Goat Hutches VS Barn

Augie

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I have a pasture setup and I'm deciding if I should buy a goat hutch or build a a 3 sided shelter. I have 4 does & 1 buck all Boers. People who have used goat hutches. How often do clean it out? What would be cheaper? I get usually less that 4 inches of rain and the whole setup needs to visually appealing. I use a game cam to check on them when I want. Will the goats spend most of the day in the shelter or only in the rain? These goats never really had any human interactions.
 

B&B Happy goats

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They will come and go out at their leisure, if your not planning on breeding them than a three sided shelter will be fine as long as they are out of the wind and rain...:)
Baby goats may require a source of heat if it gets cold where you live....
 

Augie

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They will come and go out at their leisure, if your not planning on breeding them than a three sided shelter will be fine as long as they are out of the wind and rain...:)
Baby goats may require a source of heat if it gets cold where you live....
I do plan to breed them? This is my first year breeding. Should I build little temp runs around the hutches during kidding? Where I live I never really had a shelter. I get less than 4 inches of rain and never below 43 F. The reason I'm wanting a shelter is for kidding. I'm worried about the poop build up in the hutches. Should I keep the closed unless there is weather or kidding? Will a 300pound buck fit into one? Would I need one per goat? They cost almost $150 each.
 

B&B Happy goats

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At 43 degrees any kids born will do just fine, I would build a three sided shelter for them to go into, poop shouldn't be a issue if you clean it out weekly or as needed, you can also layer the dirt floor with the spent hay they drop...we have been doing that and it's working well...when it does get cleaned out I put it in the chicken area and they make us some great composed soil for the garden...:)
 

Augie

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At 43 degrees any kids born will do just fine, I would build a three sided shelter for them to go into, poop shouldn't be a issue if you clean it out weekly or as needed, you can also layer the dirt floor with the spent hay they drop...we have been doing that and it's working well...when it does get cleaned out I put it in the chicken area and they make us some great composed soil for the garden...:)
So you recommend building a 3 sided shelter instead of IBC totes. What's the best way to add ventilation to those IBC totes? I kind of need it to be movable. Could I lock a doe into the IBC tote or is it to small? I haven't seen one before. Will a buck be able to fit into one? I'm kind of leaning to buying the IBS totes and setting up some electric netting around it for a temporary run when the weather gets bad or for kidding. One last question. This next two days I'm preparing for 2 days of nonstop rain 50 degree temps with average 15MPH wind speed. I built them a 3 sided tarp shelter and threw some hay in there. They weren't using it when I left. Ill see them this afternoon. Will this a problem? They all have really good body scores.
 

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I personally haven't used the totes, , so I can't give you any advice on that aspect...BUT have had to use the lean-to tarp shelter in a emergency situation, everything was fine in fact two goats kidded in the make shift hobo camp and all were happy campers :thumbsup
 
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Alaskan

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Since climate is so mild... maybe just a set of fence panels are all you need?

Fence would be portable, and of course easy to break down and put away when not needed. You could even do 4 fence panels on the ground, and then get one more fence panel to arch over the top, with a tarp, for a roof.... But I guess if you want it to look good, a beach umbrella would look nicer.

By the time you made enough holes in an IBC tote... eh..... but if you are set on one of those... I guess if you cut out the front and about half of each side... might work... they are about 4 feet by 4 feet? A little small i think...but might work.

I know my baby sis uses small fenced pens for her goats when they kid... but at a guess I think hers are 6x6.
 

misfitmorgan

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I do not believe ibc totes will work for Boer's.

Adult goats need 10-15sqft each, a standard 275gallon ibc tote tank is only 36"x44"x40" which is just under 11sqft however a doe and kid together need at least 20sqft which an IBC tote is not big enough for. At absolute minimum you would need 5 ibc totes, one for each goat which would be about $750. IBC totes also weigh approx 130LBS empty, so not really easy to move. Then you still have the problem of not enough space in each one for a doe/kid pair. If your doe has twins or triplets it definitely won't work.

You also have the problem of a kid getting crushed in such a small space. if the kids are asleep in a pile inside of one tote(they like to pile) and a doe comes in to lay with the kids she will likely lay on and crush them.

You can very likely make a moveable goat tractor for less money and that will serve you better.

There is a common IBC tote size one size up from the one I mentioned but it is the same floor space, just weighs approx 150Lbs empty because it is taller.

If your buck is under 3ft tall he might fit....I'm thinking he is likely to big though.

This is a picture from the internet. That's two newborn lambs, now picture it as two goat kids, then add in their doe. It's not much room.
903b3542cd02fccef14737e7bf64c814.jpg


I also believe cleaning one of those out would be a nightmare. You would have hay/bedding, manure and urine all sitting inside the plastic tote incubating since it doesnt get below 43F where you live parasites wouldnt die and the ammonia smell with be fairly strong pretty quickly. I'm sure people do use IBC totes for goat shelters I just wouldn't recommend it. Majority of people found uses for the totes becuase they got them for free or really cheap, would really suck to pay $150 each to find out you can't use them for goat houses.

You could try calf hutches, they would be big enough but they start at like $300 each for the smaller ones and you would still need like 3 of them.
 

Alaskan

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I do not believe ibc totes will work for Boer's.

Adult goats need 10-15sqft each, a standard 275gallon ibc tote tank is only 36"x44"x40" which is just under 11sqft however a doe and kid together need at least 20sqft which an IBC tote is not big enough for. At absolute minimum you would need 5 ibc totes, one for each goat which would be about $750. IBC totes also weigh approx 130LBS empty, so not really easy to move. Then you still have the problem of not enough space in each one for a doe/kid pair. If your doe has twins or triplets it definitely won't work.

You also have the problem of a kid getting crushed in such a small space. if the kids are asleep in a pile inside of one tote(they like to pile) and a doe comes in to lay with the kids she will likely lay on and crush them.

You can very likely make a moveable goat tractor for less money and that will serve you better.

There is a common IBC tote size one size up from the one I mentioned but it is the same floor space, just weighs approx 150Lbs empty because it is taller.

If your buck is under 3ft tall he might fit....I'm thinking he is likely to big though.

This is a picture from the internet. That's two newborn lambs, now picture it as two goat kids, then add in their doe. It's not much room.
View attachment 80854

I also believe cleaning one of those out would be a nightmare. You would have hay/bedding, manure and urine all sitting inside the plastic tote incubating since it doesnt get below 43F where you live parasites wouldnt die and the ammonia smell with be fairly strong pretty quickly. I'm sure people do use IBC totes for goat shelters I just wouldn't recommend it. Majority of people found uses for the totes becuase they got them for free or really cheap, would really suck to pay $150 each to find out you can't use them for goat houses.

You could try calf hutches, they would be big enough but they start at like $300 each for the smaller ones and you would still need like 3 of them.
Great visual... they really are small aren't they...
 

farmerjan

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If you want it to be portable, and looks are of some concern, and you are talking about buying the totes, look into something like the smaller 8x8 "greenhouse" or storage shelters that TSC has. Build it on a base of skids, that you can attach a couple of hooks and chains and pull to move. Use a cattle or hog panel that you can bend into a 3 sided enclosure like a rectangle, to put in the front for a "run area" for a few days as the doe bonds to her kids.
But think of something else.... Boers are a meat breed. They are also more hardy and self sufficient. They are more accustomed to kidding in the field. You may very well not have to put them separate. But, having one to fall back on for a few days when they kid.
@misfitmorgan is right. A tote is not big enough for a doe and kids.... we have a couple that have cracks and cannot be used for hauling water any longer. We have cut out the bottom and one side for in the sheep lot. Mostly a couple of lambs will use it but seldom see the ewes in it. They are there, and there are several, plus several calf hutches, for them if they want shelter from the worst of the elements.
You also said that they have not had much interaction with humans. You hare going to have some problems confining them, especially separately, if they are not used to humans....They are not like cuddly little lambs....and an upset doe can hurt kids if she is upset and panicking and trying to get out.

I would build a nice 8x8 or 8x12 or something, 3 sided shelter, on skids, that you can pull and move. Spend time with them and try to get them more accustomed to humans. I think that their natural instincts will kick in and they will kid and take care of their own in most cases. There are always problems that can come up. An easy way to have a pen to contain them is 4, 8 ft gates that are hooked together in the corners. They are about 48 " high, you can let them sit on the dry ground since you have little rain, so not mud very often. You can move them easily, you can put a couple pieces of plywood on the top for shelter if needed temporarily....
There are also the cattle panels that can be bent over into a frame built on the ground to form a quick shelter. The frame that it fits into, can easily be hooked to a tractor, 4 wheeler, or something to pull and move; Use a tarp for a cover for temp shelter when it is calling for rain. Or a nice clear plastic cover, like for a greenhouse.
 
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