experience? help! please!

Discussion in 'Goat Frenzy' started by GoatGirl333, May 19, 2010.

  1. GoatGirl333

    GoatGirl333 New Member

    4
    May 19, 2010
    first of all, hi i'm new! i have nigis and i loooove my goats!

    okay so i really need help with something. i tried to figure out the best place to put this topic and it could be nutrition, health, dairy, mini...so i figured instead of splitting it up into a bunch of smaller posts i would put it all here! so here goes!

    i need help...i just dunno what i am doing wrong...my milkers only produce maybe 2 lbs a day each, some not even that much! my does are mostly from milking lines with several generations of milking stars and dams with great udders. but theres no way i could get milking stars with 2 lbs a day! so what can i do to improve production? my does are all between 2 and 4 months fresh. the ones that i bought in milk produced more when i got them and it has dropped since they got here so it must be something i am doing or not doing or something! i feed alfalfa hay free choice. they have our whole ranch to roam during the day which has acres of herbs, grasses, weeds, trees, bushes, wild flowers, etc. nothing poisonous i make sure! then i feed a goat grain, 1 cup 2x a day when i milk! they always have shelter, fresh water, minerals and baking soda. i keep up to date on vaccinations and worm when needed including treating for cocci. whole herd is cae, cl and johnnes free.

    i milk 2x a day most days. sometimes i only get to do it once like if i go to a show or have a lot of work to do. but that is at most 1x a week. and i still get about 2lbs from that one milking. i weigh everyones milk every time and it's 2 lbs per day combined from the morning and the evening milk per doe. its crazy! what am i doing wrong? please help...i got my nigis cause everyone said that with proper care i could get around 4 lbs each a day. but now i just dunno!

    thanks!
     
  2. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    Welcome!!

    First of all, each goat is different, regardless of how well they are bred. What you are feeding them is adequate, the amount truly depends on how many times they've freshened and how many kids they've had and if you pull kids to bottlefeed and milk 2x a day from birth onward the doe won't makes as much as if she had kids on her because babies eat more than just twice a day.

    I normally measure in cups so I'm assuming you are getting about a quart a day?
    I have a doe that I am milking now, this is her 4th freshening and she's been milked for the last 3, she freshened 3/5 with a stillborn, I milked her 3 x a day for 3 weeks then backed off to 2 x a day, the first 3 weeks she was giving just under 8 cups, when I went to 2x a day, she was giving 7 cups and now at 11 weeks fresh, she's giving 6 1/2 cups, so I know that she hit her peak 2 weeks ago, I also know that I "trained" her as well as my other girls to "slack off" in August due to the fact that I dry them off for breeding in October.
    If any of your girls have been trained to be in milk for a certain period of time it will show up in their lactations with you.

    You can try to milk 3 times a day with the newly fresh doe to see if it will increase her production, it will take a week or 2 to see a difference though.
     

  3. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    I would feed them more grain -- 1 cup isnt enough to support good milk production. Mine get between 2-4 cups of grain dependign on the amount of milk they are producing.

    My grain mixture is a sweet feed, BOSS (Black Oil Sunflower Seeds) and some alfalfa pellets (to slow them down or they eat it to fast).
     
  4. Sunny Daze

    Sunny Daze New Member

    307
    May 18, 2010
    Fairplay, MD
    Did you get all these does already in milk? If so, that is a big reason for the drop. Anytime you get a doe who is already in milk and move them to a new environment with a new person milking them (and often new feed as well), they are likely going to decrease quite a bit. Some will bounce back if you are persistent but most likely you will not get them to their real potential until next freshening. Also, I agree on the 1 cup not being enough grain. I let my does eat basically as much as they can while I am milking them. Once they are milked out they come off the stand whether there is grain there or not (unless it is one that is a slower eater, needs more weight, or I am trying to increase production some). It works out well as the does that produce more take longer to milk and get the extra grain that they need. If they only eat one cup and you are done might try letting them eat a bit more before taking them off and see if it starts to make a difference. I don't know the exact amount they get but it is definitely more than a cup! I also mix alfalfa pellets with my grain mix as they will scarf it with out!
     
  5. GoatGirl333

    GoatGirl333 New Member

    4
    May 19, 2010
    they get 2 cups, but i could try 3 or 4! but on such a small goat that seems like a lot of concentrate...?
     
  6. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    they get two cups a day or two cups a milking?
     
  7. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    I believe she said they get 1 cup 2x a day. That is likely not enough, my girls get 2 cups 2x a day with milking, moms with kids get 2 1/2c twice a day due to babies sharing grain.
    I agree with upping their grain, including the alfalfa pellets if you don't have access to alfalfa hay.