Caring for Your Male Goat

Although your breeding bucks make up only a small part of you herd  numerically, in terms of their importance they are half of your herd! As such, you need to be careful to feed them properly in order to keep them healthy. Watching their body condition is important. Heavy/fat bucks will not perform well when they are needed. However bucks tend to lose weight during breeding season so achieving proper conditioning prior to breeding is important.

Preparing Your Male Goat for Breeding

Approximately 4 weeks prior to breeding it is recommended to feed your bucks good quality hay with a small amount of pellet supplement in order to get them ready for breeding.  Be careful not to overfeed the pellets as bucks can develop Urinary Calculi (UC).  This can render them useless to you for breeding.  UC are solid particles in the urinary system.  They may cause pain, nausea, vomiting, and possibly chills and fever due to secondary infection. Providing access to salt can stimulate their water consumption, which will help the buck to flush out their system.  Provide clean, fresh water at all times.  Urine acidifiers and/or salt blocks (available at your local feed store) are some other options to help prevent UC.  After breeding, good quality hay is all that is needed to keep your bucks in good health. 

Helpful Facts about Bucks

  • A mature buck can service between 40-50 does.
  • A young buck can service approximately 30 does.
  • Use at least two bucks to breed each group of does (even small groups), in order to create competition.
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