And I still ran into things I had no clue about.
Simple things like what they can and cannot eat. Some regular household veggies will kill your goat.
Visit other goat people to see how they've got things set up. What works and what doesn't.
IF you are not prepared to spend money on vet bills (and some years it can be a lot!)
Don't get a goat! Yes I know some things can be done with home remedies and you can talk to other goat people about what they think it is...but the bottom line is,
it doesn't matter how well you take care of your goats, they're bound to get sick and only a good goat vet can help you.
So that means look for a vet that knows goats before you get a goat. Not all large animal vets are good or know goats. Some of us have learned that the hard way. I've been lucky.
My vet has always been available, but I've heard horror stories from other goat people.
Develop a good relationship with your vet. Our vet is awesome, he trusts us to administer meds without him there and we trust him (and his daughter who's now also a goat vet).
Not even sure that's a word...oh well
Never, ever tie a goat!!! NEVER!!!!!
I cannot stress this enough.
A goat that is tied is at risk of being attacked by predators...and I'm not talking wolves, coyotes
and such..just the neighbourhood dog that got loose can kill or severely maim or hurt your goat...(vet bills)
Goats are pack animals. Don't get just a goat, get two.
Goats are NOT lawnmowers. They're like deer, they're browsers. They like things high off the ground. Sure in the spring when the lush, green grass is first out, they love to chow down on it. But they prefer the leaves off the highest branch on the tree, the bark off the tree or your rose bushes.
If you go in the barn and it looks like your goat is dying, foaming at the mouth, convulsions or anything like that...don't call your goat friend or someone you know that has a goat.
For the love of all that's holy
CALL THE VET!
He or she will tell you what to do and if it's like around here, he knows who has goats and if they might have what you need in meds if you don't. At least till he can get to you.
Nine times out of 10 your goat go to person will not have the knowledge to help you. They might want to, but can't, which will make them feel really, really bad.
It's not that we don't like helping our fellow goat person, but like I've said before, we haven't gone to vet school for 7 years. We know some stuff, but what might look like the same thing that happened to my goat, might be something completely different that's happening to yours even though it looks the same.
And lastly...for now
Research what type of goat is right for you...again, research another word for read.
I'm not talking Lamancha, Alpine, Nubian...
I'm talking milking goat, meat goat, fiber goat etc...
If you like going away overnight or just not into getting up an hour earlier in the morning don't get a milking goat. Well really don't get a goat. Just kidding.
It's just that some goat breeds are more time consuming than others.
Like milking goats for example.
If you're not prepared to milk every day, twice a day...even if you've got a fever of 104 and you're nose is running like a leaky faucet, or there's enough snow on the ground to make the Iditarod champion sleds dogs turn and run...don't get a milking goat!!
If you want more of a pet, look into the miniature breeds.
If there's no way you can eat what you raise, don't get a meat goat.
Ya'll get what I'm saying?!
So I hope that I didn't scare or offend anyone.
I know this list is not complete by any stretch of the imagination but
it's a start. Goat keeping is fun and rewarding..but it's also stressful and can get expensive.
Have a Blessed Day.