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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I may wether one of my bucklings, he will either be sold or become a wether. I was thinking of keeping him and if I do, I thought I might try my hand at teaching him to pull a goat cart. How hard are they to train? How expensive is the cart and harness and how much can a Nubian Wether safely pull?
 

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I do 't know. It is something I always wanted to do. I am sure some will learn a lot faster the others.
 

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Trainability really depends on the goat... More out-going friendly goats that just love to be in your lap/face and want to follow you every where make the best working aniamls because they are more willing/apt to trust you.

Starting training when the goats are babies is best. Many people start by using a dog harness to get their goats accustomed to straps around their bodies. Time, patience and lots of treats really is all it takes.

As far as weight goes, it really depends on your goat. His size, weight, muscle tone, all play a huge role in his working ability. Miniature horse carts are often used with goats, but some are not well designed for goats or are just too heavy..

Horses are better designed for pulling than a narrow bodied little goat, so a good fitting harness and light weight cart are imperitive for goats. On the subject of harnesses...There aren't a whole lot of people making driving harnesses for goats, so again you find yourself using equipment intended for horses.

If you are thinking about a traditional goat cart (no rider) you will still need a good fitting harness, and you can use anything from a modified garden cart, red rider wagon, or small wooden cart to carry light weight equipment, hay portions, or make a mini parade float for your local events, etc.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
well my friendliest buckling (the cream one) is probably staying the buck and my other one will probably be wethered. The wether would be the one I wanted to train to pull. My black buckling is friendly too, but is a little more stand offish. They are Nubians, so they should be fairly large goats when grown. The black one is pretty muscular more so than the cream colored one. I would like to get the cart with three wheels so the goat doesn't have to support the load and pull, just pull .
I have trained horses somewhat, I trained my quarter horse to ground drive, but never put a wagon or cart behind him. Just wondered how goats are in temperament to train, like donkeys and mules are more stubborn than horses, but also not as fearful and skittish. I wondered how goats compare
 

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Goats I would say are a cross between and donkey and a dog for temperament... They are personable, and if they are friendly toward people are willing to work for a treat...but at the same time are individuals.

They are smart, and like donkeys figure you out before you have them, figured out... They are keen to pick up on your short commings and if they feel they are being "forced" will lock down. Or if they think they can get away with anything-- will take full advantage...They don't perform well with long rigorous/ reptitive training sessions.

Short sessions built on consistancy that make the goat think it was "his choice" to do what you asked are the way to go. You always want to end on a good note. And go slow. It can take a few years to have a perfectly sound cart trained goat. And even when they are trained are always testing you, just to see if YOU are on top of everything....

As far as being skittish... Again, depends on the goat, BUT also depends on how much socialization/ desensitization training you put into them.
A goat that is exposed to bags floating across the street, bells, bikes, dogs barking, tarps, lines on the road, change in texture of the ground, puddles, etc. will fair much better than a goat trained in a private arena away from common distractions/ "scary things" that you may encounter on a cruise around the neighborhood, or in a local event.

Also goats are slower to mature than other animals, most goats don't reach their peak working condition until they are five. And until that time you want to avoid stressing their bodies...just like in horses you don't want to cause injuries due to developmental issues later on down the road.

There have been a few good books published recently on training goats for working. I would invest in one to keep around for reference, and better detail on training methods.
 

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I have a friend who rescues wethers and trains them to pull. He had one he picked to train because of his build. They tried and tried and tried, but the goat was a real booger to work with. Then the farmer noticed the wether's slightly smaller brother was watching everything they did with great interest. He took him and put a harness on him and had him completely trained in only a week or two. The fella had learned most of the commands, etc by just watching! Turns out he LOVES to pull and to get treats and praise. Moral of the story? The temperament matters more than the body!
 

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I have a friend who rescues wethers and trains them to pull. He had one he picked to train because of his build. They tried and tried and tried, but the goat was a real booger to work with. Then the farmer noticed the wether's slightly smaller brother was watching everything they did with great interest. He took him and put a harness on him and had him completely trained in only a week or two. The fella had learned most of the commands, etc by just watching! Turns out he LOVES to pull and to get treats and praise. Moral of the story? The temperament matters more than the body!
That's so true!!!
 

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If your still interested you can make an old nick cart into a goat cart and make your own goat harness instead of buying one that's what I did just look at alot of pics and build one. It's alot of fun to have a pulling goat questions you can ask me. Good luck
 

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Thanks so much for the info. I purchased a used miniature horse cart with three wheels and want to try to train one of my goats to pull it. I didn't know about the age requirement. Mine are all too young so I'll keep the cart for future use.
 

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I would LOVE to train my goat(s) to pull a cart. I am disabled and THIS WOULD BE A GREAT WAY for me to be out in the sunshine riding along our county road!
How about training 2 goats (twins) to pull together? Both are pets and very attached to me (1st goat births we've had on our hobby farm.)

Also, what do I look for in a cart? Can it be big enough to carry my husband and me (about 450 lbs total) and not burden our 1 yr old dairy goats? I read that the recommended age is 3 but, if 2 are doing the work, I would think that would make a huge difference.
 

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I don't think they are supposed to pull one person until three yrs old if I remember correctly, two might be too much.
 

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You need to wait until the growth plates in their bones close. It really, at that point, has nothing to do with size and muscle strength. It has to do with the fact that you can damage their skeleton beyond repair. This is a slower process than in horses and takes up to 5 years.
In the meantime you can be doing a lot of training so that when the time comes they are ready to go.
 

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:laugh::laugh: Wow, need to wait another 2-4 years then, if I want to use the twins to pull. (I want a cart that will hold husband and me.) How do I know when their growth plates are closed? If "Handsome," the baby boy goat ["fixed"] is a bit larger than his twin sister, "Beautiful," will they still be able to pull together or would that be too unevenly yolked?

Any advice on good-priced, well-built, light-weight goat-size carts, harnesses, etc? Links would be great for me.:thumbup:
:cart:
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
One thing to look for is one with the third wheel because it keeps the weight off their backs and they only have to worry about pulling not also holding the cart up.
 

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Questions on getting started training my goats to pull carts

Greetings! I have four kids whom I have been training on leashes. The little bucklings (now wethers) are really catching on quickly to commands, but the doelings aren't that interested in the training. The boys are now running in tandem with one another, on a leash that I have fashioned into a two goat lead. I would like to train my goats to pull a cart. My goal is to have them pull folks, in parades, at kid's birthday parties, etc. Can anyone give me advice on where to find halters, and driving equipment? Should I buy some books on this topic?
Thank you for your input!
 
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