Thursday, August 9, 2012

Moo-Moo Pickles

Pickles is six weeks old today.

Since we've had her in with the rest of the herd, she basically stays in the pen with them most of the day.  But she long ago figured out that she can squeeze through the cattle panel enclosure so I'll occasionally find her outside the pen munching on the greenery.  Thank goodness she hasn't figured out that there are fruit trees and my front garden that she can get to.  She's starting to have a bit of trouble getting herself through the panels, so hopefully she'll soon be confined to the goat pen and I won't have to worry about her destroying my gardens.  As if there were much left to be destroyed after the chicken and armadillo onslaught.

Pickles is still sucking down the milk like crazy.  I weighed her in at twenty-seven pound this morning before her first feeding.

Her last feeding is between 11pm and Midnight and then only again in the morning, usually around 6 am.  At least I'm getting some uninterrupted sleep now.  During the day I'll feed her about 16 ounces every 3 - 4 hours and she sucks the bottle dry.  She's eating hay and grass, although I haven't seen her chewing her cud yet.  She gets her own little bowl of grain when the other goats are penned up for milking / feeding time and she's been snacking on it, but not attacking the food like the older goats do.

I want her to grow big and strong (and meaty!!), and I'm wondering if I should increase her milk feedings or just keep them as is and let her get hungry so she eats more hay/grass and grain.  She's got at least another two weeks of bottle feedings before I start weaning her.  But I'm considering continuing giving her bottles during the day a full month past the typical eight week weaning period.  

What say you, oh keepers of goats?  Do I keep letting her drink until I'm sick of bottle feeding her or is there some detrimental side-effect of keeping a kid on milk past 12 weeks?  I kept Nettie's kids on her last year well past twelve weeks and they seemed to be bigger than the ones I weaned / sold at eight weeks.

Or it could just be that I didn't see those kids at twelve weeks 'cause I sold them. 

Any suggestions from the goat gallery?


  1. Keep on milke longer. We bottle feed or then bucket feed calves and goats at least 3 months. Better immune sytems

  2. What a cutie, and trouble maker :)

  3. I have lots of opinions, but none of them are backed by anything substantial - like logic. So I won't opine. She is a solid little thing, isn't she? Of course, that is the idea with a Boer goat. Won't she be surprised when she can't fit through the cattle panels?

  4. If you don't mind feeding her milk, do it. It won't hurt her. She will start eating more and more grain. We usually keep the babies on their Moms for around three months. Actually we let the moms do the weaning. That is unless they are a buckling. Then we take those out a little before 3 months. Don't want any unexpected little kids. lol. She's looking good!

  5. CR, She is adorable and quick about sneaking out. Hopefully with all the milk she's drinking, she will get a little larger and can't fit through the panels. For her sake I hope she doesn't get stuck.

  6. It won't hurt to keep her on milk, her maaa probably would. Won't it be nice when the little stinker can't fit through the fence anymore?! (That goes for mine too! LOL!!)

  7. She is getting so big! I know nothing about goats, so I will be using you as a goat raising tutorial :)