What can't goats eat?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by jeaucamom, Dec 20, 2007.

  1. jeaucamom

    jeaucamom Songster

    Oct 1, 2007
    Ophir, CA
    We are going to be getting a few goats at our beautiful new place. It has been empty close to a year and the area is overgrown with blackberry bushes and grass and who knows what. I can find lists of plants that goats can't eat, but no pictures. And since I know nothing, (read NOTHING) about plants, I thought I could post some pics and maybe all you plant lovers could identify if any of them are poisonous or dangerous in other ways for them????

    To start off with, they can eat berry bushes can't they, even though they have thorns?

    And we have an acre plus/minus that is fenced off. How many pygmy goats do think that could sustain without additional feed? It is completely covered in grass/foliage, no mud or dirt with bushes growing up most of the fences.
  2. ksacres

    ksacres At Your Service

    Nov 16, 2007
    San Antonio TX
    They will love your berry bushes, if you want to keep them (the bushes) you are going to need to fence them off. As a general rule, goats will not eat things that are poisonous, provided they have ample food, water, minerals and space available. We have dairy goats, and yes, they will mouth/chew/taste just about anything, but they don't EAT anything LOL That's about the most common misconception about goats. It's their way of investigating...
  3. jeaucamom

    jeaucamom Songster

    Oct 1, 2007
    Ophir, CA
    There is tons of piped water down there, but do they need additional minerals? How do you supplement?

    And again, how many small (pygmy or nubians) can fit on an acre. I really only want two, so hope that will be okay.
  4. Pinenot

    Pinenot Songster

    Sep 11, 2007
    I know that we let them eat what ever they want except the flowers that we plant each year. Most of them are poisionous to them. I also know that we don't let them have any of our potato plants out of the garden. Other than that, they are smart and usually won't eat poisionous plants. You don't want them to eat cedar type trees either.

    Hope I helped some...
  5. Goats are picky eaters. They should not be used to property clearance. The prefer to eat at or above 'head level'.

    Sheep are really the better choice.

    Good luck and have fun!
  6. picklespickles

    picklespickles Songster

    Oct 27, 2007
    mine love thorny things. they eat tumbleweeds which are super thorny like they're nothing. a small dinner mint, if you will. they will also eat the rose bushes if given a chance.

    i do give mine a mineral salt but dont' know the name of it.

    i don't know the tiny goats well but i bet they clear that acre a lot more quickly than you're expecting. lol.

    mine do leave somethings. but it also seems like that while they have their favorites they mostly like to pick and choose (chews!) here and there. nibble this, nibble that. mmmmmmmmm. bite that one right down. snap!

    they will probably like the bushes better than weeds.
  7. helmstead

    helmstead Songster

    Mar 12, 2007
    Alfordsville, IN

    just posted this a few days ago - good info.

    We use our goats to clear patches of undergrowth on our property - lots of briars, wild blackberries and poison ivy. As long as you also provide goat feed, loose minerals and grass hay they'll do a great job. If you're not in a hurry, just get 2 or three miniatures.

    PS Altho everyone says goats don't eat grass, they love our crab grass weeds, LOL. So, guess it kinda depends on your definition of 'grass' (ours is currently ANYTHING green and cutable by mower!)
  8. Dodgegal79

    Dodgegal79 Songster

    Dec 1, 2007
    Princeton BC Canada
    Actually yes goats are for property clearing. Sheep are way more pick and will not touch bushes or black berries at all. They will only eat grass that is about 5 inches or less in height.
  9. kstaven

    kstaven Crowing

    Jan 26, 2007
    BC, Washington Border
    My goats have cleared tons of brush off the property. They actually prefer this to much of their feed and suppliments that they really only dig into during the winter. Oregon grape is a real hit with them. Sheep only work if you are dealing with grass and light weeds.

    I often wonder where people get the idea that goats aren't natural scrub foragers. They have only been doing just that for how many thousand years?
  10. jeaucamom

    jeaucamom Songster

    Oct 1, 2007
    Ophir, CA
    Okay, so what kinds of supplements do they need?

    And does anyone trim their hoofs (pygmy)?

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