Goat Vegetation Goats Dietary

Dietary preferences

browsed cedar

It is necessary for goats to consume a plant in order to control it. Therefore, the question is, “Will goats eat the plant or target species?” This is not a simple question to answer because many factors affect what plant species a goat will consume.

The greatest factor in determining what plant species a goat consumes is what they learned to eat from their mothers. Goats can also learn from their peers, although to a much lesser extent. …

Goat Nutrition Nutrients


Nutrients are defined as substances that aid in the support of life. The six classes of nutrients include protein, carbohydrate, fat, vitamins, minerals, and water. Nutrients are often classified as organic (carbon-containing) or inorganic (minerals).

Energy is not considered a nutrient but can be derived from the breakdown of several nutrients, including fat, protein, and both simple and complex carbohydrates. Energy is required to propel the biochemical processes that are necessary to sustain life. A deficiency of energy will …

Goat Nutrition GI tract

The ruminant digestive system

Digestive tract of the goat.

Goats are ruminants, animals with a four-compartment stomach, as are cattle, sheep and deer. The compartments are the reticulum, rumen, omasum and abomasum, or true stomach. Monogastric or simple-stomached animals such as humans, dogs and cats consume food that undergoes acidic breakdown in the stomach and enzymatic digestion in the small intestine, where most nutrients are absorbed. In ruminants, feed first undergoes microbial digestion in the reticulum and rumen — together, …

Goat Winter Feeding of Does

Winter feeding of does

Early to mid-winter is a time when does should be in early pregnancy. The goal of a wintering program is to economically provide the necessary nutrients to help them maintain a reasonable body condition, lose no weight and keep warm. In general, most wintering programs consist of both forage and supplement components. The forage component can consist of hay, stockpiled forage or a cheap byproduct roughage feed. The supplement usually contains energy, protein, and often vitamins …

Goat Feeding Replacement Bucks and Does

Feeding replacement bucks and does

Replacement bucks and does must gain sufficient weight from weaning to breeding to be adequately large and sexually mature. A Spanish doe weaned at 12 weeks of age would be expected to weigh 40 pounds and gain 5 pounds per month to achieve a minimum breeding size of 60 pounds at 7 months of age. A Boer doe weaned at 12 weeks of age would be expected to weigh 50 pounds and would need to …

Goat Feeding the Lactating Doe

Feeding the lactating doe

The lactating doe has very high nutrient requirements. Calculate the requirements for a 4-year-old, 110-pound Boer cross doe nursing twins in week four of lactation. When lactating is selected under question #2 on the Langston Interactive Nutrient Calculator (LINC), a form drops down. Select litter size (twins), week of lactation (4), and age at kidding (4). The program then predicts production of 4.5 pounds of milk per day with 3.6 percent fat and 3.3 …

Goat Feeding Bucks

Feeding bucks

Boer buck.

Mature bucks can obtain most of their nutrients from pasture. However, yearling and 2-year-old bucks have greater nutrient requirements since they are still growing. Bucks need to be in good body condition, with a body condition score (BCS) greater than 3, before the breeding season because feed intake may be relatively low during that time, resulting in weight loss. Thus, body condition should be evaluated three months before the breeding season. Decisions can then be made on the …

Goat Feeding Different Classes

Feeding Different Classes of Goats

The feeding suggestions that follow are oriented to commercial goat producers. Purebred, show and companion animals are often fed more for larger frames and better body condition, but excessive body condition can be deleterious to the animal health.


Goat Interactive Nutrient Calculator

Using the Langston University

Interactive Nutrient Calculator

Practical goat nutrition involves providing sufficient nutrients for a desired level of productivity (milk, meat, or kids) at a reasonable cost. Nutrients are supplied via a combination of pastures, supplements, and other feedstuffs; adequate amounts are required for animals to produce at an economically viable level. For commercial meat goat production, the economics of nutrition are of paramount importance due to their great impact on cost of production and subsequent profit. For show, …