Dairy goat farming is the rearing of goats for milk..You always wanted to keep dairy goats? You wanted your own fresh and free goat milk, goat cheese, goat milk yogurt and maybe even goat meat without having to worry about antibiotics and hormones in the milk.This guide is of great value and help. It is one of the easiest types of dairy farming and therefore good for farmers in the urban and peri-urban areas. Goats do not require one to own a big land to rear them and they are less expensive to buy as compared to cattle.The goat’s prices depend on the age, type and gender.
Dairy Goat Farming : Why goat farming?
Dairy goat farming is an important enterprise especially for farmers with small parcels of land. Goat’s milk has much more benefits compared to cow’s milk. A goats milk is considered more easily digestible, the milk fat globules in goats milk are smaller than those in the cow’s milk, calcium content are higher in goat’s milk and iron contents lower in goat’s milk. The goat’s milk is also richer in most vitamins than cow’s milk.
Dairy Goat Farming : Types of dairy goats reared in Kenya
The common breeds of dairy goats in Kenya even though are foreign breeds are:
These goats survive on different climatic conditions. It is best for one to contact the Local Livestock Production Experts on the most suitable breeds or cross-breeding program in your area. All the goat requires is good health for better yields. Good feeding increases milk production. Dairy goats can feed on the following: Calliandra, leucena, desmodium, mulbury, nappier grass, rhodes grass, sweet potato vines, fodder trees, hay. The feed should be chopped and the goat should be given clean water and enough mineral salts. The mineral block should be kept dry. A healthy goat will produce an average of 4litres of milk every day. Ensure you are feeding sufficient forage and supplements for high level of milk production. Provide roughages such as Napier grass and supplements. Napier grass should be chopped into approximately 3-cm-long pieces. Energy supplements include molasses, cereals or milling by-products (bran, pollard). Protein supplements include cotton seed cake, Calliandra leaves, Leucaena leaves, sweet potato vines, Desmodium, fishmeal and dairy meal. A simple supplement can be made at home. For every 6 scoops of whole cereal grains, add half a scoop of fishmeal or any of the following: cotton seed cake, Calliandra leaves, Leucaena leaves, sweet potato vines or Desmodium. Finally add a tablespoonful of mineral mixture. Mix well before feeding.
Dairy Goat Farming : Parasites and Diseases;
Worms:- Worms are the most common parasites on dairy goats. The symptoms of worms are worm eggs or even worms in the goat’s stool, poor health and low milk production, and a poor coat. Control:- De-worming.
Ticks, mites, Lice and fleas:- It is important to ensure that the goats are free from ticks,mites,lice and fleas. Goats rubbing themselves on structures or loosing their hair is an indicator, spray the goats using an acaricide.
Dairy Goat Farming : Breeding Of Dairy Goats;
During breeding, identify a good breeding male goat which has no deformities, with two well-developed testicles, strong feet and legs, good body condition and high libido. Libido is observed by the ability of the male to vigorously detect and mate with females on heat. These qualities will ensure successful mating. One male is needed for every 25 females. This male can be communally owned provided sexually transmitted diseases and other communicable diseases such as brucellosis are controlled.Mate females two months after kidding. Introduce a male and leave it with the female goats for 2 to 3 weeks.https://bit.ly/2r2nzfM.
If possible mate all your female goats at the same time to ensure kids are born at the same time and therefore ease management.Breed females when in good body condition. Select those with a soft udder, two functional teats and strong teeth and legs. Manage reproduction in goats ensuring that first mating should be about 16 months of age because breeding too early can result in weak kids and stunted females.On average birth occurs 150 days after mating. Watch your goat closely one week before kidding in case of any problems.