Goats!!

Discussion in 'Survival & Sustenance Living Forum' started by clr8ter, Aug 4, 2013.

  1. clr8ter

    clr8ter New Member

    4,015
    0
    0
    So, I have been doing some side work for a farmer on and off these last couple of months. Interesting, since I know nothing, really, of farming. He raises several crops, and most of the standard barnyard animals. He seems to have a soft spot for his goats, though. He's got some for sale, very reasonable @ $100/pair. Now, like I said, I'm no farmer, but it has dawned on me that if the SHTF, farming your own food is what's really going to do it for you. Not that goats are food..........For now, I'm half interested in them because;
    1. I have an overabundance of horrible brushy, spiny, prickly, viney crap I can't control. I'm told goats LOVE all that stuff. It's salad to them.

    2. While the goats are keeping my "salad" under control, I'm interested to see if I have what it takes to deal with this sort of thing. He says goats are easy to care for, don't cost a lot, etc.

    BUT, I also have a lot of projects pending, house things need doing and on and on. Thoughts?
     
  2. shadamai

    shadamai New Member

    652
    0
    0
    I know nothing of raising goats, but I have heard of businesses in the area renting them to keep their vegetation under control. I could use some for my backyard ;)
     

  3. MisterMcCool

    MisterMcCool Well-Known Member Supporter

    12,816
    113
    63
    Goats smell like piss!
     
  4. eatmydust

    eatmydust New Member

    4,360
    0
    0
    I hope to never own goats!

    If SHTF, I will be looking for goats, the milk is palatable, their cheeses can be delish & I've eaten goat meat a couple of times, not my fav, but edible. They do seem to be very low maintenance!
     
  5. clr8ter

    clr8ter New Member

    4,015
    0
    0
    LOL, while goats may indeed smell like piss, they certainly smell MUCH less than pigs. (That is NOT mud you're stepping in, BTW) You can't really even smell these goats unless you go inside their goat shed. And he has about 20.
    Now, it also occurs to me that if SHTF, you're not going to find any available goats to buy, or at least certainly not for $100/pair.
     
  6. MisterMcCool

    MisterMcCool Well-Known Member Supporter

    12,816
    113
    63
    Tuskegee University has a caprine research center. They have a cookout every so often. Goats stink, but taste great.
     
  7. hiwall

    hiwall Active Member

    4,268
    19
    38
    You have a plan for your goats in the winter?
     
  8. Kodeman

    Kodeman Member

    151
    0
    16
    I bought one once to clear some back land and they do a pretty good job. Tied her up to a heavy rimmed truck tire that she could barely move. Every morning I would move the tire several feet for her to reach new vegetation. When the land was cleared I donated the goat to a (hands on) farm that catered to special needs programs.
     
  9. KG7IL

    KG7IL Active Member

    3,150
    21
    38
    Wethered Males are a piece of cake. (Neutered Males).
    Bucks (Males with balls) can stink.
    Does are fine.

    Little work at all, Water . . . . . ..

    Some Feed if the Browse is gone in Winter.

    That's pretty easy. Try that with your kid's (I mean the human kind) Kid's are hard...... Goats are easy.

    You can trim their hoofs and give shots about once a year ....
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2013
  10. Gatoragn

    Gatoragn Active Member

    3,935
    1
    38
  11. clr8ter

    clr8ter New Member

    4,015
    0
    0
    I was told for the winter they need a shed, some hay, some feed, and a heated water source. And, optionally, a TV & DVD player with every episode of the Dukes of Hazard...:D

    And yes, we are talking about wethered males here.....
     
  12. TekGreg

    TekGreg Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

    2,000
    0
    0
    I had a next-door neighbor that owned a goat and I worked with him for four years. They have to be one of the lowest maintenance farm animals there is. They eat the worst scrub vegetation that exists, including thorns, ivy and anything that you can't kill with Roundup. They can sure-footedly handle any mountainous terrain that would kill a human or tractor. If they have a small lean-to or shed to protect from rain and sun exposure, they are smart enough to use it. The milk they give is quite good if used cold and the cheese made from it is a low-fat white cheese akin to mozzarella. A local doctor also told me that it is possible for humans to increase their tolerance to poisonous foliage like poison oak/ivy by drinking goat's milk from a goat that has eaten that plant. In the winter, you can provide hay or any bailed grass, oats or cob, garden vegetation, lawn clippings and human scraps from the table. If it ever grew in the ground, a goat will eat it!

    For SHTF, this would have to be one of the most useful animals there is. On top of all of the above, there is a small culture of backwoods people that use packs and saddlebags to carry tools, food, clothing and whatever else they need with them. A goat can carry up to 35 lbs and can tow about 50 lbs in a sled. Yes, they can serve as small pack animals!

    The viable males are the most aggressive and will go through seasons of marking everything in sight. Best to use fixed males and does as long as you don't plan to breed them, or make a deal with someone with a viable male to impregnate your females. They only need a vet if injured and you can give shots or any needed meds pretty easily, making them one of the cheapest animals there is to keep. Hooves should be cleaned and trimmed if there are problems, but they are almost always self-sufficient. This is the ultimate "Farm animal for Dummies" that ever existed.

    Hope it helps!
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2013
  13. clr8ter

    clr8ter New Member

    4,015
    0
    0
    That is awesome info, TekGreg! A lot of that I didn't know. It sounds like the wife isn't going to go for it, but we'll see......
     
  14. TekGreg

    TekGreg Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

    2,000
    0
    0
    Glad to help! Let her know that the only downside to having a goat, like any other farm animal, is when they get wet. Keep their shelter away from your house and you won't have a problem. They can be put on a running line, much like a dog and therefore contained only in certain, well-foliaged areas. A sturdy nylon collar and a medium chain running along a wire, up and down greenery will keep them happy for weeks if they have water and shelter. :)
     
  15. orangello

    orangello New Member

    19,156
    0
    0
    Please Note: Keep the goats the hell away from anything you don't want them climbing all over with their sharp little hooves, things like YOUR FREAKIN CAR. They like to get up higher to see around or something, lil bastids. They will eat kudzu, though; this redeems them somewhat.

    My sister had some; ended up giving them away.
     
  16. buckhuntr

    buckhuntr Well-Known Member Lifetime Supporter

    3,819
    74
    48
    I have goats, 8 of 'em. Intent was to raise kids for eating, but they have turned me and Wife into softies, because of their great personalities and are about like dogs with horns. The lambs, however are not nearly so cute, nor are they very friendly, so about September..... :D
     
  17. JW357

    JW357 New Member

    6,716
    1
    0
    What's the expected lifespan on goats? If its not long I bet you'll have to replace them before you ever run into a SHTF situation.

    Also in a SHTF situation I wonder if any unprepared hungry neighbors might come get your goats for their own purposes...

    Not a bad idea though. My wife likes goats for some reason.

    Maybe if we get enough land someday, a couple goats could be a good alternative to a lawn mower for part of it.

    Do goats scare easily? Like from gun shots?
     
  18. orangello

    orangello New Member

    19,156
    0
    0
    Depends on the breed.

    [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=we9_CdNPuJg[/ame]
     
  19. clr8ter

    clr8ter New Member

    4,015
    0
    0
    Ahh, also very useful information. I am not concerned really about stuff we don't want them to eat, since there is not much of that, and it would be easy to keep them away.

    TekGreg, are you saying they stink when they get wet? Do they care if they are out in the rain, or will they go inside their house? The goats would not be so much for SHTF, but more like getting in the proper mindset to prep in that sort of way. I do see, though, about your neighbors "repurposing" them for their own needs. Surely in this situation, a farm would need to be hardened, and have some very good security.
     
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2013
  20. KG7IL

    KG7IL Active Member

    3,150
    21
    38
    I have a range in the south portion of the property which is fenced for the Goats and Steer.

    The Steer don't seem to care about the gunshots, the goats usually head back near their little barn, just like they do when it rains.

    Goats can be a bit skittish to something unfamiliar.