Nigerian Dwarf Goat

Jackie Blakeley

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I'm getting 4 2 month old Nigerian Dwarf Goats. I have never owned a goat before. I'm getting 2 females 2 males. Im wondering what kind of feed and hay is the best for them and how much should i give them? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.
 

animalmom

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First off, a big howdy and welcome to BYH! Glad to have you here and tickled pink you found us!

Fences fences fences, good fences are reallllllllly important, vital, necessary and sanity saving. One does not want to be chasing down escaped goats in her nightclothes. Woven wire is much better, and more expensive, than welded wire. Nevertheless I didn't know that when we put up our fences 9 years ago and we used welded wire. Yeah have had to fix places here and there because the goats will rub on the fence and that over time will break the welds.

I feed my Nigerians coastal hay. Right now where I am all that is available is first cut but I have not found that the goats care if it is cow quality or horse quality. They eat it either way... so go with what your budget allows. Right now you don't really need to be concerned with alfalfa. They will love it, but it isn't really needed right now. Later on when the does have kids they will want the alfalfa.

I saw your pictures on the Put a face to a name thread and you mentioned North Central Texas. I'm in North Central Texas too. Right now you can feed your doelings and bucklings the same ration. I use a medicated ration as that is what most goat feed is and it is fine until your doelings grow up, become moms and you want to use their milk for you. At that time you need to find a non-medicated feed because I seriously doubt you need a cocci preventative. :)

My boys and non milking does are eating a Bryant product http://bryantgrainco.com/index.php/16-goat-pellet. I am currently looking for a different pellet for my milkers. The stuff I was buying has molded in the heat/humidity we are currently enjoying.

If you can get Red Chain, they have a good goat pellet too.

Minerals... you will need to set out loose minerals for your kids, not your two legged ones. There are several out in the market. You want to get one with copper listed as at least 1750 ppm. Higher is even better. Don't go with a mineral block as the goat won't like it and if they do try to eat it the block could hurt their teeth.

Your new kids will need time to adjust to their new home and as a result may be skiddish towards you. Take a chair into their area and sit and read a book, you can read out loud if you want. You just want them to feel that you are not some scary monster. Their natural curiosity will eventually take hold and they will come to you. At that point have some bribe, no I mean treat for the brave ones. Mine love raisins but have to learn how to eat them so you could start with something easier like animal crackers or slices of carrots... something that isn't messy for you. Feel free to pick them up once they are use to you. Sit them in your lap, one at a time, and touch them all over. Get them use to you touching their feet as that will make hoof trimming less of a battle.

So many things to say and the bottom line is love on your goats and they will love you back. The first time one of them sees you and calls to you will melt your heart.

AND you are going to need to separate the boys, unless they are wethers, from the girls as soon as you get them home. Nigerian Dwarf males can mate at 2 months and your wee girlies are way too young and too small for that.

Let us know if you have any questions. We are such enablers that we are down right proud of it.

Pictures!!!! We love pictures, please and thank you.

Find a goat vet. Call around and ask if the vet knows and does goats. A doggy vet will work if that is all you have, but goats need a goat vet.

Do you have a mentor? Know anyone in your area with goats? Doesn't have to be someone with Nigerians, goat info is goat info regardless if it is meat goat or dairy goat.

Congrats YOU are going to love your goaties.

Did I mention how important it is to have good fences?
 

Jackie Blakeley

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@animalmom thank you so much for the warm welcome and the advice I really appreciate it. Our backyard is completely fenced and where our new babies will be is also fenced in. There's a fence in a fence our baby boys have been banded because they are siblings we didn't want them breeding with each other. And the lady we are getting them from is one of my moms good friends and said if we wanted to breed our does we can borrow one of her Bucks that have no relation to our kids.
 

Mini Horses

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Welcome from VA. You will love your new goats -- and I see that they have a pile to play and jump on! You've gotten the scoop on them....I will mention that they LOVE to jump. Be sure those logs aren't next to the fence...or a car or truck. :D Yeah, they'll tap dance on anything!! It's just a personal challenge for them to be "king of the mountain" :lol:
 
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