it.
    I would definitely build the other one that shows the two goats eating hay from it. It looks kinda cleverly built.
     
  9. Eliya4Gpigs

    Eliya4Gpigs Just Hatched

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    my goats would simply jump on top and break the manger/spill the hay.... i tried a DIY version. no luck [​IMG]
     
  10. Eliya4Gpigs

    Eliya4Gpigs Just Hatched

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    DIY HAY DISPENSER
    I enjoy designing things so i designed this. I AM NOT TAKING CREDIT FOR DESIGN. if anyone wants to use it, go right ahead :)
    What it is is a typical hay dispenser, with rales to keep goats from standing on bottom tray, with small slits so your goat can access the hay, but not tons of room to pull out tons. What does fall, should land on the bottom platform, where you can pick up the hay and place it threw the top so goats now have a second chance to eat it. the whole project can be placed on bricks to prevent exposer to rain/manure. Suggesting you put it in a barn/somewhere with a roof, to prevent hay from getting wet and molding. Depending on the wood you use, the wood could mold.
    Once again, I DO NOT TAKE CREDIT FOR THIS DESIGN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! you shouldn't take credit either, although i can't stop you form doing so.

    I hope i can build it soon to see how it works, when i have time/materials. [​IMG]
    I''l also be making a thread with this as the topic. Go to my threads the see comments on this DIY project for your goaties, maybe someone will be brave enough to build it and tell us how it went [​IMG]
     

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