Another Naughty Goat

Discussion in 'Pack and Working Goats' started by imported_ashley, Jul 21, 2013.

  1. imported_ashley

    imported_ashley New Member

    118
    Jun 8, 2011
    Nelson is now about 6 ish. I have had him for almost 3 years now. He is just naughty! He is the alpha. He beats the other goats up, which is fine, but he occasionally shows aggression at me. He has stood up on his hind legs at me, and when he does this he is MUCH bigger than me, and I'll admit, it scares me. I'm fine with horses but that is all I have experience with in the big animal dept. Nelson is well over 200 lbs and horned; I've tried the spray bottle; does not work. Now the hose helps but I don't always have it nearby. This goat attacks everything by the way...you drop the brush on the ground, he'll attack it...ramming it into the ground. He actually uprooted a tree because he would ram it for HOURS. I can't get any other goats out of the pasture without getting him out because he will ram the fence..HARD. I can't tie him up because he throws his head around and tries to attack whatever he is tied to. I'm just at a loss here. I don't want him to hurt someone. It's intimidating when he is looking down at you with his ears back and wanting to ram you. I'm not very big and he can drag me if he wants; he's got about 100 lbs on me. Any advise on getting his goat a$$ mellowed out? How do I know how much discipline is enough and not just being mean? I don't like getting physical with animals but I know that is how they communicate, but I am not opposed to it either...I've given him MANY hard kicks in the ribs and chest. It actually almost makes him madder when I kick him; he acts like it is a challenge. I don't want to hurt him or scare him. He is very social and is the first one at the gate to visit, it is just his ongoing naughtiness that is a problem. AND, this really only comes up when we are on familiar territory; he turns into a big baby when he is somewhere new. Ideas? Anyone want a new goat?;)
     
  2. ryorkies

    ryorkies New Member

    540
    May 4, 2010
    Just a thought. How often do you pack him? Maybe he is board. I have a 3 year old that likes to challenge me. (the only one I have with horns). He loves it when I throw him and hold him on the ground. Lays there and chews his cud. So does not work. A good smack on the nose with a stick helps. but.... my son took this goat on a 3 mile hike. with a 30 lb dead weight pack. (Salt)
    Did not let him rest much. And on the way back he packed him up again with all the extra gear. After 2 days out on the trail he seems to be better. I am thinking he just needs more
    excersize. Maybe that is what yours needs too.? just a thought.
     

  3. Nanno

    Nanno New Member

    850
    Aug 30, 2009
    Rye, CO
    Wow. What a stinker! Sounds to me like a shock collar would be a very good investment. If water isn't making an impression, a shock collar will. Make sure it's a good one. He needs a sharp jolt to bring him to his senses and let him know that he has no business getting in your face, bossing you around, or destroying your property whenever he's not the center of attention. Shout "NO!" when he starts to savage the fence or the other goats or whatever, and then zap him when he doesn't stop. It shouldn't take him long to stand down any time he hears the disapproval in your voice. Also, just because he doesn't like to stand tied doesn't mean you can't tie him up anyway. Tie him to something he can't destroy and then ignore his antics. Then you can work with your other goats in peace. That's a beauty of a stout post: it is untiring and has endless patience.

    I've also had some measure of success with a long horsewhip. Cuzco learned very quickly that he can't mob me when I've got a grain bucket in one hand and a whip in the other. He can't get close enough to get in my face or to attack the gate. I used to have to use it on him pretty hard, but now all I have to do is show it to him and maybe smack it on the ground a couple of times and he backs off. I was very sad that last night I had to use it on poor Lilly-goat. She's such a sweetheart that it makes me sad to ever hit her for anything, but her extreme greed is starting to become a problem, and I can't have her jumping on the door, jumping on me, and running over top of the other goats to get at the bucket in my hand. She gets so worked up that she pays no attention and will jump right in Cuzco's face to get at the grain bucket, and then I'm in danger of being smacked or trampled when Cuzco (quite understandably) goes after Lilly. I don't need to be in the middle of a goat fight, and Lilly is the prime instigator whenever food is involved. Like I say, I felt bad hitting her, but she's got to learn to give me (and the other goats) some space during feeding time.
     
  4. rifleman

    rifleman Member

    67
    May 28, 2013
    I've found that most goats aren't truly aggressive, they just need to sort out the pecking order in the herd. Some goats are a more prone to testing the leadership, and yes, a few goats are actually aggressive. If he's rearing up and not actually hitting you, he's posturing. He's basically asking you to either back down and recognize his dominance or step up and sort out who is in charge. At this point, you do not want to hit him, kick him, push him out of the way, or grab his horns. All of those things would communicate your intent to challenge him, but you absolutely can not win a butting contest with a goat. If he actually hits you, then you've done something when he's posturing that he's interpreting as a challenge instead of backing down.

    What you do want to do is to wrestle him down to the ground (think steer wrestling, but be relatively gentle). With the proper technique, you'll be able to knock a 250 lb goat to the ground with no problem. Also, be ready to get dirty when you're doing this. Without grabbing his horns, gently pull his muzzle sideways and up with both arms around his shoulder area, and sweep his legs out from under him with one of your legs. When I say "gently," I mean gently in comparison to the way you'd toss a steer or bull, but you're not picking daisies here either. At this point, you're basically going to lay/sit on him until he stops struggling to get back up. You can just talk softly to him the whole time. Depending on how much you weigh, be careful about sitting on him since you don't want to hurt him. Make sure that letting him back up is on your terms, not his. You may have to do this several times; the key is to grab him and lay him down as soon as all feet are back on the ground after rearing up at you. This is about the only way you're going to assert your dominance in the herd. Keep in mind that you are never ever ever going to win a butting contest with a goat. What this technique allows you to do is to take his strength (horns and hard head) out of the competition and use your strength (opposable thumbs) to assert your dominance.

    I hope the technique makes sense, otherwise I'll have to go provoke someone's goat into posturing at me so that I can make a YouTube video for you :)

    I really hope this helps. I've used this technique to turn several people's (including my own) "bad goats" into loving, hard-working companions. Also, I know it can be tough, but don't let him sense that you're intimidated when he rears up. If you're not ready to wrestle him down and pin him (i.e. you're already dressed for church or something) don't go into the pen/pasture with him. Every time you back down, you're just reaffirming his dominance.

    Also keep in mind that the dominance role has nothing to do with him liking or disliking you. What he "likes" is to know everyone's position in the herd.

    Let me know how it turns out and if you need more guidance.

    PS- is he intact or wethered?
     
  5. ryorkies

    ryorkies New Member

    540
    May 4, 2010
    Goat flipping works on some goats. It worked on my Sully. But Julio likes me to flip him and sit on him.
    Now when I flipped him and tied up his feet like they do in calf roping. I then stepped back away from him. He did not like that at all. LOL
     
  6. TDG-Farms

    TDG-Farms Dave (TDG Farms) S.E. Washington State

    Jul 12, 2013
    On the rare occasions that Legion has gotten to excited for food or grain and tried to bully his way through me, I have had to smack him hard on the nose. It breaks my heart though cause he at first looks shocked and then walks away and if I try to walk to him he keeps walking away... the big baby :) So now if I feel the need to pop him on the nose, I grab his horns first so we can talk about it, redo the act that got him in trouble in a calm manner and then give him scratches for doing it the good way.
     
  7. imported_ashley

    imported_ashley New Member

    118
    Jun 8, 2011
    I can't wait to try these tricks... I'll have my husband video the goat-flipping...I'm sure it will get some youtube hits!
     
  8. Huckleberry

    Huckleberry Senior Member

    225
    Mar 11, 2010
    We had a lot of issues with our Nubian/Boer, or I should say I did. He loves my husband, but got really bossy with me for awhile and ended up making contact with me. Knocked me over when my head was down and didn't see him coming and came down hard on me in the thigh another time. This was after several flips. I believe he actually does like to be flipped. He ends up giving in right away, gets a cud out, and starts to snore. He loves it:roll:

    We ended up discovering he really doesn't like being yelled at while looking into his face. We grab his mouth and force him to look up at us while yelling no. He hates it and almost looks shamed. He stops misbehaving right away. I know it sounds odd, but that's what worked.

    I think if he had horns I would have been afraid to flip him and get so aggresive with him. I wish you luck and hope you find a method that works. I agree the shock collar would be a good idea. Especially if you have a lot of time into him and have a connection that would make it hard to sell him.
     
  9. Nanno

    Nanno New Member

    850
    Aug 30, 2009
    Rye, CO
    Yeah, Cuzco doesn't really respond much to the whole flipping thing either (believe me, we've tried!). He got really mad the first time and actually tried to bite me, which was a first. Eventually he quit doing that and resigned himself to his fate. We let him go long after he calmed down, thinking he would be subdued when he got up, but he wasn't. We tried flipping him quite a few other times with varying degrees of success, but usually he would just fall asleep after a while. Once we let him up he was sometimes calm but usually not, and sometimes he was much worse. So we eventually gave up on that technique. Lucky for us the squirt gun usually works really well.

    The thing that actually works better than flipping is forced calm. When he's acting aggressive, I grab him in a firm headlock, look him in the eye, and tell him he's naughty. Then I make him lie down (I taught him to lie down on command when he was still quite young, and it comes in very handy!). Once he's down, I just sit and pet him for a while until the fire goes out of his eyes. Then I give him a cookie, pet him some more, and by the time he gets up we're friends again. I only discovered this about two years ago and I wish I'd learned a lot sooner because it really seems to work on this particular goat. There was a time when I was having to make him lie down a lot, but then he seemed to "get it," and I haven't had to lay him down in quite a long time. Phil could probably stand to work with Cuzco on this, though. Cuzco more often has dominance issues with Phil than with me.
     
  10. idahonancy

    idahonancy Member Supporting Member

    436
    Dec 13, 2008
    Idaho North
    I had good luck with a foghorn. It was an ear busting sound that my teenage goat understood quickly. He stopped rearing when I flipped him a couple of times. The second flip I used my boot to push a little goat poo on his head. He was still a teenager when he thought he would get pushy with me so I went to the boat returned with a fog horn. I waited for him to cross the line then blasted that horn at him and chased him into the barn with it. That was the last time I ever had to get serious with him. My husband had to repeat above procedures. The younger goats stood by watching and never ever tried to be brats. They are 5 now. That horn hangs in the barn today and has never been used a 2nd time. A real stubborn goat may end up deaf but I imagine most will figure it out quick.
     
  11. Nanno

    Nanno New Member

    850
    Aug 30, 2009
    Rye, CO
    The foghorn is a really good idea! Mary Twelveponies (popular and down-to-earth British horse trainer that I love) has something similar to say about horses that bite. She said if you scream like you are about to die, it scares the pants off that horse and he doesn't bite again. I also recall a time when I shot off a cap gun and Cuzco bolted into his shed and peed himself. He was actually trembling and scared of me for a good hour afterwards. I felt terrible because he hadn't been naughty beforehand and I hadn't meant to frighten him, but I can imagine if he had been naughty, he would have gotten the message "loud and clear"!
     
  12. idahonancy

    idahonancy Member Supporting Member

    436
    Dec 13, 2008
    Idaho North
    One training article I read noted how important the element of surprise was to backing down a bossy goat. That is why I thought the fog horn would work.