What to feed

Discussion in 'Dairy Goat Info' started by laughter777, Jun 17, 2008.

  1. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    I have been looking over the different feed posts and think I have this right, but please help if I don't!!!

    Definitely need Alfalfa pellets. (right now she has bermuda/bahia grass hay)
    Black Oil Sunflower Seeds (I think that is what Boss stands for)


    Crap I forgot and can't find my list...hubby cleaned my office last night! LOL

    Any and all help much appreciated!

    Also anyone near Tomball, TX recommend a feed mill or feed store to buy my grains and stuff from???
    Currently using D&D Feed on 2920.

    Thanks,
    Sarah
     
  2. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Even just finding good grass hay will become a chore...and bahia is not good grass hay. You will want to find coastal bermud (not coastal bahia) hay grazer, etc.. And start thinking about getting your hay for the winter now. I know that KUrby on here, look in the members list, is cutting her hay is excellent and she brings it down here and sells it when she delivers to me...I am north of 59 out of Cleveland.

    Also SCTGA.org or .net something like that meets in Feildstore every 4 months, the other alternate second month has been up in Bryan. Lots of the gals on there deal in hay.

    Sorry, even just 5 mintues south of me your feed is totally different, alfalfa pellets also. But if I didn't feed the grain I do I would be feeding Pilgrims dry Mix, or the Bluebonnet all grain at Tractor Supply. vicki
     

  3. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    I feed the hay we grow, cut and bale ourselves. It may not be great, but it is what we have...also means I don't have to look for winter hay, until winter.
    Do you feed a pre mix or do you mix your grains yourself??

    Sarah
     
  4. leslieh

    leslieh New Member

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    On feeding, here, it depends on the goat. If you are a dry doe and not pregnant, you get pasture and alfalfa pellets and minerals. If you are a wether and buck you get the same thing. Now if you are milking or pregnant, then you will get grain added.

    Having used a pre-mix grain in the past and after seeing how the girls looked so terrible, I spent a whole summer researching nutrition.

    If you want to use a pre-mix, you will be ahead of the game to check tags and find one that lists at the top of the ingredient list, oats, barley, ... It will actually list the grain, and try to find one that is "dry" which means it doesn't have molasses. If your pre-mix lists "grain by-products", then that means they can change the contents anytime with anything and use any kind of filler they want. So, basically, you will be changing your feed each and every time you get a new bag of food. Which is not good for a rumen health!

    I used to mix my own, which was a combo of oats, boss, calf manna, barley, and corn. But it was a pain to mix, so now I just feed whole oats and then top dress them boss. Simple, simple, simple. And I know exactly what they are getting and it doesn't change from bag to bag.

    Unless they are "working" (milking, breeding, etc), they really don't need "grain". It is more to make us feel better because they are SCREAMING at us if we don't! :lol

    Leslie
     
  5. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    I have a milking doe and plan to get 2 more. What is the difference in oats w/ everything you used to mix and oats top dressed with boss??
     
  6. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    COST tho I really do like barley I mix my own and when cost isn't a factor
    this is what I do
    100lb whole oats
    100lb steam rolled barley
    25lb BOSS
    25lb cracked corn
    20 lb of dry beet pulp
    Then some of the does NOT ALL just depends on the doe get a 1/8 cup calf manna or knock off of it.

    If I didn't have to drive so far to a TSC I would be using Bluebonnet dry horse feed like Vicki and add boss to it.
     
  7. leslieh

    leslieh New Member

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    Yup, COST! And barley is hard to come by here, especially since I was the only one feeding it. So, if they forgot to order it, well...there went my mix. So I've got it down to what I KNOW the feed store will have in stock. No changing up the feed that way.

    Leslie
     
  8. old dominion

    old dominion New Member

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    I would never feed anything but what I mix myself. I tweek a basic mix because I will not feed young kids any corn at all. The guy that cuts our hay regularly over cures the hay. It is not the ideal but you can raise healthy and happy goats with average quality grass hay, alfalfa pellets, and grain when appropriate. I use only enough grain to keep goats in condition when milking and prekidding. My goats have been much healthier since Vicki posted Alfalfa pellets and hay is for milk and grain is for condition. It is an easy concept that works perfectly.

    Jolene
     
  9. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Perhaps when you go to Tractor Supply the next time look at the Bluebonnet dry horse feeds. Whole oats, crimped barley, cracked corn, crimped oats, a mineral mix to die for with kelp, biotin, yeasts, probiotics all for a price higher than oats, but I bet not higher than oats tweaked with BOSS and calf manna. Mine is 28 miles one way, and with diesel nearly 5$ per gallon, I am setteling right now for a horse premix that is oats, cracked corn and alfalfa pellets...a good clean mix that normally is the mill that I get my fat oats from.

    But like Jolene said...once you can get the normal way of feeding out of your head...worry about your grain and work on the best alfalfa hay you can keep and store or good grass hay and alfalfa pellets. Clean water and a good loose mineral mix. Then you can use your grain for what it is supposed to do. Here....grain is to get size on kids, with and after all the milk you can feed, to get the size on your kids to get them bred the first year. For milkers to add the carbs, fat and energy they need to stay in good flesh while the alfalfa (calcium and protein) makes them milk, and the last 50 days of pregnancy when kids are growing fast and they need all the extra energy and carbs you can give them.

    When you rely on your grain out here for protein and calcium and everything else, you get fat goats with metobolic problems during pregnancy, poor feet, poor growth, and they milk skeletal thin during lacatation.

    You can tell on forums who doesn't feed alfalfa like we do, they are on forums asking the perferbiable question...how can I get some weight on my milkers. The answer is...you can't, if you don't supply them with everything they need 24/7/365...you can't plump them up during lactation unless they are very poor milkers.

    And adding more and more grain will either founder or cause acidosis.

    As you look longer at the goats around us, you will find many folks doing it differently...just wish they would come on forums and tell us about the problems they have in their herds from the way they feed. vicki
     
  10. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    Vicki,
    If I have to feed the not so stellar hay and I go to TSC and get the bluebonnet horse feed (which one) Would I still need the alfalfa pellets for milk production and a loose mineral or is the mineral in the hay enough?? I plan to put out baking soda, mineral (if I need it), water, hay all the time, Would I leave out alfalfa pellets 24/7 or use it as a top dress? Would you still recommend BOSS on top of the bluebonnet feed or not at all??

    Thanks so much!!

    Sarah
     
  11. Sondra

    Sondra New Member

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    yes you have to have a good mineral like bluebonnet techmaster complete and you need alfalfa or alfalfa pellets. They need like 3 lbs of alfalfa pellets in order to have milk. you can use sunflower oil as a top dress or Boss this is extra fat and puts a nice coat on them but not a necessity. they get the grain on the milk stand only but can have the alfalfa pellets later or any time
     
  12. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    OK read this again......

    But like Jolene said...once you can get the normal way of feeding out of your head...worry about your grain and work on the best alfalfa hay you can keep and store or good grass hay and alfalfa pellets. Clean water and a good loose mineral mix. Then you can use your grain for what it is supposed to do. Here....grain is to get size on kids, with and after all the milk you can feed, to get the size on your kids to get them bred the first year. For milkers to add the carbs, fat and energy they need to stay in good flesh while the alfalfa (calcium and protein) makes them milk, and the last 50 days of pregnancy when kids are growing fast and they need all the extra energy and carbs you can give them.

    When you rely on your grain out here for protein and calcium and everything else, you get fat goats with metobolic problems during pregnancy, poor feet, poor growth, and they milk skeletal thin during lacatation.
    .........................

    So first are you going to feed alfalfa hay or alfalfa pellets. In the barn, up to 3 pounds per head per day. Now what loose minerals with at least 1000PPM of copper are you going to put out? Water I am sure is covered. If you are going to choose alfalfa pellets then your grass hay would be perfect.

    And now the grain. Since your protein and calcium needs are being met in your alfalfa....and your vitamins and minerals are in your loose minerals....than your grain can be from just oats, to the Bluebonnet dry mix. Whatever tractor supply you go to just read labels, each carries a different horse dry mix. Read the label, you want one that is a labeled tag....oats, barley corn etc....not grain byproducts etc....Then when you have made up your mind, stick to it, no changes...and make your change to your new feeding program very very slowly. Vicki
     
  13. Tricia

    Tricia New Member

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    :rofl

    I will let my ladies know this! Well, we do stick to a pretty consistent whole grain regime, but I will let them know my mind again! Hopefully we'll all have a meeting of the minds.
     
  14. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    So I am on my way out to TSC and my feed store to look at prices and buy what I can. this is my list:
    Bluebonnet Tech Master Mineral or something with atleast 1000PPM of Copper
    Alfalfa Pellets
    BOSS
    and
    A dry mix w/ oats, barley, etc...NOT by products or just oats or barley (depending on prices)

    Does this sound good???

    Am I forgetting anything?

    Can I get baking soda at TSC or feed store or is it cheaper at grocery store??

    Thanks,
    Sarah
     
  15. BlissBerry

    BlissBerry Guest

    It's much cheaper at TSC or any farm store. However, you have to buy it in a 50# bag. Here the cost is about $10 for 50#.

    Sara
     
  16. Rambar Ranch

    Rambar Ranch New Member

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    We buy our baking soda from the producers in bryan in the 50 lbs sacks, very affordable that way as its considered animal grade. I've never seen baking soda at any of our TSC stores but maybe yours might. We buy the bluebonnet 10% dry horse feed as our dairy ration as it is the one Vicki was explaining about. We mix in a little extra whole oats because they seemed to be using less oats in the mix now for some reason. For us its cheaper than whole oats. If you buy from TSC in 1/2 ton increments you can save 5 % as well.

    Ray
     
  17. LynninTX

    LynninTX New Member

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    baking soda is cheaper at the grocery store... at least for us... dh even buys it there for pools! 20-30 boxes at a time...

    just read Sara's post! Weird baking soda at our feed store is $25/50#

    our local tsc do not carry alfalfa pellets... just cubes... do not get cubes!
     
  18. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    So I went to TSC and our feed store....Feed store way better!! Forgot to ask about baking soda!

    Alfalfa Pellets - none at TSC $13/50# at feed store
    Mineral - $38.99 for 50# of Bluebonnet Master at TSC $13.95 for 25# of Purina Goat Mineral (has over 1000ppm of copper)
    BOSS - didn't ask at TSC $15.50 for 25#, $26.50 for 59#


    Now to get hubby to build feeders for alfalfa and mineral out of extra PVC pipes we have laying around!
     
  19. laughter777

    laughter777 New Member

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    Forgot...what do we think of Dumor goat feed - ingredients were real not by products its $12.20/ 20lb (I think)
     
  20. NubianSoaps.com

    NubianSoaps.com New Member

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    Don't get the Purina minerals you want the grey Tech Master complete. Start looking around at private feed stores and get an off brand of alfalfa pellets....Evans is nice and way less than $13 per 50. Arrow and Boyce are cheaper yet but always have problems with powder or crumbling. MG are my favorites but they are right over $10 per 50. Not a fan of the Dumor products most are medicated, honestly never read one that wasn't by products.

    BOSS is always cheaper at TSC than even our wallmart. Vicki