TreeHugger / Steven Merkel





Buying Goats for a Small Farm

Herd of goats

Dana Tezarr /图像库 / Getty Images

Before buying goats, decide whether you want to raise them for yourself or in order to sell meat or milk. Keep in mind that a single doe will produce 90 quarts of fresh milk every month for 10 months of the year.Even if you're raising goats for your own use, you'll need to keep at least two so they don't get lonely: a doe and a wether, or two does.



Two Boer Goats lying at a lake

David&Micha Sheldon / Getty Images

In addition to selling goats' prolific milk, many goat farmers make cheese, goat's milk soap, and other products with it.


It's fairly easy to keep dairy goats and raise the bucks for meat since you have to breed your does to keep them in milk and roughly half of all kids are male. The Boer is the main meat breed in the United States; it is primarily raised for meat and not milk,so you may decide to breed your milking goats to Boers or another meat breed to produce crossbred kids for meat, while still keeping does for milk.



朱莉娅·戈斯 /盖蒂图像


围栏有点复杂。山羊需要一个very strong fencethat they can’t climb over, knock down, or otherwise escape from. If there is so much as a tiny hole, they will find a way to get out. They use their lips to explore their world, so if a gate latch is loose, they can wiggle it open with their lips and escape. They also chew almost everything—rope, electrical wiring, and so on, are all fair game.山羊能跳和攀爬,所以你的山羊通行e should have a climbing-proof roof.

A smooth high-tensile electrified wire is ideal if you want to take an existing fence and make it goat-proof. You can use a nonelectric fence at least 4 feet high but aim for 5 feet for active品种such as Nubians. Brace corners and gates on the outside so the goats can’t climb up. You can use wooden fencing, stock panels, a chain-link fence, or you can combine a wooden rail fence with woven wire.



Brian T. Evans / Getty Images


山羊require additional hay even when they have pasture, as they can't eat all fresh grass. You can feed hay free-choice—give them as much as they desire, up to about four pounds.Young goats and pregnant or milk-producing does require some goat "concentrate," or goat chow.肉山羊除非他们的护理或成长的孩子,否则请在干草上做得好。

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