Commercial goat farming is gaining momentum in southern Ontario as more consumers look for cow milk alternatives. However, raising these curious, playful and highly social animals presents unique challenges to livestock farmers. Here are a few steps you can take to prevent your inquisitive goats from getting stuck in farm fences.
Install proper fencing
First, install woven wire no-climb fencing around your goat enclosure. Woven wire fencing is strong enough to withstand the force of a goat ramming it, and the knotted construction will keep it intact for years. Choose a fence with a maximum hole size of 10 by 10 centimetres, small enough so that a goat can’t get its head or horns caught in the wires.
By the way, goats can jump extremely high, so ensure your fence is at least 1.2 metres tall. Click here for more goat fence tips.
Mow around your fencing
Goats are voracious eaters and are attracted to anything they can munch on, including grass and weeds. If a goat sees something to eat, it’ll do almost anything to get at it, including jamming its head through a fence. Mowing and trimming around your fence will eliminate this temptation.
Modify their behaviour
Young goats aren’t used to having horns and will try to fit their heads through any tight spot. Attaching a piece of PVC pipe to the animal’s horns using duct tape will prevent the goat from sticking its head into small spaces. However, this isn’t a permanent solution, but it can teach your goat to avoid small spaces. If your goats don’t learn, you may need to invest in farm fencing with smaller holes.
What to Do If a Goat Gets Stuck
No matter how many prevention steps you take, you’ll undoubtedly encounter a goat with its head or horns stuck in a fence. Here’s what to do if that happens.
Approach the goat slowly and quietly. Don’t scare it.
Lift the goat by its hind legs, like a wheelbarrow.
Tilt the goat forward to encourage it to lower its head.
Gently pull back, and the goat’s head should slip through.
If the above steps don’t work, you may need to cut the fence wire to allow the goat to pass through.
Farm Animal Fencing Supplies in Southern Ontario
At Ontario Wholesale Farm Direct, we specialize in farm wire fencing for clients across southern Ontario, including small hobby farms and large commercial operations. We also carry farm gates and a wide range of livestock feeders at wholesale prices. Contact us today to learn more about our farm fencing supplies and our delivery service.