As dairy goat producers become more progressive and milk yields increase, we frequently see more herd related issues dealing with animal disease and productivity, such as poor milk quality, nutritional problems, and fertility issues.
Developing a herd health plan is essential for all dairy goat farms.
4 tips for a healthier and happier herd
Maintaining Hoof Care
Lameness can cause reproduction issues, decline in milk production, and drop in body condition score. Regular hoof trimming is a necessary task for maintaining good herd health.
Providing Essential Nutrients
Being smart about your nutritional choices will ensure the most productivity from your herd. Essential nutrients for your herd include:
- High levels of protein
- Feed with high energy values
- Vitamins and minerals such as calcium, phosphorus and salt, and vitamins A and D
- Lots of fresh water
Disease Control and Prevention
Preventing diseases by keeping your goats healthy is the first line of defense. To prevent the spread of disease through your herd, be sure to provide clean environments with fresh air and ventilation. Reduce the stress of your herd by avoiding overcrowding, and provide the most natural environment possible.
Improving Reproductive Health
Studies have shown that extended periods of light exposure improves off season production. To avoid purchasing lighting and increasing your electricity costs, choose a barn that provides a naturally bright environment and allows for daytime light cycles.
Remember, it costs less to prevent herd health issues than to treat them. So take a proactive approach to your dairy goat operation.