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Transition to lush pasture for my goats  RSS feed

 
Taylor Cleveland
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We brought two old nannies home about a month ago. (Pictured is one of them) We put them out on lush pasture with the sheep. They have been moving every 2-3 days. They are eating well and drinking well. Their droppings are very green and softer than they should be. I thought it went away but yesterday I made them a tarp shelter with a tarp floor because we have had Horrible flooding and they were pretty cold. This morning I went out to check on them and the one pictured had green poo smashed all over her backside. I'm assuming she pooped while against the plastic and rubbed it in.

So, I didn't know that I shouldn't throw them out on luck pasture if they weren't on it before. I have been making raw honey/baking soda/salt water and outing that out. Is that okay to sit out continually? I'm sure it wouldn't the others to have some since they may not be as used to it either.
Also, should I purchase and leave out some hay for them until their bodies adjust?
Any other tips?
Thanks!
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Travis Johnson
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If your goats are out there eating for the last few days then they are well beyond the problems you might have with bloat. The fact that they are pooing says that unto itself. If you wanted to, you could just cut some browse with lopping shears and give it to them as roughage, but I think they are fine.

As far as shelter, it is concerning when you first get animals and their shelter needs, but this time of year they are fine. Animals are pretty smart and find natural shelter, just as they have for 9000 years. It gets a little different in the winter. Here, by law I must provide shelter to my sheep in the winter months, but in the summer it is fine to let them just be on pasture.

It is impossible to get a ruminant too cold. Their warmth-makers are their stomachs, and as long as they have feed (which you obviously do) they will burn calories (called energy in the livestock world) to keep them nice and warm. We as humans do them more harm trying to coddle them then if we just let them be animals. We have to provide enough feed and water, but housing is minimal.
 
Melinda Pepper
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So, I didn't know that I shouldn't throw them out on luck pasture if they weren't on it before. I have been making raw honey/baking soda/salt water and outing that out. Is that okay to sit out continually?
Thanks!

Lush pasture all at once will loosen them up but they need the dry baking soda I think. Right next to their goat minerals.
 
Liz Hoxie
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ANY stress on a goat (moving, kidding, etc.) causes worms to bloom up. Check for those. Instead of baking soda, put raw ACV in their drinking water.
 
Melinda Pepper
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Liz Hoxie wrote:ANY stress on a goat (moving, kidding, etc.) causes worms to bloom up. Check for those. Instead of baking soda, put raw ACV in their drinking water.


I agree with stress bringing on worms but would argue that goats should always have access to baking soda and loose goat minerals. I am no expert but have been lectured many times by experts on that very subject. They know when they need it and how much they need. They will lick it up greedily. I know mine do.

Your does should be fine. Just be aware that while their requirements are similar to sheep they do have different mineral needs. Most areas in the states have mineral defiencies so the browse doesn't give them all they need.

There are several great books on goat care available.
 
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