Supplemental Bottle Feeding

Discussion in 'Goat Management' started by StaceyRosado, Apr 20, 2009.

  1. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    Ok so I was curious for those of you who do supplement bottle feed how do you get those dam raised kids to take a bottle? :shrug:

    I have a hard enough time getting pulled kids to take a bottle :GAAH: and when I bought Mia at 6 weeks I tried for 2 weeks to get her to take a bottle and it was a no go!

    Last year Sweet Pea had quads and she looked like possible twins. This year she is wide already and just reached 3 months today. Last year I pulled one then I had to pull another. It was her first freshioning so I gave her that grace. But this year I would like her to raise all her kids if possible. But I plan to supplement bottle feed as necessary - IF I can learn how to do it.

    So pointers, suggestions, what works what doesnt work. I need it all. I know the hows of bottle feeding - just never had the quick nack for getting them to take it right away (I have no patience and I get scared they will die, hence the reason I want them to stay on mom!).
  2. ProctorHillFarm

    ProctorHillFarm New Member

    When they are born- before they nurse off mom- bottlefeed them their colostrum- most cases- they remember the bottle next time you want to supplement them

    A breeder I know will pull mom out of the stall for a few hours each day (3 or 4 hours) then bottlefeed the kids before putting mom back in.

    I know what you mean about trying to get them onto a bottle sometimes! :hair:

  3. RunAround

    RunAround New Member

    Feb 17, 2008
    I just offer them a bottle at a couple days old and they usually take it. Little bugger like their food and they don't seem to care how it comes to them.

    But giving the bottle at birth does make it a bit easier.
  4. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    Yep, If their first feeding comes from a bottle, they'll be much more willing to accept it later.

    What I have done before is give the kids their first feeding, then leave them with mom for 4-7 days, then start supplemental feedings if needed. Sometimes I give one bottle a day to all the kids just because I enjoy feeding them and then, if something happened and they had to be bottle fed, it's less stressfull for them.

    When I start to separate kids at night, I usually give them a bottle in the morning before they go back to their momma so they're not so hungry they all attack her when she doesn't have much left anyway.
  5. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    my problem is getting them to take the bottle in the first place. I wouldnt want to remove them from mom to get them to take the first bottle with colostrum - that is to stressfull on me :worried: and I might not even be there as I work
  6. FunnyRiverFarm

    FunnyRiverFarm New Member

    Sep 13, 2008
    Hudson, MI
    Yeah, I guess that would complicate things...have you tried separating the kids from mom for a couple hours before offering them a bottle? Usually the more hungry they are, the more willing they'll be to try it. They can be very stubborn little things, but most will take it eventually.

    I also noticed that kids seem to prefer the clear-rubber nipples rather that the gum-rubber ones. I guess the other ones must taste funny.
  7. StaceyRosado

    StaceyRosado Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2007
    nope -- this will be my first year, hence why I am asking for tips
  8. keren

    keren owned by goats

    Oct 26, 2008
    There is no quick knack lol sorry stacey :)

    When we kid at work, we dont remove any multiples, and I go out in the paddock morning and night with some bottles. Basically I have a couple that I can see need the extra milk - trips and quads that are looking skinny - I catch them, hold them on my lap (sitting in the dirt) and force the bottle in them, most of the time after a while they suckle, if not I move onto the next kid. I start this at a couple days old, and pretty soon the 'regulars' come running over when they see me. This actually acts as encouragement for the others, because they come running over so after a while I just offer the bottle to anyone who comes over, the ones that are hungry drink, the ones that arent, dont.

    Dont know if thats any help to you ... lol
  9. Amy Goatress

    Amy Goatress New Member

    Oct 1, 2008
    I have done supplemental bottle feeding before but I'm good at getting them to take a bottle though, I just pry their little mouths open and stick the nipple in their mouth and wrap my hand around their mouth and the bottle and it works pretty well.