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How to Raise a Baby Goat to Grow Up Big & Strong

Home Animals How to Raise a Baby Goat to Grow Up Big & Strong

So you want to raise up your baby goat right? I’ve got the best methods for you to use so your baby goats grow up big and strong. Read on so you can get started on raising baby goats the right way. These tips and practices are perfect for any homesteader at any level!

Best Practices for Raising Baby Goats

Baby goats are one of the most delightful side-benefit of homesteading. I call them a side-benefit because the main reason that homesteaders decide to get goats is because they want milk for their family and all the other amazing things that milk makes: ice cream, butter, yogurt, kefir, cheese… yum. Perhaps the ongoing concern about hormones and antibiotics in milk is causing concern, or perhaps you just want the added benefits of goat milk without the nasty, nasty taste of the store bought stuff. In my opinion, it’s like bottled buck-stink, and famously, my walking-trash-disposal-spaniel even once refused to drink some I had rejected. There’s nothing like it, fresh from goat warm, or chilled to perfection, depending on your taste.

But back to baby goats. The reason they’re a side-benefit is because in order to have milk, you have to have babies! They’re cute, funny, adorable, bouncy and just all-round fun! You get to keep additional does to add to your milk-making herd, or sell them for a little extra farm-funds to other homesteaders looking to have their own home-raised milk.

Interested in Raising Goats for Dairy, Meat, & Profit? Check out our Homestead Handbook.

Baby Goat | Best Practices for Raising Baby Goats

One of the big questions that arise once the babies are on the ground is, “how do I raise them?”

You basically have three options: dam-raised, bottle-raised or dual care. Each has its benefits and drawbacks, and really what it comes down to is what suits your situation best.

Dam-Raising

Dam-Raising | Best Practices for Raising Baby Goats

Pearl, a silver angora doe, is an exemplary mother who always tends her babies and they always grow big and fat with gorgeous mohair locks!

This involves leaving the babies on the mama goat to raise. If you are short on time and unable to provide a baby with a bottle every 4-6 hours, then this might be the best option for you. You won’t have to milk the doe to feed the milk back to the baby every few hours, and you know that the milk is always available to the baby, on-demand, at the perfect temperature. There’s a lot to be said for this method – it’s as God intended!

However, I do not generally use this method because there are a few drawbacks that I find significant:

  • If there’s one baby, or sometimes even with two, the babies will nurse unevenly on the udder, causing it to become unbalanced. If the doe is to be shown, this will be a problem, and could lead to a lifetime of unevenness which may or may not correct with subsequent freshening.
  • In the case of triplets or quads, you may end up having to pull on or more babies anyway as Mama may not be able to cope.
  • Babies will be significantly different to those which are bottle raised. They’re usually more wild, harder to catch, and less fond of their people. I have a dam-raised doe who routinely used to run from me and then try to kick me in the head on the milk stand. When you’re dealing with this twice a day for a year or more, it’s no fun at all. Over time she has warmed to me and no longer does this, but it’s taken years.
  • This extends the routine care: feet trimming, vaccines, shaving during summer, kidding clips, etc. When you compare them to bottle babies, they’re just so. much. harder.
  • If babies are sold for show, to either adults or 4Hers, dam-raised babies are often less compliant in the show ring.

Bottle-Raising

Bottle Raising | Best Practices for Raising Baby Goats

This is a high-maintenance way to raise babies, as you have to be available to give them a bottle every 4-6 hours but, in my opinion, it gives the nicest, most compliant babies.

They are well-handled, used to people, and affectionate. The down side? Well, if you have bought the babies as bottle babies and are feeding them something other than goat milk, purchasing the Vitamin D whole milk from the store can get pricey. For various reasons, I do not recommend milk replacer. The only other disadvantage I can think of is that the babies can be excessively friendly, bordering annoying! I have on doe who was rejected by her mother, so I bottle raised her. She now hates to have to go out to the pasture with the others and prefers to hang in the yard where she can intercept me as I go about my daily business, and can occasionally be found in my laundry room, tipping over cat food and banging on the kitchen door for affection. However, this is till my baby-raising method of choice, it works well for me. People like my animals because they’re easy and sweet and the ones I keep are a joy to handle.

Feeding Baby Goats | Best Practices for Raising Baby Goats

If you have many baby goats, a lambar will save your arms and your sanity! Up to six babies can nurse from one large 2-gallon bucket at the same time.

If you do decide to bottle raise, just bear in mind that you need to ensure the kids have appropriate socialization. Don’t be tempted to purchase just one bottle kid – you’ll have a screaming mess on your hands before you know it. Always purchase in minimums of pairs, and if you can’t afford two does, get a wether as a second to keep your doe happy.

Dual Care

Dual Care | Best Practices for Raising Baby Goats

This is where you leave the momma with the baby, and ensure that she is feeding it, but you offer the first feeding of colostrum in a bottle, and usually one or two bottles a day thereafter.

This combines many of the advantages of bottle raising – the kids are friendly and well-handled – with the huge advantage that you don’t have to get up in the night to feed kids or find someone to give them a midday bottle if you’re at work (or end up taking them to work with you!) because they snack on mama.

However you decide to raise your goats, proper worming and coccidia prevention is crucial, or the babies will not grow to their maximum potential. Coccidia especially, when left untreated, can cause such extensive internal intestinal damage that the kids never recover and, if they even survive, grow to be unthrifty, ragged-looking, sickly adults.

But with proper care and raising, you’ll find your new goats to be entertaining, affectionate, productive member of your family – congratulations! You’ll be enjoying them for many, many years to come.

Need more reason to get baby goats? Check out this adorable video of funny and cute baby goats from CrazyFunnyStuffCFS:

There are different methods in raising baby goats and knowing your options makes things a little bit easier for homesteaders like you and me. Whatever your preference is, with proper care and attention, I’m sure you’ll have healthy goats in the homestead all the time!

Do you have baby goats of your own? What method do you prefer? Let us know below in the comments! And if you need some reason to start raising baby goats, here are some inspiration!

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Self Sufficiency

NYC Adds Nearly 4,000 People Who Never Tested Positive To Coronavirus Death Tolls

New York City added nearly 4,000 people who never tested positive for the coronavirus to its death toll Tuesday, bringing coronavirus-related deaths in the city to around 10,000 people.

The city decided to add 3,700 people to its death tolls, who they “presumed” to have died from the virus, according to a report from The New York Times. The additions increased the death toll in the U.S. by 17%, according to the Times report, and included people who were suffering from symptoms of the virus, such as intense coughing and a fever.

The report stated that Democratic New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio decided over the weekend to change the way the city is counting deaths.

“In the heat of battle, our primary focus has been on saving lives,” de Blasio press secretary Freddi Goldstein told the Times.“As soon as the issue was raised, the mayor immediately moved to release the data.”

The post New York City added nearly 4,000 people who never tested positive for the coronavirus to its death toll appeared first on Daily Caller

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Self Sufficiency

How To Make Lacto-Fermented Sauerkraut In A Mason Jar

The thing about homesteading is you get to create your own ingredient right from scratch! Cheese, yogurt, butter and now sauerkraut, a delightfully sour and crunchy ingredient you can use on your meals — or consume by itself — while on a homestead, or while facing this health crisis!

This homemade sauerkraut is a great meal because it has a long shelf life. You can either make plain sauerkraut or mix it with herbs and spices. In this tutorial let us make Lacto-fermented sauerkraut that preserves all the good probiotics in a jar, good for your guts.

So how to make sauerkraut in a mason jar?

RELATED: How To Make Buttermilk On Your Homestead

Delicious Sauerkraut Recipe Every Homesteader Should Know

Why Make Sauerkraut?

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Not only does sauerkraut spoil a long time, but it is also a meal in itself, and it is also easy to make! You don’t need to be an expert cook, all you need to do is follow these simple steps.

So let us get started. Here are the steps in making sauerkraut in a mason jar.

Ingredients:

  • 1 head of cabbage or 2 1/2 lbs cabbage
  • 1 tablespoon of salt

Tools Needed:

  • knife
  • bowl
  • mason jar
  • smaller jar
  • rubber band

Step 1: Wash & Clean the Tools & Ingredients



Wash all the equipment and utensils you need. Wash your hands too.

You don’t want to mix your sauerkraut with bad bacteria, anything that is going to make you sick.

Next, remove the faded leaves from your cabbage. Cut off the roots and the parts that don’t seem fresh.

Step 2: Cut the Cabbage Into Quarters & Slice Into Strips



Cut your cabbage into quarters and remove the core. Then, slice it into strips.

Step 3: Place in a Bowl & Sprinkle With Salt



Put the stripped cabbage into a bowl. Sprinkle the cabbage with 1 tablespoon of salt.

TIP: Use canning salt or sea salt. Iodized salt will make it taste different and may not ferment the cabbage.

RELATED: Homemade Yogurt Recipe

Step 4: Massage the Cabbage



Massage the cabbage for five minutes or more to get the juice out.

TIP: You’ll know it’s ready when you see a bit of juice at the bottom of the bowl and will look similar to coleslaw.

Step 5: Press Cabbage Into the Mason Jar



Add the cabbage to the mason jar gradually. Press it in hard to allow the juice to come out. Do this every time you add about a handful of cabbage.

IMPORTANT: Food should be covered by the liquid to promote fermentation. Add any excess liquid from the bowl to the jar.

Step 6: Press a Smaller Jar Into the Mason Jar



You want to squeeze every ounce of that juice from the cabbage. To do this place the mason jar in a bowl and get a smaller jar.

Fill it with water or marble to make it heavy. Press it into the bigger mason jar. Allow any juices to rise to the surface.

Step 7: Cover the Jars With Cloth & Tie With Rubber Band



Leave the small jar on. To keep your jars clean from annoying insects and irritating debris, cover your jars with a clean cloth. Then, use a rubber band to tie the cloth and the jars together, putting them in place.

Step 8: Set Aside & Check Daily

Set it aside in a cool dry place, away from direct sunlight. Check the water level daily. It should always be above the cabbage.

Step 9: Taste Your Sauerkraut & Keep at Cool Temperatures

Homemade Sauerkraut Cumin Juniper | How To Make Lacto-Fermented Sauerkraut In A Mason Jar

After about five days, you can taste your sauerkraut. If the taste is to your liking, tightly cover it with the lid and store in the fridge or cellar.

NOTE: If after five days it’s still not your desired taste, leave it for a few more days. This will allow the fermentation process to continue.

You can now enjoy your sauerkraut in a mason jar. Enjoy its goodness! You can use it as a side dish or mix it with your favorite sandwich.

Things to Remember in Making Sauerkraut

  • Store away from direct sunlight and drafts.
  • Colder weather will make the process longer. Spring is the best time to make them since the warmth helps activate the fermentation.
  • Always make sure that the cabbage is below the water level during the entire fermentation process.
  • If the water level decreases during the fermentation process, you can make a brine and add it.

Let us watch this video from Kristina Seleshanko on how to make delicious Lacto-fermented sauerkraut in a mason jar!

So there you have it! Making Lacto-fermented sauerkraut in a mason jar is as easy as slicing the cabbage into strips. Remember that as long it remains unopened, your sauerkraut can last for months. Best of all, you can partner this sauerkraut in many recipes.

What do you think of this homemade recipe? Share your best sauerkraut recipe in the comments section below!

Fellow homesteaders, do you want to help others learn from your journey by becoming one of our original contributors? Write for us!

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9 SPRING VEGETABLES FOR YOUR GARDEN

Having plants in the house will bring peace to people. Having a little garden with vegetables is even better! You can grow these vegetables in your backyard garden easily as well!

RELATED: Microgreens Growing Guide

In this article:

  1. Tomato
  2. Eggplant
  3. Beet
  4. Spinach
  5. Pea
  6. Carrot
  7. Radish
  8. Cauliflower
  9. Asparagus

Growing veggies in your garden will give you an opportunity to understand what you eat and value it more. Early spring is when most vegetables are being planted. Keep reading to learn about 9 spring vegetables that anyone can grow in their garden!

Tomato

Tomato is the most popular garden vegetable in the States! There are different varieties to choose from. Tomatoes need to be planted in early spring because they won’t survive a frost.

Because tomatoes are consumed daily, try adding them to your garden! They’re not difficult to grow either.

Eggplant

Eggplants are known to have low-calorie, vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. Plus, they are delicious! So why not plant them in your garden?

Eggplants shouldn’t be planted too early because they won’t be able to survive a frost. So you could consult an expert in your area before you plant your eggplants.

Beets

Beets are known to be a superfood for its various health benefits. They’re easier to grow in the garden, usually around late March or early April.

If the weather is always cool, beets will keep getting bigger and bigger. Once the weather starts to warm up, you’ll need to harvest them, or they’ll go to waste.

Spinach

Spinach is a delicious early spring veggie, and it’s also very beneficial for health. And it’s not difficult to grow spinach in your garden!

Spinach needs cold weather to grow. Getting spinach to grow is easy, but keeping it growing will require some extra care.

Pea

Peas are usually planted in late April. Peas will die in freezing temperatures, but they also won’t survive the heat either. So make sure you plant your peas in early spring.

Peas are widely used in many different ways, and there are different types of peas. The soil you’ll be planting your peas should be suitable for them, so make sure you ask while buying seeds.

Carrot

There are different types of carrots, but regardless of their size and color, it’s a fact that carrots are both delicious and rich in vitamins.

They’re root vegetables, so with proper sun and watering, they can be picked up as baby carrots as well.

Radish

A radish is an excellent option for beginners because it doesn’t require too much care. Radish is easy to harvest.

Radish grows fast, so it’s better to keep an eye on it after a few weeks. Radish usually is grown pest-free, but there’s always the chance of unwanted guests, so watch out for worms. Radish can be eaten raw or can be added to garnish recipes.

Cauliflower

Cauliflower isn’t the easiest vegetable to grow at home, but it is very popular.

Cauliflower grows better in colder weather, so before you plant it, consider the climate of your garden. Cauliflower can be eaten raw or cooked, and it is known to be very beneficial for health.

Asparagus

Freshly picked, tender asparagus is very delicious!

Asparagus plants get more productive with each harvest, and mature asparagus harvest can last for months! Make sure you plant them at the correct time, or else they might go to waste.

All the vegetables listed above are great for your healthy diet, and it’s fun to watch them grow. So don’t miss out on the opportunity to grow your own veggies and eat healthy this spring!

So tell us which veggies will you be growing this spring? Tell us in the comments section!

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