Breeding a young doe, questions

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by Centermile, Oct 22, 2009.

  1. Centermile

    Centermile Junior Member

    Oct 6, 2009
    Mid California
    I'm sure this has been covered before ... but here it is again ...

    She was born in May, she’s 3/4 Alpine ¼ Togg, over 80 pounds (she’s a big girl, as is her brother).
    “People” are telling me it’s not safe to have a dry doe. Telling me things like the birth will be difficult for a 2 year old if I wait till next year to breed this one. But to tell you the truth, she is so small compared to her Mom.
    She's just about mid thigh in height on me, her mom is hip high, and I'm not short at all (for referance).

    Her Mom Ruby, I didn’t breed till she was 2 and pretty near grown. No problems birthing, just had to straighten out a front leg on the first born. Ruby did fine, giving me two fine kids.

    If I do breed this one this season, she will be about 7 to 9 months old then.
    I’d like to wait till she is bigger, but am open to your opinions. Yes I’m scared, can you tell? She's such a little thing ....

  2. AlaskaBoers

    AlaskaBoers New Member

    May 6, 2008
    Wasilla Alaska
    I've gotten does who hadnt freshend and were 4-5yrs old. they did just fine. If you dont feel comfortable breeding her, it wont be a problem, though most like to see FF udders on a yearling.

    she's old enough to be bred, and big enough, but theres nothing wrong with waiting. :thumb:

  3. KW Farms

    KW Farms Moderator Supporting Member

    Jun 21, 2008
    Wapato, WA
    That is incorrect. Breeding her later when she's two three or four isn't going to increase any risks vs. if she had kidded as a yearling or 2 yo. I personally would wait until she is near the same size as her dam before breeding. Like Alaska said...there is NO problem waiting. You should feel confident breeding her and knowing she'll do fine, not being anxious and worrying. is generally the small, young, first freshener that has problems kidding vs. an older, full grown doe.
  4. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    if you dont mind having a hay burner for another year then wait. The thing with yearlings are they put on a lot of weight easily and for show it can be a detriment to them in the show ring as well as an overweight doe is harder to get to settle. also an overweight doe will have more difficulties with birthing (hence people will say that 2 year old FF have difficult kiddings because they were overweight at breeding and never lost the weight).

    THe best thing you can do is to limit her grain intake so she doesnt gain that extra weight that is so common on yearlings. But even hay can put the weight on them so its gonna be a juggling act to keep your bred and milking does in good condition while not overfeeding your yearling -- it can be done, just might require a little ingenuity on your part.

    at 80lbs she is safe to breed, you will see her udder sooner and get her in that show ring (if you show) and she will also be earning her keep much sooner.

    Goats take 4 years to fully mature -- by 2 years they are close to their final neight so but not fully. She probably comes from large lines so thats why she looks "small" to you

    Many goats grow when pregnant -- I have seen this happen many times.
  5. sparks879

    sparks879 New Member

    Personaly i hate dry yearlings, and try to avoid having them. Its a waist in my book for me to be feeding an animal thats doing nothing but eating. Is she is big enough which it sounds as though she is i would breed her. Even if you breed her now she has another five months of growing while she is pregnant. Yearling usually hit a growth spurt about three months into their pregnancy.
    Like Stacey said, yearlings tend to get fat. They get fat pockets around their shoulders and chests that they never seem to lose.
  6. Centermile

    Centermile Junior Member

    Oct 6, 2009
    Mid California
    She’s not fat, just tall.
    I have to drive her about 80 miles to be bred, that should be fun.
    I’m leaning towards breeding her, just not all that comfortable about it.
    Her Mom gave birth to 2, 8 pound kids and she weighed 150 at the time, how can a little 100 pound doe pass something that big? She might be 120 by next May, but whose to say?

    Here she is now.


    Attached Files:

  7. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    I am a MAJOR stressee of breeding FF.....If my FF looked like your pretty girl, I wouldn't be so stressed!

    Your girl looks to be deep enough, it's width that matters I think...even with mini's. If you look at her hips from the rear and can see her easily passing an alpine kids head thru then she'll be fine, if she doesn't have the width to go with her depth, then go with your gut, :hug: If you think she'll cycle going into February you can breed her then, giving her a few more months to grow.

    If you feel uneasy about the possibility of too large of kids, look into a good feed management program for her, with mini's too much grain in the beginning and at the end off pregnancy has been found to make kids bigger than average.
  8. poppypatch

    poppypatch New Member

    May 30, 2009
    Montesano WA
    Most people I have known with standard size goats will say wait until they are at least 70 lbs to breed so would think your doe is plenty big enough. If you were breeding her to a boer that might be different but bred to a dairy buck she should be fine.
    They grow a lot during those 5 months. I have found the bred yearlings actually grow larger a lot of the time than the yearlings who were left dry.

    Poppy Patch Farm
  9. sparks879

    sparks879 New Member

    She looks big enough to me. I wouldnt breed her in feb if i were you. If you breed her in fabruary then she will have kids early july, not an ideal kid time and you definatly wont be able to breed those next year. I like to be close to weaning time by july.
  10. Look, truth is you can breed her. I have a 17in doe who is bred right now as we speak. Did I put her with a huge buck, no but she is doing fine and this will be her second kidding with us.

    However, if you do not want to breed her then don't. Simple fact is this is your choice and if it is a choice that is going to have you bitting your nails then wait. And remember, if she is a year old now maybe you will feel better in a month or two?

    If you do breed her, and I would say this for any first timer. Try to make sure the buck is not a HUGE buck. In my opionion, that is just common since in breeding but not everyone has been doing things as long as others. So keep your buck reasonable size and you will be fine. Remember too, if her body is not ready it just won't happen. Also keep in mind goats are hardier then you think. They surprise most of us at every corner.
  11. Centermile

    Centermile Junior Member

    Oct 6, 2009
    Mid California
    All of you have been so much help I can’t thank you too much.
    Even Ruby (120 pounds) was bred to a small buck. I just don’t want the risk that that breeding to a big buck entails.
    As you can tell I’m new at this whole thing, but have read a thing or two.
    And your right, goats are hardy things!
    I will continue to use small bucks, it’s not worth the risk to use the bigger Dandy Looking ones …

    I'll try to get a picture of Grace from the hind end tonight if the light holds.

  12. Please don't get me wrong you can use a larger buck on a larger doe. I am not sure about the breed you have, someone jump in, but with Myotonics so long as it is a myotonic to a myotonic you are ok. Now keep in mind why I say this is MANY people breed one smaller breed to huge boer bucks etc. In my case a smaller or medium size myotonic doe to a huge boer buck is very much so a risk on the doe. That is what I would not recommend. Some folks also breed to a huge cross, and those too are not bucks I would recommend as you do not know where the genetics will fall with smaller first timers. Now a doe that is larger with some kiddings behind her is a whole other story.

    Hope that helps.
  13. sparks879

    sparks879 New Member

    I have noticed with alpines that it really doesnt matter the size of the buck, the doe will comipinsate. And if you feed her right her kids wont be big. If you give her a lot of grain through her pregnancy her kids will be big. If she has a single its going to be bigger then twins. Even small bucks can throw big kids. I had a doe who was one thirty bred to a one fifty lb buck (small in my book) she had two 14 lb huge buck kids.
    It just depends on the genes, and the combination of the cross.
  14. Graffogefarms

    Graffogefarms Active Member

    Oct 11, 2007
    Personally, - I would wait till she gets to the one year mark. Togs and Alpines are dairy breeds. I've had one BA about a year or so ago - who broke out through the water trough hole in wall, and got bred, and it was horrible. She died pushing out a kid. Now Goldie is a small goat, and did very well with an alpine doe that she gave birth to this year. As did Heidi, but they were at least a year old. Thing is - when they are preggers, (talking as a mom) most of the nutrients are going to feed the growing foetus, and yes it will take from the mom, and her growth will slow. She may do well with the kidding, and be ok, but she may not get to her full size as a result. In UK, the farm where I got some of my goats, they don't breed till they are 18 months old, and do very well on production. AVeraging between 1600 -2200 litres per 300 day milking cycle. Personally, again - it won't hurt till At least March to breed her, let her have her "teenage" time.