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Re: topic of the day:what to feed your goat

Amber Waves Pygmy Goats Goat Mix
Posted by GoatWorld on November 03, 2001 at 21:34:09:

In Reply to: topic of the day:what to feed your goat posted by Della on November 03, 2001 at 18:57:24:

Hi Della,

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.

Best regards,

Gary Pfalzbot


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