What do you give a pregnant goat?

Answered by Willian Lymon

When it comes to feeding a pregnant goat, it is important to provide a balanced diet that meets her nutritional needs during this crucial time. The diet should primarily consist of pasture and hay, as well as a goat mineral supplement to ensure she is getting the necessary nutrients for a healthy pregnancy.

Pasture is an excellent source of nutrition for pregnant goats, as it provides a variety of grasses and plants that offer different vitamins and minerals. If possible, it is beneficial to rotate pastures to allow for a more diverse diet. This helps prevent the goats from selectively grazing and ensures they receive a wider range of nutrients.

Hay is another essential component of a pregnant goat’s diet. Good quality hay should be provided, and it is advisable to save the best hay for early lactation when the goat’s nutritional needs will increase. Hay provides fiber, which is crucial for maintaining proper digestion and preventing issues like bloat.

In addition to pasture and hay, it is important to offer a free choice goat mineral supplement. This mineral should contain 16% calcium and 8% phosphorus, as it is vital to maintain the calcium to phosphorus ratio at 2:1. This ratio is necessary for healthy bone development in the growing kids and to support the overall health of the pregnant goat.

When it comes to choosing a goat mineral supplement, it is best to opt for a product specifically formulated for goats. These supplements are designed to meet their unique dietary requirements and often include additional essential minerals such as copper, selenium, and zinc. Providing free access to the mineral supplement ensures the pregnant goat can consume it as needed to meet her nutritional needs.

It is worth noting that while pasture, hay, and mineral supplements are the primary components of a pregnant goat’s diet, individual nutritional requirements may vary. Factors such as breed, body condition, and stage of pregnancy can influence the specific dietary needs of each goat. Consulting with a veterinarian or a goat nutrition expert can help tailor the feeding program to meet the specific needs of your pregnant goat.

In my personal experience, I have found that providing a balanced diet consisting of pasture, high-quality hay, and a goat mineral supplement has resulted in healthy pregnancies and successful kidding. Monitoring the pregnant goat’s body condition and adjusting the diet as needed is crucial to ensure she is receiving adequate nutrition throughout the pregnancy.

To summarize, feeding a pregnant goat should include pasture and hay as the primary sources of nutrition, along with a goat mineral supplement containing the appropriate levels of calcium and phosphorus. Monitoring the goat’s body condition and seeking professional advice can help tailor the diet to meet her specific needs. By providing a balanced and nutritious diet, you are setting the stage for a healthy pregnancy and successful kidding.