February 2014
Homeplace & Community

Goats Aren’t Just for Farms Anymore!

 

As goat lovers can attest, goats have a lot of personality. More and more people are raising goats as pets rather than commercially for meat or milk. For many first time owners, this is their first experience raising a ruminant animal and they are surprised at how different they are from dogs and cats. In an effort to help simplify the experience, the SWEETLIX All Purpose Goat Pail was developed for all sizes, ages and breeds of goats.

Since goats are ruminants, they are designed to digest forages like grass, browse and hay. And because these little guys are living the high life as pets, their needs won’t be as rigorous as animals in a production setting. Under these conditions, it’s very easy to overfeed your goats. The SWEETLIX All Purpose Goat Pail was developed to "spoon feed" to your goats the essential nutrients most likely to be lacking in hay and pastures. Think of these pails as insurance to bridge nutritional gaps – just in case. In many situations, this pail, fresh water and plentiful pasture or good quality hay are all you need. When you don’t know the quality of your hay or if you notice your goats are losing weight, it’s best to hedge your bets by feeding a small amount of commercial feed as well.

We know that nutrition can be confusing! That’s why the SWEETLIX All Purpose Goat Pail delivers the full daily requirement of salt, minerals and vitamins along with supplemental protein needed to keep your goats healthy and happy. The added protein helps the rumen microbes digest available hay and pasture more efficiently – giving you more bang for your feed dollar! Provide it to goats on a self-fed basis as directed for glossy coats and strong hooves. No other sources of salt or minerals are needed or recommended. So be sure to throw away all of those white salt blocks and red trace mineral blocks as they will interfere with proper intake of the SWEETLIX All Purpose Goat Pail. Also, there’s no need for measuring scoops as these self-fed pails allow goats to adjust to their needs on a daily basis.

This convenient, 18-lb flat-back pail is designed to be easily hung from fencing or a post anywhere your goats are. We recommend placing them within 10-30 feet of your water source. You don’t even need to shelter these weather-resistant pails from the elements as the unique SWEETLIXformula retains its excellent palatability in rain, sleet or snow. This supplement won’t melt or blow away. You don’t even need to dump rain water off, unless you just want to, as the goats will drink the water and continue eating the supplement.

Plus, because these pails are available 24/7, there are no worries about the dominant goats keeping the smaller, weaker ones from getting their share. Just provide one pail per 5-10 animals so each can have access. It may be necessary to have at least 2 pails at all times if you have one very dominant goat. Once these heavy-duty, plastic pails are empty of supplement, they make great water and feed buckets.

Another added benefit is that when these pails are hung up, kids cannot climb or lie in them, keeping the supplement clean. As you know (or will soon find out!), keeping feed clean of kids’ dirty little feet is an uphill battle! Goats are very clean animals and will refuse to eat feed, minerals or hay covered in dirt and manure if given a choice. When feed pans and hay troughs are contaminated with manure, goats are more likely to contract deadly parasites. Keeping supplement clean not only promotes proper intake of nutrients but also helps protect your goats from disease.

While knowing what and how to feed a goat can be a little overwhelming, the SWEETLIX All Purpose Goat Pail strives to simplify this as much as possible. Just follow our feeding directions, and let the goats get what they need, when they need it. What could be easier?

Ask for the SWEETLIXAll Purpose Goat Pail by name at your local Quality Co-op! For more information, visit www.sweetlix.com or call us at 1-87-SWEETLIX.

Jackie Nix is an animal nutritionist with Ridley Block Operations (www.sweetlix.com). You can contact her at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 1-800-325-1486 for questions or to learn more about SWEETLIX mineral and protein supplements for cattle, goats, horses, sheep and wildlife. References available upon request.