Management / Herding

Kidding and Raising Kids

It is helpful to let the kidding happen in the herd and to place dam and kid in a ‘kid stall’ or ‘kid pen’ after birth. Here, especially low-ranking dams can bond with their kids without disturbance. The kidding pen should allow visual contact with the herd.

Dairy goats usually are separated from their kids soon after kidding. The kids are raised ‘artificially’ by bottle or bucket feeding.

Meat goat kids stay with their dams until weaning.

Recommendations for raising kids:

  • If kids are not raised with their dam, provide milk by bucket/bottle with nipple or an automatic milk dispenser; kids must receive colostrum within 12 hours after birth
  • If raised artificially, provide cows’ milk or milk replacer at least 3 times per day (if raised with dam, approx. 20 suckling events per day occur)
  • Roughage: provide high-quality hay beginning at 1 week of age
  • Keep kids in a well-lit, dry and draft-free pen, possibly with outdoor run

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