Alfalfa Pellets

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by Spicer Creek Goats, Dec 17, 2007.

  1. Spicer Creek Goats

    Spicer Creek Goats New Member

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    Hi everyone! This is my first time posting. I sure appreciate everyones knowledge on here. I have a question....I have a nubian doe that is due the end of January. I want to start giving her alfalfa pellets, as our hay is not the best and I'm worried she might not get enough calcium. I know anytime you change their feed you have to do it slowly, but would that be the same for alfalfa pellets? Right now she is getting a handful of grain twice a day and hay. The hay she gets is kind of weedy grass with a touch of alfalfa. Thanks in advance. Julie
     
  2. Patty13637

    Patty13637 New Member

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    Alfalfa is not like grain. You can add more faster . I would start her with hmmm 1 pound divided in 2 feedings a day and increase from there . You want to make sure she doesn't get to heavy before kidding that she has problems. My husband is telling me my girls look like meat goats not dairy as they are in good flesh .

    make sure she has access to a good mineral also . What type of grain are you feeding ? I am sure the girls who feed just pellets will pipe in and help . I am feeding an alfalfa mix pellet now so I have to be a little more carefull on how I feed it .


    Patty
     

  3. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Hi Julie can you please put what kind of goats you have and what area you are in so we can answer your questions, and no who you are:) Ask a mod for help if you can't do it.

    Dairy goats need a bank of stored calcium to utilize when they are actively growing kids (the last 50 days of pregnancy) or when they are milking, and even during times of stress. So a little bit of alfalfa in your hay may be fine if she is a poor milker or is dry, but once you decide to breed her or milk her you want more than just that small amount of alfalfa. Her diet should revolve around alfalfa hay or alfalfa pellets, then that handful of grain when dry, upping it weekly as she gets closer to kidding, and then depending upon how much she milks, she may eat 1, 2, 3 or 3 every 4 pounds of grain a day to milk and keep her weight up..all the while eating her alfalfa in the barn. Loose minerals are key so she gets all the other vitamins and minerals not found in her hay, grain or forage.

    Does this time of year should have some bulk to them if they are bred, otherwise they kid and start milking and become skeletaly thin. All those who asked last year "how can i get some wieght on my milkers"...this is your only chance, but do make all changes super slow.

    Another good time when dry before they go back onto grain, is to change to grain and get away from byproduct feed tags, hard on the does to switch during late pregnancy and milking. Vicki
     
  4. Spicer Creek Goats

    Spicer Creek Goats New Member

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    Thanks Vicki & Patty for your responses. I live in northwest Ohio (yeah, just got blasted yesterday with at least 8" of snow) I have a mix of nubians and boer does. Just looked it up and my first nubian is due January 21st. She is heavy with kids. The grain I give her is corn, oats, cottonseed hulls, TFC 40 beef(supplement) and molasses. Also small amount of selenium. Up until recently we have had good alfalfa hay, but it is very hard to come by now and the price has gone through the roof. They also have free choice mineral available all the time. I wanted to up her grain, but not without giving her alfafa pellets. Thanks
     
  5. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    OK just my opinion but corn is candy to a goat thus I don't use much corn nor do I use molasses except what little is in beetpulp. the goats all get 3lb of alfalfa pellets per day at least. Since your goat is not on the pellets then just start off gradually and increase. All of the above that Vicki suggested.
     
  6. Patty13637

    Patty13637 New Member

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    I feed a mix 4 part oats , 1 part corn , 1 boss 1/2 calf manna . The pellet I am feeding is 12 % soybean hull , alfalfa mix. I would gladly feed straight alfalfa pellets but my girls will not eat them .

    Do you have access to a good dairy cow pellet ? I do but I pick up an off flavor in the milk when I feed them . Same thing with second cut hay . I would cut out the molasses keep the corn {small amount } largest amount being oats .

    Ha 8 inches .... we got a foot and a half !!! Snow that is . That was a piece of cake it was the cold single didgets and winds up to 40 mph that was the problem. I am hoping to have the horses barn yard plowed out so they can get out of the barn .

    Patty
     
  7. Spicer Creek Goats

    Spicer Creek Goats New Member

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    Thanks everyone. Patty, I just picked up alfalfa pellets today. We'll see how she likes them tonight at feeding time. She is a "pig", so I'm hoping she likes them. I have my own feed mixed at our local elevator. I do use more oats than corn, however, I'm thinking I ought revamp this mixture. I also throw in a little calf manna-of course they love that! Not being mean--but I'm sure glad it was you that got a foot and a half snow and not us!!!! Julie