1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    Not a member yet? join BYC here & then introduce yourself in our community forum here.

Yes, another goat question...! Feeding time

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by miss_thenorth, May 31, 2008.

  1. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Songster

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    I have had my goats for a week, and have discovered that they waste alot of hay.

    Just to backtrack, i got two nubians does, probably about 6 mos, old. I cannot call the breeder, (see my other post on goats). so, is there anything else I can feed them besides hay, (since i really hate to see it wasted). And what about sweet goat or other grain, also, mnerals--better to have loose or a block.

    Basically, what is the best diet for my goats?

    TIA
     
  2. Hi I am new to goat ownership, but this is what I do know. Goats need hay. You can install a hay rackand this will solve your hay waste problem. Hay is the mainstay of their diet, along with grass. I read that too much grain can cause life threatening problems for pet goats. (Meat goats don't live that long so it is not an issue for them and why they get rich grain as a diet) I was told grain and pellets are like candy, so use sparingly.

    You can build a hay rack from wood or buy one for under 30 dollars at a tack show or feed store.

    Oh, and a mineral block is important for them, as well as baking soda. Baking soda helps their digestion.

    I am sure others here know alot more than me, but this info is from a goat farmer and what I have read so far.

    Good luck! We absolutely adore our goats!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 31, 2008
  3. reallemons1

    reallemons1 Songster

    570
    0
    149
    Mar 31, 2008
    Gloucester, VA
    Mine get grass or hay. If they are not eating all of the hay then cut back, they are probably getting too much. Mine also get a small ammount of coarse 14, a sweet feed. Maybe 2 cups or more each depending on their size. Their weight and condition will guide you as to how much they need. A plain white salt block block should be availiable to them. Also a handful of a good loose mineral blend with the sweetfeed. On my first goat I didn't know about proper hoof care. Trim their feet as needed or there will be problems. Hoagger has a great pair of hoof nippers.(The orange or green handled ones).
     
  4. wynedot55

    wynedot55 Songster

    Mar 28, 2007
    just give them as small of a hay flake as you can pull off the bale.2 goats need about 6lbs of hay a day.thats 3lbs hay ea.
     
  5. The reason a hay rack is so important is because they will eliminate on the hay. This causes wastage, but also sets up the possibility of parasites and illness through ingestion of their own waste. Goats scatter the hay and "go" all over it. I would not limit your growing babies' hay. Just my thoughts...
     
  6. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Songster

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    Quote:Okay, how many flakes is 3 lbs. (it's true, I'm blonde). Another blonde ? Is the loose salt/mineral mix I give my horses ok for the goats? the breeder never mentioned minerals, and I can't call them--they want the one goat back. the thing with the hay is they only eat off the tops and leave the stems.
    Hooves look good for now, ears look good--no bugs. Are they prone to mites, lice, other pests?
     
  7. wynedot55

    wynedot55 Songster

    Mar 28, 2007
    i flake off a bale should be 3lbs to 6lbs.
     
  8. reallemons1

    reallemons1 Songster

    570
    0
    149
    Mar 31, 2008
    Gloucester, VA
    Generally the mineral for horses is okay for goats, that's what I use. The mixes just for goats is better though. I'm blonde too, couldn't tell you how much a flake of hay weighs. A hay rack is a good option. Another option is to leave the bale whole and put it behind a cattle pannel inside a building so they can eat all they want but not mess in it. They do mess in their hay a lot. They do like best the tops of the hay. I don't mean to limit their hay, just don't give them so much that they waste it, it's way too expensive for that. I've never had a problem with mites, lice and such. I do worm about every 2 months with Ivomec orally at 1 cc for every 34 lbs of goat.
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2008
  9. miss_thenorth

    miss_thenorth Songster

    Dec 28, 2007
    SW Ont, Canada
    Quote:Thank you thank you!
     
  10. Blondie

    Blondie Songster

    Even with a hay rack there will be waste. But you can use that for bedding or mulch. I sprinkle the loose minerals on the pellets and they always have baking soda free choice. Have fun!!

    Here's Ginger and Billy, lounging on an old dog house:

    [​IMG]

    Here's Baby Valentine, born 2/14/08 staring at the wasted hay on the ground. She is standing on a dock box that I keep their goat supplies in. You can barely see the hay rack on the left. Our chickens have their own dock box.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 31, 2008

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: