Need help introducing a bottle baby to food....

Oakknollfarms

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Chip is a Nigerian Dwarf buckling (rejected by Momma) and is about a month old. He nibbles at everything when he is outside, and I keep a selection of hay, cut grasses and grower pellets with loose minerals in his crate. He will mouth at everything, but doesn’t actually eat any of it. Just his 4 daily bottles. He is due to drop down to 3 per day per the feeding chart that I was given by the end of this week. I’ve even tried sprinkling milk replacer in the feed. No luck. Then I put a few spoonfuls of actual goats milk onto some feed to entice him. No luck.

How can I get this very spoiled, much loved bottle baby to take an interest in “real goat food”?

I’ve got no issue whatsoever continuing him on bottles until he is 2-3 months old. No worries there, but I know that getting him to start taking regular food is also very important for his rumen development.

ideas?
 

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Beekissed

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Why not switch him from a bottle to a bucket, then transitioning from there to soaking a little feed in his bucket of milk, then progress from there to a thicker gruel and onward? Babies usually learn what to eat from watching Mom, so it could take him a little longer to catch on.
 

Oakknollfarms

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I had tried putting it in a bowl when I got him, but he wouldn’t have any parts of it. My dog did teach him to drink water from a bowl, so maybe I’ll give this another shot this week. He’s been with us since he was 2 weeks.
 

Oakknollfarms

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Why not switch him from a bottle to a bucket, then transitioning from there to soaking a little feed in his bucket of milk, then progress from there to a thicker gruel and onward? Babies usually learn what to eat from watching Mom, so it could take him a little longer to catch on.
Thank you!!!
 

AlleysChicks

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I got a 4 week old bottle baby that wouldn't touch food. Only wanted the bottle. I put her with kids her own age and she's eating solids now and almost completely milk weaned at 9 weeks. I say almost because she's also learned the does have milk 😂🤣😂
 

Oakknollfarms

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I got a 4 week old bottle baby that wouldn't touch food. Only wanted the bottle. I put her with kids her own age and she's eating solids now and almost completely milk weaned at 9 weeks. I say almost because she's also learned the does have milk 😂🤣😂
He will be 4 weeks in just a few days. I don’t have any other kids his age to put him with right now because we are all on stay at home orders. I was taking him over to hang out with his brother and sister for goat socializing (so he’s stop thinking he was a human-Labrador 🤣) before all this happened.
 

farmerjan

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Cut a bottle. He doesn't need to eat because he is getting enough milk to satisfy his hunger. Cut a bottle and he will start to pick at it more and actually eat it. Everyone babies them too much. If he is hungry and there is no bottle, he will try what is available. Yes, it helps tremendously to have a bigger/older one for them to follow, imitate etc..
I am not saying starve him. Just give him incentive to eat because he is feeling a little hunger pang.
 

Oakknollfarms

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Cut a bottle. He doesn't need to eat because he is getting enough milk to satisfy his hunger. Cut a bottle and he will start to pick at it more and actually eat it. Everyone babies them too much. If he is hungry and there is no bottle, he will try what is available. Yes, it helps tremendously to have a bigger/older one for them to follow, imitate etc..
I am not saying starve him. Just give him incentive to eat because he is feeling a little hunger pang.
I wondered about that. He’s taking more during his feedings now and was due to be cut down a bottle in the next few days anyway, according to the feeding chart that I have.
 

AlleysChicks

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He will be 4 weeks in just a few days. I don’t have any other kids his age to put him with right now because we are all on stay at home orders. I was taking him over to hang out with his brother and sister for goat socializing (so he’s stop thinking he was a human-Labrador 🤣) before all this happened.
Cut a bottle. Can you pen him with his siblings of the night? He definitely needs herd socialized. He may pick up on what they do.
 

farmerjan

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I wondered about that. He’s taking more during his feedings now and was due to be cut down a bottle in the next few days anyway, according to the feeding chart that I have.
How can he be taking more during his feedings unless you are giving him more? You are increasing his amount of milk if he is taking more during his feedings, so he will never start to try more solid food. Decrease the total amount he is getting a day. Split it in however many bottles you want but do not keep allowing him to be "taking more during his feedings"
 
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