Monday, December 5, 2011

Strange Chicken Treats

It rained ALL day Sunday and late into the night.  Not that I should complain; the weather guys had hinted that it may have been sleet or ice pellets at night.   I didn't have grand plans for doing things outside, but the goats tend to stay inside the barn when it rains (acid rain, you know) and make a mess of everything.  Goodness forbid they should take four steps outside to take a whiz. 

I only milked Ishtar yesterday evening.  Annette was pretty saggy and I figured I may as well start drying her up.  I'll continue milking Ishtar every day, but milk Annette every other day.

I also got their hooves trimmed.  It's much easier to trim when they've been wet for a while.  Oh, and a question for those of you that have both goats (or sheep) and chickens; are my chickens the only ones that go absolutely crazy scrambling to eat the hoof trimmings?  Talk about a major Ick-Factor.  I don't get it.  Maybe it's like some gourmet treat for poultry.

I did manage to clean out one side of the chicken coop this weekend and put down fresh bedding (wasted goat hay), but didn't get the other side cleaned.  Now all my wasted-hay-bedding is soaked so I'll have to wait a few days for it to dry out.  Or maybe the rain will have "cleaned" the hay and the goats will think it's "new & special" hay and want to eat it now.

As if.


  1. Our chickens grab the hoof trimmings and run. I just thought they were nuts. Now I am wondering what makes them such a treat.

  2. I have a question for you goat people.

    I have a friend who recently lost two 4 month old bottle calves that were penned with her goats. They were fine one day and just laying dead the next. They are wondering if the goats piled up on them to sleep and smothered them??? I think calves that big should have just jumped up and away from the pile of goats.

    BTW Carolyn, dream on about that dirty hay....once it is soiled....our animals walk away! Cows, not goats though.
    What do you all think?

  3. You tubing "trimming goat hooves" today. Got any pointers for a newbie? Note to self-don't let the chickens know! LOL

  4. Peggy, I'm glad I'm not the only one who noticed this. How weird is that???

    gld, that seems very suspicious, although like you said, who would have thought that two calves couldn't have made their way out of the goat-pile.

    So far, I haven't had tons of hay to to REAL waste as I use the goat-picked-over hay for bedding, and even that gets composted afterwards. It doesn't change the fact that i's completely MADDENING!

    hoosier girl, I use the hoof shears, usually called hoof rot shears. I guess if you really wanted to, you could file their hooves every week, but I just find it easier to trim with the shears once a month, or whenever I remember and they are already on the milk stand & can't move!

  5. Our dog likes the horse hoof trimmings! :)

  6. Oh Carolyn, thanks for the chuckle about the goats. It's a little known fact that goats are made of sugar and will actually melt if they get rained on!

    I have never heard of chickens going for hoof trimmings. But come to think of it, ours always seem to disappear and I know I'm not cleaning them up.

  7. Dogs love hoof trimmings, cow, horse, goat or sheep, gelatin is made from hooves so guess that is why they like it.

    If you have an area where you run goats (sheep) in and out, alley, gate or barn door, and you put down some rough concrete it will really cut down on your having to trim feet. I have a water trough made out of a round concrete culvert pipe with cement on inside, there was leftover concrete that was just dumped out and not smoothed out about 2 ft. around it, never have had to trim the feet on the sheep in that pasture because they wear feet down everytime they get a drink of water. The goats in pen with soft ground always have hoofs that look like elf shoes and need to be trimmed.

  8. We had our Bouvier dog, Max, when we had our dairy goats and he would go after their hoof trimmings like they were candy. Obviously getting something in them that was lacking in his diet??

  9. Our chicken eat the hooves too. I thought it was weird but now seeing all the responses it must not be. Our chicken eat snakes though too. If one finds one they start yelling and the whole group comes running and tears the snake apart - totally gross.

  10. So you're telling me that when we finally do get goats, the chickens will be right there cleaning up the trimmings for us? Gosh, aren't chickens awesome? ;)