help me fix her feeding schedule?

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by TheMixedBag, Mar 22, 2011.

  1. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    So yeah...we know, Jenny's thin. I do plan on drying her off early, probably around May when the kids are weaned (no way I'm bottle feeding bucklings).

    HOWEVER, I'd like to not have to, so what do I need to change/add to help her gain/maintain? I know, everyone tells me a lactating doe won't gain weight, but she still looks better than when she was pregnant. Right now, she's getting 2 scoops dairy ration, 2 scoops dry beet pulp, canola oil and minerals, plus as much alfalfa as she'll eat in a day (4 huge flakes out there right now). I'll be adding better alfalfa and Calf Manna Thursday, but until then, should I increase, decrease, what?

    There is a little bit of browse, I'm sorely tempted to throw her in the front yard to eat all the dang henspit that's popped up this week.
     
  2. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    With twin bucklings, she'll be producing even more as they grow.
    When you say "scoops" aproximately how many "cups" are in the scoop?

    I use a plastic 1 cup dry measure that I got in a set at Dollar General to measure out the feed my does get, I feed each a mix of 50lbs 18% goat feed, 25lbs Calf Manna and 15lbs BOSS...Each doe gets 2 cups am and pm along with alfalfa hay, I will be giving each 1/2 cup alfalfa pellets here soon due to my dwindling hay supply.
     

  3. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    It's a 2 quart horse scoop.
     
  4. nagismom

    nagismom New Member

    125
    Sep 25, 2010
    northern ohio
    Beet pulp has a lot of fiber. I would switch that out with BOSS and add calf manna. I've also had a lot of success with diamond V yeast supplement from hoeggers. I teaspoon daily. One of my does lost condition towards the end of her pregnancy and I started feeding her 2 quarts 18% goat feed, 1 cup calf manna, 2 cups alfalfa pellets, 1 cup BOSS, and 1 heaping tsp of the yeast supp. daily. I'm happy to report that she looks much better 2 months later. Hope you get her looking better soon.
     
  5. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    wow thats a lot of feed!

    what % is your dairy feed and is it a sweet feed or a pellet? whats the brand?

    Remember you shaved her and she is a dairy goat.

    Let me see if I can find a picture of my very dairy ND doe who always looks way to skinny for anyones liking while producing milk for her kids.
     
  6. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    This is Sweet Pea just under 2 months fresh (memorial day weekend)
    [attachment=2:3nwrp87v]IMG_0473.JPG[/attachment:3nwrp87v]

    This is her one week later (june 5th)
    [attachment=1:3nwrp87v]IMG_0532.JPG[/attachment:3nwrp87v]

    One month later (July 1st)
    [attachment=0:3nwrp87v]IMG_0614.JPG[/attachment:3nwrp87v]
     

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  7. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    The feed is Busch Goat dairy ration (Chet Busch of FeatherCreek Farms makes it and sells it to the local mill), and it's sweet feed with some pellets mixed in. She doesn't like it and has taken to refusing it. It's 16%, along with the alfalfa pellets.

    I did get the Calf Manna today, about how much should I be adding with the ration, pellets and pulp?

    Your doe is still in better shape than mine, Stacey. This was at yesterday morning's milking, about 8:30am.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  8. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    Well is there another feed place where you can try their feed? Obviously she isn't getting all the nutrition she needs. Do you have a tractor supply? The Dumor feed is a good feed.

    Im not sure on the calf manna amount. Usually the tag will tell you the amount per lb.
     
  9. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    I gave her about a scoop of Calf Manna, threw in another scoop of beet pulp, and a scoop of pellets to last her the day, since there's no alfalfa left. She did eat the sweet feed, once I mixed it with Manna and the beet pulp, but she only ate about a quarter-scoop on the stand.

    She's been grazing all day, and I will say she does look better than yesterday, so it *might* be possible for her to actually gain weight while lactating.
     
  10. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    You just leave her food out there all day?

    Have you ever tried just limiting her grain intake to on the milking stand or at feeding times so that she is most interested in eating all that's given to her?
     
  11. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    I started this yesterday, when she refused to eat it all (ate the alfalfa just fine, went grazing for the rest of the day).

    I was expecting my nubian doe earlier, but she won't be here until after the 29th, and we sold Maverick the other day, which is probably why she's content with leaving it all day, as there's no competition for it anymore.
     
  12. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    Ah I see. Well my doe sweet pea isn't a grain hog but will hog the hay. So if she loves her hay try getting some alfalfa or second cutting grass hay for her (if you haven't already)
     
  13. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    We ran out of alfalfa hay this morning, there's a little bit left out there, and we won't be able to get any more until next Thursday, when I get my check.

    She does have timothy/oat hay, but she's not a fan of it either, and it's maybe an 8% hay, so it wouldn't do any good anyways. She is grazing, though, so she's apparently finding enough to keep her happy.
     
  14. tracyqh

    tracyqh New Member

    394
    Aug 9, 2010
    Ohio
    I'm having the same problem with my doe.
     
  15. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    With the amount you are feeding her she should have some more flesh on those bones. Hmmm...you could try adding a couple teaspoons of corn oil or veg. oil to her grain to provide some extra calories without adding more bulk. I can't think of anything else other than just trying to get her to consume as many calories as possible...which you are doing. Honestly, if I had a doe that was such a hard keeper, I wouldn't even deal with her.
     
  16. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    She was fine all summer and up to about mid-December, when she started losing weight. I did try canola oil, and she liked it for a bit, but but is kind of indifferent about it now.

    I think for right now what the whole problem has been is competition. Maverick got the most feed, leaving Jenny and Milky Way to pick out what they could, and now that they're both gone, she's not really sure what to do. She had always gotten her fair share of alfalfa, but grain, no.
     
  17. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    Yeah, feeding grain from a community trough doesn't always work out--the lowest on the pecking order always get shorted and they are usually the ones that need it the most. However, I still find it concerning that she got so thin--even without the extra grain. My pregnant does do not get any grain at all until about a month before kidding and they've never had trouble maintaining their weight...and certainly not to the extreme that your girl has. She probably does miss her herdmates and old routine so she may just need more time to adjust...but I also wonder if there could be something else going on.
     
  18. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    She was hit with a B vitamin complex and Ivomec Plus just in case she got into a puddle...who knows how long ago.

    It has been about 4 months since she started losing weight, add in a pregnancy with HUGE kids and genetics that will always make her look skinny, and I can see it happening.

    Just so you can see how she looked before. We got her late June, she was 16 months.
    Approx: mid-July last year. Had her for a few weeks here, in milk.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    One month later, drying off.
    [​IMG]

    August, first shave.
    [​IMG]

    November, when we thought she was still open.
    [​IMG]

    January-ish
    [​IMG]

    February
    [​IMG]

    And finally, the day we got her home, and her half brother that we had gotten as a cleanup buck when Tag died. These are both from the first day we got them home.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  19. TheMixedBag

    TheMixedBag The Hoofcare and Repro specialist

    Oct 16, 2010
    Glencoe, OK
    She feels like she's gained a little weight (with the sudden cold snap, she looks worse than ever), and I'm slowly adding back in the grain, just for an added protein boost. As of right now, her whole day's feed comes close to filling a 12lb buttercream icing bucket (the really small ones-not a 5 gallon). She eats a bit in the morning, and nibbles on it all day until just the dust and a bit of beet pulp is left.

    I think not having to milk her any more is helping, at least a little bit. Her spine is still completely visible, but the dorsal process is only sticking maybe a half-inch out rather than nearly a whole inch like it was.
     
  20. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    NJ
    you dried her off already?