raising bottle calves on goats milk

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

I was wondering if anyone had raised bottle calves on goats milk? I have four does that will be freshening soon and trying to decide what to so with the extra milk - bottle calf for the freezer! Can the milk be taken straight from the goat and given to the claf? Anyone who has done this i would really appreciate the advice. thanks!

-- Susan (dsowen@tds.net), January 31, 2002


We noticed a big improvement in the calves when we started feeding goat milk to them. We also gave them scour tabs and Immuno_g, an immune supplement after we would get them. This way they can pretty much droink all they want. I just milked the goats and then put in bottles. Hope this helps.

-- Bernice (geminigoats@yahoo.com), January 31, 2002.

Yep! Lots of farmers keep dairy goats just for that purpose. When my goat was being milked I used to sell her milk to wildlife rehabers. They used it for all sorts of wildlife.


-- Susan in Minnesota (nanaboo@paulbunyan.net), January 31, 2002.

Yes! I am assuming though that you do save excess colostrum and freeze it for emergency purposes. I believe many years ago there was an article in Countryside about feeding calves with goats milk. Someone had made a sort of stanchion for the goat and put something similar to cattle panels right next to the stanchion for the calves to reach through to reach the teats.

-- Katie S (cashcrop90@yahoo.com), January 31, 2002.

Yes, you can give calves goats milk and I feel it gives them a good start. After our goats had their kids, sold the kids, and was getting way to much milk. So, after we got what milk we wanted, we left the goat on her milking stand and let in the calf! She didn't mind it at all if we gave her another small scoop of feed. The calf grew up big and healthy. We just butchered him and the meat was yummy.

-- Jo in PA (farmerjo02@yahoo.com), February 01, 2002.

Someone had made a sort of stanchion for the goat and put something similar to cattle panels right next to the stanchion for the calves to reach through to reach the teats.

I knew a doe once that had gone through this. Her udder hung almopst to the ground and she had huge, bulbous teats, about 3-4 inches across (not around). I don't think it was genetic- I owned her daughter and a son and the daughter had a very high tight udder with teats that were on the small side. The granddaughters of this doe also had good udders. Needless to say, this is something I would NOT do to any doe that I cared about....

-- Rebekah (daniel1@itss.net), February 01, 2002.

Rebekah, that is good to know. I know I posted that fact about the stanchion as a form of encouragement I guess. Goats I owned in the past I don't know that they would have stood for it! I had a hard enough time getting them to just stay still while I was milking them yet, they could hardly wait to see me. It was usually about the time they ran out of grain in front of them!

-- Katie S (cashcrop90@yahoo.com), February 01, 2002.

thanks for all the encouragement, although i have no intention of letting a calf nurse any of them. i will hand milk and then give it to the calf. but can someone tell me how much milk a calf needs? If i fed it three times a day, how much should each feeding be? this is a great place to learn so much - thanks again everyone

-- Susan (dsowen@tds.net), February 01, 2002.

We feed a 3 day old Holstein calf 3 cups per feeding 4 times per day. At one week old we change to 4 cups per feeding 3 times per day. A Holstein cow gives milk of much lower fat content than a Jersey cow. A Nubian goat (which we have) gives a high fat content milk, compared to a Saanen goat. A Holstein calf may have a bad reaction to the high fat content of Nubian milk, so I usually water the milk at first just until I can be sure he's o.k. with it. Just be sure to follow the rule: BEFORE each feeding, check the calf's back end. If you see any sign of him having the runs DO NOT FEED THAT MILK. Feed warm water insteak, just for that feeding while you get advice about what to do next, if you don't already know. Oops, I got sidetracked. After three weeks of age we ease the calf into two quarts per feeding, twice per day. A Jersey calf may need less than that if it is extra small.

-- Dianne Wood - Woodlan, WA (woodgoat@pacifier.com), February 01, 2002.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ