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Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by hensplease, Dec 19, 2009.
can someone tell me all about them im getting one for chrismas what do they eat Everything
Well they don't eat "everything" like some folks think. They eat kitchen veggie scraps, goat feed, and various young shoots from plants, hay, grasses etc. There are several things that are very common in most yards that are poisonous to goats! Rhododendrons of various kinds, nightshades....you might want to Google for a list, it's long and I can't remember all off the top of my head. We have been through a rhododendron poisoning with ours the 2nd week we had them, and I can tell ya it's not something good for the goats OR you, quite nasty indeed!! It could even kill them if they ingest too much, luckily we had one relatively small culprit plant between 4 goats, and a homemade ginger mixture did the trick to heal them. The best thing you can do is research, and ask old timers that own goats all the tricks. That's what I did, and we welcomed our first kid to the farm Monday!! They are wonderful animals!! I hope you enjoy them as much as we do ours!!!!
can they live in the chicken coop?
My chickens don't care if my five month old runs in and out of the coop/run with them. The problem is that they really shouldn't eat chicken food since most chicken feeds are made with animal by products. Goats are herbivores, but will eat chicken and cat/dog food which is bad for their rumens. I'm constantly keeping mine out of the coop. A little isn't bad, but goats really are sensitve animals. Most people think they can eat anything, but that is SO not the truth. They're pretty fragile. Not trying to scare you off, just do a little reseach. Mine got into the boxwoods and was sick for four days. He pulled through and has never touched them again. I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I got him. Then I started reading about them on the web and backyardherds.com and realized I was lucky thus far keeping him a live. I had him neutered and he's worth it. He makes me laugh daily even though I have to watch him like a toddler. The neighbors have lost three in five months. Just learn all you can because they are a blast. Mine is like a puppy, maybe worse. Lap goat? Seriously, he is!!!!
The problem with chickens and goats "sharing" a coop is A) The food, and B) The chickens might decide they like it outside better.
That's what happened with us. We've been slowly building a goat barn and I still have to go out and round up the chickens in bad weather and put them in the coop. They just don't have an attachment to sleeping inside it.
The goats will eat anything that looks similar to their food and chicken crumbles look similar to goat pellets to them. They would pig out on chicken crumbles, I have not yet created a goat proof feeder, although I am working on making a PVC one as we speak and I will post pics and instructions of it if I make one that works.
The best I can tell you is that we free range our chickens. So in the spring/summer/fall here in NC we feed them once in the AM by spreading the crumbles thinly over the ground for them to pick up. In the winter we have to rig feeders in places where the goats can't get them. This is not easy. We still spread it out on the ground as the Cochins it seems would rather starve than fly for their food. They can fly for it. We do put some in a feeder up high, the Silver Phoenix feast on it. My Delawares are thinking about going up for it. My Cochins look up all confused but refuse to go up and get it no matter how many times we put them up there to show them where the food is.
I agree about them not eating chicken food. I let my goats out of the coop...which they share with my chickens, every morning before I proceed to feed my chickens and turkeys. They get along well with the goats on the floor and the birds roosting above. I have had no problems. I have 5 Spanish goats, 9 Delaware chickens and one Buff Orp who all live together happily.
thanx soo much tomoow we are going to make our feeders so the goat wont eat it and can someone post pic of there goat feeders
the goat should absolutely have a separate shelter.. it does not have to be elaborate but chickens can be down right foul..the poop should be reason enough alone to have separate area for goat.. also goats are herd animals and one pygmy will not do well by itself. consider getting at least two. two castrated males (wethers) make good pets as do a doe and a wether. goats unless bred, in milk or kids need very little grain. a good quality hay (usually a grass/legume mix) will suffice. Fresh water twice a day too. Goats also need free choice minerals specifically for goats ( I use Sweetlix meatmaker 16:8) due to mineral content. It should also be the loose kind.. goats dont do well with blocks..too hard to bite (goats don't have full teeth) and they can't lick a block enough to get the quantity mineral they need. I also keep out some baking soda to help with rumen.. keeps acidity in check and can be a life saver in the long run. Do your homework though and talk to some goat people in the area (books, internet ok also) but remember goats need maintenance and are a long term commitment. Hoof care is an absolute must (trimming) as are vaccinations and wormings. All things can be done at home including vaccinations if you are inclined.
Careful!! NOTHING smellier than a goat fart!!!
Because goats are a herd animal you really should have more than one. A single goat will tend to get lonely and may become a problem to keep in as it may try to seek out a companion.
All they really need for shelter is a roof with 2 walls on the side the wind comes from most often. They do fine on local grass hay and a little grain to supplement in the winter. They don't drink much water except in the very hottest part of the summer, but they should always have plenty of clean water available. You need to make sure to provide salt either in a block or lick. You will also need to plan to care for the feet. They need to be trimmed periodically. If you don't know how to trim the feet find a local goatkeeper that is willing to teach you or maybe trim them for you.
Good luck and enjoy your goat they can be a lot of fun but also take a considerable amount of work.