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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I only have a few goats, and I am only in highschool so I don't have very much money to spend, so a dog is definitely out of my budget. I have been thinking about a guard llama or miniature donkey to protect them, but I don't know anything about either of them. Do they require a lot of care? Are the easy keepers? And are they cheap? I don't want to spend very much on them at all. I just need them to protect my goats, and not take up too much space. Like I said I don't know anything about them, so any general info about them would also be very helpful.

Thanks in advance!
 

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A dog would alert u if anything were to come on the property but between a lama and donkey I'd choose donkey because u could even get a mini one for cheap on craigslist and they will eat what the goats eat so no extra care provided....dog would be easiest tho.
 

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I think with donkeys they can get aggressive. Of course dogs can too, but as a puppy they can be trained and raised with goats. Shelters are the way to go if you decide for a dog. But not all donkeys are mean
 

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Tbh miniature donkeys would probably not be a good choice...they may be feisty and sturdy, but against anything more than a small coyote, I doubt that they would be of much use. It's the reason alpacas can't be guard animals. They are just too small. I would go for a regular donkey or llama. However those can sometimes be as expensive as a dog if you want a reliable one. As for the care and such, they are animals :) You won't be able to just throw them out and hope they don't die. They need at least the same care as goats(I'm almost certain donkeys require hoof care, not sure about llamas), they probably need more food than goats, and any other regular care like vaccinations, wormings and such. However llamas and donkeys are only good against one dog, coyote, or something like that. They won't be able to handle packs or bigger animals. And you can't get more than one because they'll bond together instead of with the goats, which means they won't guard. And like wildegoats23 said, they can get aggressive(and when a 400+ lb animal gets mean, it isn't good) and you can never let your family dogs near them as they will probably get trampled! As for easy keeping and general temperament, it depends on the animal, just do your research on all your options and decide from there.

To be honest, I would save up for a good LGD. They are completely worth it, reliable, small(smaller than the other options), and efficient. They also probably will cost less in food. You may have to get two of them if you have a big predator problem, but it's still better in the long run to spend the money and protect your animals than spend a little less money and have most of your animals killed. Sorry to be blunt, but I'm just thinking practically ;)
 

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Llamas need to be shorn once a year and need their hooves trimmed on a regular basis. They also can't have copper like a goat needs. As stated above, they are fine for 1 dog but a pack would take them down. Plus you have to be sure they are actually a guard. You would probably be better off waiting until you can afford an LGD.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well the thing is I am only going to have goats until a few years. So would a mini donkey protect them from cyotes?
 

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Honestly, you don't NEED a guard animal.. We don't have one.
 

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Around here the cheapest option would be a guard donkey. You can often get donkeys here for next to nothing. You would have to be sure it isn't aggressive towards goats though, and will actually guard. Some donkeys will attack goats. Llamas here are more expensive than LGDs. You can sometimes get LCDs here for a small amount sometimes they are very expensive, has a lot to do with the amount of training they have received and their lines.
 

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What are your predators? Do you have to worry about packs of dogs/coyotes? A single animal, whether a llama or a donkey or an LGD can not defend against a whole pack of animals. We really need to know what your predator problems are in order to give you advice.

Whether you choose a llama or a donkey, they absolutely have to like goats and have to already be a guard animal. To just throw any old llama or donkey into the field with your goats can lead to disaster when many are not guard animals.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Mostly coyotes or neighbors dogs. I haven't had a problem yet but I want to move them farther away from my house. I keep them close because of this reason.
 
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