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· Senior Member
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Our herd queen is a kiko/cross doe. She's not a huge doe, but she's good sized, probably 140-150lbs. when not pregnant.
She is due in 3 1/2 weeks. Last January she had HUGE triplets 7lbs, 10lbs and 11lbs. then in 2012 a 13lb. single doe kid.

She's bred to a different boer buck this time, but she is HUGE.

I don't want to over do it with grain, or under do it especially in these last few weeks as it's getting colder, and she starts needing more for her own energy as well as the kids.

We feed 16% medicated pelleted feed. Right now they have access to a good roll of grass mix hay. We also add some BOSS into the feed, and next week I plan on adding alfalfa pellets.
I also give her 3-4 Tums every other day or two.

She'd been getting 1lb. of grain a day, but I've upped it to 2lbs. Should I leave it at 2lbs. even when I add the pellets?
 

· Raising Nigerian Dwarf DAIRY Goats, registered wit
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I give my pregnant does (Nigerian Dwarf) 1 cup in the morning and one in the evening. But these are dairy goats and I don't know about meat goats. Make sure she has good hay and minerals and tha should be enough.
 

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Should I leave it at 2lbs. even when I add the pellets?
By mixed grass hay do you mean grass/alfalfa or do you mean various kinds of grass? If the latter, I think I would leave it at 2 lbs. Alfalfa pellets are usually around 18% protein, so mixing them with a 16% pelleted feed takes the protein content down to roughly 16%, but that is still pretty high for a doe in the last month of pregnancy - especially one who has a tendency to throw large kids. Do you know if your hay was tested and what it tested out at?
 

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Thanks. No, we aren't doing alfalfa hay this year, it's just a grass mix that we buy from a farmer down the road, as far as I know they don't test their hay. Usually we get good clover/grass hay bales, but they fuss and push each other out of the feeders so badly, we opted to go with a roll bale so they have 24/7 access.

I'm not really sure what I should do for her. Cut back on grain and offer the alfalfa pellets and BOSS. Or keep the grain as it is and add a little alfalfa pellets/BOSS.
OR... wait and add alfalfa pellets when she kids, and just give her some Tums a 3-4 days a week so she's getting the calcium.
 

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If you're only giving grass hay you don't need to be as worried about protein levels - but fat is a more concentrated source of calories and won't create ginormous babies. I would add at least some BOSS.
 

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Thanks! We adore her so much. I feel awful for her! I know she loves having her babies though, but the last weeks in her last pregnancy were hard on her, and I feel she probably needed a little more groceries last time to keep her energy up, that's why I'm so confused on how much I should feed her.
The last week of her last pregnancy with the triplets, she couldn't walk. She'd walk out of the barn, and go lay in her favorite place in the sun, and would only get up to eat some hay or go to water. She refused to go browse with the others any more. So far she's still active, but with cold weather settling in, I want to make sure she's getting enough especially with multiples & using energy to stay warm.
The last week I usually do limit grain. I'm going to try and get the clover/grass bales that they love a week before her due date, it's pretty good hay, and a little better than the roll bale.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Fat is definitely good for staying warm so I would give her more of the BOSS than the rest get.

By the way, if you ever come to WA I want a Snow White baby! She's gorgeous.
Thanks! We adore her, and she is one of our easiest keepers.
I ran out of BOSS yesterday, so hopefully I can pick up more tomorrow when I go to town otherwise I have to wait until Monday.

We love her babies, each kidding gives us something different and we never know what to expect from her. Her 13lb. single doe kid from last year is the 'newborn' dry baby in my avatar w/my daughter. You'd have thought she was 2 weeks old, not an hour or two old lol
 

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OH MY GOSH! POOR BABY!!! I wouldnt be giving her much grain at all.....
She has to have grain because grass hay alone will not provide the nutrients, energy, or protein needed to support gestation past about day 120. Underfeeding during gestation will affect quality and quantity of colostrum, milk production, cause higher neonatal losses, and can throw her into pregnancy toxemia or ketosis when she kids.
 

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I'm going to try and get the clover/grass bales that they love a week before her due date, it's pretty good hay, and a little better than the roll bale.
I don't have any experience with clover except for the wild sweet clover that grows around here but, from what I've heard, that just might allow you to cut her grain back a bit and still support her gestation. Clover is a legume like alfalfa, so it should be easier to digest and it would also provide more energy than straight grass hay. It would also increase the protein content of the hay. If you find that she needs a bit more energy, you can always include a little cracked or rolled corn. I wouldn't do whole corn because it's hard on their teeth, nor would I do ground corn because it's too easy to eat it too fast and cause rumen upset.

PS According to what I've seen, BOSS should only account for about 6% of the total ration. More than that can gum up the rumen due to the amount of oil they contain.
 

· Goat Girl
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I would continue feeding her like you are and would slowly increase her grain in the last two weeks so she has the energy she needs to give birth and produce milk. Plus I assume you will be graining her after she kids and it is better to have them used to the grain before they kid than just up their grain the day they kid.

Usually with mine since they are dry in the last two months, they get mostly alfalfa pellets (I try to feed 3 lbs per head per day) but I also slip in a scoop of their grain (scoop weighs about 2 lbs, so 2 lbs of grain in with about 8 lbs of alfalfa pellets for the whole bunch twice a day) this way they are still getting a little bit of the grain that they will be getting when they are fresh and milking. About 2 weeks prior to kidding I start bringing them in on the stand once a day and give them some grain and gradually work the amount up over the next two weeks until they are getting close to what they will be eating in grain once they are fresh and milking. They still get their alfalfa pellets outside. If they get too big to safely get on and off the stand then they get fed separately in a pen in the barn. I haven't had any problems with kids getting too big, does getting too fat or any other issues. Mine have plenty of land to exercise on so I think that helps a lot.

My Boer get some alfalfa pellets and grain and they also have a 20% protein lick tub.
 
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