Herd Management

Here is some info on what we have found works best for managing our little herd. There are many MANY different ways to keep your herd healthy but here is what has been working for us!

If you are just starting out with goats it is crucial that you only purchase animals from breeders that regularly test their herds for CAE/CL. These are two diseases that can wreck havoc on your herd and are very difficult to recover from. Unfortunately these diseases are often untested for in smaller herds and I can’t stress enough the importance of being extra careful when purchasing your animals!

Wormer:

Molly’s Herbal wormer has been working very well for our animals. We live in a very dry climate and so worms aren’t a huge issue as they might be in locations that are wet for more of the year.

Weekly worm formula: Given once per week.

Monthly worm formula: Dose given once a month. We do not give to pregnant does, they remain on the weekly formula.

GI Soother – We use this whenever we have a case of “the runs” due to change in feed or stress. Works like a charm!

Supplements:

Vital Herbs – I order bulk herbs from Mountain Rose Herbs and combine them using this recipe. We add them to our loose minerals and feed free choice. Can be given in a concentrated dose for animals who are sick or stressed for immune support.

Thorvin Kelp – Can be ordered through most feed stores. We add this to our loose minerals and feed free choice.

VetRx – Immune support for any respiratory issues. Dose by putting a drop in each nostril. This has cleared up many a runny nose in our herd!

Apple Cider Vinegar – Added to waters to support immunity and keep those rumens happy.

BoSe – Selenium/Vit. E supplement. This is a MUST since we live in a very deficient area.

Copasure – Copper supplement given ever 3-4 months. The bolus sizes here are meant for cattle so we divide the dose up into smaller 0 capsule sizes. You can buy the capsules on Amazon.

SweetLix Meat Maker loose minerals – Given free choice. Goats cannot get enough minerals from a block so make sure you are feeding a loose mineral. Can be ordered by most feed stores. Sweetlix also makes a Magnum Milk version that is best if you are mainly feeding alfalfa due to the Calcium:Phosphorus ratio of the minerals. I’ve found that the Meat Maker suits our whole herd needs better since our bucks don’t get as much alfalfa as our milkers. So unless you are only feeding alfalfa I would go with the Meat Maker from the research I’ve done!

Pregnancy Support

Pregnancy Tonic – This formula has become an essential part of our pre-kidding routine. It helps prepare the doe for kidding and we continue to feed it until about a week after the doe kids. It helps support uterine health and healing. Given dry before kidding and then we make it into a “tea” to give to the doe right after she kids.

Post kidding – Right after the doe kids we give her this mixture to help with hydration and energy after labor: Preg Tonic boiled into a tea, molasses, apple cider vinegar. Our does prefer to drink it warm!