Goat farming has the potential to become a profitable and fun enterprise. Goats are not difficult to raise but they do need proper care. Knowing their nature and needs will help you raise goats that are healthy and happy. Here’s how to get started on your new goat farm:
Goats feed on grass and they will feed on vegetation for as long as it is available. This sustenance will usually suffice but to improve the animals’ health, it is recommended to give them vitamin and mineral supplements specially formulated for goats. These are usually available at stores that sell veterinary supplies. Fortified goat feed, the kind that contains essential nutrients, is also an excellent dietary choice to consider.
Animals who live in crowded spaces are more likely to be stressed and lose their appetite. To keep your goats healthy and productive, make sure to provide a pen that has room enough for them to move and play.
Goat pens should also have the right temperature for goats to feel comfortable and secure. If they are too cold or too hot, they will become more susceptible to stress and diseases. If goats are comfortable, healthy and happy, they will be more productive and you will get the optimum results for your efforts.
A common misconception about goats is that they do not need a lot of water. They do actually, especially during warmer months. Goats need water to keep their bodies cool and comfortable. That way, they can focus on breeding, and produce milk and wool without issues. Make sure goats always have access to clean drinking water.
Never feed goats contaminated grains and feeds or rotting food. Contaminated food contains harmful bacteria that can cause diseases, some of which may be fatal to the animals.
One way to prevent contamination of goat feed is to store them in rodent-safe containers. Rats are a common culprit in contamination, and since many of them scavenge for food in trash and garbage, they may carry disease-causing germs and viruses that could affect the goats. Keep in mind that when one goat becomes sick, he or she could put the other goats in the herd at risk.
Another important step to take is to keep the haystack on an elevated platform or a haystand. This will prevent direct contact with the ground. Hay can soften from moisture in the soil, making it the ideal environment for the growth of mold and mildew. It could also invite unwanted guests such as rodents and insects.
Goats like to drink from clean buckets and containers, so aside from providing fresh water, it is a good idea to clean the containers regularly. Fresh, clean water encourages the goats to drink and help prevent dehydration.
Find a good veterinarian you can trust and make sure you have easy access to them. Goats, like other farm animals, can experience health issues that may require regular or immediate veterinary attention.
Veterinarians can offer regular check-ups and provide much-needed advice to help you care for your goats in the best way possible. A vet can also spot issues that may escape your eye and provide treatment to prevent serious health issues.
Special Diet Needs
During colder months, goats typically need more food. More food means more fuel that will allow them to generate more body heat. This will help them cope better with the cold weather. Provide more feed during the cold season to keep your goats happy.
Are You Ready?
Starting a goat farm is a lot of work but it can be a fun venture as well. With these tips, you can become a confident and knowledgeable goat farmer who is capable of keeping your animals healthy, happy and thriving in the best environment possible.