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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
As well-behaved as my goats are, they seem to have a big problem with crossing water. Since they all have the same problem and deal with it in the same way, I'm assuming it has more to do with me than them.

If there's a bridge of any type, it's no problem. They all scaled a 6 inch diameter log over a creek the other day and made it look easy.

The thing is, no matter how shallow (half an inch) or slow-moving the water is, they don't want to cross it. If I start to walk off on the other side, they'll decide it's worth it to follow me, and they'll jump it, but they won't walk through it. It's great that they're able to jump an 8 to 10 foot creek, but when they're loaded down, they really shouldn't be jumping.

Any pointers on training them to walk through shallow water?
 

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Dave (TDG Farms) S.E. Washington State
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When the weather allows and the river is low enough (still about 4 feet higher then normal right now) I like to take the prospects to a place on the Yakima river that is about knee deep for a good 50 feet. I carry them out as far as I can and set them down. At first they dont understand they cant stand on top of the water but soon accept it. The Yakima is a pretty warm river so I stand out there with them for 10-20 minutes. Walking around and petting em. I do it one at a time at first then all of em at the same time with the help of someone holding em out there till i get the last one out.

A few things to note. This works because its shallow enough for them to stand. Warm enough for them not to get to cold to quick. Though even during a 100 degree day, after 20 minutes they will start to shake. And far enough out that they dont make a run for the shore. Here is video from last year.

This was only their second time in the water. And instead of making for the bank, come out in the water with us.

 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Dave, I may be able to try something like that with the younger goats.
 

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My only pointer would be salted peanuts and plenty of them. For an added teaser to walk in the water I eat the peanuts while they are watching until they come out to get one. Obershasli goats seem to do real well in water. Also start water training as young as possible. With peanuts my baby goats walked out in water like it wasn't even there then looked at it very curiously when it splashed. As they got older they became more cautious but I just kept walking without hesitation as if the water wasn't there. They seem to get over the caution and find their own way across. One of them slipped off a log bridge and now they all seem to fear bridges more than the water.
Good luck.
 

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Dave (TDG Farms) S.E. Washington State
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... Legion doesnt like peanuts :( Nor does he like chips, nutter butter cookings or fruit or veggies or pop or juice or anything else anyone gives their goaties as training aids or treats. It sure is a good thing he loves his cheeks scratched :) OH and he loves grain! But I cant keep any on me or he smells it and hounds me till I give him some. Which is to say all of it cause he will continue to bug me till its all gone :) So I just stick with scratches.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Sounds like I may need to find some streams that are wide enough that they can't jump them.
 

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As crazy as it sounds, I have found out that bath time works well to. I have a small kiddie pool that I fill up and let sit in the sun so its warm. All of my goats get baths and they seem to not mind it to much. Since the water is a few inches deep, and they are getting petted and babied the entire time, they seem to not mind it so much. Even when I have to soak them down completely, they still don't make to much of a fuss. Meat Loaf even lays down during his turn.
 
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