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what kind of calcium do you give your goats. The reason i want to know is should i give my goat who just had triplets a month ago calcium to build her back up befor breeding season so she doesn't get milk fever when she has her next kids. thank you
-- gail akins (firstname.lastname@example.org), March 14, 2002
Hi Gail, it doesn't really work like that. She needs calcium in her diet everyday. On your feed tag your calcium to phosphurus should read a maximum/minimum of 2 to 1. Like calcium 4.3 and phosphurus 2.1, twice as much calcium as phosphurus. Did she have milk fever this time?
Then you get into readibly absorbed calcium like in alfalfa hay. Does who have readibly absorbable calcium in their diet all the time, with nothing else, like no calcium carbonate etc., when they need all the extra calcium in their diet late in pregnancy, they aren't able to use the stored calcium, which is what they need to be doing. So though their rumen is all full of calcium from alfalfa hay, they don't have reserves of it in their bones and blood to utilize for milk, making bones for kids, and growing if they are young themselves, so they go into hypocalcemia, and die because folks start giving them sugar thinking it is ketosis, when they need calcium. Now you could give them calcium when they are pregnant, folks use Tums, just wonder how much you would really have to give to make a difference in a blood level? An old fashion thing to do is to take away their alfalfa, add epsom salts to the minerals? (shoot if I know why) and keep their grain calcium to phos the same. Makes them have to use the stored calcium.
For us it is just eaiser to have a good grain mix, with everything we need in it, supplement with a good loose mineral, and balancing protein with hay. More protein in the grain if your hay is lower in protein, lower protein in the grain if your hay is higher in protein. And moving at day 100 from high calcium alfalfa hay to low calcium grass hay until they kid. Course now that I am all Nubian, I doubt seriously that we could force them to have milk fever if we wanted :) Vicki
-- Vicki McGaugh TX (email@example.com), March 14, 2002.