Goats!

By jilladmin • January 31st, 2016

If you don’t love goats, it’s only because you haven’t met the right ones yet.  We love our Nigerian dwarf dairy goats – they’re like little dogs that eat your gardens if you don’t watch them like a hawk. Thyme is the beige one, Pearl is black, and Jasmine is brown.

IMG_4292 IMG_4281IMG_4307

 

 

 

 

 

I bought these three does bred several years ago with the honest intent to milk them, but then I discovered that I’m pretty much terrible at doing anything on a regular schedule.  Besides, the girls could tell I’d never milked a goat before, and that was the end of that.  So I let them raise their youngsters and gave up on my dreams of goat’s milk soap (at least temporarily). Jasmine and Thyme both had triplets, but sadly, Pearl resorbed her pregnancy.

Baby goats are quite possibly the cutest things on the planet.  They hop, they jump, the climb on anything that stands still long enough – and when they fall asleep in your lap, the cuteness overload is too much.  261203_10200320587831489_2045848377_n

We ended up keeping one of each set of triplets, and so now we have our little herd of five, the three does and two wethered boys.  Number One’s disbudding was botched by the vet, so he is the proud owner of a set of horns.  Thankfully, he’s mostly good with them, unless he really, really thinks you need to be petting him more.  You can see he’s not a lap goat any longer.

IMG_1225

I am often asked if goats and alpacas can be kept together.  The short answer is, “No.”  The longer answer is, “Yes, if you’re willing to do a lot more work and run some serious risks of illness or injury.”  Goats and alpacas share all the same parasites, but unlike relatively tidy alpacas, goats don’t even seem to know when they’re pooping – so manure ends up everywhere.  This exposes the alpacas to a lot chances to pick up parasites, and alpacas are a lot more sensitive to those parasites than the goats that shed them.  So a responsible owner would need to be checking fecals, eyelid color and weights on a regular basis (not deworming to a schedule!), to make sure the alpacas were not developing a worm burden beyond their ability to manage.

Goats and alpacas don’t have the same nutritional needs, either.  Goats need added copper compared to most livestock, while alpacas are copper sensitive, like sheep.  They don’t speak the same language – goats may be used to getting rammed in the ribs by their herdmates, but that same butt could break a young alpaca’s ribs.

I could go on – but I don’t have to, because the Suri Network put together a chart of pros and cons for keeping alpacas with other types of livestock, not just goats.  Nutritional issues, parasites and diseases, behavioral challenges – we tried to cover it all.  Read more in the current issue of PurelySuri, here.

Comments are closed.

 

« | Home | »

Sunshine, vitamin D and alpacas

January 24, 2016
by: jilladmin • Alpacas, Herd health

National Show Results

March 18, 2014
by: jilladmin • Alpacas, Black, Brown, Fawn

Suri roving available for sale

February 26, 2012
by: jilladmin • Alpacas, Beige, Black, Fawn, White

MAPACA results

April 9, 2011
by: jilladmin • Accoyo Bloodlines, Alpacas, Brown, Full Peruvian, Males, White

Bluebird boxes

February 22, 2016
by: jilladmin • Uncategorized

How can you resist this face?

February 21, 2016
by: jilladmin • Uncategorized

Today’s egg-y goodness

February 1, 2016
by: jilladmin • Uncategorized

Goats!

January 31, 2016
by: jilladmin • Uncategorized

Bluebird boxes

February 22, 2016
by: jilladmin • Uncategorized

How can you resist this face?

February 21, 2016
by: jilladmin • Uncategorized

Today’s egg-y goodness

February 1, 2016
by: jilladmin • Uncategorized

Goats!

January 31, 2016
by: jilladmin • Uncategorized