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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
(This is a bit long)
A friend of my cousin's called me in a panic Tue. They had 2 small goats their son got for 4-H. The family had gone out of town for a week and someone was checking on the goats and 2 dogs.

They did not know that goats need fed daily. The parents put out an entire 50# bag of sweet feed for the 2 goats and a numerous buckets of water.

Both wethers ate all they could. When the people got home Sun. they thought that the one was bloated. But thought he would be ok. They called me Tues. knowing I had goats. (They had no money for a vet.) I told her I would be right over. In the 10 minutes it took me to get there, the one goat died. The little boy was heartbroken. The other one must not have eaten as much, he wasn't bloated, but I told them to pull the grain.

Lot of things were done wrong. The major one was that they had no idea how to take care of a goat and never bothered to look anything up.
The second thing was that goats do not have a shut off valve when it comes to eating! They can and will eat themselves to death! The people had no idea that goats can't moderate their grain intake.

I am also disappointed with the breeder. He neutered the kids at 4 days old, (I prefer 2 months, but that is just me) but never informed them of the chance of urinary calculi (stones in the urinary tract) and how a high grain diet could cause the UC.

He also told them to take the kids off milk at around 5 or 6 weeks old. They have been bottle feeding them with water! He never mentioned a cd+t shot, worming, or hay! The kids are only 2-1/2 months old. The remaining one might weight 15#. (Alpines).

I showed the owner the bottle of CD+T, told her what it was for, filled the syringe and showed her how to give the injection. (I'm not a vet, didn't want any repurcussions from the shot!) I wormed him with ivomec (owner did with my guidance) orally because he looked wormy- and took a fecal sample home. He has lots of worm eggs and is full of coccidea oocites. (he had loose stools).

I guess my whole purpose of this entirely too long post is that: Goats will eat themselves to death- they are like horses in that respect. Don't feed water out of a bottle and Please try to educate and ask questions about something if you don't understand it!
 

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Thank you for this! I am brand new to goats and have had my kids for 3 days, and have had to ask lots and lots of questions just to make sure I didn't kill them (which they were close to dying when I got them).

Fortunately I knew all the above from reading lots and lots on this forum in the past two days! But, I was lucky in that respect...I also have someone to call as a mentor when I am in need of immediate help. This information you just posted is important for newbies like me, and I thank you for taking the time to post it!
 

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that's sad. what a terrible breeder! glad they had you to help!

although, the lady we got our goats from was even more hands off than that. she pretty much just gave them to us without giving us any info.... needless to say it was disastrous, and I lost a buckling because of it, but now that I found this forum, I have 3 goats that are thriving!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I think everyone loses a goat to not knowing stuff (I did) - but for a breeder to not tell them anything- that was just wrong!
 

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I know. some people are just in it for the money of selling a goat and don't really worry about its health and well being. or at least enough to spend the time to go through the basics to newbies. the lady stated that we could ask her any questions we wanted, but she never answers her phone..... then there are the terrible vets around....

without TGS, I would for sure have zero goats!
 

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This is exactly what happened to man that was new to goats in my area. He picked up a Boer buckling from me and asked how much grain to feed him. I said he was only used to a pound a day.
But 2 weeks before he picked up the buck he told me he had given all his does a 50# bag of grain, and all of them bloated, and he lost three. Thankfully his neighbor raised goats and told him you can't given them grain like that, they'll kill them selves.
But yes, you can kill a goat with too much grain. Slowly build them up to it.


I also new a lady who raised alpine goats, and she let coccidiea run rampant and it severely stunted every goat she had until they were no bigger than 20# max. They were smaller than pygmies.
 

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I'm watching you
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I also new a lady who raised alpine goats, and she let coccidiea run rampant and it severely stunted every goat she had until they were no bigger than 20# max. They were smaller than pygmies.
Wow, that's only 10% of their potential. Thanks... I feel better about my 104 lb. 11 month old now. At least he will continue growing...
 

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Sad...this doesn't happen just with goats. It is happening to all animals. There are many irresponsible 'breeders' out there and as long as there are irresponsible people buying animals, you'll hear stories like this.
 

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So far we're only talking about irresponsible breeders. In my opinion, nobody should commit to owning an animal they haven't studied in detail and prepared for before purchase, neither should anyone who is not financially prepared for the occasional emergency vet bill. There are unscrupulous breeders, but they are only successful because they are selling to ignorant buyers.
 

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So far we're only talking about irresponsible breeders. In my opinion, nobody should commit to owning an animal they haven't studied in detail and prepared for before purchase, neither should anyone who is not financially prepared for the occasional emergency vet bill. There are unscrupulous breeders, but they are only successful because they are selling to ignorant buyers.
What about people like me? I got my two baby boer doelings and I knew NOTHING about goats...but I took them because if I didn't they would have died. I was asked to take them and two days later I had them.

They are severely underweight. They are five weeks old and one weighs 9.4 pounds and the other weighs 8.4 pounds. They are infested with lice, and have scours. I have had them for three days.

The previous owners stopped feeding them milk three days before I got them. They were bottle feeding them water. They were bottle feeding them electrolytes only...nothing else, just the water. No hay. No grain.

I have little money to spend on these girls. Hubby and I are first time home owners as of January 2013. Money is TIGHT. But what else could I do? Let them die???

Please don't judge everyone who owns goats and knows nothing. Sometimes there are people like me who are doing it to try to save babies, regardless of knowledge. That's why I came here to this forum. To learn as much as I can, and ask as many questions as I can so I can save these babies from the death that was awaiting them had they stayed with the previous owners.
 

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Becca you've done an incredible job having these two sprung on you out of nowhere!
The subject is irresponsible breeders preying to to speak, on clueless buyers and though yes you are new to goats, Elchivito remarks were in no way directed to someone like you.
 

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Becca you've done an incredible job having these two sprung on you out of nowhere!
The subject is irresponsible breeders preying to to speak, on clueless buyers and though yes you are new to goats, Elchivito remarks were in no way directed to someone like you.
Thanks for clarifying. The statement that Elchivito made, "In my opinion, nobody should commit to owning an animal they haven't studied in detail and prepared for before purchase..." kinda pertains to me...I new NOTHING about goats except they like to eat everything (LOL) and people can drink their milk. Seriously. That's all I knew. Oh, and that sometimes they are used for food and sacrifice.
I am committed to them though. I will do everything in my power to make sure they survive and live long happy healthy goat lives. They are my babies. I LOVE them. They are now a part of my family. I have three human kids...but I also have 12 barred rock chicken kids, 1 chocolate lab kid, 2 kitten kids, and now two Boer doeling kids.
How'd ya like to be in the middle of one of our group hugs??? :D
 

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That is so sad and its disappointing that the owners didn't take the time to learn about goats AND the breeder didn't give them proper information. You think he would at least want to make sure they knew a little bit, but I guess some people just don't care.

I hate hearing about stuff like this. You should research having any animal before buying it. That's as big a part of caring for it as feeding it or housing it. If you don't know how to safely care for the animal your not helping it. Whether its a
goat, chicken, dog, or cat your responsible for caring for it, and it relies on its you for its care. If only some people would think before they buy animals. They're fun to have, but a big responsibility too.

Rant over
 

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So... Why are some new people that got goats without knowing anything irresponsible and some are responsible? I see that a lot on here.
But either way.
I think both the breeder and the owners are at fault. BUT the breeder didn't give them ANY information what so ever just gave them the goats and left. So yes the breeders at fault. And if the kids in 4h they should have gotten with their extension agent and they would have moved them over to their goat person to get advice had help when needed.
 

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Goats of da UP
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Thanks for clarifying. The statement that Elchivito made, "In my opinion, nobody should commit to owning an animal they haven't studied in detail and prepared for before purchase..." kinda pertains to me...I new NOTHING about goats except they like to eat everything (LOL) and people can drink their milk. Seriously. That's all I knew. Oh, and that sometimes they are used for food and sacrifice.
I am committed to them though. I will do everything in my power to make sure they survive and live long happy healthy goat lives. They are my babies. I LOVE them. They are now a part of my family. I have three human kids...but I also have 12 barred rock chicken kids, 1 chocolate lab kid, 2 kitten kids, and now two Boer doeling kids.
How'd ya like to be in the middle of one of our group hugs??? :D
But you are so different than the folks in the original post. You sought help and advise. You are willing to learn and do all you can to ensure your little darlings do well. They just twiddled their fingers for the longest time (it took them at least two days to seek help for an emergency situation). It seems like they didn't even know how to turn on the computer for a quick google search!

Sure, the best situation is doing a lot of prep and reseach before brining a critter home. It sounds like that is what those folks should have done, since they were in 4H and likely had time to prepare. You know, they could have cracked a book and read a few chapters on goats (my extremely rural and poorly funded local library even has the Storey's Guide to Goats!).

But in your situation, where goaties in need fell into your lap, lots of research beforehand is impossible. You have to learn on the fly, which can be tough and stressful for a caretaker. And we're not judgmental of that, rather, supportive (I hope everyone has been!). I think you are doing awesome!
 
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