question about cleaning barn?

Discussion in 'Goat Frenzy' started by cdtrum, Nov 5, 2008.

  1. cdtrum

    cdtrum New Member

    Aug 25, 2008
    Northern Indiana
    Ok.....we are somewhat new to the goat world and was just wondering how often should you completely clean out the goats pen? My DH just built my 2 wethers a very nice pen inside our big barn with a play area and their own large dog house inside the pen.....they are 2 very spoiled boys! Do I need to clean out all the straw every week or just their sleeping area????? It has dirt floors.....I put lime down with wood shavings on top and then straw. I have been cleaning up the goat berry piles every day and then trying to rake the straw so the rest will fall to the bottom. I just want to keep it as clean as I can and was wondering how you all handle your barns. They have access to outside, so right now they spend alot of time outdoors....but with winter coming I am sure that will change.
    Thanks for your advice! Denise
  2. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    in November I start to let the hay build up in the sleeping area. They need the hay to keep themselves warm for the winter.

  3. QotL

    QotL New Member

    May 27, 2008
    I sort of eyeball it. Does it smell like ammonia? Is it damp? Then it needs changing. If it looks squashed with quite a few berries, I change it. But if it still looks decent, is dry, and there aren't many berries, than it's good to go.

    I will tell you though, my chickens taught me a VALUABLE lesson last fall. There IS such a thing as too clean!! Everytime you really clean it out, dust particles fly into the air, and the sneezing starts. That's not good for them, either.

    We are sort of in transition with our barn right now.. and having to keep a boy seperated. There aren't any official pens in the barn, just open floor, and a corner full of bedding. Everyday I sweep the berries/hay off the rest of the floor, and again just leave the bedding. It's a pain in the RUMP, but I like it better when it looks clean :)

  4. SDK

    SDK New Member

    Jun 26, 2008
    Yucaipa ca
    i don't have a barn, but as far as the bedding in their huts goes, i keep it nice and clean

    i clean the pens once weekly right now because i have 10 does, and im boarding one to breed, so that pen is in use

    but usually its bi-weekly pen cleaning
  5. enjoytheride

    enjoytheride New Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Humboldt Co Ca
    I clean daily, hardly ever missing a day. But I don't throw out the straw. I flip over the straw and throw out the wet spots that accummulate on the bottom. I bank the straw on the side of the shed and sweep up the berries that are on the floor. Then, if the day is rainy and the goats need their cover, I spread the straw out, add some new if needed. If it's a dry day, I leave the straw banked until evening then spread it out again as they sleep there at night.

    My feeling is if I wouldn't want to lay on it myself, it needs cleaning.

    I also clean out their night pen, sweeping up the berries. But I will occasionally let that go a day if I feel like taking a break.

    For wethers , it may not be as important as for dloes- I think that some mastitis cases come from dirty bedding.
  6. capriola-nd

    capriola-nd New Member

    Jul 6, 2008
    Northwest Oregon
    At home, I sweep up the berries into their stall with lots of straw and wasted hay (the berries just stay at the bottom) every day I do this. At the farm, I clean the barn once a week (missed this week though :oops: ) I usually strip the whole barn leaving only the areas that have dry hay down and have not been pooped on. We typically leave several areas with lots of hay down in the winter to keep them warm. The berries and urine underneath the hay kind of "compost" and make the goats nice and warm. We don't ever let them lay on nasty, yucky poop/urine, there's always some hay or straw on top.

    It sounds like your boys are very spoiled!! Fortunate little guys! :)
  7. heavenlyhaven

    heavenlyhaven Senior Member

    Apr 16, 2008
    Belmont, NY
    i agree with stacy
    around about november i let the hay build up but it depends on the weather too
    in the winter i don't put hay in the outside feeder i only put it in the feeders in the barns
    so the goats are constantly pulling fresh hay out
    and as the bottom layers rot/decompose it creates heat and helps to keep them warm
    by spring i have a good 2 feet of hay to clean out and its a royal pain but it works
  8. capriola-nd

    capriola-nd New Member

    Jul 6, 2008
    Northwest Oregon
    Just curious but for those of you that let the manure and hay pile up in the winter, do you have wood or dirt floors?

    I would be more inclined to do this but our main doe barn has wood floors and even though it has a thick coat of epoxy paint, I don't like it to get too piled up for fear of ruining the wood. Our other goat sheds have dirt floors and I don't clean those every week.
  9. heavenlyhaven

    heavenlyhaven Senior Member

    Apr 16, 2008
    Belmont, NY
    last winter i had one of each - 1 wood floor and 1 dirt floor
    this year both have wooden floors
    and i still let the hay build up

    i even did it for my horses and cows back when i had horses and cows
    their barns would get cleaned out more often
    they weren't left all winter like the goats but i would let a "pack" build up for them in a corner or half the stall or whatever to lay on
    but then they had cement floors and i didn't want them laying on the cold cement
  10. Amos

    Amos New Member

    Oct 2, 2008
    Like HeavenlyHaven, we let ours build up around sometime this month. The first year we had goats we had then on a wood floor, and the corner boards rotted out, but then again we had rabbits and chickens in there for a while. Now we have a dirt floor, and it all works out.
  11. liz

    liz Well-Known Member

    Oct 5, 2007
    Shelocta PA
    I have wood floors, some plywood the rest treated decking, I do a major cleanout in "Indian Summer"....usually about now, then I don't clean out again til the weather warms in January....and again in problems with the wood rotting so far...and I've done it this way for 8 years...same plywood floor too. :greengrin: The "nursery" always has a thick layer of fresh straw over a layer of wood chips, babies and momma stay cozy and clean.
  12. deenak

    deenak Member

    Oct 10, 2007
    Ames Iowa
    Last year I only had three goats but this winter there will now be five in the barn and I have really noticed a difference in the amount I have to clean up. Well it is also primetime leaf season so they are eating all of the leaves in sight. I usually leave the hay down starting about now but the smell from the amonia makes me sick so I may have to clean more oftern.