2018 Fall Goat Maintenance

So today was goat maintenance.  I had 14 goats to do.  This involved convincing them to get on the spool. checking their body condition, conjunctiva color and coat quality. Then trimming their hooves, noting their condition, and putting zinc sulfate on them.  Then giving them copper oxide capsules.  This is basically what I do once per month with the goats except the copper.  So we have a nice routine down and only 2-3 goats each time are not easily coaxed.

Shorty is demonstrating the process.  She is on the spool, thanks to the green pail of grain I used to get her there.  I used the garden shears and the Dr. Naylor’s bottle on the blue stand for her hooves.  The chickens are eating the hoof bits, they love them.  The copper oxide capsules are in the green container, and I used the hot dog buns behind the green pail to give these capsules.  There is a paper, pen and clipboard out of the photos where I make my notes.  Originally I had it on the blue stand but one of the goats ate part of the paper.

We have tried all kinds of things to get these capsules into the goats.  Sheep are easier than goats in many, many ways, this one included.  We have tried marshmallows, peanut butter, Karo syrup, double stuff Oreo cookies.  And only today did I discover the hot dog buns are the trick.  I gave the cattle their copper capsules in potato buns the other day so figured that something as squishable but smaller would work.  I tear them in half and them open the center to put the capsule in it.  I squish the edges together so the capsule does not come out.  I give the half bun to the goat and immediately after they take it, offer the second half.  That way if they are trying to get the capsule out, they are distracted by the prospect of another bun and forget about it and swallow it.  It worked beautifully today.  I am so glad because repeatedly trying to bolus them is not pleasant for anyone.  So once again, we are learning how to accomplish tasks easier for all involved.

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4 Responses to 2018 Fall Goat Maintenance

  1. Denise says:

    I love the “second bun” part of your new technique- very clever!

  2. Jeanne says:

    Yes!! That second “bite” idea works with dogs, too. We’ve used that for quite a while, except since my Sadie-girl passed away last year. She always needed a lot of pills.

    I wouldn’t have thought that the chickens would like to eat the hoof trimmings, though.

    • Donna says:

      It took me awhile to figure the pill thing out with the goats. So far all the other animals are easy except the cows. The chickens fight over the hoof bits. They love them.

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