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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I am new here and not sure if I am posting in the right forum, let me know if I should have put this in a different place.

I just got my farm about a year and a half ago and have 1 mustang, 1 big ole mutt dog, 2 cats, 2 grown hens and 3 baby chicks, plus two mice and a gecko that reside most of the year in my kindergarten classroom (I am a teacher).

I just got my first goat this weekend. She is a Nubian/Alpine cross and 6 weeks old. After the fact, I have found out she was weaned a little early (not my choice, choice of the person selling her), and I know she needs a friend also, which I am working on. In the meantime, I am keeping her in a crate (she has room to stand up, turn, walk around a little) in the garage at night. She is next to my 3-4 week old chicks and they are sharing a heat lamp since the nights have been cold. I have a shed with attached pen for her during the day. I have also been taking her out on a leash/lunge line for walks and browsing. I am feeding her medicated pellets and hay along with whatever fresh stuff she gets when out and about.

She was unhandled when I got her, but she is coming around. She is very calm when held and has figured out that she likes to have her head scratched. She will sit on my lap unrestrained and pretty much go to sleep. She is still a little hard to catch, but getting better. The wonderful surprise is that she and my dog are bonding. He is lonely because we lost our old dog a few weeks back and haven't found just the right new one yet. He is scared of everything (even the chicks), but loves the goat, I
think he thinks she is a puppy. She is interested in him, but still a little scared, but I think it is only a matter of time before I find them curled up napping together, lol.

She is eating and drinking good, and going to the bathroom. In fact, she is pretty much crate trained like a dog, which is pretty interesting to me.

In the research I have done, I have found that everyone does things a little differently with goats, but I just want to make sure I am on the right track.

Here are some questions I have:
-She gets shivery outside, I am not sure if she is just scared in a new place or truely cold. I figure a little of both, but didn't want to leave her alone in the pen overnight, figured she was better off in the garage with the chicks and thier heat lamp. She seems to have a good warm coat and she lived outside before I got her, should I be worried about the cold. What is her temperature threshold? The nights have been around 30 and they days warmer, but windy.

-It sounds like she grinds her teeth a lot, when she is nervous or thinking about something. Also, it sounds like she burps alot. Are these normal goat sounds?

-Her mother was wormed when she was born, and I was planning on worming her at 8 weeks. Sound okay? Do I go by weight like the horse?

Thanks for all of the help! I look forward to spending time on this site learning all I can about my new friend.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Ahh, I wondered about the heat lamp. What I have set up outside right now for her is a shed that is about 8'x12" with about a 5.5' door that has a 6' high wire covered gate across it. I am going to add a paddock this afternoon or tomorrow- 6'high pipe horse panels covered with wire. A little while ago I put a doghouse with a blanket inside into her pen. She is protected from the wind inside the shed. Tonight I think it will be in the upper 20s, should she be okay out there?

Sounds like I need to get her away from the heat lamp and just let her adjust on her own.

Thanks for all of the great help. I am already addicted to goats for sure. I carry her around all the time and have managed to sneak her into the house for little visits. Poor husband, he is such a good sport!

I think I attached a picture, trying to get this all figured out. She is supposed to be mostly Nubian, but wouldn't baby Nubian ears be already floppy? I like the sticky outy ears better anyway, and I don't care that she is mixed breed, I don't plan to breed her.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Miss Maple really is a lot of fun. She has come so far just since Saturday afternoon. She was terrified and totally wild, now she comes up to me. I just took her for a nice long walk around the neighborhood and through the woods and she walks better on the leash than my dog! She also pruned some wild roses back from the roadside, how handy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
More thanks for the advice and compliments! I am looking for a friend, there just are a lot of goats for sale right now that fit the bill. I am a worrywort, I just went to check on her in the shed and she is laying by the gate shivering, breaks my heart! I put her in the doghouse, so hopefully she will go back in there. Ugh! Should I leave her in the garage, just not with the heat lamp since that is what she is used to?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I am in the mountains of NC. It was warm, but of course, we are back to cold. I think I will put her in the garage, she might feel at least safer there.

Thanks!

Oh, I know that horses can't have goat food, but what about dogs. My big dog snacked on about 1/2 cup today.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
He is a sneaky dog when it comes to things he isn't supposed to eat, but now we know to keep an eye out.

She seems happier in the garage. I scootched her crate away from the chicks so she can still see them, but not get the heat from their light. She had water out in the shed but chugged as soon as she got into her crate and started chowing down. I have always prided myself in not spoiling my animals, but I think my maternal instinct must have kicked in (never thought that would happen, lol) in a misdirected sort of way.

So, days in the pen, nights in the garage until she gets used to things, a friend, or too big for the crate, whichever comes first. The dog thinks she should sleep inside on his bed with him.
 
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