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In Reply to: topic of the day:what to feed your goat posted by Della on November 03, 2001 at 18:57:24:
Great topic! For the most part our goats get a good helping of hay. Up to a few months ago, I was feeding primarily square bales grown locally because they are easier to handle and inspect. As of now (and a lack of adequate rain at the right times this year), I am feeding round bales. The hay is comprised of a good quality, mixed grassy alfalfa.
In addition to the hay being the better part of our goats diet, they also receive smatterings of sweet feed, cracked corn, a few rabbit pellets here and there, cattle cubes from time to time and steam-crimped oats. Oh, I can't forget that a few weeks ago we got a call from our local bakery who offers "day-old" bread at a discount price. I came home with 250 pounds of hamburger and hot-dog buns, rolls, bread, bagels, etc. So they have gotten quite a few of those as well.
As per "natural" browsing, we have a variety of trees and grasses including that infamous kudzu vine which is now dormant for the winter. Lots of oak, walnut, hawthorne, hickory and a few pecan trees that provide leaves and such. Our pasture has quite a variety of weeds as well: rye, wheat, alfalfa, brambles, hedge just to name a few.
For your pregnant doe I would recommend getting a bit higher protein percentage since she is needing to not only satisfy her own nutrition requirements, but her kid(s) inside as well.
It sounds like you are feeding her a pretty good mix already but a few things I'd recommend (and you probably already know) is supplementing her diet with a good, loose mixed mineral. Corn isn't always the best thing to feed in quantity as it contains around 6% protein, but mixed with other grains and products, it helps.
I believe the recommended protein level for a lactating doe is around 18-22%. Most commercial "all purpose" mixes vary from 14 to 17% so supplementation is necessary. You can get some of the higher protein mixes as well though they do cost more. I would simply add some oats, wheat, and other grains to help boost the nutrition levels. And the hay, that should be the largest part of her diet.
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