The Beginner's Guide to Raising Goats in the UK: From Buying to Breeding
Goats have become increasingly popular among UK farmers and smallholders in recent years. These versatile animals can be raised for milk, meat, or simply as companion animals. However, before taking the plunge and buying a goat or two, there are a few important things to consider. In this guide, we will cover everything from buying to breeding, and provide you with all the information you need to start raising goats in the UK. We keep goats at Indoor Outdoors and have a range of products aimed at helping goats thrive, most of which we use ourselves everyday.
- Research the different breeds of goats available in the UK, and choose one that best suits your needs and circumstances.
- Consider whether you want to buy a male (buck) or female (doe) goat, and whether you want to purchase a kid (young goat) or an adult.
- Always buy goats from a reputable breeder, and make sure to check the health and vaccinations of the goats before making your purchase.
Housing and Fencing:
- Goats need a secure and weatherproof shelter to protect them from the elements. A simple shed or barn will suffice, but make sure it has plenty of ventilation.
- Goats also need a secure and well-maintained fence to keep them contained. Goats are known to be excellent climbers and escape artists, so make sure your fencing is tall and sturdy.
Feeding and Care:
- Goats are herbivores and will eat a variety of plants, including grass, hay, and shrubs. They also need access to fresh water at all times.
- Goats should be wormed regularly and have their hooves trimmed to prevent overgrowth.
- It's important to provide goats with plenty of space to move around and explore, as they are naturally curious animals.
- Goats typically breed once a year, with a gestation period of around 150 days.
- Does will usually give birth to 1-2 kids, but they can have up to 4.
- It's important to provide does with adequate nutrition during pregnancy and lactation to ensure healthy kids.
In conclusion, raising goats in the UK is a rewarding and enjoyable experience, but it does require some knowledge and preparation. By following this beginner's guide, you'll be well on your way to owning and caring for your very own goats. With a little patience and effort, you'll soon be reaping the benefits of fresh milk, delicious meat, and the companionship of these charming and hardy animals.
The Jake's Farm Yard Ultimate Goat Care Kit, as seen above, gives you everything you need to start your goat ownership journey including toys, cleaning kit and feed.