Today we delivered a couple of our goats to a new home, along with two other goats we agreed to transport from a friend’s farm. While this trip is still fresh in my mind, it’s a good time to mention some tips for you when you re-home goats to a new farm.
1. Make sure expectations are clear and reasonable before goats are received
Every buyer has different goals when they purchase goats for the first time. If you are a new goat buyer, make certain you understand the responsibilities that come with raising goats. Taking proper care of goats is a lot more involved that having to maintain most house pets like cats and dogs. Study as much as you can before finally deciding to buy goats for the first time. And be prepared to make a long term commitment before you take the first step.
2. Get the new home prepared before the goats arrive
Prior to the day your new goats arrive, you will need to make sure you have acceptable food, water and shelter ready to go beforehand. People often think that goats can eat anything. But some breeds, such as Nigerian Dwarf goats, can be somewhat selective in what they will eat, and can easily get sick if they eat the wrong things. Talk to the person you are buying the goats from and find out what your new goats are accustomed to eating. Study up on they typical diet. Make sure you have a good supply of fresh water that will be readily available to your new goats on a daily basis. Also, goats hate to get wet, so make sure they have a shelter available where they can at least get out of the rain and stay dry. And keep in mind that goats are herd animals, and don’t like to be alone. Don’t just buy one goat. You will want to be sure to have two or more.
3. Be flexible and keep an open mind when the goats arrive
Try not to have any certain expectations in mind when you receive your new goats. For example, you may want them to hang out in a certain part of the area you have prepared for them, but they may decide they like a different area instead. Or you may plan to feed them a certain type of food, but they decide they prefer something different. No matter what, it’s best to wait and see how things flow naturally with your new goats, and just adjust as you go along.
4. Be patient and allow plenty of time for the goats to adjust
Your new goats will probably be little nervous and jumpy when they first arrive. Remember, they have just been taken away from their home and herd that they have been accustomed to, which would be challenging for anyone. However, goats are pretty adaptable and as long as they have good food, water, shelter and other goats, they will adjust to their new home quickly and settle down in no time at all. In the meantime, until they adjust and calm down, just be patient and understanding.
5. Establish a regular schedule of care and maintenance for you new goats
Remember that your new goats need a regular schedule of proper feeding, hydration, protection from the elements and socialization with fellow goats to stay healthy and happy. You will need to make their care a regular part of your daily routine to be successful raising goats. And be sure to keep a close eye on them. If anything ever seems to be out of the norm, it could be a sign of illness and you will want the help of a qualified veterinarian to treat them.
6. Relax and have fun
Involve the whole family and your friends in the life of your new goats. Goats are funny, entertaining creatures. They may seem to require a lot of work. But if you take care of them properly, the rewards are more than worth it.