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Goat Kid Care

| 3/8/2019 10:26:00 AM


I recently bought three young goat kids that had been rejected by their mothers. Two of them were twin boys that were about 3 days old, the other was a doe kid that was about a week old. The three of them were absolutely adorable and little did I know, required frequent care. Not that I minded, they're too cute to not spend time with!

Feeding Goat Kids

Goat kids that are on the bottle (or nursing from mom) will start trying to nibble on feed pretty early.  It's ok for them to try some if they want to. Their new ruminant stomachs require time to build up the bacteria that they need to digest their food once they are older. This is probably why goat kids start experimenting with feed from an early age.

If you've got goat kids that you are bottle feeding, then you'll need a bottle and a lamb/kid nipple attachment. You can purchase these at feed stores (I found all of my goat kid needs easily at my local Tractor Supply Company store.) or order them online. If they aren't nursing from mom, then they will need goat kid milk replacer and possibly colostrum. If they didn't nurse from mom at all, they definitely need colostrum. Colostrum is the first milk that the mother produces. It's loaded with antibodies and probiotics that get the kid's immune system and digestive system up and going. Both replacer and colostrum can be found in feed stores.

Make sure that you're buying goat kid milk replacer and colostrum if you can. It's formulated for goats and has the nutrition that goat kids need. In a pinch, a multi-species replacer or colostrum could be used until goat kid supplies can be bought.

Goat Kid Supplements

Occasionally you'll experience a weak goat kid. Some veterinarians or farmers will lovingly refer to these as 'dummy' goat kids. These weak kids will act uninterested in nursing.  If this continues, eventually they will starve to death. This weak condition is due to a lack of thiamine, AKA vitamin B12. You can purchase a thiamine injection from your local veterinarian. It's a prescription and can't be bought over the counter. If you have a weak kid that looks pretty rough, I'd recommend the injection.

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