The Goat Spot Forum banner
1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
880 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I know there are a bunch of threads right now about feeding during pregnancy, but I have read everything I can and even asked the breeder I got my girls from and still feel pretty confused about how to proceed.

I just bed my largest two junior Alpine does. They are both about 8 months old and 100 lbs. All my does(around the same age) have been getting around a pound of grain per day along with grass/alfalfa mix hay free choice. They have been copper bolused, BoSe'd, are worm-free, and look to be in great health(knock on wood). I would rate their body condition scores to be around 3-3.5. In the herd they come from most does seem to have triplets. One of my bred does was a quad.

My question is how much grain should I give to my bred does during the first 2 months, 3rd month, and last 2 months? I don't want the kids to get too large for them, but with a high likelihood of multiples I don't want to risk pregnancy toxemia by underfeeding either. Everything I read talks about drying them up two months before breeding, but they are not in milk and are still growing. The breeder said he doesn't give any grain to kids and starts lead feeding pregnant does 4-6 weeks before they are due.

Edit to add they are currently getting 18% protein grain, but are about to be switched to 16% sweet feed.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,939 Posts
Given their age and circumstances I would go with a pound and keep an eye on them for excessive weight gain. If that happens, I would think about either cutting back on their hay a bit or maybe adding some grass if they are on straight alfalfa. I think the grain will support their continued growth and development better, as well as supply readily accessible energy. I would not feed sweet feed. I would go with a good 14 to 16% goat grower pellet because it has everything in to do what you are wanting to do. My .02.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
880 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·

·
Registered
Joined
·
380 Posts
I usually don't feed does in the dry period unless they are extremely thin or small.

Usually 2 to 3 weeks before kidding I start feeding them some grain.

In my herd I feed good hay and if I feed grain I run the risk of ketosis or having to pull kids because they get too big.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
880 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Okay, thank you everyone who weighed in. I think my tentative plan is to wean the preggos off grain except for a few handfuls and maybe supplement the free choice hay with alfalfa pellets if they start losing condition, then when they reach the 4th month start working back up slowly with a mix of oats/barley/boss. Hopefully the lower protein mix will keep the kids from getting too big while supplying enough energy. They come from very high milk producing lines, so I want them to be prepared for a milking ration when they freshen. So challenging. Of course I had to pick yearling high producers with a tendency for multiples for my first ever goats to freshen. :hammer:
 

·
Goat Girl
Joined
·
1,985 Posts
On your 8 month old does, I would be feeding them mostly alfalfa pellets, not a lot of grain as you don't want them overly fat. The alfalfa pellets will provide them with the protein and calcium they need to grow themselves and their fetuses.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
880 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Update: I have now weaned my girls off of grain. They are currently getting 1 1/3 cups alfalfa pellets and 1/3 cup BOSS per day along with free choice grass/alfalfa mix hay. They are about 1 1/2 months pregnant.

Should I also start cutting out the alfalfa pellets and BOSS, or do you all think they should be okay on that amount until I start feeding grain again right before they deliver? Their condition looks good. They probably went down from 3.5 to a 3 over the past month and a half. I just don't want it to go down any more.
 

·
Dave (TDG Farms) S.E. Washington State
Joined
·
4,805 Posts
On your 8 month old does, I would be feeding them mostly alfalfa pellets, not a lot of grain as you don't want them overly fat. The alfalfa pellets will provide them with the protein and calcium they need to grow themselves and their fetuses.
Totally agree. Though if you can, Id get it by the bale from a good grower if possible. If not then as Crazy suggested, a alfalfa grass mix is great as well. Then alfalfa pellets would be my 3rd choice.
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top