New to Raising Pet Geese

burd66(6)February 5, 2009

Hello Again! Well, after much research, I have decided to raise geese instead of chickens. Thanks for all of your helpful advice. I want to get 3 male goslings to raise as farm pets- an American Buff, a Pilgrim and a Sebastopol. Any advice for a rookie? Will they indeed become pets and let me pet them? Any advice would be appreciated. Any other breeds make good pets?



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A dog or cat would be a lot cleaner and less noisy.
Just kidding..
I have fond memories (just kidding there too)of a neighbor's geese when I was a kid and can't remember how many bruises I grew up with from being chased and pinched or just by slipping in the liberally distributed puddles of sh!t and falling. And hearing the constant racket everytime a stranger would show up or maybe just drive by in a different sounding vehicle.
But hey, anything's possible. Have fun,


    Bookmark   February 6, 2009 at 4:00AM
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Same sex is a good choice and males better than females I think. I have 2 female Roman tufted and they lay eggs all year. One of the geese, Betty is very very protective of these eggs and beats me up when I go in to feed and clean them. When they don't have eggs they are very loving and follow me everywhere. They free graze in our fenced in back yard, they love grass especially dangelions. We got 2 same sex because we didnt want to add more unwanted animals. They are like watch dogs but only when someone or somethings enters their space. It's funny because if a hawk flies over they don't send an alarm they sit extremely quiet and don't move tipping their heads sideways so they can have a clear view, when it's gone is when they resume what they were doing. If they are in protection mode they will "attack" lowering their heads and hissing, they have lots of teeth but mainly pinch and twist your skin. They do know their names. Most time they don't recognize me by sight but when I speak to them they know it's me. I love my geese. They do poop and eat, poop and eat and yes poop and eat, I just use a regular dog pooper scooper. I also use pine shavings in the shelter, the urine and poop adhere to it and its easy to pick up. I give them hay to make a nest, not sure about the males and I am told they are extremely happy because they keep having eggs. I'm thinking you should get two or four, three is odd man out, I could be wrong. Also, make sure they have enough water to get their heads in, they have to blow out their nostrils. Mine have a kidding pool in the winter but in the winter I make sure they have a heated bucket and clean water at all time.
Good luck

    Bookmark   February 6, 2009 at 1:19PM
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I heard the best thing about geese is that they are like watch dogs on your property alerting and sometimes chasing strangers but I also heard males can get very aggressive when they become adults.I don't have any this is just what I heard.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 2:07AM
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Many time have people called and asked how to tame their cage birds-parakeets-parrots...what ever. The first question I ask of them is when you put your hand up to or in the cage do you pull it away when the bird tries to reach for it with it's bill? The answer is always yes-I was afraid it was going to bit me-was their answer.

This is responsive training--when you pull your hand away when the animal (bird) reaches for your hand teaches it--If I try to bite your hand you'll leave me alone. Don't do this!
Don't reach for them-let them come to you-entice them with rewards (something they like)-before long they'll love your contact time and become loving pets.

Same with geese-if you respond to their threatening behavior with a fear response you have empowered the geese with your fear. Have some treats that they like-shelled corn in your pocket and when they make that threatening hiss give them a few kernels of corn. They soon learn your are not a threat-your the dispenser for their favorite treat. This training does not keep them from being good watch geese for they would react differently toward strangers.

Every animal responds to your ques. Recognize what your bad ques are and modify your reaction to the threats of your animal and look for a way to defuse their threatening behavior and with consistent responses from you, you will train your animal good behavior.

Geese make very good pets. As a boy I had a goose call Moose. He did not like my brother and would chase him every time he saw him and my brother would head for the hills every time Moose started to chase him. It became a daily routine with them-almost a game. Again responsive training at work.

Moose knew the Mail Ladies schedule and would always be waiting by the mail box for his daily dog biscuit from her. Again responsive training at work.

Most behavioral problems in animals are not the animals fault but the owners, they respond to ques from us.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 9:12AM
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We have two male pilgrims left, goodness I can't remember how old they are we've had them that long. Couple times a year they are seen pinching each others feathers out while fighting, though there are no females left.
Can't offer much by way of care-ours are free-range all year-don't want anything to do with us. It's how they were raised.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 8:32PM
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A big key to tame geese is handling them from day 1 on-You are getting day old goslings? Feed them treats from your hand and always have some treats in your pockets for them (shelled corn is among their favorite).

When lifting a gosling reach from the front placing your hand under and between their legs and lift that way. While lifting with one hand steady them by placing the other hand on their backs gently. Let them lay in your lap and pet their backs.

Avoid reaching for or from above their heads. Things coming at them from above triggers a fright-flight response. Talk softly to them-every living thing love this. The more contact the tamer.

    Bookmark   February 8, 2009 at 9:23PM
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I am the proud Mother Goose to 10 one-month-old goslings--5 buff and 5 tufted Roman. I spend as much time interacting with them as I can, but I have noticed they are gradually becoming less inclined to follow me or come when I call them. When I sit with them at night, they nibble at my clothing and are starting to get a little too enthusiastic about it. If this behavior will lead to true aggression and/or biting of flesh, I want to nip it in the bud. I chose these two breeds because they were described as gentle. Does anyone have any suggestions and/or advice about training them not to bite?

    Bookmark   May 5, 2009 at 11:26AM
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Geese are different than chickens. But I think chickens are better than geese in general. I have had all of them. Geese eat too much and are not very nice.

If you want a pet get a real nice golden retriever. make sure the parents are real nice. If you do not have a large pond or lake then the ground will become goose poop everywhere including your front and rear porch. Try not to slip and fall down into the poop in the winter. My geese were eating 50 pounds of grain every day. pooping it everywhere close to the house.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2009 at 11:11PM
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We just lost our 15 year old Emden goose to a neighbor's pit bulls. She was in her preditor proof cage that we would put her in when we were not at home. One of the dogs must have lifted an edge of it and the smaller dog got under and killed her. The dog was still in the cage with his partner in crime standing outside.
Wanda was picked out as a birthday present for my daughter's 11th. The goose went everywhere with her. She had long ago moved and the goose was very bonded to me and friendly to most people and our other animals. Even at 15 she still layed a lot of eggs which make good craft projects. Wanda was very friendly while laying eggs. Starting in late March thru June she wanted to snuggle and wait for her back to be scratched.
Geese do eat a lot of grass and will root out dandelions in the lawn. They poop a lot and the favorite place is the porch. Our goose did molt after egg laying season which made for a lot of white feathers everywhere.
In the past we had dozens of geese that we raised for meat and they could get fairly agressive. Another time we had a pair of geese and the male was dangerous to everyone. They were given to some neighbors with a pond.
I perhaps think that geese have individual personalities just as other animals and people do.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2009 at 1:58PM
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zootjs(zone 5 MA)

I loved my four pilgrim geese, but unfortunately, the rest of my family was afraid of them. They do occasionally challenge you, and you've got to clarify who is boss. My wife shrank away, and so the goose bit her, and that was the end of that friendship. Eventually, I gave them all away, so that she and my two small children wouldn't be afraid. Too bad, though, because I enjoyed them very much. Very beautiful creatures and excellent conversation pieces.

    Bookmark   June 6, 2009 at 2:26PM
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I have 3 geese that I raised from babies. I didn't plan on having geese but I am glad I do,they are just so fun and yes they let me pet them but I need help. As I said I didn't plan on geese and know nothing about them. I think I have 2 males and a female and the females feathers grew in wrong. she is perfectly healthy in every other way her appetite is great and her energy is normal no runny stool or anythng but I am soo attached to her I am worried about her. I cna't find a vet nearby who knows anything about geese. Ha anyone experienced this or know what it is? I had them on a general water fowl starter feed and wasn't aware that they like grass so the whole time the were growing they only ate the feed, could that be the problem? Now they are outside in a 1/2 acre pasture that they share with goats and have access to all the grass they can eat as well as insects. They are soo sweet they follow me around and talk to me and get mad when I don't pour their food fast enough........fantastic pets. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2010 at 6:52PM
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I used to have geese. What do you mean by the feathers grew in wrong. Can you explain it a little better?

    Bookmark   June 21, 2010 at 8:52PM
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Geese can be very aggressive birds but if you love them they will love you back. Just try to be patient with them and make sure they have somwewhere to swim

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 9:49AM
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A little over a year ago, I went to the feed store and fell in love..with two goslings! They are Chinese Brown Geese. They follow me anywhere, respond to my voice, and as babies grew upset if I didn't allow them to come out of their pen with me to go feed the horses. One of their funniest moments was on one of our walks around the property. The neighbors have about 8 geese, 5 of those just about a month older than mine. They came rushing around the corner in all their glory with wings out and lungs blareing!!! My babies were horrified by the sight and came running to mama and stood behind me. "Dusty" is my male, and we have a very strong bond. Last summer on a particulary hot day, he peeked through a knothole in the wooden fence and honked constantly while I was in the pool. I let them both in and we all swam together for about an hour. (fortunately, and much to my surprise, there were no 'accidents').
Every time I go outside he comes to me. I pet the base of his neck and between his wings. He carefully rubs his bill on my cheek. I would be lost without him. When I have any bags (feed,trash,bread), Dusty follows me around, hissing and attacking the bag. He's not to keen on rakes either, but he never takes it out on me.
I would recommend geese as pets to anyone who truly loves animals and will "lower" themselves to the animals thought process. Although, truly I feel I raise myself to theirs.
My son has no desire to get along with Dusty, and provides great entertainment as he jumps around avoiding Dusty pecking at his shoes. I think I've just about convinced him that if he'd just stand there, there would be no issue.
I think what people 'fear' is the loud noise, the lowered head, the outspread wings, and most of all...the hissing. We have been taught all our lives that if it hisses, it is dangerous, i.e. cats, snakes, etc...
But for a goose, that is a way for him to express himself.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2011 at 11:25AM
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How do geese make out in the winter? I live in Colorado and it can get below 0 degrees here. What can I do besides a heat lamp in the coop for them? Can they go outside or will it hurt their feet during the day? How do they do in the snow. Thank you for your help!

    Bookmark   August 20, 2011 at 8:52AM
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I live in Colorado as well and my goose who is 10 years old does just fine in the cold. He doesn't go outside in the snow much, but if the sun is out he will go out and sit in the sun if I shovel him a path. I have a pen for him in the barn with straw for him to snuggle down into when it is cold. I will sometimes use a heat lamp if it gets below O degrees. If he goes out in the snow and he gets cold he just hunkers down to heat up his feet. I bring him a bucket of warm water to bath in occasionally as well.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2011 at 4:34PM
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We have two wild geese who are making our yard their home. We live on the river. Now mama goose is nesting down by our patio by the river. I am having a party next weekend and am worried about the geese and my guests. She will be about 20 feet from the edge of the people place. What should I do?

    Bookmark   May 2, 2013 at 10:12AM
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i just hatched 2 gosling up to now when and what will they eat i also have baby chickens i know how to look after these .im soo pleased with myself it was a long wait

    Bookmark   July 20, 2013 at 2:42PM
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