When to start training bottle baby

Discussion in 'Pack Goat Training' started by AmyJoe, Feb 2, 2017.

  1. AmyJoe

    AmyJoe Member

    100
    Jun 9, 2015
    Southeastern KY
    We have a Boer/Dairy cross buckling, 5 weeks old today, that we've been bottle feeding since he hit the ground. Our neighbor's goat had twins and refused one. He's super attached to us so instead of not keeping him we decided he could be our hiking partner/pack goat. We've always wanted to hike with the girls but they are not as attached and will wander away easily. My question is when do we start training, other than having him follow us around in the yard. Is it ok to walk him with a halter on, what distance is ok for him to go..we take short 2 mile walk in the evenings...and what else should we be doing at this age to teach him to be a good hiking companion? Our intentions are to get a nubian mix doe around the same age closer the weaning time. We're gonna wether him also but can't decide on what age to do that. I'm searching the other threads for banding horns and wethering subjects....we missed the disbudding iron because we got snowed in when it needed done. I'm determined to learn to do it myself in the future
     

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  2. Damfino

    Damfino Well-Known Member

    Dec 29, 2013
    Right behind you
    What a cutie! Training starts now with what you're already doing--walking with him, holding him, playing with him, taking him for car rides, etc. Once he learns to like treats you can even start teaching him little tricks and commands. I don't usually start halter training until the goat is about 5-6 months old. The little ones don't need a halter and it's important to be careful of their little necks, which are easy to twist with a halter since you have so much leverage.

    We usually wether ours at 3-5 months. It's easiest if you do it closer to 3 months so you can use a normal elastrator. Wait much longer and many goats will have to be banded with a special (and expensive!) type of ratchet bander that probably only your vet will have.

    I'm not a fan of banding horns. It's not an easy process for the goat and it can make them very head shy. I would not band the horns unless your goat is actually causing problems with them down the road. Teaching good manners is better than banding in my opinion. You'll have to wait until the horns are grown out enough to band them and by then you may decide it's not necessary. Horned goats do take a little extra consideration and management, but there's no reason why they should be disrespectful or dangerous.

    Best of luck to you!
     

  3. AmyJoe

    AmyJoe Member

    100
    Jun 9, 2015
    Southeastern KY
    Is there a distance we shouldn't go past with him? I don't want to wear him out. We're not doing hiking yet...around our yard. The 2 mile walk we do is all blacktop so nothing hard. We haven't taken him on it yet because we don't want to push him too far. I'm gonna use a body halter and 16 foot leash so he can hang back and keep up but I can still have some control incase of cars or random stray dogs. Doesnt happen often but it has.

    He's with 2 of our ND does right now to keep him company since he was raised in the house for almost 4 weeks. I guess he'll be by himself for alittle while before being wethered. I'll probably pull them just before he's 7wks.
     
  4. Damfino

    Damfino Well-Known Member

    Dec 29, 2013
    Right behind you
    I'd say take your little guy walking as far as he wants to go without getting tired. You're the best judge of what that might be. Two miles is not very far and he should be able to handle that just fine, but if you notice him starting to lag, or droopy head and dragging feet, it's a sure sign he's hit his limit and you'll want to shorten your walk next time. Have fun!
     
  5. AmyJoe

    AmyJoe Member

    100
    Jun 9, 2015
    Southeastern KY
    thanks! we're gonna start getting him out with us. i cant wait to see how he likes it
     
  6. fivemoremiles

    fivemoremiles Well-Known Member

    Jan 19, 2010
    western montana
    ditto good advice
    work the kid in to hikes 1/2 mile then 1 mile kids have more stamina than you think.
    lots of car rides are good. take him to the feed store, I love going to pet co and pet smart. the double takes people give your kid is great.
    good looking kid you will love camping with him.
     
  7. AmyJoe

    AmyJoe Member

    100
    Jun 9, 2015
    Southeastern KY
    Thanks for the advice! i hope he enjoys it too
     
  8. AmyJoe

    AmyJoe Member

    100
    Jun 9, 2015
    Southeastern KY
    Horns are gone and so are the boys. We found a vet who sedated him, cut with wire, the whole horn base..which turned out, after shaving, to be almost the size of a .50 coin. Then used the disbudding iron for bleeding control, and she castrated him at the same time. We were so afraid he'd get with our little girls. He's back to his normal self already.
     

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  9. Luckthebuck234

    Luckthebuck234 New Member

    546
    Jul 15, 2015
    Texas
    Aaww........ it looks like he is going to rob a bank, lol :lol:
     
  10. AmyJoe

    AmyJoe Member

    100
    Jun 9, 2015
    Southeastern KY
    He was very much upset about his bank robbing mask. He now has more of a hat of gauze and tape. We haven't taken him on a walk yet because of being cut...didn't want to aggravate his no balls lol He's almost healed up now so I think we'll try for a quick trip today once the sun comes out alittle better.