Preparing does for the Nationals

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by Tim Pruitt, May 24, 2008.

  1. Tim Pruitt

    Tim Pruitt New Member

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    I am considering going to the Nationals. For my first Nationals, I fed a little too heavy on the grain and foundered one of our does. I always had to deal with hoof problems with her thereafter. I want to be careful not to do so but also want my does in best condition as possible. Of course, I started months ago but could use a few more ideas.
    Nantucket, our six year old has not bounded back from having quads. She is milking well but is not carrying the proper condition. Any ideas on how to keep my girls milking through the summer heat, improve condition without causing founder?
    They continue to get COB only on the milk stand with an added cup of cracked corn in the AM, alfalfa pellets, 16% goat pellets in a communal trough and soaked beet pulp.
     
  2. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    personally I would top dress with a 1/8 cup calf manna or the knock off. and BOSS I don't really like all that corn your giving but that is just my opinion you have great looking stock so it must be working for you. Also now I am just wondering why are you soaking the beet pulp? I feed it dry.
     

  3. ecftoggs

    ecftoggs New Member

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    We feed our beet pulp dry also, but the first year we fed it we soaked it. They ate it well soaked, and I think it is good to get as much water into them during hot periods as you can, it was just an extra step we decided to cut out. Keep your water tanks and water as fresh as possible to keep the fluids going into the hot season. Tim, I think you are on the right track to keep the energy high now during peak lactation so when they start to decrease intakes you won't lose as much milk production.
    Tim
     
  4. MysticHollowGoats

    MysticHollowGoats New Member

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    I second Sondra's suggetion on the calf manna and boss. We have alway given boss but just began the calf manna 2 months ago and it really has shown good improvements.
     
  5. Be careful buying that calf manna. Feel the bag ends and sides to make sure there are no lumps. I had a bad bag and took it back. There should be no excuse for getting moldy manna, the loader should have caught that. Now that we have good manna and I've seen exceptional results with our senior doe keeping weight. Tammy
     
  6. Kaye White

    Kaye White Guest

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    :lol Reading this one with interest....as this will be my first Nationals, too.? :crazy It was suggested to me to spread my feedings out over 3-4 times a day. Not so much the milking, as the feeding. With the noon feeding being beet pulp and more alfalfa pellets. Not so much the grains. The dry beet pulp will also cause them to drink more water. I "think" I've found the right amount of beet pulp to keep them from milking off ALL their weight and to actually put a little condition on them. Yes, it's more work, but I hope it will help in the long run.

    I'd have to shy away from the "hot" feeds....calf manna, high proteins, soys, ect. With temps here already in the mid 90's, I don't want these girls stressing over the heat, hot feeds, and developing health problems right now. Some of my does will be just past their peaks on production and some will be right at their peaks by Nationals. Making the "management" a little more difficult.
    JMO,
    Kaye
     
  7. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Yep hot energy feeds will actually make your does eat less. Lots of smaller meals throughout the day is a horse trick. Going to 3 milkings a day unless you bred for nationals of course. And Tim if Daniel Considine is going to judge you might just want to try to get more weight off....I can't even imagine what his goats look like for what he put at the front of the lines this last show.

    You'll do fine, don't do anything stupid! Any changes you make are only going to make miniscule changes, getting weight on is for the end of lactaion and during the dry period, they are dairy goats and your dairy character points show that! :)Vicki;)
     
  8. ecftoggs

    ecftoggs New Member

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    Is there a change to the Show judges that are scheduled?
    Tim
     
  9. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Sorry Tim, I was teasing Tim Pruitt :) Vicki
     
  10. Kaye White

    Kaye White Guest

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    :lol If that was going to be the judge....I wouldn't bother going. ;)
    Kaye
     
  11. Tim Pruitt

    Tim Pruitt New Member

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    Well here's my reason for feeding soaked beet pulp. #1 - they like it wet. #2 It is a way to get water into them by having it soaked. It is wet - therefore there is a fluid intake when they eat it. Maybe they would drink more if it were dry? I dunno.
    I might add BOSS - that is a good idea - that seems to make shiney coats. However, the calf manna - I think Kaye might be on to something here.
    You are right about keeping the water supply clean and fresh. That is so important for the hot weather.

    Now what tips can you share about getting them to drink plenty of water at the show?
     
  12. Shykid Acres

    Shykid Acres Guest

    Put a dab of salt on their tongue. I have never tried this but I have heard that this is how you get them to drink. :shrug
     
  13. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    gator ade my goats love it in their water cherry or red stuff. I pour 1/2 a lg bottle in a bucket of water and this also gives them extra electrolytes where as kool aid doesn't
     
  14. Kaye White

    Kaye White Guest

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    :biggrin Getting them to drink water at a show....I will go down the line about every 3-4 hrs. and put a little beet pulp in each does feed trough. They will scarf up the beet pulp and immediately turn and drink water. Regardless of taste. ;)

    I also don't leave goats in their pens throughout the show. I'll take them outside and walk them for just a little...maybe one lap and back to the pens. (I NEVER walk them inside the barn...too many other goats to sniff noses with, and it interferes with people trying to get to the ring.) If I have babies there, I'll get in the pen and pet, play, or just get them moving. That's enough to make them want to eat/drink. Too blasted much work to get the babies out and walking. Milkers come back to the pens and either start on the hay bags and/or drink water.

    The salt idea is not a good one. How would you like it if someone put salt on your tounge? I do have one feed pan hung on the fence with baking soda and a bit of their minerals in it...if I'm staying for more than one day. BS is in my show box in a gallon ziplock.

    This is why it's so blasted hard for me to visit at a show. It's serious business to me and I'm constantly working at the does comfort. Then I'm exhausted at bedtime and I take sleep seriously,too! :lol
    Kaye
     
  15. Tim Pruitt

    Tim Pruitt New Member

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    What about adding wheat germ oil?