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Just got some skinny goats

Discussion in 'Feeding Time - Goats' started by JenniferDuBay, Jul 28, 2016.

  1. Jul 28, 2016
    JenniferDuBay

    JenniferDuBay Ridin' The Range

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    Hello, I've inherited some skinny goats- or at least that's what my vet says. Their rumins are healthy, to say the least! So now I have to figure out how to fatten them up. They're two la manchas, under a year, not been bred yet. Here's what I have available to me:

    Coastal hay-I spent time digging, and this is the only hay that seems to be available in my area. I've called feed stores, checked craigslist, it's all only coastal.
    Sweet feed
    goat pellets
    alfalfa pellets or cubes (if at all possible- cubes are a PITA, I'd rather not do that.)

    So what should I feed, in what ratio? And does anyone have a schedule for medicines, inoculations etc I should do? I'd assume they have had nothing of what they were supposed to. Please if at all possible, help me out. These poor goats kind of fell in my lap as a last minute resort, and I'd like to do right by them.
     
    Alexz7272 likes this.
  2. Jul 28, 2016
    Southern by choice

    Southern by choice Herd Master

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    Welcome to BYH and congratulations on your new goats! :)
    I have Lamanchas and they are my favorite. Well... ONE of my favorites. :D

    You can use coastal hay.
    As far as feed and or alfalfa pellets go slow. Too much too soon and that can cause some really sick goats.

    They should get CD & T vaccine and since you have no history repeat in 4 weeks.

    They should have a fecal run in 4-7 days as they will have a stress bloom. You want the fecal checked for parasites and cocci. Cocci is usually a kid issue but not always. Systematic deworming is not good. Deworm based on fecal analysis.

    Not a fan of sweet feed. Your goat feed needs to have a Calcium to Phosphorus ratio of a minimum 2:1.

    Loose minerals are a must. Manna Pro is a very good loose mineral. Sweetlix is also very good.

    Depending on your region and where they have come from they may need additional supplementation.
     
    sadieml and Hens and Roos like this.
  3. Jul 28, 2016
    JenniferDuBay

    JenniferDuBay Ridin' The Range

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    Could you give me an idea of exact food levels I should use, and a time frame for increasing them? I've never done goats- I'm not sure what going slow means, really. Sorry if I'm being a pain!
     
  4. Jul 28, 2016
    Southern by choice

    Southern by choice Herd Master

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    You are not being a pain. :)

    Do you know what they have been on or been getting?

    Don't be worried about trying to fatten them up quick... slow is better.

    Do you have any pictures? Size? Height? weight?
    Something for reference?

    What region are you in? The goats came from? You don't have to be specific...
     
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  5. Jul 28, 2016
    JenniferDuBay

    JenniferDuBay Ridin' The Range

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    I'm in Florida, that's as specific as I'm willing to get, and I have no idea what they have gotten. One of our neighbors down the street got a condemned notice on their house, and basically showed up in the middle of the night and offered me the goats, I think because I have an enclosure in my back yard. Pretty sure someone was using it for goats before I just recently moved in. I have no way of checking with them, as they've disappeared off the face of the earth as far as I'm able to check. I'll have to weigh them tomorrow, and measure. They're all bedded down right now and I don't want to set them off screaming, as they think I need to spend all night in their pen! lol Thanks for your help, by the way.
     
  6. Jul 28, 2016
    Southern by choice

    Southern by choice Herd Master

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    Ok that is helpful. Certain regions will be very deficient and more prone to certain parasitic issues.
    Weights and pics would be great.

    There can be a pretty big range when it comes to goats.
    I have a 3 month old that is 55 lbs and I have 6 month olds that range from 72-80 lbs and a 5 month old at 70...

    Give free choice hay 24/7. Mineral can be hand fed until you think they won't just gobble up everything you put out. Once they eat it without gorging themselves on it put the mineral out free choice.
    I would start with 1 cup am and pm feed to start and see how they do. You want their poo to be berries. If tolerating this well then after 3-5 days up the feed slightly by 1/2 cup and continue at 1 1/2 cups am pm and see how they do. Calf Manna is also good to add but you have to be careful with it.
    You may need some vitamins - B-complex.
    Since they are not bred they shouldn't need much feed but if they are very thin it may help get them to optimum weight.
    Some feed hay and forage only some give feed as a small supplement. Much depends on hay and forage availability for region.

    Were they seen by a livestock vet? Or a pet vet?

    Tagging a few people as well to pipe in...

    @Goat Whisperer - what do you think?
    @babsbag
    @Fullhousefarm

    @Fullhousefarm is in FL and may better advise on what kind of deficiencies etc may be in your region

    BTW- First thing you want to do is buy a digital thermometer, vaseline, thermometer slipcovers, and some gloves.
    NOT JOKING! This is the most important thing to have in your goat cabinet. Label GOATS ONLY and keep it somewhere you will always remember where you put it! ;)
     
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  7. Jul 28, 2016
    Latestarter

    Latestarter Novice; "Practicing" Animal Husbandry Moderator

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    Greetings @JenniferDuBay :frow Welcome to BYH and congrats on your new family members. Sorry you had to acquire them the way you did, but I hope it all works out great for you. There's lots of good info in the various threads and a really active goat community on here. Hope when things settle down a bit that you can share a few pics of your animals. We all thrive on pics here. Make yourself at home!
     
    sadieml likes this.
  8. Jul 29, 2016
    JenniferDuBay

    JenniferDuBay Ridin' The Range

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    I had them seen by the local mobile vet- they're the only ones in my area that service goats at all, so it's the only choice I have. He said he has his own goats, so I would assume he's knowledgeable. If I had to guess, the heavier one is probably 50-60 lbs. I have a hard time lifting her, but I'm not too good with this sort of thing. The smaller one is maybe 30 lbs? I can lift her fairly easily. I'll buy a scale and weigh them tomorrow. I have seen both of them poop, and it looks like deer scat, so that's good.

    I tore half their pen out, to attach it to the half finished shed that was on property. I currently jury rigged the shed to put a "hay feeder" in (a tote with the side cut off, and the window through the dividing wall I jury rigged up. So they have access 24/7. It's so macguyver-esque it hurts. Then they escaped the pen. Three times, lol. Took me a while to realize they could crawl under the shed, so I blockaded that until I can go buy some wood supplies. This is the least prepared I have ever been for a pet, and I feel pretty crappy about that. I'm usually a responsible owner. I need to clean the whole pen out, it has seen use before. The goats have stripped the spare area already, there's nothing green in the pen anymore.

    And as far as the feed goes- which did you say I should use for the 1 cup am and 1 cup pm? Alfalfa pellets, goat pellets, or the calf manna?

    Also @Latestarter thanks for the warm welcome!
     
    sadieml likes this.
  9. Jul 29, 2016
    babsbag

    babsbag Herd Master

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    In addition to the hay I would get a goat pellet type of feed for them. Purina makes one and it is usually pretty easy to find. Tractor Supply, if you have one, is a good place to find it. Manna Pro has Goat Balancer and Calf Manna, both are good for adding some extra calories but go slow, maybe a 1/4 c. a day to start and then work up to the amount on the label. Another feed for adding calories is beet pulp, about a 1/2 a day. Black Oil Sunflower Seeds is another good choice for adding weight, about 1/4 cup a day. The thing with goats is to feed in moderation and never change their feed quickly.

    And everything else that @Southern by choice said :)

    Enjoy your goats and welcome to BYH from California.
     
    sadieml likes this.
  10. Jul 29, 2016
    Hens and Roos

    Hens and Roos True BYH Addict

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    Welcome :frow, glad you joined us.
     
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