Goat Diaries, Part 2

Back to Article
Back to Article

Goat Diaries, Part 2

Emily Houdyshell, Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






For people who own farm animals, February can be the start of an exciting time. Most animals give birth in the spring, but some animals have their babies as early as February and March – and goats are some of these animals. We currently have two does who are ready to kid, or give birth, soon, and we hope to have babies from three others within the next two months. This means that preparations are being made to house the new mothers, such as cleaning up the extra huts and splitting pastures into separate areas.

But when it gets this close to kidding season, I get a bad taste of baby fever. See, we’ve had many baby goats in the time that we have goats, and many of them were raised by a bottle because they were separated from their mother or their mother wouldn’t accept them. Because of this, we’ve had a lot of experience in bottle-feeding goats.

In fact, all thirteen of the babies we got from Wisconsin were bottle-fed. They were still so young when we got them, so they needed a bottle at least three times per day. At first it was always a long and stressful process: trying to feed the kids without others getting in the way, trying to keep track of who was eating how much so we could give them the right amount, and, the most difficult, trying not to feed the same goat twice.

It took us a while to get it figured out, but by the time the kids were old enough to only get two bottles per day, we had a system. We had even figured out how to hold two bottles in each had so we could each feed four goats at once, and it usually only took about fifteen minutes. At that point, the most difficult thing we had to deal with was keeping away the two older goats who had just been weaned and still expected a bottle.

So now, every time it gets near kidding season, I start itching for a new bottle-fed baby goat. They are always so cute when they are that young and they get so excited when they see their bottle, and I have always loved getting to interact with them every day and see how they are growing. I know that it is unpractical to get a baby goat that you will need to feed regularly, and it’s usually too young to go outside on its own and needs to live inside, but really, once you’ve taken care of the first bottle-fed baby, it’s hard not to want so many more.