FoxDog Stampede: Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions:

What do the goats eat?

The goats eat orchard grass hay, brush and leaves, the pasture in our fields, and whatever else they find that they like. They depend mostly on pasture and hay. For treats they get bread, corn chips, and fruit and vegetables. They also get supplemental minerals, baking soda, and of course, all the water they can drink.

For years we fed alfalfa as our hay, and the goats have done very well on it. However, they waste a lot of it. Goats don't like stems of alfalfa! And the price of the hay has shot up so quickly and radically that we switched to an orchard grass alfalfa mix. The goats LOVED this hay. Our pasture has some orchard grass in it as well, so they were used to it. They wasted far far less of the orchard grass, and seem to do just as well on it. In fact, a ton of orchard grass hay lasts longer (probably due to less waste) than a ton of alfalfa. We have not noticed a deterioration in quality of milk in switching from the straight alfalfa to the orchard grass alfalfa mix hay. And so, eventually, we switched to straight orchard grass hay and dropped any alfalfa. Again, there was no deterioration in goat quality or milk quality. The hay is not that much cheaper than the alfalfa now (2018) but they eat so much more of it and waste so much less that it's effectively about half the price.

Our pregnant and milking does get extra grain. We currently feed Country Feeds 'Goat Feed' which we get from our local feed store.

Our goats also get minerals. The milking does and kids have it offered free choice, the others get it as a top dressing on their grain snack. For many years we used Golden Blend Minerals from Hoegger Goat Supply. But a few years ago Hoegger stopped selling the Blend and we couldn't find it elsewhere. Now we use Sweetlix 16:8 goat minerals. Also offered is baking soda, although the goats don't need it if they are getting access to good pasture and aren't eating a lot of grain. The milking does have it available free choice. I should note we've never had a case of bloat here, knock on wood. The baking soda helps prevent that.

When are kids available?

The kids are available as soon as they are weaned. This is usually about 8 weeks after they are born.

You can also put a deposit down before the kids are born to ensure you get a kid from your desired pairing. Of course we can't predict the gender of the kid, and we will allow you to pick another kid of the desired gender after they are born if the gender you desired isn't produced from your selected kidding.

Why Do You Dam-Raise the Kids?

We let our does dam raise their kids (in other words we do not 'pull' and bottle feed the kids). The reasons for raising bottle babies are good ones, and should be considered carefully when raising goats. However, we have a closed herd, we've had the herd tested for the various illnesses that can be spread by dam raising and the herd has tested negative.

We've found that dam raised kids can be just as friendly, just as tame and just as fun as bottle raised kids. In fact the dam raised kids are less needy and less annoying as they grow up. Dam raising the kids also seems to help milk production and quality. The kids keep the does 'clean' during the time of high milk production. We've never had a case of mastitis here. Finally, dam raising the kids, and being careful about weaning, means we can leave for a weekend, put the kids with their mothers, and come back to fully producing and happy does.

What is your purchase protocol?

We offer goat kids for sale before they are born, in which case a deposit is required to reserve the kid you hope will be born. If that particular gender kid is not produced by the parents you desire, you have pick of the other unreserved kids in that year's crop. If you don't like any of them, your deposit is returned.

We also take reservations for particular kids after they are born. If you see a kid you like on our webpage, but it is not yet old enough to be weaned and leave FoxDog, you can reserve it with a deposit of 1/2 its purchase price. Usually no refunds are offered or changes allowed once this deposit is made. This is because once you reserve the kid, we remove it from the sales page or mark it as reserved, so other potential buyers do not attempt to purchase it.

Weaned kids and adult goats are also available for purchase to take home immediately, without a deposit or reservation. Most of the time all of our kids are reserved by the time they are weaned, so we seldom have kids available like this. However, we do from time to time offer adult goats for sale in this way.

Once your reserved kid is born, we encourage you to come to the farm to visit the kid(s) and get friendly with it (them). The more handling by you the kids have, the happier they will be when they leave the farm. Please limit your farm visits to once a week or so, and give us a phone call or drop us an email beforehand so we know you are coming!

We will not allow any same day purchases! You must contact us by phone or email, and preferably come see us in person, before we'll let a goat go with you.

Can I reserve a kid?

Of course. If you see a doe or buck you like you can reserve one of their offspring.

Are your Bucks Available for Stud Service?

We keep a closed herd and generally do not allow our bucks to service unknown does. However, if you have proper vaccination and testing certificates from a veterinarian, we are willing to allow our bucks to do drive-way service on your doe. This means the doe is brought to our farm while in heat and mated quickly. She will not be boarded here, or allowed to stay with our does.

What is your Vaccination and Testing Protocol?

All new animals to our herd are tested upon arrival for CAE. They are also vaccinated for Tetanus and Enterotoxemia C and D and we run fecal tests on them. We keep a closed herd and do not generally test for CAE after the goat has been cleared by the first test. However, we do follow up tests upon our veterinarian's recommendation.

Our goats are not vaccinated regularly for enterotoxemia C and E, except for the does who are vaccinated one month before they give birth, and new arrivals as mentioned above. We have found it unnecessary to vaccinate more than this. We will gladly vaccinate all kids sold at the new owners' request.

We perform regular fecal tests on our goats to look for worms and coccidia. If we find evidence of such infestations we will worm and/or treat for coccidia. Generally, we have not found such evidence as our goats were wormed regularly upon arrival and the land they live on did not carry a wormload prior to their arrival.

Do you take returns on your goat kids?

Sometimes. If a buyer cannot keep one of our goat kids we like to know about it. However, in order for us to take a goat back we need several things. The goat needs to have been registered, or left our farm as registrable (in other words, it has to have the micro-chip we inplanted) unless the goat is a wether. Since we do not tattoo our goat kids, the chip is the only way we know that the goat we are getting in return is the same goat that left our property. If the goat is chipped, then we can re-home it as registrable, or breed it if we desire.

We also need to see the sales paperwork we give to all our buyers. This shows the original purchase price. We'll not give more than that price for the goat. Sometimes we will take back goats from second-hand buyers if necessary. In this case the goat needs to go through a vet check and be certified as clean of coccidia, worms, CAE, CL, TB and so on. The cost of the vet check will be deducted from the re-purchase price of the goat.