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Dumb goats

4907 Views 19 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  Good Goats
I seperated a group of kids and 3 older does who are bred and are now dry to another pasture so that my yearlings that were kidding could have more room. They have a nice shed to sleep with a hay feeder. Instead of sleeping in the barn, they lie at the gate in the open pasture and are sleeping there.
There is nothing wrong with the barn, the other goats slep there every night. Last night at 9 PM I went into the barn (it is closed on the West and the North side for protection from the wind) and called them to come there. Even before I left, they were running back to their "spot" in the open pasture near the gate to go back to sleep. It is 35 this morning and frost and the idiots are still huddled at the gate. If this were their first night, I would think "Well they will wise up" but this is their 5th night to stay there.

Funny thing, the three older goats spent the winter in the same pasture and slept in the barn. I have no way of locking them up in the barn except by draggin up some cattle panels and forcing them to sleep there. I worry about my 10 year old doe especially. The cold must be hard on her old bones. :sigh
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I know where you are coming from Tim. I have a perfectly good barn as well, and I will be darned if my does prefer to sleep in the pasture. We had a relatively dry winter last year, and unless it was raining or snowing, the whole herd would be out in the drylot with temps in the low 20's. JUST bizarre!
It will start raining again soon, and you'll have to get a stick after them to get 'em out of the barn :biggrin
That's incredible Odeon! In my wildest nightmares I wouldn't leave my goats sleeping without shelter but here they are doing this to themselves. It makes me feel better knowing yours have survived sleeping outside with the temps in the twenties. I guess they won't die but I hope they will figure it out soon. The low was 32 degrees last night and I can't hardly stand them choosing to sleep outside.
Ya know... there's alot of peace in knowing that other folks are experiencing this peculiar behavior! One of my does spent the entire last year avoiding going outside of the "corral" area just outside the barn door while my cow spent all her time attempting to get inside the barn with her. This year, I added a doe from Texas (where the reputation for fearing rain drops lives) and now my entire herd spends all day and all night out in the pasture somewhere whether it's raining or not, below freezing or above!
Just plain weird! I worried about it so much this Summer that I replaced my fence charger with a really powerful one in the hopes that it will help to repel any of the local coyotes who love to come visiting (much to the chagrine of my LGD).
Tim, rest assured, if they have access to shelter and feel they need shelter, they will use it. Animals just condition themselves to the colder temperatures. Mine will go in if it is windy, but if you think about it, depending on your barn, on a calm night the temp outside the barn typically isn't that much different from that inside the barn. So as long as they are dry and out of the wind, they should be fine.

:sigh Don't feel like the lone ranger... mine have spent all summer sleeping in their loafing shed...now, with temps getting lower and lower at night, they've opted to spend the night OUTSIDE and directly in front of the gate. :/ :shrug I guess they know best and I'm not too torn up about NOT having to clean the inside of shed right now.
Our girls will sleep outside as long as their is no wind, snow, etc. They prefer to be outside for some unknown reason. This morning, we went out and it was 25 degrees at 7:30 and they were all outside. Not a whole lot of wind though. Believe me, they would have been in had there been a little bit of wind or precipitation.

I live in the cold north of Montana, and my goats sometimes choose to sleep outside as well. Unless it's snowing, rainy or really windy, I've observed them sleeping by their feeder when it's been below zero. The hay builds up on the ground there and provides some insulation. Of course, there is straw in their goat houses when it's that cold. I've learned not to worry about them. I'm only concerned if they're real close to kidding or have small kids they are raising.
Think like a goat. If you are in a shed or barn, you can't hear the sabre tooth tigers approaching, and you can't get away as easily. :yeahthat
Rose said:
Think like a goat. If you are in a shed or barn, you can't hear the sabre tooth tigers approaching, and you can't get away as easily. :yeahthat
...or the door open or a feed bucket rattle.

Mine sleep in the open too, by the backporch light. Unless there are one of those famous Texas raindrops...if it is "misting" my goats freak out!
Well I guess I'm the only one with weirdos then... They are usually out in the pasture until it starts getting dusky dark and they all go in a line straight to the barn and sleep in their shed. Syrah scares the heck out of me. When she sleeps, she really sleeps. She lays on her side all stretched out and she don't get up unless it is absolutely necessary. She will raise her head up and look at you like WHAT do you want. Especially if you go out early in the morning to feed before daylight. I turn on the light and their eyes are all squinted up as they peek out of their shed. Turn the light off Mom!!! :lol
Christine, that's what mine do. Even if I'm out with them in the pasture, at dusk they start pacing between me and the door like "HELLOOO Are we going in or what?" If I'm running late and get out there after dark, they've always put themselves to bed inside. Of course, they're spoiled rotten so that might have a teeny bit to do with it. LOL
BethW said:
Of course, they're spoiled rotten so that might have a teeny bit to do with it. LOL
Ditto....... I think mine are too, but Shhhh.... don't tell anybody. :yes
Funny thing. Mine dont seem to mind the rain! I think I conditioned them that way though. I let them out to free roam graze when I am home and I think they would get far enough away from the barn that they didnt feel like walking (in the rain) that far to get BACK to the barn and now they have learned that it wont make them melt! It was raining here most of they day and I kept expecting them to head for the barn, but NO, the weeds were much too exciting I guess. :lol Goats, the surprise me every day! :)
Mine still sleep out in the pasture, and it was cool last night. They slept out there all summer and the only time they went to the barn was when it was raining. Now the bucks, they go in their shelter as soon as the sun goes down. Guess they are scared of the boogie man!! ;)
Mine always sleep beside the gate when I split the goats up in different pens and the goats in the pen sleep by the goats beside the other pen gate ......... :/ , right now I have goats split in 3 areas, a mama doe with new twins in 1 pen ,because I dont want her to loose the kids out in the big pasture . My dairy doe's out are where the barn is with the 3 wethers that go to the butcher next week :D and then the front yard pen that has the bucks and others including Peggy the doe that stuffed herself and her 3 week old twins ..... and ALL of them in the 3 pens are sleeping out on the ground by the gates even in cold temperatures now :nooo ... I was worried also about pneumonia or snotts and especially sick kids but they all are fine ...... the 5 Pyrenees dogs that we have dug out and run all over trying to guard all the goats in the pens , I even have a couple of wethers that get out in the holes that the dogs dug and they are running around also ..... none of them go in the barn ! I even thought there must be something wrong or something in the barn .... :nooo I think they all want to be together and then they will all go in the barn.. This weekend is barn cleaning day... haul out the old sand,add new sand,lime and DE and then top with pine needles for bedding..... then hopefully turn them all together and they will use the barn :sigh .
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HUmmm?, My goats have never slept outside.
They have a run attached to their side of the barn. Their side has a hall that goes from front to back and has the mineral feeder there. on the right is three stalls with feeders, hay feeders and waterers.
They stay in in the morning for a few hours after milking to eat fresh alfalfa and then go to the meadow with all the other animals.
They come back for water in a few hours and lay around the barnyard naping and then head back out till dusk.
They then come in for the evening and beg to get back into their side of the barn.
I refill their feeders and let them in and they stay in the barn all night even though they are free to go out into the run at any time.

The only time they will go out into the rain is if it has rained all day and turns to drizzle. They finally get cabin(barn) fever and go out anyway.
Tim, I got to thinking about this again.

I think my goats would do the same thing even though they are barn goats now.

The reason is, they are not choosing to sleep out in the cold because they don't want shelter.
Goats ae creatures of habit and they are used to going in the other barn at night.
They don't know why they can't. They are waiting by the gate for you to open it so they can go in like always.

Like they said. If it rains they will get in the shelter I think but then they will come back out and go to the gate when it is time to come in in the evening.

It's been a while and they may be settled into their new home by now.

Thats just my opinion.
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Our goats usually sleep outside unless it is really cold, raining or windy (or of course snowing, but that doesn't happen too often). Goats are just weird. . . that's it :)!

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