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Stunted Goat growth rate in small pens?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by waddles99, Dec 27, 2016.

  1. waddles99

    waddles99 Songster

    Jun 22, 2013
    I have a Boer doeling about 9 months old I am conditioning for show. I am keeping her in a pen that is about 12 x 30, or 360 sq ft. I also have a buddy in there for her to keep her company. I have larger pens where I can put her but I don't want to keep her with the other goats for 2 main reasons. One, I want to make sure she gets the proper amount of her show ration, and the other goats aren't stealing her food. Two, I like the ease of having her in a separate pen right by the barn so I can take her out and walk her. So, basically, I like her in the smaller pen because it is easier to condition her. Recently, I was talking to someone who raises large dairy goats. They said they have trouble getting the kids to grow because of the small pen size. Their pens are similar in size, I think they might be 10 x 20ish. I am worried about my doeling not growing properly because of what this person said. Obviously, I am conditioning for show, so I want her to be as big as she can possibly be. Especially if I am going to be feeding a show ration and working with her. I don't want her pen size to stunt her growth and limit her potential as a show animal.

    So, my question is, can having a growing doeling in a small pen really stunt their growth??
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2016

  2. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    If the pen is kept clean and she doesn't have any issues with cocci (or other young goat diseases) early on and she is getting the proper feed for a goat her age, it should not stunt her. Most often I find stunting to be a problem with goats fed inadequate feed (especially vitamins and minerals) or goats that are kept in less than ideal conditions with bad hygiene practices.

    Also remember that dairy goats will be different than meat breeds like boers.
  3. Zoomie

    Zoomie Songster

    Dec 6, 2015
    Mora, NM USA
    I raise dairy goats, and I can assure you that pen size does not affect growth. What DOES affect growth is parasites: coccidia and worms. Best thing I ever did in my management was to start on cocci prevention when they were small kids: dosing them appropriately every 20 days, and worming every 30 days, until they are about 6 months old.That has made a huge difference in the size of the kids because the parasites do not ever get the upper hand and the goat can grow to it's genetic potential.

    Keep in mind: dairy goats are usually GIGANTIC in height compared to Boers. i have a friend down the road who raises some really kick-butt Boers and just took a look at her kids and does last night. Those kids look like bulldogs, but to me, man are they ever short! They would have a hard time in the kid box for me to disbud, I would have to put a towel under them to make them tall enough!

    So although yes, both meat and dairy goats are GOATS, they are really not the same at all. I suspect your dairy goat friend thought your Boer is "small" but most likely your goat is fine. Sounds like you take care of the goat well, and it should have every chance of doing really well for you.

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