I'm looking for some good barn plans (inside set up) and lessons learned on what to do and not do. The goats will not live in the barn. They will be kept outside in a fenced in area (about 5 acres). They will have access to a lean to and have access to get into the barn out of the weather. I want to use the barn for nursery, milking (non-commercial - family use only), illness, storage, etc.
Im still trying to come up with plans my self so cant help there lol. But I have soooo many lessons learned. Make it tall enough that you dont bump your head lol, Think about where the door way will be and about where the wind blows when its cold. My wind comes from the north and one of the little 'houses' opening faces north. And think about drainage. The first 2 buildings I made the water from the rain went right into the houses, its not fun digging ditches in the rain. And if your going to put the money into it do it right the first time lol. Thats all I have for now Im sure I can think of more
Build the barn as large as you can afford. Having overhangs at least 10 feet are wonderful and stops rain and snow from coming into the barn. Using corral panels to make your stalls makes it very easy to rearrange as needed.
Home to 1 Nigerian Dwarf, 1 LaMancha and 1 Nubian/LaMancha along with 3 dogs, 4 cats and 1 understanding DH
My suggestion is to be aware of what kind of natural disasters occur in your area. Two weeks after we finished building a very well constructed goat loafing shed we got hit by a Microburst (just imagine straight line winds strong enough to blow large oak trees over at the roots, throw objects over buildings, violently shake my house, etc.). Our brand new goat shed was attached to solid rock but that was not good enough. The winds ripped it from the bedrock foundation then through it over 10 foot tall trees and ripped it apart sending the pieces in all directions. Completely destroyed. Our lumber order just arrived yesterday and today we started prepping the ground for the new shelter. This new shelter will be anchored well. So before you start building, think of the worst case scenario and build for that.
We thought we had overbuilt our shed. It was well constructed and its not going anywhere was uttered several times. After our house stopped shaking but the storm was still too dangerous to go outside in, we looked out the living room window and could see the loafing shed was gone. A stack of straw had been inside the shed which topped over. I could see yellow but was too far away to tell what I was actually seeing. I never want to feel what I felt that day looking out my window. I feared the shed had simply collapsed killing all the goats inside. Thankfully no one was hurt. Build so you hopefully will never feel what I felt on August 11.
Its all Lawn Mowers fault. She showed up one day and then asked for some playmates. I now a herd of goats, two cats, a dog, and a flock of egg laying chickens, 2 roosters, and 12 baby chicks.
I totally agree about making it bigger, or at least leave the option to eventually add on when you are ready.
We only planned to have about 5 goats, we have boer/percentages and made a barn that is 16'x12' out of pallets - I have a topic on it in the link that liz gave above, I love our barn, it's not fancy but we saved a lot of $$ making it and it is very sturdy and if we had done everything close together it wouldn't have taken long to do at all.
Anyway, my goal now is the fact we have more goats than we have room for. Well okay so we have 9 now, 2 will be sold, that leaves us with 7 - the goats we have now are fine, plenty of room.
BUT, 5 of them will hopefully be bred for Jan/Feb kiddings, 3 stalls, 1 stall is full of hay.
So I have to set up temporary stalls in the sleeping area!
Therefore, I now have to build a run in shelter before the girls start kidding.
So if you plan to have 5 goats, count on housing double, plus kids if you plan to breed
Make sure you have a good way to ventilate, it can get really stinky the more they have to be inside.
Plan everything out on paper and give yourself time to check it, if you know people who have animals/barns, get an opinion, or you can even post your layout on here
If you plan to have heat in the winter, find out the safest, and cost efficiant way to do it. Safety on electric <we don't have electric in our barn, afraid if we dig we'll hit the electric to our septic tank - so when I need electric I run an extension cord out to an outdoor surge protector that is mounted in the barn wall>.
Oh, and make sure no matter what kind of floor you plan to have that it's raised a little higher than outside to help keep the risk of water pooling up into the barn during heavy rainstorms.
Make sure your doorways are wide enough for a wheel barrow to fit through, and if you have a muck pile try to make it easy access, BUT I also recommend fencing it in, or something so your goats don't climb in it. we have that problem right now, and I plan to use pallets to box it in.