Housing marks an important criterion in goat rearing and farming. Goats are known to be very tolerant species who are adaptable to different kinds of weather and environment. However, this cannot negate the very reason for ensuring they are in good health. Similar to humans, they are also susceptible to a variety of bacteria and viruses. Being exposed to changing weather conditions for a longer period makes them vulnerable to illness and diseases, sometimes also leading to death. Hence, an ideal housing is a must for goats that would help keep them dry and protected under changing the weather.
Why is housing important for goats?
As mentioned, changing weather conditions like rain and snow often leave goats exposed to a large number of bacteria and viruses present in the air. In addition, being exposed to wet surrounding for a long period makes them vulnerable of fatal diseases that can in short time effect the entire flock and thereby lead to huge losses for the farmer.
Housing during winter
Compared to other days, winter is the most important time to keep them covered from snow and extreme cold. Excess of heat and cold also ends up affecting the meat and milk production. Winter is the time when they seek housing for breeding. Thus, housing facility for goat makes an important aspect whether it is for rearing goat, milking or for meat.
Types of Housing for Goat
Housing for goats is divided into two categories namely Open Housing and Confinement Housing. A detailed description of both are as follows:
- Open Housing
Open Housing also referred to as loose housing allows goats to move in open from weather condition along with giving them access to open pasture. This type of housing is ideal for goats as it allows the animals to be in a natural environment. These can include many types of structures such as three-sided pole barns, framed sheds, and temporary and movable structures.
- They are cost-effective
- Allows free movement of goats
- Proper air circulation and quality
- Open space may require more beddings
- Supervision to maintain hygiene and dryness
Confinement Housing allows the goats to be inside a structured place which includes a separate structure for their exercise, milking separating new-borns, adults, and bucks from one another. However, here in this case, proper management of the place and keeping it dry under all conditions is of utmost importance.
- Offers dry and hygienic places for goats and keeps them covered from excess heat, rain, and snow
- Not much bedding is used
- Allows easy access to individual animals and their care
- Proper supervision is possible
- Construction of housing may be expensive
- Frequent cleaning and maintenance is required
- The need for proper ventilation and security is necessary
- Animals are needed to be taken out for exercise.
Based on the need and requirement, providing the goats a proper housing facility is important. It would not only aid them protection from the weather but also prevent from the spread of diseases and avoid losses.