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Author Topic: weaning kids - how best to do it??  (Read 1625 times)

goatlover

  • Joined Jul 2011
weaning kids - how best to do it??
« on: July 14, 2012, 09:16:58 pm »
Our kids are now two months old...how time flies...we have sold a couple of them (of course we have fallen in love with them all and dont really want to sell, but needs must!), we have told the buyer we will get back in contact with him, when they are weaned....my question is how best to help the kids to get weaned??
I have read that it is best to simply let kids and mum run together, and that eventaully the kids will take less and less milk and self-wean, but how long can that take?
I think that my buyer was looking to acquire them asap...I have read that kids can be weaned from three months, but how does that work? I am worried about seperating them and making the kids go 'cold turkey' and at the same time risk mastitis in the mums?
Any advice on weaning and taking kids from mum would be appreciated....I am guessing mum will feel a bit lost when kids taken away, any advice on how to comfort her? (perhaps I am being too sensitive?!!)
 
Voss Electric Fence

poppy2012

  • Joined Mar 2012
Re: weaning kids - how best to do it??
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2012, 11:18:11 pm »
hi there - from what i have learnt from bottle feeding ours, is that gradual is best, slowly introducing feeds, have read in my goat book, soaked sugar beet and some concentrates are good, also kale at bed time is supposed to be good! they tend to head for the hard stuff quite quickly, so would prob avoid cold turkey! have a look at the british goat
society website...

www.allgoats.com
good luck!!!

jaykay

  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Cumbria/N Yorks border
Re: weaning kids - how best to do it??
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2012, 10:32:32 am »
I don't think you should even begin before 3 months. At that age you could begin to shut out the kids at night - but then you'll need to milk mum in the morning. I don't think it's good for mum or kids to wean quickly or too early. They'll do it naturally given time.

Personally I have told the lady who wants one of mine that she can wait til the end of the school summer holidays, when the kids will be 4.5 months old and so beginning to wean themselves.

cuckoo

  • Joined Jan 2011
Re: weaning kids - how best to do it??
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2012, 09:27:09 pm »
Well - there is obviously different methods and opinions but this is what we do.  We dont milk our goats.  Any entire males are removed from their mothers as twelve weeks as potential sexually mature.  Cold turkey.
 
Have also removed females at this age again cold turkey but this year kept all females and castrated males with dams to wean naturally as we were keeping them - which has worked well for us - kids friendly.  Are now 7 months old and definately weaned - I would say they were self weaned by six months of age.
 
Kids are taken well away from dams - different non ajoining fields.  Dams are monitored for mastitis and hard feed stopped to speed drying off.  Kids already used to hard feed as have access to dams diet from birth.
 
If kids going to new homes I think it is best to wean at 12 weeks or thereabouts as we can bring the kids home and handle them much more frequently for their new homes.  They leave us at 16 weeks old.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2012, 09:31:55 pm by cuckoo »

sokel

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Jun 2012
  • S W northumberland
Re: weaning kids - how best to do it??
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2012, 10:44:00 pm »
We bottle our kids as we have had several damaged udders in the past and blood in the milk when kids get too rough
They do still feed off mums when they go out into the field but from 1 week old when in they are in seperate pens to the mums
Tbh we go O.T.T with bottling and the last 2 where still getting 1 bottle every night at 6 months old.  Just because ........
Graham

 

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