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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have purchased 3 four year old wethers (2 togs & 1 ober). The former owner packed with them, but more of a cross country style where they were just loose and followed him.

I would like them to be in a row as we will not be doing cross country hikes, but more single file trail hikes. The goats all have unique behaviors and one is definitely more friendly than the other two.

We have taken them out of their pens on leads and collars and struggled. (We are ordering halters today.) I think part of the problem is that they are not used to kids and we have a 3 year old boy (no further comment necessary with that statement) and a 7 year old girl. The goats do not like the kids and are very skittish and will run away when the kids are present.

Is it better to take one goat out at a time or all 3? Does anyone have suggestions for getting the goats to overcome their anxiety towards my kids?

We are getting 4 three month old alpine/boer crosses in 2 weeks and hope to incorporate them in to one big group eventually. I guess the same question goes for the 3 month olds - is it better to start working with one individually?

I really appreciate all the help and support on this site.

Tonia
 

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I always work one on one with training. If they have issues then they feed off each other. It is much harder to control them as a group and it takes much longer for them to understand what you are trying to teach them. One on one is the way to go.

Goats raised around adults can be unnerved by small people. Let them get to know the kids gradually. I wouldn't let the kids in with them unsupervised until they are completely comfortable with them. It would also help to let them feed the goats treats when you have them out so they look forward to seeing the kids.
 

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I got three at ten weeks old. I would walk all three on the lead at the same time just to get used to being with me while walking. And really the leads were just for safety in case a dog came around. I wanted them to stay with me rather than head for the hills.

They are yearlings now and still stay close enough that I don't really need leads even on a trail. I am now moving them to a string with the larger goats.

So if your training is just to follow you, you can do all the little ones together, with some voice commands to start and stop. Bigger goats will distract them. Also if you can do it in the evening and at night, they will more instinctively stay close to you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for all the great tips. I really appreciate it. I read on someone else's post about not putting babies in with older goats. We thought we would, but now we are re-examining our plan based on what I've read.

I had dairy goats as a kid and did 4-H and they were all bottle babies so they loved me and I was 'mom'. Getting babies and adults from others is different, but we can't wait for our first pack trip (in 3 weeks).

Tonia
 
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