Our Boer Goat Schedule

Typical Goat Management Steps

We were recently asked, "What do you do on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis?" While it was an interesting question and one of which we gave much thought, we came to the conclusion there is no one answer. Our goat management depends on a lot of variables such as season, condition of the goats, age of the goats, etc.
 
 

On a daily basis, of course, we feed the goats. The amount we feed and what we feed depends on how much forage is available to the goats and the quality of that forage. The amount and mixture we feed also depends on if the goat is growing (up to a year old), if the goat is pregnant or lactating, or if the goat is just maintaining conditioning. We do feed our goats even when ample browse/pasture is available to them; this is to keep them in a routine of coming to the barn, going through the catch pen, so we can catch them when we need to. Some of our goats are fed twice a day, and some are only fed once a day.

On a daily basis we also spend time simply observing the goats. Do they show signs of diarrhea? Are they standing with their heads down? Is a goat down on its knees eating? Are any holding a foot in the air or seeming to have trouble walking? These are all signs of trouble that would require additional care.

On a weekly basis we go to town to pick up feed (we buy by the ton but don't have the storage capacity for that much. To insure freshness, we only bring home the amount we need to feed each week.) At different times of year and at different points in gestation of the goats, we supplement our Co-Op Goat Grower with yeast, corn, and/or sunflower seeds.

Also on a weekly basis we check the supply of minerals and baking soda we have out for the goats. We replace as needed.

At Clear Creek Farms we do not worm on a schedule; instead, we worm only when the goats need to be wormed. At least once a week we will do a fecal examination under the microscope to determine excessive parasite loads. Every couple days, as part of our routine observation of the goats, we will check different goats' eyelids and/or gums to assure they are a healthy pink.

Vaccinations are done on a routine basis, but not all goats need the same vaccinations at the same time.

30 days before a doe is scheduled to kid, we will have her a shot of 2 cc BoSe (because we are in a moderately deficient selenium area) along with 2 cc of Vitamin A,D,E. We also give a 2 cc booster of Covexin 8. 30 days is an approximate timetable; we may vaccinate a group at the same time even though their due dates are several days apart.

We wether bucklings at 2 months, so the buck kids get a 3 cc shot of Covexin 8 at that time. Buck kids we are leaving entact as well as doelings get their first shot of Covexin 8 at 12 weeks with a booster one month later. Bucks get a yearly booster while does get a booster either at a year or 30 days before she is scheduled to kid – whichever comes first.

Hooves are trimmed as needed. We have some does who have their hooves trimmed once a year and some trimmed every other month. The hooves tend to grow at different rates. There is a myth that as long as goats are walking on rocks they won't need their hooves trimmed often. At Clear Creek Farms we have not found this to be the case. We have noted that hooves tend to grow faster (for some) when they have corn added to their diet. (In the winter we add whole corn to their feed to provide a source of heat.)

 

Since we have free-flowing spring water at Clear Creek Farms, we do not treat for Coccidiosis on a routine basis. There are many, though, who treat their babies at 6 weeks and 12 weeks – for 5 days – with Albon in their drinking water. On the rare occasions we have to treat for Coccidiosis, we treat individually. (Since switching to a feed with rumensin we have not had to deal with a case of Coccidiosis.)

Paperwork is accomplished on a daily/weekly basis:

  • We have worksheets at the barn to record when we give medication or when we work on feet. Once a week these daily worksheets are taken to the house so the data can be transferred to our animal care program.
  • We also have a board at the barn with every goat's name that we may use to make notations of weights or treatments. This information is input in our farm animal program at a minimum weekly.
  • Babies are ear-tagged at birth, and the data base update to reflect this identification; but babies may not get their tattoos until we either sell them or submit their paperwork for registration.
  • Applications for registration are completed on a weekly basis and put in the herd book. We do not automatically register the animals. Goats we expect to sell we tend to sell with applications instead of hard papers; why should both the seller and the buyer have to pay the Association(s) to register an animal?
  • Paperwork concerning purchases and sales (either animals or supplies) is completed within 48 hours of the transaction – then filed. This is a great time saver come income tax season!
 

If you liked this article please let us know by signing our guestbook.
 





Ken and Pat Motes
Clear Creek Farms
33 South Clear Creek Road
Fall River, Tennessee 38468
Phone: (931) 852-2167
Fax: (931) 852-2168


Copyright © 2002 -2017 All Rights Reserved