Caring for Goats: 15 Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting Goats

Updated: ·
Posted: 09/18/2017·

This post may contain affiliate links, please read my disclosure policy.

If you’re considering adding goats to your family’s farm – read this first! A list of everything I wish I knew before we got goats & a basic guide for just starting out!

15 Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting Goats | However, it is a common misconception that goats are easy keepers - in fact, they are our most high maintenance animals. They require a close eye and lots of attention, so I thought it would be convenient to compile a list of things I wish I knew before we got goats - if you're considering getting goats, please, learn from my mistakes!  #goatcare #goats #goatlife #ranchlife #boxwoodavenue

Please note that I am not a veterinarian, and my opinions come from personal experience. Please research diligently before making decisions for your goats! Always speak with a trusted vet when possible. Remember, there is a lot of information on the internet, and a lot of it is misleading. 

Caring for Goats: 15 Things I wish I Knew Before Getting Goats

I get countless emails asking me about goat care. One of the most common questions is: what should I know as a beginner goat owner?

When we first got Elderberry and Buckwheat, I had NO idea what I was doing: their sister, Rosemary, died from Coccidia, I had never heard the term “disbudding”, and hoof care, vaccinations, and feed were a mystery to me. I simply wanted to get some goats because I thought they were cute!

Since then, I have learned so much about caring for goats: like what to feed, when to de-worm, and how to care for them during the different seasons. Goats are absolutely wonderful pets, and can add so much to your family’s farm!

However, it is a common misconception that goats are easy keepers – in fact, they are our most high maintenance animals. They require a close eye and lots of attention, so I thought it would be convenient to compile a list of things I wish I knew before we got goats – if you’re considering getting goats, please, learn from my mistakes!


The goat version of Parvo. I had no idea what coccidia was, and my first goat Rosemary died because of it.

Coccidia is a parasite found in all goats. I don’t believe that it is true that goats only die from this due to bad conditions. Since coccidia is in all goats, the levels are generally manageable for the animals; however, when goats become stressed, or the weather starts to change, Coccidia levels can rise to dangerous levels and kill the goat.

Similar to the standard vaccination for parvo, some people opt to treat all of their newborn goat kids for Coccidiosis at exactly 21 days old, and again 21 days later, due to the 21 day cycle of the parasite. You can find more information here, here, and here.

Personally, I don’t think this pre-treatment is necessary, but it’s important to keep a close eye on this! If you have a baby goat with scours (diarrhea), it could very well be Coccidia!

15 Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting Goats | However, it is a common misconception that goats are easy keepers - in fact, they are our most high maintenance animals. They require a close eye and lots of attention, so I thought it would be convenient to compile a list of things I wish I knew before we got goats - if you're considering getting goats, please, learn from my mistakes!  #goatcare #goats #goatlife #ranchlife #boxwoodavenue


Goats need (must have!) mineral supplements for their health. These supplements make up for what is lacking in your area’s soil.

While you can purchase mineral from any supply store, the best mineral supplement is one that is specifically developed for your area.

To find mineral that is specific for your area, visit your local large animal vet. They will more than likely have mineral for you to use.

Never feed a goat mineral that isn’t developed for goats. This is critical, goats are very sensitive and can suffer from toxicity easily.

Vitamin D Milk vs Milk Replacer for Bottle Babies

update spring 2018

This is my opinion after doing my own research and consulting with veterinarians, not breeders. Ultimately, you must do your own research and make the best decision for your farm.

I have read many articles stating how horrible milk replacement formulas are for bottle fed kids. It was said that milk replacer contained soy, and baby goats do not tolerate soy protein.

This is NOT true anymore. I’ve read many articles stating how horrible goat replacement formula is, and how it is almost certain to kill your baby goat. I do not believe this is true for formulas that are not specifically made for goats

If you would like to bottle feed your baby goat milk replacer, it MUST be a formula specifically formulated for goats.

While I have been told by many many breeders that vitamin D cow’s milk is the best replacement milk for bottle fed babies, I don’t necessarily believe that to be true.

Whole, raw, cow’s milk straight from a cow is your best bet (aside from raw goat’s milk from a goat)! However, that isn’t feasible for most people raising bottle babies.

I am a part of a facebook group dedicated to goat health where veterinarians are the only people allowed to give advice. I trust this group, and every single vet there agrees that vitamin D cow’s milk is not actually the best milk replacement for bottle fed babies. This is interesting to me because it contradicts what I’ve been told and what I read.

So what should you bottle feed a baby goat?

Your best bet is to get raw goat’s milk from a goat, your next best is to purchase goat’s milk from the grocery store or use a milk replacer formulated specifically for goat kids. I have chosen to use goat’s milk from the grocery store. A more cost effective option is to use formula.

So why not Vitamin D cow’s milk?

I know many will disagree with me stating that cow’s milk is the best replacement. This is true if the cow’s milk is raw.

The cow’s milk purchased at the grocery store is actually different in fat and protein content than goat’s milk naturally is. Goat’s need about 4.5% fat, and “whole” cow’s milk contains about 3.25% (sourcing from veterinary group).

Keep in mind you must use a goat specific formula, and it must be mixed correctly. Bottle feeding a baby goat is a huge time commitment. You are acting as the mom, trying to emulate nature.

Feedings should be small, often, and warmed (over a stove, never microwave). If you aren’t up to the stress of bottle feeding, purchasing a dam raised goat kid is always an option, plus that goat will probably have a better immune system!

If you would like information about a feeding schedule, click here.

You may find this scholarly article to be interesting if you are researching this subject.

If you are switching from goat’s milk to formula, do not transition with an electrolyte mixer. This information is given on goat-link, and I disagree with that method. 

15 Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting Goats | However, it is a common misconception that goats are easy keepers - in fact, they are our most high maintenance animals. They require a close eye and lots of attention, so I thought it would be convenient to compile a list of things I wish I knew before we got goats - if you're considering getting goats, please, learn from my mistakes!  #goatcare #goats #goatlife #ranchlife #boxwoodavenue


By now, you have probably realized, goats are a little more delicate than you first thought. This is true for their housing preferences too. 

Goats prefer a three sided shelter rather than an enclosed structure because they need quite a bit of ventilation to keep their lungs happy.

Goat’s go to the bathroom A LOT, and they go right where they sleep. Unlike horses, pigs, and alpacas, goats don’t select a single spot as their bathroom, they just go, and go, and go creating toxic levels of ammonia.

Since goat’s lungs are very sensitive, the ammonia along with dust particles, will irritate them, it is best to have a covered, yet open area for them to find shelter.

Note: if an enclosed area is your only option, just clean more often, and add a bit of stall freshner to the floor.

I purposefully had my goat’s house built with a large door that we keep open as much as possible for this reason. I clean their house weekly, although sometimes I go a bit longer.

Many goat keepers clean their goat’s pen daily – I have found that mine are okay to go a week or two; however, I sweep and “pick-up” every other day. The most important thing is that their bedding is dry! When the bedding looks wet and dirty, I know it’s time to clean! Goats DO NOT do well in dirty conditions, they will get sick very easily! 

Fresh Water

My friend Lylah from The Simple Farm has told me her secret to healthy happy goats is fresh water. Lots of fresh water. Remember when I said that goats go to the bathroom a lot??

They drink enough to make up for it! It is so important for goats to have a steady, clean water supply! You might be lucky enough to have a creek in your goat’s pen, but if not, you’ll find yourself refreshing and cleaning their water supply daily.

In the winter, it is important for goats to have access to warm water. On the coldest days, I bring out buckets of warm water for my boys to enjoy. This is especially important for wethers, due to their risk for urinary calculi. Goats tend to drink less water in the winter, and by providing warm water, it will help them stay hydrated during the cold months.


Goats are susceptible to parasites of all kinds, especially stomach worms, which cause anemia and death. Just like any other animal, it is important to get on a good de-worming schedule.

We de-worm in the spring and in the fall. However, it will depend upon where you live – this article is very helpful for determination! Ivomec Plus or Ivermectin injectable (from the vet) is the best form of de-wormer for our goats, click here to see why.

However wormers vary by location, my advice is to call your vet or speak with someone in your area with goats to find out which wormer they have found works best for them.

Hoof Trimming

Goat’s hooves must be trimmed every few months to keep them healthy. This is my least favorite chore – because it is a bit scary to do simply because the clippers are so sharp, and goats don’t generally tend to get excited about the task. This is a great article on how to trim your goat’s hooves.

You can’t just have one…

Goats are herd animals and depend upon each other for safety. In addition, they are actually quite unhappy when by themselves. Unless you spend countless hours with them daily, they will be lonely by themselves. When purchasing a goat, it is important to select two or more.

Wethers & Their Issues

Goats are susceptible to urinary calculi (kidney stones), especially wethers and bucks. When wethers are castrated, their urinary tract stops forming, and creates this high risk! 

Prevention is the best form of treatment: lots of fresh water, and good quality hay. It is important to only feed male goats grass hay, roughage, minerals, and necessary supplements. Grain may also be useful, but only as needed, for example: kidding mothers, recovering animals, etc… Wethers do not need typically alfalfa or grain. 

If you do feed grain / alfalfa it is important to offer a balanced formula that has the correct ratio of calcium:phosphate (2:1).

I encourage you to read about urinary calculi if you have wethers, it could save you a lot of trouble!

More about Raising Goats!

The Best Resources for Goat Care

Raising Goats: Keeping the Barn Clean

15 Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting Goats | However, it is a common misconception that goats are easy keepers - in fact, they are our most high maintenance animals. They require a close eye and lots of attention, so I thought it would be convenient to compile a list of things I wish I knew before we got goats - if you're considering getting goats, please, learn from my mistakes!  #goatcare #goats #goatlife #ranchlife #boxwoodavenue

Grain & Alfalfa

This is so important, and many people do not know this: wethers do not tolerate alfalfa or high levels of grain well (as I mentioned above). If you are raising a show goat, meat goat, or doe – you will need to develop a specific feeding regimen that will probably include rations of alfalfa and grain; however, it is my personal opinion that wethers should not be fed alfalfa or grain due to their risk of kidney stones and because they have little physical needs. (Although mineral supplements are necessary.)

However, does (female goats) do not carry this risk and can enjoy alfalfa and grain. Alfalfa and grain can be useful for pregnant or nursing does, but are not entirely necessary.

Free Range Abuse

Goats don’t have a brain trigger that tells them when they’ve eaten too much. Since goats can so easily bloat, it’s important to monitor how much ‘free range’ time your goats are getting.

Goats are like deer rather than cattle, and will find the juiciest, yummiest brush to eat first. As you can imagine, an entire afternoon eating yummy greenery will result in a stomach ache, bloat, and possibly overeating disease.


Goats are ruminants that rely on live bacteria in the stomach to digest their food. Sometimes this bacteria is disrupted and needs to be replenished: weather changes, antibiotics, stress… Anytime your goat experiences something out of the norm, it’s probably a safe bet to give them some pro-biotics. You can purchase a syringe of it, and give orally as needed.

Wool & Winter Weather

In the winter, goats grow their own wool (or cashmere) undercoats to keep them warm. This, in addition to lots of grass hay, is generally enough to keep goats warm through the coldest temperatures, provided that they have proper shelter.

Goats will require a safe place from wind, rain, and snow with lots of dry straw. Their three sided shelter may need a bit more structure during these months to protect them from the elements. Ventilation is good, but drafts are bad because goats are very susceptible to pneumonia.

In extreme situations you may find man-made coats necessary. Personally, only one of my goats needs additional care. Elderberry grows a very strong winter coat; however, Buckwheat does not grow as thick of a coat, and I often find him shivering when Elderberry is completely fine.

Many people will tell you not to use a man-made coat because it will hinder the goat’s natural cashmere undercoat, but you will have to figure out what works best for your animals. For me, a coat is only necessary at nighttime for Buckwheat when the weather is below 5 degrees.

For more information, read this.

15 Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting Goats | However, it is a common misconception that goats are easy keepers - in fact, they are our most high maintenance animals. They require a close eye and lots of attention, so I thought it would be convenient to compile a list of things I wish I knew before we got goats - if you're considering getting goats, please, learn from my mistakes!  #goatcare #goats #goatlife #ranchlife #boxwoodavenue

Disbudding & Dehorning

Disbudding and dehorning of your goat is your own personal choice. Many find it cruel to do and advocate against it (against disbudding: here | for disbudding: here). However, I opted to have my goats disbudded.

Disbudding happens when the goat is about a week old, a vet uses a hot iron to burn the base of the horn to prevent it from ever growing. It isn’t always successful, and ‘scurs’ may grow as the goat gets older.

Dehorning happens when the goat is older – as they do for cattle, the horn is cut at the base. Generally there is quite a bit of bleeding and it is very painful.

There is also a cream option for use, however the cream is very dangerous and has the potential to blind the goat.

If you prefer your goats to not have horns, try purchasing a naturally polled animal, as Elderberry was. If you aren’t able, then disbudding is the next best option, although it is still painful for the animal and not always 100% successful. You should do this within the first week of life. Typically goats will come already disbudded.

Antibiotics to Keep on Hand

A goat’s normal temperature is 103 degrees F. If you suspect that your goat is sick, the very first thing you should do is take its temperature. To diagnose illness, click here. In general, I like to keep these medications on hand for quick treatment – it always seems that our goats get sick, at night, on a holiday, or on a Sunday!

Albon (Sulfadimethoxazine) • C&D Anti Toxin • CD/T Vaccine • De-Wormer • Corrid Powder • Vitamin B and C • Electrolytes • LA200

Bonus Point: Baking Soda

I have posted videos on social media of the goats enjoying baking soda, and every time I do, I get loads of questions about it! How much is too much? Do you give it to them every day? Can all breeds of goats have baking soda? Etc…

From what I have researched, all goats can enjoy baking soda, and similar to minerals, goats will eat baking soda free-choice, consuming as much, or as little, as they need. Baking soda is known to keep the rumen’s pH in balance and aid in digestion.

Do not give baking soda in a bottle or force baking soda. The goat will determine if they need or want it. Leave it out in a little dish for them to access if desired.

Baking Soda is known as an old timer’s bloat prevention trick. I haven’t found any studies done on baking soda proving its effectiveness. However, I have used it for years and it never fails to kick start the rumen whenever my goats eat some. I can literally hear it working.

I leave it out as a little insurance policy. Sometimes my goats eat it, sometimes they don’t, but it makes me feel better knowing it’s there.

Note: When I started offering mineral free choice, my goats became much less interested in the baking soda. I think goats have good instincts for this sort of thing (not so much when it comes to getting stuck in a fence or eating too many apples), and they will only eat as much as they need, but if you notice a goat eating an excessive amount of mineral or baking soda, remove it immediately and consult your vet!

I hope you have found this information useful! This is a basic list of general information that I think every new goat owner will appreciate having on hand. Goats are absolutely wonderful pets, in fact, they are my favorite pet! I consider my time with them therapeutic, and I think you will love adding them to your family. For a list of goat care resources, click here

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  1. I have a large horse pasture and am considering a pair of goats to help w weed co trol. Will tethers keep them in the horse fence?

    • it depends on what kind of fence you have. since goats are expert escape artists, the fence might not keep them in. so tethers might be a good option.

  2. I must be a lucky goat rancher. A friend told me goats are as easy to raise as cats. Just feed them and have a water trough where they can reach it. That advice has worked for the last twenty years. I keep my herd +/- 75 and sell them when I get more. My goats rarely get sick but when they do I call my vet for advice. Most medicine, including injectables, I administer myself. I worm them when the grass greens up or it rains a lot, but I do that by buying wormer feed or drenching the wormy ones with Cydectin. I agree, closed barns are not healthy for goats, but they are good shelter for sick or injured goats. They otherwise shelter under open horse shelters or in an old Quonset hut with no doors on it.

    Goats are not hard to raise and they are nice to have around. They trim my fences, trees and pastures but they do not kill the grass roots. And if I burn the needles off, they love my prickly pear cactus.

    In the end, I would say goats are as easy to raise as cats.

  3. Thank you SO much for posting this! We are adopting our first goats, and this was a huge help. So many decisions to make, and so much conflicting info out there. This was probably one of the most helpful articles I’ve found to help me give my 2 month old wethers the best life I can. Thanks again!

  4. I implement small portion of Baking Soda / & Granular Mineral in w / MY Daily grain Mixture Feed & They consume it everyday. ALWAYS feed the Grain & Mixture in the Morining hrs. & ONLY once a day !!! They seem to do Fine & Keep in Nice shape This way & Feed Hay Roughage to them

  5. Thank you for the informative article. Got four kids a couple months age (3 does and 1 whether). Bottle fed the runt of triplets for a couple of weeks but fully weaned and growing now. You gave me comfort on most of the things I’ve been doing, still need to figure out hoof trimming. Good info presented well!

  6. Thanks for this informative article. However, a couple of words are missing from “However, * does do not carry this risk and ** can enjoy alfalfa and grain. Alfalfa and grain can be useful for pregnant or nursing does.”. Without * and ** the first sentence is meaningless.

  7. I’ve been trying to find a vet to look at our goat. He is losing weight and hair. We have wormed him but we need help please

  8. This was very helpful…thankyou so much for sharing. I have tripplets baby goats about a month old that have been orphaned. Wish I knew all this before.thanks again.

  9. Hi ya im
    Looking at getting baby goats would u have a list of thing i could purchase they are for pets for out garden thanks

  10. Thanks! I loved the article.I too thought goats were cute and I wanted a chemically free way to get rid of weeds. I just bought my first to goat Saturday at auction. You answered a lot of my questions.

  11. Thanks for the info I’m from Jamaica Goats took care of themselves,we didn’t have to deworm them but I’m getting it.

  12. thanks so much for all this information! I’m getting my first 3 goats next month, our family is super excited! All this information has been super helpful.

  13. Thank you, I’ve learned a lot. We just had two baby goats, so this is very new to use. I will keep this info. on hand.

  14. My two goats luckily survived a dog attack yesterday evening. One goat did not receive any trauma and the other received 4 superficial scratches along it’s sides. However, almost 24 hours later, they still seem stressed by not eating or drinking and laying down in their shelter. Panting has subsided but they continue to shake. What else can I do? They are together in their shelter with minimal stimulation.

    • Hello Charis, I am sorry for just getting to this comment. I hope your babies are doing okay? When there is a dog attack, goats almost always go into shock, and the most important thing you can do is keep them calm and warm. The FB group “Goat Vet Central” is very helpful for this type of emergency – you can search for it on FB. I hope that is helpful.

  15. We are new to goats, and I’d love your insight. Can… or should, a 10 day old and a 7 week old be spending the night together in an enclosed but well ventilated barn? Both male, and spend the days together in their pasture. Oh, and nights are hanging around 30 to 36 degrees.

  16. Hello, hope you can help? we are getting a boer goat as a companion for my horse. Do I need to get 2 goats? Would prefer not too

    • If the goat is a companion to a horse, I wouldn’t worry about getting a second goat – he will probably just think the horse is his herd mate haha! Have fun! :)

  17. Hello! Hope you can help…we rescued 2 female goats 15 years ago, they’ve been by themselves and last night one died. Not sure what to do—will the other pass if alone? we don’t want any other goats…

    • I would get another goat for sure. your other doe might become very lonely, and even die if you don’t. good luck, though.

  18. A friend of mine has his goat on this land and it is touch-and-go. He is the only goat with two ducks or company. We give Zippy the goat lots of attention. She got diarrhea and we don’t know why we thought maybe it was something we gave him but after reading your article I think it might be the goat parvo I can’t pronounce it. But this article helped a lot and I will refer to it often I’m taking him baking soda in a couple of minutes thank you for that tip

  19. I bought 2 young sister goats from a friend to save them from the butcher. Now they are fully grown with large , dangerous horns. They have never been bred but one of the goats bags is hugely distended. I have read of witches milk but this problem is going on for a long time. I have no way of holding the goat for milking. Other than looking very bad it does not seem to cause her any grief. The other goat has no symptoms, Does anyone have any advice?

  20. Good advise. I am reading because i bought my gf one in Loas. She now has 6.
    Her brother takes care of them but i was interested in their general wellfare. I can ask a few questiins and offer some axvice now. Many Thanks.

  21. I have a baby Dwarf Nigerian goat 4 . 5 weeks old, how much baking soda do I give him for bloating?

    • Hi Tonya, I would give your vet a call, they can typically consult over the phone. Baking soda may help, as a note: do not mix it with water. Do not put it in milk or in a bottle. Do not force feed it. If he wants to nibble at some, that should be fine. Again, I would ask your vet first, as I am not a vet. I think the more important question is why did he bloat? That way you can prevent it from happening again. Too much milk? Rich feed? I’m so sorry you’re having to deal with that! A tip to help him get a burp is to stand in front of him and lift his two front legs up and act as if you’re giving him a hug. Hang in there.

  22. This is a great article and covers a good information about goats.
    Goats are great animals with lively personalities.
    Thank you for putting this out and sharing your experience.

  23. We have had two goats for eight years and they have been a joy and best friends. Sadly one passed away last week. The other is sad. He is a BIG goat, with horns and boisterous. I believe being a herd animal he needs another friend, but would a baby be safe? Is he likely to hurt of resent it joining his paddock / stable?

  24. Recently moved to mountain house, with now 4 goats. What type is a Male long haired coat called. Does he need brushing.?
    2. What is fed as a treat?
    3. How to stop bad behavior like aggressive horn butting?

    • Hello! How fun! Mine enjoy veggie scraps and fruit! Strawberries especially! If you have one that is aggressive, chance are, treats and food will make it worse. I am not sure how to treat – they’re farm animals at the end of the day with natural instincts to develop a “pecking order”, I bet you have an alpha goat on your hands :( who is trying to make his dominance known!

  25. I hope this a question that won’t cause any problems. In my mail tonight I received a note from a neighbor asking my permission for them to include some of my property with theirs so that when they “rent goats” to clear brush and poison ivy from the line of their property so that the goats clear a small piece of my property along with theirs. I have a fence around my yard, it has a good margin outside that is grass and then I left up trees, BlackBerry bushes and poison ivy unfortunately which along with normal weeds, they gave hired a local person with goats to comep and eat the brush. My thought was ok, I am not paying for it go for it.
    I do have a dog. A shetland sheepdog. Hint on my not so small sheltie. He is 55lbs + and naturally tries to herd anything. He herds by running back and forth and barking, and I mean barking. I don’t want to have him frighten, or do anything, to hurt the goats while in the yard next to my yard. I cant keep hi. Inside or on a leash for however long they will have the goats in their yard. But he is a non-stop barker. Thank you so very much for this great piece on owning goats. Who knew they would need so much care. They are beautiful sweet animals, but the amount of work to keep them alive, wow! Any info would be appreciated. And feel free to delete this after you give me any info since it really isnt on topic. You just seemed caring enough to be completely honest with me. Thanks.

    • Hello Jeanette – Last time my vet was here, I asked her about this since I do get a lot of questions about it! She told me this: baking soda is going to help balance the rumen out if it becomes too acidic, since it is a base. It reacts by releasing carbon dioxide. Anyways – she said the only time you really *need* it is when your goats are on “hot” feed, meaning grain or alfalfa (in a large production type facility or breeding). So this leads me to conclude that you really don’t need to give it to them. If it makes you feel better having it out, it is safe, but just leave it in a small dish for them to eat it only if they want to – don’t force feed. Hope that’s helpful!

  26. Thanks for making it seem terrible to own a goat. After reading this,I feel like if I sneeze in the wrong direction, I will kill my goat.

    • Hi Cory – I don’t mean to scare anyone off, but I do want to keep it realistic. Goats are definitely not as easy of keepers as most believe. :( But once you establish a good routine, they’re pretty easy to care for! It’s the learning curve that’s the hard thing! Hoping my post can help keep that curve to a minimum! :)

  27. Thank you I just got two baby goats and didn’t know how to take care of them prob early. I was wondering do goats eat weed and how much should I let them eat?

    • I am guessing your comment was auto corrected to “weed” rather than “weeds” and I don’t think you mean “weed” as in what is legal in CA and CO?? Goats can eat weeds yes! However, I would watch how much they have access to if they’ve never free ranged before. They could potentially bloat. I’d just call your vet and consult them before turning yours out in case there are poisonous plants where you live.

  28. I would be afraid to use goat milk from the grocery store. How would you know if the goat(s) it came from were CAE negative? Maybe that is a dumb question. I am pretty new to goats. Our first doe is due next month and we found out after breeding that she is CAE positive.

    Also question on the baking soda. What if you out Apple Cider Vinegar in your water for algae, wouldn’t it be bad to give them Baking Soda?

    • Hello!! Your question got me thinking :) I discovered that the pasteurization process kills CAE / bacteria so if you do have a CAE infected goat, you could feed the babies goat’s milk from the store in order to prevent the babies from becoming infected. IE: the store bought goat’s milk will not transmit disease because it has been pasteurized. Hope that helps!

  29. I have a friend whose Doe had triplet babies a month ago. One of the babies was really crying a lot yesterday so she got some cows milk for him and he drink it from a bowl. Since she posted about that 2 people have said, NEVER,NEVER feed milk to a kid from a bowl or pain but no one said why. Is this true. Why is it bad?

    • It is true – the way they open their throats when they are bottle fed is different than when they open their throats while looking down (drinking from a bowl). It’s important to feed them above their head so that they are looking up at the sky. This helps the milk go to the right part of their body!

  30. Baking soda is never okay! We were giving our goat baking soda for bloat, but the vet said it could actually blow up their stomach!

    • Thank you so much Chloe. This is really a loaded article. I learnt a lot.
      Please I want to know if I can use antibiotics for my two weeks old baby goat.

    • Interesting, I’ve read and heard the opposite. I don’t give it to mine anymore because they aren’t interested. I’m going to ask my vet to see her opinion! Thanks for the heads up! I’ll update here when I hear back!

  31. Hi,
    I just started with goats about 3 months ago in Ohio.
    What is the best bedding to use? For smell? Comfort? Cleaning?

    Thank you!

  32. Thank you for this helpful and informative post Chloe! I jumped into adopting three goat babies when they were 2-weeks old and, like you, I had a lot to learn! I read everything I could find about goat care and you are right…so many variations of opinions! I’m happy to report that my three goat babies (2 does and 1 whether) are happy and healthy and will be celebrating their third birthdays this June. I was lucky to find a resource for fresh, raw goat milk just 5 miles from my home so I bottle fed them 4 times a day for three months and it was a huge commitment but sooo rewarding! Your article gave me some additional info that was very helpful. Even three years in I’m still learning. Thank you for sharing your tips, tricks, and great goat keeping experience with us!

    • Hi Cathy, how sweet! Will you be throwing them a birthday party? ;) You are VERY lucky!!! That is wonderful! Yep, a huge commitment, many don’t realize when they get bottle babies how much time it takes to feed them! Thanks for stopping by! xo Chloe

        • Hi Cat! Absolutely vaccinate. I am a proponent of proper vaccinations CD&T and worming. We typically do this each spring once the nasty bugs wake up after winter. I also do fecal samples late summer to make sure that more de-worming isn’t necessary. Only worm when necessary, but definitely keep a close eye on it as it can take down a goat pretty quickly. Check eyes and lips to make sure they aren’t becoming pale/white which is a sign of anemia most likely due to worms. Hope this helps!

  33. Thanks for this post! I used to think I wanted goats but maybe not. They seem very fragile! Lol, I wish our horses pooped in one spot! Can I send ours your way so your herd can teach ours how to be cleaner equines?

    • lol! I suppose ours don’t always poop in the same spot, but let me tell ya, goats just go everywhere! haha! They are little poop machines!

  34. I grew up with goats. They are my favourite animal and I miss them! We always had a huge salt block out for our goats that they loved. My dad also built a play structure for them to climb as they love to play up high. We used elastic bands on their horns. As they started to grow the horns would be cut off eventually with the elastic bands. When we got our pygmy goats, we took them to our vet and he removed their horns under anaesthetic. As they loved to buck the little kids in my mom’s daycare. Such a great post and reminded me of my beautiful goats!
    Hugs, Jamie

    • Hi Jamie, I too love goats the most ;)! They are so sweet! Butternut had to have one of her horns removed via surgery, it was interesting to see down through her sinus cavity and I was so glad she didn’t get an infection!