pen arrangements

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by chewie, Jan 17, 2009.

  1. chewie

    chewie New Member

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    i have 2 currently milking does, hopefully bred. i have 3 doelings, and then 2 more does, that are looking *very* preggers. within those last 2, one was run with the buck all summer, so have no idea when she's due. the other is saanen who looks like she's also getting bigger but shouldn't be due til mid feb. these last 2 are in their own pen, the others all together.

    it would be nice to have all does together, but i am afraid to put the 2 further along ones in with the others, fear of the fighting would make them loose their kids. i penned them separately to feed them grass hay for the few months but now they are close due, i am feeding them alf. hay (worked up to it slowly) when should i put the close-due ones in with the others? after kidding? now?
     
  2. goatkid

    goatkid New Member

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    If you're feeding the two does who are due soon differently, it would make sense to keep them in their own. pen. When to move them in with other goats would depend on how you plan to raise the babies. If you pull the kids, it would make sense to run them with the other goats. If they are raising their kids, I'd wait until the babies are a bit older to move the families. Of course, by then, the two milkers may need their own space if they are bred and soon to kid. Here, I do move young pregnant does in with the older ones when I need their pen for the new bottle babies. I'd rather not do it that way, but we rent and there are space/pen restrictions as I can't afford to extensively fence and build on someone else's land. If you have the space, it's great to have a "due pen" a kid pen and a yearling pen as well as pens for your bucks and milkers. Kathie
     

  3. Anita Martin

    Anita Martin Senior Member

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    I can't tell you what would be best in your situation. All of our does are now in together. They have been since August I think. Young and old alike. They have plenty of room and pasture, which helps and there are only seven of them. We do have a serious problem going on at the moment though. It happened last year too. An older doe (the herd queen) gave birth and a FF decided to step up and take over her spot in the herd. The bucks had been left on their dam, and were nearly trampled with the fighting that began while I went to the store. They had to be seperated for several weeks and I really didn't have a good set up for that. The older doe...still herd queen, and not a very nice one sometimes either, has been induced, and is probably 12 hours away from kidding. The younger doe, now a two year old, has begun challenging her. My computer is in front of the window and I can see out into my goat yard, so I am watching this carefully. I do have extra stalls that I could put one or the other in, but they are not used to those stalls and I feel they would yell and holler and stress that way too. This only happens at kidding time. The rest of the year, the older girl rules the roost and nobody gets in her way. I was so hoping not to have to seperate them this year, especially since I am bottle feeding all babies. Good luck with your situation. It's hard to tell what various personalities will come out when the girls are all together. If you have plenty of room, especially at the feeders, that can only help.
    Anita
     
  4. chewie

    chewie New Member

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    i have a big feeder with lots of room for them all. main question is could the pecking order arguement cause the heaviest-pregger doe to loose her kids? i have a nice kidding stall ready for her in the main barn/run area, i could put her there for now, again, no idea when she'll kid as she ran with the buck all summer/fall. her belly is hanging lower but no baggin up yet, she is a 6yo doe. i just wonder if it will stress her less moving her to the main pen now, or after babies?
     
  5. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    I know full well what your asking, I just moved three bred does in with the others. YES there was major fighting going on. So hopefully no one got too rough. Twas rather funny as the big ones took on the big ones and the Mini's took on the mini's. I am inclinded to think that the first trimester would be the ones to abort, but can't say that for sure.
     
  6. BlissBerry

    BlissBerry Guest

    Personally, I would never move heavily bred does to another pen forcing them to compete and fight with other does. Not worth it in my opinion.

    Sara
     
  7. chewie

    chewie New Member

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    just wondering when i can put them in with the other pen then, after babies are up and going well?

    thanks.
     
  8. stacy adams

    stacy adams New Member

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    Yea, I would wait until they have kidded, and even then if it were possible, is it possible to divide the pen so that they're together but separate? just for a while until they get to know one another? Even post kidding they can be hurt by a meanie.
     
  9. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    I didn't have a choice here as only one area for freshening and all are pg However no one got hurt and they had all been together before. Guess in the end you need to know your goats.
    I of course pull the babies at birth so that wouldn't be a problem for me to put them in after freshing as there are no babies to worry abt. When I used to let babies stay with moms they were kept separate with their mom for 2 wks so good and bonded and MOM warded off any problems that might have arose with the other goats.
     
  10. Legend Hills

    Legend Hills New Member

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    :yeahthat I've also heard of others that keep mom and baby separated from the herd and together for bonding and safety for two weeks.
     
  11. chewie

    chewie New Member

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    i'll just leave them in the 2 pens, until she is ready to kid. i do have a small stall that she can be near/in with the other group, but not really in with them. it would do fine for those few bonding weeks. thanks all.