Feeding wethers.

jaytori220July 20, 2008

Hubby broke down and let me bring home 2 nigerian wethers today. They are both 3 months old. One is already wethered and the other just got banded today....They were being fed a Manna Pro Ranch Mix feed..10% textured with NO copper 1/3 cup once a day. Coastal hay free choice. I worry about urinary stones in the males and was told that too much protein can cause it also and over 20ppm of copper is not good as it can cause overdose and no copper will cause copper dificiency which they can die from. So my question is....SHould I find a 10% textured feed with copper or should I go with a goat feed that is 16% which they all have copper anyway? TSC has a 10% textured feed with copper in it and says its for goats, cows, and horses. If I remember right the copper was 30ppm. Its a cheaper feed but has a lower protien with copper. I plan on keeping them on coastal hay, feeding baking soda to keep the gut neutral and ammonium chloride...If I am reccommended a feed that has the AC in it I wont need to add it. What do you all feed? Any suggestions.

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I been worried about the feed I am using as well. It is grain but I thought there was a feed with corn and oats and such but only one feed store has it. Last time I brought some it was all powdery and I wonder if he sold me a bad batch. He said it was not supposed to be like that but no telling if all his feed is like that and I don;t want to chance it. What about mixing the corn/oat mix with grain? What is a good mixture??

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 5:55PM
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I work in a feed store and if a bag of feed gets powdery we replace it. You can't tell what is in the bag until you open it and it sometimes comes that way from the supplier. We will check a couple bags but usally it will be only one bad bag.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 6:38PM
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I used a feed called Boer Goat Express (Manna Pro brand, I think), that was low in protein and had ammonium chloride in it for urinary health. There are feeds out there specifically designed for wethers. I know that the feed companies made a lot of changes to these feeds because the market goat (meat goat) population is expanding and these goats were dying of urinary calculi before they made weight. I had a wether that I never gave grain to, just grass hay and he did just fine. As a matter of fact he was huge, 289 lbs. But, as babies they need some grain to finish growing. You could also look at feeding COB (corn,oats and barley) to them which is considered a three-way feed. The four-way feed is the same with minerals added. There is a publication out there called "How to Feed Wethers" or something like that. It is a spiral bound book and gives advice on how to mix your own grain as well as what they need nutrition wise.


    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 8:17PM
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I only have one Dwarf Nigerian wether to report to you how we feed him. He is two years old now and doing fine running with sheep and also a female Dwarf Nigerian and a Male Nubian that will be bannded soon. They all eat the same thing..show Lamb pellets with low copper No extra thing except sweet licks sheep minerals free choice. Lots of pasture and lots of love(knock on wood) He is happy and pee's just fine. The baking soda thing he did not like the sheep went after that. Don't worry so much and just enjoy!

    Bookmark   July 21, 2008 at 9:41PM
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what do you keep baking soda in? a bowl or something? just leave it out there for them?

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 6:13PM
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Why are you giving them a ration with no copper? It's a trace mineral that they need. The urinary calculi are most commonly caused by an unbalanced Calcium to Phosphorus ratio. That should probably be around 2/2.5 to 1. Tom

    Bookmark   July 22, 2008 at 8:23PM
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can't she get the copper from a mineral supplement that is available free choice?

I found out my goats like nerds candy today. It is the only treat I can bribe them with so far. I gave them a couple of pieces and they went crazy for it. No need to panic.... it was only a few small pieces to see if they would eat it.

    Bookmark   July 28, 2008 at 10:35PM
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