About animals

Keeping and feeding goats at home

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A goat is an unpretentious animal from which you can get fluff, meat and milk. Therefore, it is very popular that keeping goats at home for beginners, in addition, goat breeding in the household has other advantages. She is rarely ill and does not require specific conditions for detention. There are many breeds that have their own characteristics - the cultivation is made for meat, milk, fluff and wool, often beginning goat farmers try to get all these products.

Useful properties of goat milk

The properties and chemical composition of goat's milk is very close to cow's milk. The composition of goat’s milk, as well as cow’s milk, may vary slightly during the year depending on the conditions of keeping, feeding the goat, breed, health status, age and lactation period.

Unlike cow's milk, goat contains a higher amount of protein, fat and calcium; instead of carotene, milk contains easily digestible vitamin A, as a result of which the oil is whiter than cow's because of the absence of carotene. Goat milk fat contains 67% unsaturated fatty acids (in cow's 61%), more capric and linoleic acids, and milk balls are 10 times smaller than in cow's milk (0.001 mm), resulting in goat milk having a fat content depending on the breed from 3.6 to 6% and above, is almost completely absorbed by the human body.

Goat milk fatty acids have a unique metabolic ability to prevent the deposition of cholesterol in the human body. The beneficial properties of goat milk can also include the presence of selenic acid, which is involved in the formation of immunity in humans.

Goat milk, due to the lower content of orotic acid (Vit. B-13), than in cow's milk, especially today when various processed foods prevail in the modern human diet prevents liver obesity syndrome.

Scientists argue that goat milk, containing such an element useful for human health as lactoferrin, can replace breast milk with newborns if necessary, in addition, goat milk helps prevent oncological diseases that have increased recently in humans, has a pronounced anti-allergic effect, and also given that currently about a third of the population has a pronounced allergy to cow's milk. The amino acid composition of goat milk is close to the amino acid composition of breast milk proteins, while casein micelles are larger than casein micelles of human and cow milk and are 133 nm and higher. Due to the low content of alpha fractions (10-15%), goat milk casein, when rennet coagulates in the human stomach, forms a loose clot.

A characteristic feature of goat milk, unlike cow milk, is its low lactose content (13% less), which makes it an indispensable animal product for people suffering from lactose intolerance. Compared with cow, goat milk contains 6 times more cobalt, a trace element that is part of vitamin B-12 (0.1 μg). This vitamin in the human body is responsible for the function of the blood forming organs and controls metabolic processes. A large amount of potassium has a beneficial effect on the activity of the cardiovascular system.

Goat milk, unlike cow milk, has a better composition due to the content of substances and minerals useful for the body, such as antioxidants, calcium, phosphorus, sodium, potassium, magnesium, copper, iron and manganese. 100 grams of goat milk corresponds to 68 calories. Doctors recommend taking into account such a diverse composition of goat milk it is included in the diet of children who have an allergic reaction to cow's milk protein. It is noted that the inclusion of goat milk in the menu of children with frequent acute respiratory infections, ear infections and eczema can reduce the time course of a disease in a child. The unique properties of goat milk are indispensable and are used by physicians for diseases of the stomach, organs of vision, diathesis, and demineralization of bone tissue, especially in the elderly. Goat milk is an equally useful food product for both pregnant and lactating women due to its high content of calcium and vitamin B-12, especially if they are allergic to cow's milk.

Goat milk in itself, and especially in combination with various herbs and foods in traditional medicine, has long been used to treat many diseases. Often milk is used to quickly restore strength after suffering stress and physical exertion, in the postoperative period, and also to strengthen bone tissue, especially against bone fractures. Here are some recipes for using goat milk in folk medicine: Cough is treated with a decoction of goat milk and oats or a mixture of milk, goat fat, butter and cocoa. Chronic bronchitis is treated by taking a cup of goat milk three times a day with the addition of a tablespoon of honey. With insomnia, a bandage with a mixture of clay and goat milk is applied to the forehead. Using goat's milk in cosmetology we can restore the collagen of the skin, thereby reducing the signs of aging and rejuvenating the skin. Goat milk is often used in various creams, lotions and scrubs. The use of goat milk becomes especially noticeable when mixed with natural extracts (chamomile, green tea, cucumber).

The issue of inclusion of goat milk in the school nutrition program, the development of technical regulations for goat milk is being considered. Considering the above, in some regions of Russia they are starting to build goat-breeding complexes for thousands of heads, with 60-head rotary milking units, as well as to build goat milk processing workshops where it will be bottled, with the production of cheese and cottage cheese, it is planned to import dairy goats Zaaninsky breed, which are capable of producing about 1000 liters of milk per year each, will bring them from Europe.

Goat breeds

In the direction of productivity of goats, it is customary to subdivide into dairy, wool, down, meat and meat-milk-wool (mixed). In the Russian Federation they usually breed from dairy breeds: Russian, Gorky, Zannanne, Megrelian.

Dairy goats of this breed of all goats are considered the largest, have growth from 75 to 85 centimeters. The live weight of a goat can reach up to 95 kg. This breed is characterized by a strong physique, goats are usually kolos. The color of the coat is white. Goats of this breed are distinguished by great endurance and fertility. The average milk yield per goat per year is about 600 liters, with a milk fat content of 4%.

Russian white breed.

A goat of this breed is characterized by a strong and proportional physique. Goats have a live weight of about 50 kg, the growth of females is about 80 centimeters. Dairy goats of this breed can be hornless, but sometimes they also have horns. The productivity of Russian white goats is from 500 to 800 liters of milk per year, the percentage of fat in milk is from 4 to 5%.

This breed was bred in our country as a result of crossing Saanen and Russian goat breeds. They have a strong physique, the growth of adult goats is about 70 centimeters, live weight is about 50 kg. Goats of this breed can be either hornless or horned. For goats of this breed ears sticking forward are characteristic. The color is usually white, about 10% of down is present in the coat. Gorky goats have a milk production of about 450 liters of milk per lactation. This breed is well adapted to harsh winter conditions, are unpretentious to feed. Goats have a multiple pregnancy.

Goats of this breed were bred in western Georgia. This breed is ideal for stall keeping. With free grazing, it is capable of being in the pasture from early spring to late autumn. Goats most often weigh from 38 to 45 kg. Females most often have twins. With proper feeding, LPH owners have the opportunity to receive up to 900 kg of milk per year, with a fat content of up to 4%.

In goats of dairy breeds, the skin is thin, dense and is a first-class leather raw material. Specialized down breeds of goats include: Orenburg, Pridonskaya and Kashmir. Goats of these breeds have a strong constitution with a bias towards coarseness and small size. The coat consists of a long outer hair and a short downy coat. Breeding work in goat breeding is aimed at improving the pedigree qualities and productivity of goats. To have goats younger than 14-18 months. Not recommended. The case is carried out in a state of hunting, which in goats lasts 35-40 hours. If after the mating the goat does not fertilize, then the next hunt will resume after 2-3 weeks. The duration of pregnancy is 150 days. Most cultivated goats are multiple. On average, they give 1.5-2.5 kid per year to the uterus.

Keeping and feeding dairy goats

In order for goats to be able to fully realize the genetic potential of milk productivity, their owners must create good conditions for them to feed and feed, in which young animals have the opportunity to grow and develop intensively, and adults have good productivity and good health. Considering that most regions of Russia have a short summer period, goats in winter have to be kept on deep straw bedding and on livestock yards, and in the pasture period - on pasture and under a canopy.

In large goat-breeding farms engaged in the cultivation of dairy goats, animals must be kept separately for sex and age groups:

  • goats,
  • goats - manufacturers and repair goats,
  • repair goats,
  • Culled culled adult livestock for fattening and sale for meat, as well as uterus - marriage and goat-castrati.

A milking herd of goats so that during the lactation period the livestock does not interfere with the milking process, and in the dry period the owners had the opportunity to control the process of succession in order to timely detect abortions, miscarriages, etc., should be kept separately from other groups animals.

During the winter period of time in most regions of Russia, with the onset of steady colds, goats spend most of the time in the goat’s premises. The optimum air temperature in the goat house should be from +13 to 21 degrees with a relative humidity of 60-70%, goats can feel quite comfortable even at a temperature of + 4-6 degrees and a relative humidity of 80%. Goats are bad for both very cold and very hot rooms.

Close, dark, damp and poorly ventilated rooms are harmful to goats. In winter, the goats should be dry and clean. In areas where year-round grazing is practiced, goat mating is carried out in the month of November, so that the lambing of goats coincides with the warm weather stable in the area.

If the conditions allow, including the owners of private household plots to conduct winter lambing, then the mating of goats should preferably be carried out in July-August. With this mating, the kids born in December-January can already use the pasture in the spring.

LPH owners, under good conditions of feeding and keeping, can, without prejudice to the health of goats, receive 2 lambing animals per year or 3 lambing animals in 2 years.

In personal subsidiary plots, owners use manual mating of goats, while the load on the young goat should not exceed 25-30 queens, on the adult 40-50. The kids are beaten away from their mothers 45 days before mating.

In large goat-breeding farms for the detection of goats in the hunt for every 50-70 goats, you must have one goat - probe. In the pre-random and random periods, goats and goats must be placed on an enhanced, full-fledged diet. Goats must be run 40 days before the expected lambing by gradually stopping their milking. If the owners of private household plots practice a suction method of growing, then the kids are up to 3-3.5 months. contain together with mothers, the first 3-5 days the kids are kept in an individual cage on a plentiful dry litter.

If the owners of LPH violate the rules of feeding and keeping, the goats have digestive disorders - dyspepsia. Dyspepsia (Dyspepsia) is an acute disease of the colostrum kids, characterized by a violation of digestion, metabolic disorders, increasing intoxication and dehydration. Body temperature during dyspepsia in a kid is within the physiological norm.

Etiology. The main cause of dyspepsia in newborn kids is a decrease in their resistance under the influence of various factors, and the leading one is the inferior and insufficient feeding of the goat. In case of insufficient feeding of goat goats, the kids are born small and weak, with low body weight. Inadequate feeding of succulent goats leads to a decrease in their milk production, so goats do not have enough milk, not only for twins, but also for single people.

Of particular importance in the etiology of dyspepsia is vitamin-mineral deficiency, a lack of vitamin A in the feed of goat goats causes a hypovitaminous state of the kids, one of the manifestations of which is the degeneration of the epithelium of the mucous membranes of the gastrointestinal tract. As a result of epithelial metaplasia and impaired function, acute digestive upsets, dyspepsia, often occur.

The development of dyspepsia is affected by the inadequate production of minerals (calcium and phosphorus) by the goat. The occurrence of dyspepsia of the kids is promoted by unsanitary conditions of living, crowding, damp litter, poor preparation of baby goats for lambing, lack of sanitization of kids, careless care of the udder and other violations of animal care. In more detail about this disease in our article - "Diarrhea in kids".

When the kids reach 10-15 days of age, the kids begin to graze with their mothers. The same-age offspring of kids with their mothers are combined into groups (sakmans), which, as they grow older, the kids are gradually enlarged. When cold and damp weather sets in, grazing the goats is canceled. In case of a sucker-milking method of cultivation, 1-1.5 months after lambing, the goats are allowed to reach the uterus only at night or 2-3 times a day for several hours after milking the goats (milk during milking is not completely given out). If the uterus is small milk, the kids are fed up to 1-1.5 months of age with milk of 200-300 ml. per day.

Beats from the uterus are beaten when they reach 3-3.5 months of age. In dairy goat farming, goats are taken away from the uterus immediately and fed with fresh or warmed (up to 38 degrees) milk from a bottle with a pacifier, in extreme cases, from a cup. In the first days after birth, the goat’s colostrum is the only food for the kids. The first 5 days the kids are fed 6 times a day, starting from 6-10 days — 5 times, from 11-30 days — 4 times and then up to 3 months of age 3 times. Starting from the 11th day, in addition to milk, the kid is given liquid oat broth, and from 3 weeks of age - a mixture of finely ground concentrates, from a month old - finely chopped root crops. Small-hayed hay, mineral feed and brooms begin to give the goats from 2 weeks of age.

Approximate daily allowance for goats. The dairy goat diet in the stall period mainly consists of hay, succulent and concentrated feed, as well as mineral additives.Typically, the owners of private farms and large goat farms adhere to the following norm for feeding goats forages: hay (cereal, mixed grass) from 1.2 to 1.4 kg, bean crops from 0.5 to 0.7 kg, succulent feed (beetroot) in winter , potatoes) from 1.5 to 2.5 kg concentrated feed - from 0.3 to 0.5 kg, table salt from 13 to 15 g, mineral top dressing (feed precipitate, disodium phosphate and others) from 12 to 15 g.

In the LPH of citizens during the stall period, it is widely used, with the aim of improving cicatricial digestion, and also because of the high content of macro- and microelements, branch feed, which mainly serves as brooms and autumn leaves. For the winter, at least 100-180 brooms must be harvested per goat, based on a broom per day, or at least a half broom per day. Brooms are best harvested from branches of willow, aspen, maple, ash, mountain ash and birch.

When feeding some birch brooms, owners should remember that birch brooms can cause kidney inflammation in goats, so they must be alternated with brooms from other tree species. You need to start harvesting brooms as soon as warm weather sets in and young shoots grow. Based on the fact that the largest amount of valuable nutrients (as in grass) accumulates in the early morning or late evening, they must be cut off with secateurs at this time. The thickness of the ends of the branches at the slice should not exceed 1-1.5 cm. In order to form vitamin D in the cut branches, we lay them out after cutting for several hours on the ground for easy drying. When forming a broom, LPH owners should proceed from the fact that in the butt the broom should not be thicker than 18-20 cm, the length should be no more than 80-100 cm. After knitting, the brooms are usually dried in the shade of the attic or in the barn, hanging them on poles or on nails on the walls. After about a month, we put them on a grating in several layers.

Milking goats for each liter of milk baked must add 0.4 kg of feed units and 50 g. digestible protein. The daily norm of table salt for goats up to 5-8g, for adult goats 10-15g. Owners of goats should select feed in the diet in such a way that in total their nutritional value corresponds to feed standards. For example, in a random period of a day, a producer-goat needs to give grasses of cultivated pastures 5 kg, oats 0.5 kg, separated milk 1l, table salt 15g. Goat in the second half of maturation-hay meadow 2kg, oat bran 0.5kg, table salt 15g. Goat in the 2nd half of the suction grass of grassland meadows 4kg, sunflower silage 1kg, sugar beet 1kg, oat bran 0.1kg, barley bran 0.1kg, table salt 16g. Goats 6 months and up to a year of grass meadow 3 kg, 0.25 kg of oats, 8 g of salt.

The main food for goats in the pasture period is grass growing in the pasture. Pasture needs to be grazed gradually, in small areas. With such a grazing system, after driving goats to other pasture areas, the first etched plots grows after a certain period of time. When grazing, the following rule must be observed: goats must be grazed so that the sun illuminates the goat from behind or from the side. direct sunlight prevents the goat from finding the right grass. Given that goats do not tolerate heat, from 10 to 16 hours goats take a break in grazing. In the morning and evening, it is advisable to graze goats in the direction of the wind, and it is hot during the day so that the wind cools the animals against the wind. Given that the goat is very sensitive to changes in atmospheric pressure - before the rain and during his goats it is better not to graze. If the pasture for goats is good, then in 5-6 hours the goats are eaten, the same amount of time goes for the chewing gum of the consumed food, during the period of the chewing, the goats should lie quietly.

In the grazing period, goats should be watered twice a day. If the weather is cool, and the grass in the pasture is juicy, then you can limit yourself to a single drink. The best time to drink goats is considered to be the time after their daytime rest, before the resumption of grazing, and also in the morning before its start. Drinking before a break in the middle of the day is not recommended, as it can cause gastrointestinal tract diseases in goats. In those regions where climatic conditions of goats allow, they graze year-round. At the same time, in autumn and winter they use valley pastures that are protected from cold winds, bushes, the southern slopes of the mountains. Owners of goats in winter pastures should have insurance reserves of feed in case of severe cold, snow drifts and icy conditions. Goats need to be drunk from flowing springs or wells.

In those regions where winters have little snow during the day, goats are kept in the walking yard. Based on the physiological characteristics of digestion, you need to feed the goats 4 times a day: at 7-8 hours, at 11 hours, at 14 hours and 17-18 hours, while 2 times a day are watered: at 12 hours and at 16 hours. We give juicy feed to goats before watering, concentrated after the goats have been watered. In the walking yard, decks should always have lick salt and mineral feed. Goats are driven into goats only at night. Before transferring goats from stall to pasture, they have trimmed an overgrown hoof horn, cut off wool contaminated with feces, and take anti-epizootic measures necessary for the region (studies on brucellosis, tuberculosis, helminth infections, vaccination against anthrax, etc.).

When grazing, goat owners must abide by the rules of grazing; if they are violated, goats may experience acute scar tympanum. The disease is usually registered in the summer-pasture period, especially as a result of a sharp transition from a winter feeding diet, when the main goats and sheep are dry food, to green, especially legumes (clover, alfalfa). The disease is associated with errors made by the owners of the animals when feeding, drinking, subject to non-compliance with the rules of grazing on pastures, grazing after rain and dew on legumes (clover, alfalfa, vetch), feeding young green grass, shoots of winter plants, cabbage leaves and beets, potato tops, apples (padanami), ears of corn of milk-wax ripeness, grain feed. Especially these feeds are dangerous when they are fed to sheep and goats warmed in a heap or moistened by rain and started to “burn”, followed by watering. In more detail in our article - "Acute tympanic scar in goats and sheep."

Large numbers of goats in winter are kept in goats. At the same time, it is assumed that 2-2.5 square meters of area are needed for each uterus with kids, 1.2-1.5 square meters for a single uterus, 0.6-0.8 square meters per head for young animals up to a year . The height of the fences for adult animals should be 1.4 m. At a height of 30-40 cm from the floor to the walls, upholstered with tesa, we attach shelves-beds for the entire length of the wall, 60-70 cm wide for animal rest. We attach bases to the goat house for walking the goats at a rate of 2-4m / goal, while the height of the hedge should be 2m. In the summer, we keep the goats outdoors under a canopy, and we subject the winter premises to thorough mechanical cleaning and disinfection. The light area in the goat house should be 1: 15-20. The floors are made of adobe or earthen.

Goat's case

Owners of goats when conducting mating should know by what signs hunting can be recognized. At the beginning or end of a random period, these signs may appear weakly or even completely absent. The strongest signs of hunting appear from September to February.

The duration of the sexual cycle (from the first day of hunting to the beginning of the next) is 18-24 days, depending on the breed and the individual characteristics of the animal. Goat hunting can last from 12 hours to four days.

Goat breeders should take into account that goat hunting is more pronounced in the middle of the season (from October to December). Therefore, at this time, goats have a greater number of fruitful inseminations.

What are the signs of goat hunting?

The following are commonly considered signs of goat hunting:

  • The external genitalia become swollen, pinkish, or even red.
  • The behavior of the goat becomes restless, it often bleats.
  • Since the smell of a goat attracts her, the goat begins to sniff more often. To strengthen the manifestations of hunting goats, you can stock up on a special "goat rag." The glands located behind the goat’s horns are rubbed with a piece of tissue and stored in a jar with a tight-fitting lid. If necessary, a jar with a rag can be given to the female.
  • A hunted goat constantly twists its tail from side to side.
  • Vaginal discharge appears. At the beginning of the hunt, they are thick and opaque, then they become clean and liquid, and at the end of the hunt they become thick again and turn white.
  • A distinctive feature of hunting is a change in the behavior of the goat. A hunted goat begins to drive other animals in the herd for anxiety and jumping on itself.
  • In goats, like other animals, the so-called reflex of standing (immobility ”) manifests itself during the hunting period, when it calmly allows other goats to sit on it.

How to make a mating correctly

The first hunt in young goats appears already at the age of four months, but an animal can be happened only after reaching a weight of 32 kilograms, that is, puberty of the body. Depending on the feeding regimen and content, the females reach the required body weight for mating (puberty) by 7-9 months.

In some farms goats do not happen until 12-18 months. This reduces the amount of milk, but extends the future productive life of the goat. However, it should be borne in mind that a later mating (at the age of one or one and a half years) can lead to obesity of the animal, which will negatively affect the fruitfulness of the cover and the offspring. An obese goat is less likely to enter the hunt, and cysts may appear on the ovaries, preventing fertilization and offspring. To reduce weight, you need to revise the diet and increase the motor activity of the animal.

Proventhat goat hunting signs begin to appear ten weeks after the longest day of the year. In the period from September to February, most goats are ready for mating, and are easily fertilized. In April, the signs of hunting begin to weaken and practically do not appear until September next year. A small percentage can be sexually active a month before and after the onset of a random season. But this indicator mainly depends on the conditions of keeping and feeding animals.

In order for the goat to have high-quality sexual hunting and full fertilization, the goat owners must provide the goats with a complete diet. With an unbalanced diet and violation of the conditions of detention, goats have problems with the reproductive function, namely:

  • An insufficient amount of phosphorus and copper can delay the hunt or lead to its irregularity.
  • Magnesium deficiency can delay hunting and reduce the fecundity of animals.
  • With a lack of vitamin A, ovulation in the ovaries of the egg is delayed, and during fertilization, fetal development worsens.
  • Hot weather worsens the implantation of a fertilized egg in the uterus.
  • Severe stress also negatively affects fetal implantation and can even lead to abortion.
  • Some grasses that goats eat on pasture, in particular in white and red clover, contain a large amount of estrogen. This can lead to the formation of cysts on the cervix, which will complicate the progress of sperm and delay fertilization.

An adult and healthy goat can cover up to 50 queens. Owners should not give young goats more than one cage at six o’clock, and the daily rate should not exceed two mates with a goat.

Some animals manifest a phenomenon called the "goat effect." If the uterus had little contact with the male before the time of mating, transferring her to the goat pen may stimulate her signs of hunting and contribute to successful fertilization.

Farms that sell milk should strive for winter and summer (or spring) kidding. A goat, fertilized in September, will bear offspring in February, and a uterus that passed a mating in March will bring a kid in August. Animals with the same fecundity differ in lactation depending on the time of the goat. The uterus that gave birth in February will produce more milk than the ones that produce offspring in August.

Which mating is preferable, manual or harem?

There are several types of mating. Most of them are used in all goat-breeding farms.

  1. Free matingconsidered the simplest. Males and queens are kept together during the entire hunting period, that is, up to two months. In this case, the goats cover the uterus without human control. And although this method of mating is the simplest and least cost, it is considered inefficient from a rational point of view. First of all, with free mating, the productive period of using goats is reduced. In addition, in this case, it is difficult to conduct tribal work. Often there are cases when, after a free mating, a goat is not interested in goats for several months. To avoid this, the male should be given daily rest from the females and kept separately for five to six hours.
  2. Harem matingalso considered not rational, but still more thoughtful in terms of tribal work. A goat is kept with a certain group of queens during a random season. In this case, it is impossible to regulate the use of the goat, but the quality of the offspring is monitored.
  3. Hand matecarried out under the complete control of a person. A certain uterus is brought to the manufacturer, which suits him according to the main characteristics of the breed. For proper mating, the uterus is fixed in a special machine. For fertilization to occur, one normal cage is sufficient, which can be determined by the characteristic impulse. The goat should not be allowed to cover the same uterus several times.

All described methods of mating have their advantages and disadvantages. For example, harem mating does not require human intervention, since males and females are kept together, and fertilization occurs as soon as the goats enter the hunt. Manual mating requires human intervention, since only one uterus is planted on a particular male. In the case of harem mating, a large number of pregnant goats can be obtained in a short time, but in this case the breed is not kept clean and goat resources are wasted.

What should be a goat?

You can keep goats in the goathouse, shed or even in the attic, they easily climb into it, but in any case, the room needs to be arranged for animals, as they need a place for sleeping, eating, childbirth and so on.

The size of the room depends on the number of goats. But in any case, it should be spacious so that it is convenient to move along it, take animals for walks, milk, inspect them. If more than 5 goats are contained, it is worth taking care of separate stalls for them, because often individuals fight and this can save them from possible problems.

You can keep goats in the goathouse, shed or even in the attic

They keep 1-2 animals in each stall. The exception is the female with the cubs. If the kids have not been taken away, there may be 3-4 or even more animals in the stall - the female and all her offspring. So goats and kids will be kept until the latter learn to live independently and eat simple food, and not mother’s milk.

It is important to note that males are always kept separate from females, since a strong goat smell can be transmitted to milk.

Recommended stall sizes for one individual 1x2 meters.Of course, if the goats are large breeds or dwarf, then the sizes are adjusted. These are suitable for the simplest, like Russian white. A separate stall is built for the female and the cub - a spacious one, about 2-2.5 square meters. It is important to note that the kids, after they grow up and weaned from their mother, you need to settle in one common stall with dimensions of 2-2.5 m / sq. There they must live until they become completely independent and adults. This is done to save space, and that animals are socialized.

Now about the technical side of the goat.

  1. Cold, lack or abundance of sunlight for goats is not terrible, but drafts can greatly harm their health. If the goat is constantly in a draft, it begins to have problems with legs, hooves, ears, eyes. The problem is difficult to notice immediately, but it may be too late to treat it over time, so when equipping a goat, it is worth making it as protected as possible from drafts.
  2. Moisture affects goats, goats and kids too. It occurs if the room is not aired or aired, but badly. Due to the stagnation of air, condensation occurs, which leads to high humidity. Humidity provokes respiratory diseases and lung problems in these animals. But to solve the problem simply by making the most elementary and primitive, but adjustable, ventilation system in the room.
  3. Temperature is also very important. In the southern regions, low temperatures are rare, therefore, goats are often kept there even on the street, but in more northern cities you need to worry about warming the walls and floor of the goat. In winter, the temperature inside should not fall below +6 degrees Celsius, and if the breeder also contains kids, then not below +8 degrees.
  4. The windows are located at a height of 1.5 meters so that the animals do not break them in a fit of games.

How to equip a goat?

After the construction of the main building, you need to think about how to equip the goat house so that the content of goats is simple and not troublesome.

Goats love to sleep on the hills

  • It is advisable to make feeders in a common room, and not in each individual stall. Usually they are long troughs. They are hung at such a level that it is convenient for individuals to eat, but it is not recommended to put them on the floor, so that animals do not walk on troughs and do not contaminate food. The length and height of the installation of the trough depends on the number and age of the animals.
  • Drinking bowls are another matter, they can be put in each stall, especially since the water should be in the stall with a pregnant or lactating female. Sometimes water is simply poured into buckets, but the kids can turn them over, so it’s easier to make special mechanical drinkers or pour water into hanging buckets.
  • Goats love to sleep on the hills. If you put bales of straw in the goathouse, they will certainly climb onto them and sleep there. To simplify their task, it is worth putting a small bale in each stall so that they can sleep comfortably. Such a fraud will also protect them from illness - to sleep on soft straw is much more pleasant than on a cold floor, albeit with bedding.
  • To keep the air in the goat house clean and free from unpleasant odors, the floor is sloped and a drain is installed at the bottom so that all the slurry will be poured there. This will significantly improve the appearance and condition of the goat, and the content of goats will be a much more pleasant process.
  • It is worth worrying about the litter. Usually they put her only in the stalls, since she is not required in the common room - the goats do not sleep there. They make it from coarse, cheap straw, which animals will not eat.

How and what to feed the goats?

The content of goats at home in summer and winter is very different. This primarily concerns feeding. On warm days, goats feed mainly on greens - grasses that they can find on grazing. In winter, there is no walking and no greenery, so animals are transferred to roughage.

In summer, in addition to greens on a paddock, goats should be given compound feed or bran with vitamin and mineral additives, hay, and root crops. Whole grain is never given to goats! You can also feed the tops of garden crops (potatoes, carrots, beets). But it is important to note that when feeding beet tops, chalk is added to it to neutralize the acidity of the leaves!

In winter, the diet is made up of hay, silage, brooms, dried branches, fresh spruce branches. It is important to add vitamins and minerals to the feed all the time, which can be purchased in stores. Root crops and vegetables (boiled potatoes, beets, carrots, fresh cabbage) play a large role in the diet of goats in winter. Each goat needs to feed 2-4 kg of root crops per day.

The content of goats at home in summer and winter is very different

Hay for the winter should be harvested for the future. It can be bought in winter, but it is expensive, especially since in the cold months the prices for hay are very high, but this is understandable, because storing it is not so simple. Harvesting hay at year-round content of goats is necessary at the rate of 500 kg of hay per 1 individual. Young animals from 6 to 12 months need a little less - 320 kg.

An adult can eat from 1 to 3 kg of feed per day. Food should always be fresh, like water, not exotic, simple and familiar to animals. Any innovations are introduced gradually and very carefully! In the goat’s trough with food or water, it is also worthwhile to install a lick salt so that animals can replenish the mineral balance in the body when they need it.

It is strictly forbidden to give goats wormwood, tansy, mustard, chamomile, poisonous black nightshade, horsetail, leaves and bulbs of daffodils, rosemary branches, tobacco leaves. They can affect the reduction of milk yield, make milk bitter and lead to problems with the gastrointestinal tract in the animal.

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Useful properties of goat milk - https://www.fermerok.info/poleznye-svojstva-kozego-moloka

How to determine a goat’s pregnancy?

It is easiest to determine the presence of pregnancy by monitoring the manifestations of hunting. If, after three weeks after mating, the goat shows no signs of hunting, then fertilization has been successful. If after three weeks the hunting resumes, this means that fertilization has not occurred or the embryo has resolved for some reason. Such an animal must be shown to a veterinarian and, in the absence of disease, repeat the mating.

Pregnancy can also be determined by the level of progesterone in milk. The check is carried out during the alleged resumption of the hunt (approximately 18-22 days after the last mating). In most uterus, a check for hormone levels can be carried out as early as 20 days after mating. If the level of progesterone is increased (the production of the hormone of the corpus luteum of the ovary is in progress), there is every reason to believe that the goat is pregnant. The most accurate and modern method of diagnosing pregnancy is an ultrasound examination, but this method is not too common because of the high cost.

In some farms, experienced goat breeders palpate the abdomen to determine the compaction and enlargement of the uterus.

In goats with the first pregnancy, the udder begins to increase in size in the fourth month of pregnancy, and in old dead animals - not earlier than the fifth. In addition, in pregnant women, the belly increases in size and acquires a barrel-shaped form.

Step-by-step instructions for content

Providing the right environment is key to good performance. The attention of the farmer should focus on the following points:

  1. Competent organization of the stall.
  2. A balanced diet consistent with physical condition and age.

The optimal is the stall-pasture regime. Under this system, goats graze 185 days a year during the day, and spend the rest of the time in the goat house without the ability to eat green mass on pastures. This type of content is similar to sheep.

Goats have excellent adaptability to new climatic conditions and good health. They eat almost any feed, which significantly saves the budget.

One of the most productive farm animals in demand everywhere

Step 1. Breed Selection

Grown to produce several types of products:

The breed is selected based on indicators of productivity in a particular direction.

Zaanen goat is the largest in the world

Table 1. The best varieties.

DairyMeatDowny
  • La Mancha,

  • Cameroon
  • Alpine
  • Russian white,
  • Toggenburg
  • Nubian
  • Megrelian.
  • Boerskaya,

  • Kiko
  • Zaanenskaya
  • Greek
  • Gorky.
  • Black down
  • Orenburg
  • Angora
  • Pridonskaya
  • Dagestan
  • Gorno-Altai.
  • Taste qualities of Boer goat meat are similar to veal

    Features of productive lines:

    1. Meat. Appreciated just like lamb. The Boer male gains up to 135 kg, Gorkovskaya - up to 75 kg, Zaanenskaya - up to 100 kg, Kiko - up to 70 kg.
    2. Downy. From one goat get from 350 to 700 g of fluff. The skins go on sewing winter clothes. With quality care, the female gives about 300 liters of milk annually. The meat is used for culinary purposes.
    3. Dairy. The most cost-effective destination. Animals produce up to 5 liters of milk per day. With a high market value, the cost of the product is low. Maximum productivity occurs after the 2nd lambing and remains at this level for almost the entire lactation period.

    How many days does a goat's pregnancy last?

    The duration of pregnancy in goats is 145-155 days. Ovum fertilization occurs in the oviduct, after which the fertilized ovum moves into the uterus, fixes on its inner wall and the fetus begins to develop. Already 60 days after fertilization, the fetus will be fully formed and during the rest of the pregnancy will simply gain weight. Quite often, the simultaneous fertilization of several eggs and the development of the fetus are encountered, since two or three eggs are often secreted in goats during one ovulation. After birth, fetal membranes, which are called the afterbirth, leave the uterus.

    During pregnancy, the goat must steadily gain weight. This is especially true for queens who carry several fruits. Therefore, the diet of animals should be full and rich in vitamins and nutrients. The most intensive nutrition is necessary in the last 4-5 weeks of pregnancy, when the most intensive growth of the fetus occurs.

    Exterior features depending on destination

    The physical characteristics of these animals are related to the type of productivity.

    Body structure of dairy goats:

    • deep chest
    • elongated barrel-shaped body,
    • convex ribs
    • strong, well-formed skeleton,
    • wide back
    • convex peritoneum
    • straight limbs with powerful hooves,
    • sacral sac, deprived of sharp overhang.

    The natural location of the nipples is not always suitable for machine milking. Breeders devote a lot of time to improving their shape and place on the body.

    In a special article we will tell you how to milk a goat or even a whole herd, in what cases, under what circumstances and with what result.

    World consumption of goat milk is more than cow

    • massive barrel-shaped torso
    • a small high udder,
    • well-shaped muscles
    • volumetric belly
    • strong legs that support the heavy weight of the animal.

    The structure and length of the coat are determined by the specific terrain in which the breed was bred.

    The use of goat meat accelerates the treatment of diseases of the digestive tract and the cardiovascular system

    • average dimensions
    • short stature
    • weak muscularity
    • strong hooves.

    The kids are born with a well-formed coat. Females give little milk.

    About 450 g of fluff and 350 g of coarse wool are obtained from one goat

    Step 2. Building a room

    The goat house should be located in an open area, away from tall buildings that block sunlight. To ensure that the room always has fresh air, it should not be near cesspools.

    Recommendations of construction professionals:

      Material. Almost any one is suitable. Natural wood is preferable because it holds heat well. The stone cools the room and makes it moist in the winter. If it is planned to build a crib from solid rocks, the walls on the outside are sheathed with roofing material or similar material. Internal 2 times a year, disinfect with lime.

    Goats spend inside the goat’s all winter, so it should be warm

    From the fire safety position, the doors of the goat house must swing open

    It is desirable to keep the kids separately

    These animals like to spend time on the crossbars with a width of 60 cm, located at a height of 30 cm from the floor.

    Goats are clean and squeamish.

    Step 3. Organization of the place

      The rest area should always be dry and clean. Due to the fact that the goats choose one place for sending physiological needs, these zones should not overlap.

    The goat house should be clean

    Slots are treated with mounting foam in winter

    Co-location with chickens is not the best option in terms of hygiene

    Harbingers of the goat

    The main signs of an approaching birth in goats are as follows:

    • A goat may refuse feed.
    • Signs of anxiety appear.
    • The animal begins to push every 5-10 minutes.
    • With the approach of childbirth, the udder begins to fill up in goats: in adults, this occurs immediately before childbirth, and young queens - about 1.5 months before birth, the nipples are filled, colostrum appears (usually 1-3 days before birth).
    • A week before birth, a hollow forms between the sciatic bones due to the fact that the ligaments connecting the pelvis and caudal vertebrae relax.
    • After the fetus takes a generic position, the goat becomes less voluminous, and cavities may appear in the groin.
    • An increase begins and swelling of the vulva begins.
    • With the onset of attempts (1-2 days before the onset of labor), a cervical tube comes out of the vagina - a transparent straw-colored mucus. During the opening of the cervix, goats are worried and constantly look back at their stomach, begin to look for a place in the cage for childbirth. If the color of the mucus is white or cream, you should consult a veterinarian, as the animal could have begun vaginitis.
    • About a day before birth, rectal temperature decreases by one or two degrees (normally it is 39-40 degrees).

    The birth process in goats consists of three periods: preparatory, fetal and posterior. In more detail in our article - "Lambing in sheep and goats in the conditions of LPH and KFH"

    And although in most cases childbirth does not require human intervention, it is still worth attending the process to provide assistance to the animal if necessary.

    Step 4. Organization of the feeding zone

    To optimize the feeding process, it is important to correctly design a zone for eating. The size of the structures depends on the age and name of the feed. They are placed at a height of 50 cm from the floor.

    Table 2. Options.

    Types of feedersWidth (cm)Height (cm)Feeding and drinking front (cm) for adultsFeeding and watering front (cm) for young animals
    Under root crops40303020
    Under roughage and silage65753020
    Under concentrates25253020
    For kids2010-15
    Drinking bowls40253020

    Due to the fact that these animals like to climb high places, structures must be safe

    The main principle is that the feeders are arranged so that it is convenient to fill them, and they are in the public domain for goats. On the one hand, the feed grill is equipped with a protective board that does not allow food to be taken from above. Under it put a nursery for the dropping out food, including bran and beets.

    Brooms and hay should not be stored in close proximity to bowel movements. They absorb vapors from manure, which negatively affects their eating by goats.

    Step 5. Pasture selection

    The best option is natural meadows or dry land with intensively growing undersized grass. Suitable areas located in the mountains, waterless valleys, small villages and steppes. Large swamp forests with high humidity levels are not suitable. A prolonged stay in a humid environment is fraught with the appearance of hepatic fasciola or hoof rot. Goats prefer bushes. Shoots and leaves of young trees, as well as herbs provide them with the necessary nutrients. In summer, maple and willow leaves should be present in the diet.

    It is desirable to mark the area for pasture with pegs

    The necessary pasture area for 10 queens with kids is from 2.5 to 3 ha.

    Step 6. Making a feeding schedule

    Goats have a good digestive system. They carefully chew food, which they digest almost completely thanks to 1 stomach and 3 pancreas.

    Goat is a ruminant

    The feeding schedule in the stall period consists of 4 feedings per day, in the pasture of 2.

    Table 3. Filling the diet.

    GrazingStall
    The green food that animals eat in the meadows needs to be diversified with the following ingredients:
  • concentrates - 200 g,
  • root vegetables and vegetables - up to 1 kg,
  • dry hay before bed - from 400 to 500 g.
  • grain - 1 kg
  • hay - 3-4 kg,
  • vegetables or root crops - 2 kg,
  • silo - 1.5 kg.
  • Mandatory food element is dry brooms from tree leaves.

    General recommendations for feeding:

    1. In summer, the emphasis is on the lush greens eaten by animals on grazing. This period coincides with the peak of lactation.
    2. In the goathouse, branch feed is hung in the form of suspended brooms, and lick salt is placed next to the feeders.
    3. In addition to grass, they give garden tops with chalk in a ratio of 1 kg per 1 g. The last component reduces the effect of organic acids.
    4. Among vegetable crops, goats prefer potatoes, beets, carrots and cabbage both in raw and boiled form. The exception is potatoes, which are fed only after heat treatment. Root crops are pre-crushed. Animals love Jerusalem artichoke, and eat both the root and the fruit.

    100 g of Jerusalem artichoke contains 61 kcal

    When keeping goats in the milk line, they are not recommended to overfeed. Otherwise, productivity will drop.

    Little kids absorb a lot of fluids

    The most common diseases in goats.

    In case of violations by the owners of LPH and peasant farms of the existing rules for feeding and keeping goats, they may experience various kinds of diseases. So, for example, in case of irregularities in the feeding of deep-breasted goats, in the postpartum period they may have a delay in placenta (retention of the placenta in small domestic animals during childbirth), during childbirth the goat has weak contractions and attempts (weak contractions and attempts in small domestic animals) , postpartum paresis (postpartum paresis in small domestic animals), if the rules of grazing are not respected, as in other farm animals, infection with various helminthic diseases is possible (worms in goats). If the rules of feeding and keeping the kids are not followed, disorders in the activity of the gastrointestinal tract occur (diarrhea in the kids), in adult goats, similar disorders (diarrhea in the goat) are also possible. In case of non-compliance with the rules of lambing, goats may have inflammatory diseases of the uterus (acute postpartum endometritis in small pets). In violation of the rules of milking and keeping, goats have inflammation of the udder (mastitis in goats, serous mastitis, purulent-catarrhal and hemorrhagic mastitis in goats, abscess of the udder). In case of violations of the existing veterinary and sanitary rules for keeping, including the rules for quarantining purchased goats, untimely antiepizootic measures, goats can get so dangerous for them and humans as brucellosis (brucellosis in humans, brucellosis of small cattle, infectious agalactia of sheep and goats) , salmonellosis (salmonellosis of sheep and goats).

    Young food system

    Females bear the fetus for 5 months. In one lamb, from 1 to 3 kids are born, less often from 4 to 5. A few hours after birth, newborns move independently.

    Basic rules of feeding:

    1. The first 20 days, the basis of the diet is milk. Drinking schedule - 4 times a day.
    2. 3 weeks after birth, the kids are given 5 g of chalk and salt. At the age of 3 months, this dose is increased to 10 g.
    3. At 5 weeks of life, young growth is fed with concentrates. Start with 50 g daily, by 3 months, bring to 300 g.
    4. From 13 weeks, they switch to an adult diet.
    5. There are no restrictions on water absorption.

    With a well-composed diet, young animals gain from 3 to 5 kg every month

    Goat feeding

    Since the main function of the male is the fertilization of females, special attention is paid to his diet before mating.

    The animal must not be overweight. Obesity is fraught with a decrease in sexual activity, which negatively affects the growth of livestock. The daily feeding rate should be strictly regulated.

    Table 3. Nutrition scheme of a goat weighing 100 kg during mating at 3 cages per day.

    Grazing periodStall Content
  • oats - 1 kg
  • bran - 200 g
  • oilcake - 200 g
  • carrots - 500 g
  • chicken eggs - 2 pieces.
  • grass forbs - 1.2 kg,
  • alfalfa hay - 500 g,
  • bran - 200 g
  • crushed barley - 400 g,
  • sunflower meal - 100 g,
  • flattened oats - 400 g,
  • peas - 200 g
  • carrots - 500 g
  • fodder beets - 1000 g.
  • The goat should not be fed

    The emphasis should be on green and roughage. Cereals do not overfeed. The diet must include vitamin and mineral supplements.

    Step 7. Providing Proper Care

    1. Hoof trimming. Hooves grow back quickly, so they need to be regularly shortened. In the absence of experience in this area, they invite a specialist. There is a high risk of injuring the limbs of the animal.
    2. Combing out. The coat of goats, especially downy breeds, is dense. Experts advise combing them several times a month with a brush with hard bristles. If necessary, cut the mallets. Particular attention is paid to the hair during shedding in February.
    3. Skin treatment. Since ruminants are often attacked by skin parasites, they need to be treated with a solution of soda once a week. Sodium carbonate is an excellent prevention of lice.
    4. Walking. Animals need fresh air even in winter. With the advent of spring, grazing is taught to pasture gradually, starting from several hours of stay. Long pastime outside the stall can adversely affect their well-being. In April, it is better to select pastures located on the hills. The sun heats these areas faster than others, so the grass grows more intensively. In addition, the land will not be damp. If it rains outside, goats are left indoors. Otherwise, milk production will decrease and milk quality will deteriorate.
    5. Insemination. A healthy adult male covers up to 50 females during the rut period with a 100% guarantee of fertilization. If the mating occurs outside the schedule, the animal is given hormones that increase sexual activity.

    All food items are kept clean and disinfected daily.

    Hoof trimming is one of the main care procedures.

    Baby Care

    After the kid is born, mucus is removed from the respiratory tract. After give the mother, who should lick him.

    Some breeders make the classic mistake of transferring a baby to a warm place after giving birth. If the female has not left her smell on him, she will not be able to nursing him and will consider him a stranger.

    The first meal is breast milk. If goats are kept exclusively for dairy products, it is not worth keeping a newborn near the mother for a long time. Otherwise, within 2 months, all the nutrient fluid will be spent on feeding the offspring.

    Colostrum contains all the necessary elements for the harmonious development of the immune system and digestive system

    Rules of treatment

    1. Goats quickly become attached to the owner and touchingly demonstrate their love.
    2. They are able to recognize the farmer by voice and joyfully greet him with loud bleating.
    3. The animal is more sympathetic to the one who feeds it. But it also remembers the members of the breadwinner’s family.
    4. They prefer to graze near the barn. Only wayward individuals go far. Such instances need to be kept on a leash.
    5. They love when a man grazes them, and with pleasure make long joint walks.
    6. Goats understand when and for what they are punished, but because of their touchiness, they are in no hurry to improve. They prefer to wait a while and take revenge on the owner for his actions.

    A distinctive feature of Nubian goats is the absence of a specific smell

    Prices for goat milking machines

    Keeping and raising goats will not cause trouble if there is a good forage base, pasture nearby and a comfortable goat house. The main point worth paying attention to is dampness. If animals are fed and kept in a dry room, they will delight not only with good productivity, but will also give a lot of positive emotions.

    Choosing a Goat Breed for Home Breeding

    Depending on which product can be obtained from the animal, the following groups are distinguished:

    Most novice farmers plant dairy, meat and mixed breeds. Goat milk is much healthier than cow milk. However, in sufficient quantities it can only be obtained from dairy goats.

    Downy breeds are quite in demand. The largest volume of fluff comes from castrated goats. Such individuals are distinguished by a more powerful skeleton and coarser hooves.

    Woolen breeds are not as widespread as downy ones. The wool in its structure turns out to be a little coarser than the down, but still softer than the sheep’s wool. There are also woolly downy varieties.

    In most cases, goat meat has a specific smell. Several meat breeds that have good taste have been bred. The cost of breeding individuals is quite high. This is explained not by the number of meat breeds, but by their absence in the domestic market. These types of goats are raised at home, and not on large farms.

    What to look for when buying a goat and a kid

    Experienced farmers do not recommend buying only one goat, as it is a herd animal. Alone, it becomes hyperactive. It is important to buy an animal only in a trusted place. It is best to buy a goat on a special farm, where it is possible to see the pedigree and conditions of detention.

    Often, novice farmers acquire a pregnant goat - this is beneficial, as soon the goat will begin to milk and the population will increase. But you need to understand that the problems of care will also increase.

    When choosing a goat, you need to pay attention to physique. Normal weight is 50-60 kg. Down and meat breeds are larger, the dairy goat has a leaner build with a wide chest. Before buying a dairy breed, you need to examine the goat from the side: the front and back of the animal should be in one line.

    The udder plays a big role, so when you buy it must be inspected. In a healthy dairy goat, the udder is clearly visible, does not sag, has the shape of a pear or a bowl.

    The optimal age of the animal for purchase is 2-3 years, because after 6-7 years of life, the goat practically stops giving milk. It is also necessary to pay attention to the jaw. An adult should have 32 teeth. Young goats have healthy incisors.

    The kid is best bought at the age of 2-3 months. By this time, the skeleton of the animal has almost formed. A healthy individual has a large body and a wide chest.

    Barn device

    In order for the animal to grow well and give large yields it must be properly maintained. The goat quickly adapts to new conditions, normally tolerates cold and sun. At the same time, the storage shed must be dry and warm.

    When arranging a room, you should pay attention to the following indicators:

    • temperature,
    • humidity,
    • degree of ventilation
    • lighting.

    The minimum temperature in the barn is 5 °, but it is better to maintain it within 10 °. In the summer, the room should be cool - about 18 °. The goat is not recommended to be kept in a damp room. The optimal indicator of humidity is 75%. It is important that the floor is dry.

    The room should have good ventilation, but drafts should not be allowed. Throughout the daylight hours in the barn should be light. Good lighting is important for the normal development of young individuals.

    The barn should be quite spacious. The exact area is calculated depending on the number of goals that will be kept. The ceiling should not be lower than 2 m, but not higher than 2.5 m. 1.5 m 2 is required per adult. For young animals, you need to create a separate place, special stalls are equipped for them.

    It is important to build stalls correctly, if they are too cramped, this will negatively affect the amount of milk yield. The front stall should look like a low door with strong hinges. The optimum height is 1 m. For maximum convenience, a manger for hay is placed on the wall.

    Pasture - Livestock Goat Breeding

    Any grazing land is suitable for grazing goats. The exception is flood meadows and marshy areas. If the animal grazes in a wet area, there will be a high risk of developing helminthiasis and hoof diseases.

    In most cases, a grazing system is used in the grazing contents of goats. Especially often it is used in mountainous regions, where different meadows and fields are present in one geographical area. The flock on pastures settles down seasonally. In autumn and winter, animals are transferred to lowland and lowland pastures.

    In the spring, vegetation is restored on winter pastures, which in turn contributes to weight gain in goats. This is important, since it is in the spring that the brood campaign begins. Over the summer, the goat manages to gain a lot of weight.

    Types of feed for goats

    At any time of the year, the main emphasis is on succulent feed. Such food is presented:

    Grass is the most affordable and cheapest type of feed. From garden tops, cabbage or beet leaves can be used. To reduce the acidity of such products, it is necessary to give chalk along with them. About 1 g of chalk is taken per 1 kg of tops.

    A valuable food supplement is silage. It is important that it be of good quality. Sometimes, due to improper storage, the silo begins to peroxide. By its properties, such a product is fully consistent with fresh grass. A day a goat can be given no more than 4 kg of silage.

    In winter, vegetables and fruits must be added to the diet. From vegetables, you can give beets, cabbage and carrots. Root crops are given in crushed form at 3-4 kg per day. The composition of natural feed contains a large number of vitamins, proteins, minerals and nutrients.

    The group of roughage includes the following products:

    Straw and hay help to improve the digestive system. One animal should eat 2-3 kg of roughage per day. To use the product more economically, it is recommended to pre-grind and crush it. For this, special installations or a simple ax can be used.

    Branch feed - tree branches. Poplar, willow, maple and aspen are perfect. The branches are pre-cut into small twigs 60 cm long. In winter, 3-5 such brooms are given per day.

    The third category of feed is concentrated. If used improperly, a goat can have a disease of the gastrointestinal tract. In most cases, oats or barley are given. Cereals must be pre-chopped. A good version of the feed is feed and bran. In a moderate amount, goats are given corn.If there is too much of it in the animal’s diet, then it begins to gain fat.

    Feeding pattern

    Feeding should be in accordance with the schedule. If it is not, then this will negatively affect the general condition of the animal and the number of milkings. The optimal diet for a goat is 3-4 times a day. The time intervals must be the same. In the morning and in the afternoon it is recommended to give heavy feeds, and in the evening, lighter.

    It is important to give enough water. After eating, the goat should drink 2.5-4 liters of water. At other times, the animal should have free access to water. Its temperature should not be lower than 6 ° and not higher than 10 °.

    Shed Cleaning

    Goat care begins with bedding. It should always be dry and in large quantities. Otherwise, the goat will hay itself. For a wooden floor, a straw litter is perfect. Peat can be placed on concrete or brick. It is laid under the straw. If this is not done, the animal will get dirty and sick.

    The goat prefers to lie on the ground, while moving the litter. It is important to remove manure in a timely manner. Fresh is cleaned daily, and thorough cleaning is carried out 1-2 times a month. To carry out such cleaning, it is necessary to use a soap solution. During lambing, manure is removed less often, since it allows you to save heat.

    If the animal has a long coat, then it needs to be combed periodically with a comb with metal teeth.

    About milking goats

    An important part of goat care is milking. The frequency of milk production directly depends on the milk secretion of the animal:

    • in winter, milk is collected 2 times a day with an interval of 12 hours,
    • in the summer, it is recommended to milk the goat 3 times - until 7 a.m., at lunch, and at 5-7 p.m. In this case, the interval should be about 8 hours,
    • in the first months of lactation, the amount of milk will be quite large, but over time, milk production begins to decline.

    Matching pairs and mating

    When choosing a pair for mating, you must be guided by certain requirements. They are needed to maintain productive and tribal qualities. Valuation - the process of dividing goats into groups according to individual indicators: productivity, exterior and constitution. It can be carried out individually or in groups.

    Evaluation of productivity is carried out by weighing goats, measuring the amount of wool and down. An analysis of the quality and fat content of milk is also carried out.

    Goats are estimated by the number of offspring. The first selection of manufacturers is carried out a few weeks after birth. After selection, all individuals that are not suitable for reproduction are castrated. Selected kids form a separate group that receives enhanced care. The second selection is carried out during the period of weaning of goats from the mother, that is, at the age of 4 to 6 months.

    The manufacturer selected for mating should have the following qualities:

    • lack of disease
    • strong constitution
    • good sexual vigor,
    • high mobility
    • the presence of vivid signs of the breed.

    It is important that the pair for mating receive all the necessary vitamins and minerals. Improper nutrition can cause problems with offspring. The lack of vitamins A, E, iodine and iron has a negative effect. It is these substances that are needed for good sperm quality.

    To properly mate, you need to know the signs of hunting. Most actively they appear in the period from September to February. The sexual cycle lasts from 18 to 24 days. The exact time depends on the breed and the individual characteristics of the animal. The hunt lasts from 12 hours to 4 days.

    Pregnant Goat Care

    A pregnant individual requires special care and proper nutrition. It is important to constantly monitor the well-being of the animal. Feed must be balanced and in sufficient quantity. Hunger is dangerous not only for the goat, but also for the fetus.

    An important aspect is feeding technology. Meals should be started with a swill. First, concentrated feeds are given, then juicy and coarse. Drinking makes it easier to assimilate food. In this case, the water should always be warm.

    Goat Care

    Care and feeding of the kids depends on the method of growing: under the goat or without it. In the first case, the kids must be brought to the mother an hour after lambing. At first, the kids will need to help the udders find the udder. Depending on the milk content of the goat, the kids can eat 6 to 8 times a day.

    The second option for feeding the kids is most often used in dairy film production. The bottom line is that the goat is fed mother's milk, but through a bottle. During the first 3-4 weeks, the kids are fed 4-6 times a day, and then they are gradually transferred to three meals a day. It is important to teach a newborn animal to drink water, if this is not done, the kid will refuse to drink. A small amount of wheat bran can be mixed in water.

    Goats are great for both small farms and large farms. In order for the animal to give good milkings, it needs to create optimal conditions for keeping, as well as properly organize the feeding process. Goats, like other animals, are recommended to be bought in verified farms, where all the necessary documents and good conditions for keeping young animals are present.

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