What do goats eat?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Leah567, Apr 21, 2017.

  1. Leah567

    Leah567 Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    I was wondering, what do goats eat? I am picking up a couple. Where do I get alfalfa?
     
  2. Tenrec

    Tenrec Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh boy, you are in for a treat. What kinda goats you got there?

    Goats will eat anything they can get their mouths on. They will generally not eat grass; they are browsers. They will eat things that don't even seem like they'd taste good. They will eat things deer won't eat. I have recently tried to plant some baby conifers in my goat yard...They were demolished. Goat-proof their enclosure before you get them...You don't want them eating plants that are toxic to them (and they will, they really do not know any better).

    The good news about this is if you need an area cleared, goats will all but clear it for you. They pretty much fixed my privet problem in their area.

    Alfalfa should be provided if you don't have quality browse. You can find it at feed stores, like Atwoods, Tractor Supply, etc. Make sure they're eating it. This roughage should be most of their diet. You'll want to get grain pellets (I use Ranch Pro) for them, but make sure it's for goats...And don't feed them grain exclusively. It's bad for them.

    They need salt too (with copper, unlike sheep which die easily from copper OD). Get the salt in loose form. Don't give them a block; it's very bad for their teeth.

    Are you getting whethers? If so, they are prone to kidney stones. You'll need to make sure the salt/food they have has ammonium chloride added. This will prevent stones. Also, the "don't feed them too much grain" goes double for whethers.

    Also, you need your dirt tested for selenium, if there's no information available already on selenium content in your area. A lot of regions have selenium-deficient soils, which makes the browse selenium-deficient. Goats on selenium-deficient browse will need regular shots of the stuff.

    Also I know this isn't food related, but a lot of people don't know you're supposed to trim these guys' hooves...

    Good luck with your goats! They're an absolute joy.
     
  3. cassie

    cassie Overrun With Chickens

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    Hay for goats needs to be of very good quality. It should be fine stemmed, leafy, and not moldy or musty. Goats will not eat poor quality hay unless they have to. They end up wasting it rather than eating it. It goes without saying that they need access to plenty of clean fresh water.
     
  4. Leah567

    Leah567 Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    [​IMG]I am getting a couple pygmys!
     
  5. Tenrec

    Tenrec Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Pygmies! What a joy! They are silly little things. Can we see your babies when you get them?

    Pygmies won't go up as high as other goats when browsing (Gosh, they'll try, though...They'll try).

    Also, seconded on making sure that's GOOD hay. If it's a local feed store, don't ever let on that you're feeding this to goats. Make them believe you got good horses, if you have to...A lot of people will hear "goat" and just assume you can feed them garbage/scraps.
     
  6. Leah567

    Leah567 Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    Got my goats will post pics
     
  7. Leah567

    Leah567 Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  8. Tenrec

    Tenrec Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Oh my GOODNESS, they are SO SMALL. What darling little goats.

    How old are they? They look young enough to maybe still be needing milk.

    You're making me miss baby goats lol
     
  9. 10 acre woods

    10 acre woods Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Grass hay is plenty good for goats and a lot less expensive than alfalfa. Easier to find also. If you have a big enough paddock for them. They should be able fend for themselves for the most part during the spring and summer months. Even pygmy goats will clear the underbrush out of a woodlot. Keep good fences to keep them out of mischeif and they will provide hours of entertainment. In the early nineties we switched from a cattle operation to goats. We kept 250 does and ran over 700 when the kids hit the ground. Watching 500 plus goat kids running and jumping across a pasture was like watching a flock of birds flying a few inches off of the ground!
     
  10. Leah567

    Leah567 Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

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    The black one is 5 days, and the bigger one is 3 months. Baby goats are fun!
     

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