Nanny's Kids in Paradise Tennessee Fainting Goat Farm

***I've had many "newbies" contact me for a doe and an unrelated buck.  I added this section to explain a bit of what you need to know about purchasing kids, if you plan to breed.  These are all things that I did not know when I was brand new at this and I just thought it might be good to share this information.***

A fainting goat doe should not be bred until it is at least a year old (so they'd be having their first kidding at around a year and a half old).  They CAN get pregnant as early as 3-4 months old, but you'll either lose your doe, or end up with a c-section (to the tune of around $500).  The risk of either of these is great and it's not worth putting your doe's well-being in jeopardy.  You must keep a buck and a doe separate (a buck CAN breed at 2 months old) until you are ready to actually breed your doe.  First timers normally purchase two does (you must have more than one goat, they cannot be alone like a cat or a dog can) and when they are close to a year old, then they purchase a buck.  If you buy a buckling and a doeling to start out with, you'll need buddies for each of them if you do not have others already.

Kids are weaned at 2 months old.  Don't wait until they are 3 months old!  By then, your buckling could have re-bred his mother or bred his sister.

Spacing of breedings can be confusing.  I will tell you how I do it, but I'm sure each breeder has their own 'tricks of the trade'. :)  Using the example of a doe born January of 2010:

1st breeding January of 2011 (kidding June of 2011)

2nd breeding January of 2012 (2nd kidding June of 2012)

3rd breeding November of 2012 (3rd kidding April 2013)

4th breeding November of 2013 (4th kidding April 2014)

So, one year between breedings after their first kidding, then after the 2nd kidding, you can breed 'back to back' (add two months of lactation after the kidding and then another 3 months to get back into shape and then breed again) one time.  After the 3rd kidding, you need another year off and then you can breed 'back to back' again.  :)

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If you find yourself bottle feeding babies, use the following recipe:

1 Gallon whole milk

1 Can evaporated (NOT CONDENSED!!) milk

1 Cup buttermilk (full-fat is great, but I can only ever find low fat, which is fine too - you need it for the cultures mostly)

Pour several cups of milk out of the gallon milk container.  Add the cup of buttermilk and the can of evaporated milk to the gallon milk container.  Add whole milk back into the gallon milk container to equal one gallon of mixture. 

When bottle feeding, make sure that the nipple is held vertical and the kid's chin is kept tipped upward (just like they would be if they were trying to reach the doe's teat).  If you nurse them like you would a human baby (nipple more horizontal and chin not tipped), the milk does not go where it's supposed to go (it will hit the stomach, which isn't ready to digest the milk at this point).

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There are several awesome message boards and websites that are really helpful when breeding.  Goats are tricky to breed and keep and you'll need help from time to time.  An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure when it comes to goats!!  The following websites are among my favorites:

 


Suggestions and Care

 Recommended web sites for goat care/supplies, etc:

·          Website for International Fainting Goat Assoc. - http://www.faintinggoat.com/

·          Website for the Myotonic Goat Registry - http://myotonicgoatregistry.net/

·          Websites for goat supplies - http://hoeggergoatsupply.com or www.jefferslivestock.com

·          Goat forum board - could save your sick goat's life!! (you need to be registered w/ the site to use but worth it’s weight in gold!) - http://www.goatworld.com/

·          Link to the best goat mineral on the market!  Very important for your goat's best health - http://www.jollygerman.com/livestock/

·          Yahoo has a great fainting goat board. Register with Yahoo and ask to be a member of “fainting goat discussion group”.


Recommended Feeding for bucklings/wethers and non-breeding does:

·          No concentrated feed after 6 months of age.  Feeding of about 1 cup of feed a day up to that point, preferably in two, 1/2 cup feedings, rather than one, 1 cup feeding.  Check feed for addition of ammonium chloride, as this helps deter the formation of urinary calculi.

·        Goats MUST have access to minerals at ALL times.  This impacts their ability to fight worm load, coccidia and helps keep goat polio at bay.  Purina goat minerals are too high in SALT.  I highly recommend using the minerals noted above mixed with Sweelix goat minerals (50/50).  Loose minerals are suggested, as mineral pails {a pail of hard/formed minerals} make it difficult for them to get enough minerals.  Their tongues can only lick so much!  Goat minerals and feed are dangerous for horses as they are too high in copper. Medicated goat feed is very toxic to horses due to the coccidostat that is added!!

·        FEED FREE CHOICE TIMOTHY or TIMOTHY/ORCHARD GRASS HAY!