Goat Feeding and Care Take Home Sheet

Feed pasture when available and free choice hay when pasture is not available. We recommend alfalfa or a high percentage alfalfa with grass hay. Goats need a calcium:phosphorous ratio of about 2:1. Very generally, alfalfa is high in calcium while grass and grains are high in phosphorous. A higher amount of calcium is acceptable, but phosphorous needs to stay low relative to calcium.

No grain, at all, ever, for wethers. Does in milk get grain when on the stand and bucks if needed during rut. We feed a mix of roughly 2 parts barley, 2 parts oats and 1 part peas from Kaniksu Feeds in Deer Park.

Free choice loose minerals—not blocks—should be available at all times. First choice: New Country Organics Goat Mineral, followed by Thorvin kelp or Sweetlix Meat Maker. Redmond Salt is a good companion to Thorvin kelp.

A three-sided shelter in winter is ideal with deep straw bedding. Goats need well ventilated shelters that are protected from wind, rain and snow. In summer, shade and protection from rain is essential. We get straw from Kaniksu Feeds as well; conventional wheat is often sprayed before harvest.

We use Land of Havilah herbal parasite formula and, if needed based on FAMACHA scores, Ivermectin 1% injectable give orally at a rate of 1ml per 40# of body weight. For external parasites, MSM powder given free choice as a mineral during times of infestation along with yellow “sulphur fungicide” for plants mixed 50/50 with diatomaceous earth applied topically along the topline is effective.

Hooves need to be trimmed every few weeks. Standard hoof trimmers are too large for Nigerians, but will work. I prefer spring loaded straight blade pruning shears; spring assisted ones are great for reducing hand strain.