Goat Folks! Your expertise please:) - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 07-11-2017, 10:03 PM Thread Starter
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Goat Folks! Your expertise please:)

Are goats of any type picky hay eaters? ANY kind of goats?

I ask that way because I don't know what kind of goats these folks bought -- all DH said is the goats are "the floppy ear kind" ----- I thought all goats ears flop when they lower them..

I ask because we gave these folks a bale of my 2016 mixed orchard grass hay that I bought for my horses. The goats ate it.

The folks then went to their local feed store and bought some nice mixed grass hay (at least I think it was mixed grass). The goats refused to do anything more than pick at it but they love it for bedding.

I thought maybe with the grass as lush as it is, they didn't want the hay when they get locked up at night. But I sent them two more bales of my 2016 hay. I told them when I use up my 2016 hay they can't have my 2017 hay because I can't afford to run out.

Darned if the goats aren't devouring my hay! The husband works with my husband and he said the goats devour my hay.

I know the feed store they buy from ---- I have bought hay from them when I've run out ---- they carry great quality hay, although it tests high in NSC so I try to buy an ample supply from my feed store to get thru to the next year's first cut.

I had no idea goats could be picky! I thought they ate anything that grows on a hillside that is too dangerous to mow.

Why the love for my hay, yet they won't eat the grass hay from the other feed store?

Thanks in advance:).

A Good Horseman Doesn't Have To Tell Anyone; The Horse Already Knows.

I CAN'T ride 'em n slide 'em. I HAVE to lead 'em n feed 'em Thnx cowchick77.
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post #2 of 3 Old 07-11-2017, 10:23 PM
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I suggest you read up a little on goats.

First, goats do not prefer grass, they are browsers, like deer. They prefer to eat shrubs, trees, vines, brambles, and many weeds that grazers do not. However the idea that "goats eat anything" is a complete and utter pile of hooey. They are the pickiest eaters of all the livestock I have ever kept. They also, in nature, eat a little of one thing and then a little of another thing and so forth. This is one reason why it is more difficult to poison goats than some other livestock.

I kept goats for about 10 years and hopefully will again. I eventually settled on feeding straight alfalfa free choice, and cut browse for them (pine, fir, and oak branches, prunings of most kinds of trees but not cherry). They were also foraged in the forest, and grudgingly, some grass pasture.

I've had them refuse grass hays that were not quite right according to them. They are very opinionated creatures.

Also, Nubians and Boers, both African-derived breeds, have large floppy ears, the better to disperse heat. Other breeds have smaller upright ears. Goats' ears don't flop unless they are a specific breed or cross of that breed. They don't 'lower' their ears like dogs.

Short horse lover
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post #3 of 3 Old 07-11-2017, 11:25 PM Thread Starter
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Well, you have told me what I need to know and would have never guessed ------goats are opinionated and picky.

They love my hay and they do not even like the great quality hay from the other feed store. I need to borrow one of them during hay season --- if the goat eats the hay then I know my horses will too:)

I will have to stress to their new owners that once these last two bales are gone, they need to find another source. There's a part of me that chuckles over this, as the goat husband has always made fun of DH about my horses being so picky and not eating just anything I thought they should eat ----------:) :)

Yessssss, there is justice, lollol.

That isn't as evil as it sounds --- DH rebuilt a transmission for Goat Husband's race car. The wife is sweet as can be and is giving me eggs from her new chickens, plus she's the vet tech where my dogs and cats go for surgeries.
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A Good Horseman Doesn't Have To Tell Anyone; The Horse Already Knows.

I CAN'T ride 'em n slide 'em. I HAVE to lead 'em n feed 'em Thnx cowchick77.
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