Our Goats

…no one farms for the money. It’s the appeal of the lifestyle; appreciation of the moments of calm while embracing those that are hectic. And above all, it’s a love of the animals! 

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Our small farmstead, Sheepy Hollow Farm, has never been the same since we brought home our first Alpine dairy goat in 2007! We currently maintain a very small herd of Oberhasli dairy goats that belong to my daughter, Katie. Her ADGA registered dairy herd “Kids Play” has been a source of family enjoyment ever since! Our goat kids are bottle fed and handled one-on-one every day. We hand milk ‘the girls’ twice daily and prefer to drink their milk ‘raw’. We also use our goat’s milk for cheese making and other dairy products. Surplus goat’s milk is used to make our pure & natural herbal goat’s milk soap.

TERMS to know: An adult male goat is a buck (the sire when breeding); an adult female is a doe (the dam); goat babies are ‘kids’: a doeling (girl) and a buckling (boy). A castrated, non-breeding buck is a ‘wether’.

To keep a goat, you really need more than one because they are a herd animal and love companionship…at least that’s what I tell my husband! You’ll have to provide a shelter (with minimal hay storage), pasture (room to roam, play and exercise), the knowledge of a good veterinarian, impenetrable fencing, salt/minerals, hay and fresh clean water. Varying amounts of grain may be required depending on the type of goats raised. Regular maintenance includes trimming their feet (a skill any novice goat-keeper can quickly acquire), annual vaccination (a skill quickly learned) and dispensing ‘medication’ for parasite control. Dairy goats generally are bred in the Fall, after five months gestation giving birth to twins or more (kids) in the Spring…called freshening. During lactation, dairy goats are typically milked twice-per-day at 12-hour intervals and depending on the breed, may produce one quart to a gallon or more goat’s milk per day…until you repeat the breeding cycle all over again in the Fall. Some owners of heavy milkers may extend their doe’s lactation through a year or more [without breeding].

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Be sure to visit Sheepy Hollow’s Farm Shop in the Spring when we have goat kids and Shetland lambs to greet you! Depending on our current milk supply, we may offer goat milk shares and cheese making workshops!

14 thoughts on “Our Goats

  1. Hi Jenny, When I read your blog it sounded like I was reading about myself. I too raise French Alpine dairy goats for the milk and cheese and soap. I have BFL but love the Shetland breed and buy fleeces from Jackie Deems, hope to have some, someday. We live on 26 acres in SE Ohio. Most days you can find me in the garden around the barnyard or fiber’n. I also raise working border collies so I am in the field with them too. My husband and I love the Lord and sounds like you do too. Check out my blog at, everygoodharvest.blogspot.com.

  2. I am so envious of your space! If we had more land (and not such close neighbors) I would have goats. What a great farm you have – much more of a “farm” than ours!
    Thanks for visiting- it is wonderful to have found you!
    K.

  3. Hi. I’m new to dairy goats and I too live in southern Ohio. Can you point me in a direction as to where I can get a goat? I’m not having much luck.
    Thanks
    Amber

    • Hello Amber! You’re going to LOVE dairy goats!!! Please do your homework first to learn as much as you can about their housing needs, health & maintenance, etc. Research the different dairy breeds so you can decide/narrow your search. It’s best to buy local so you have local support from your breeder if you have questions. Plan on buying two goats (a doe and a wether would be fine), because they need companionship! Bucks require separate housing.

      My blog has a few links to ‘goat’ resources. There’s National, State and local goat organizations/clubs. Do you have children? Check your Ohio State Extension Office and 4-H Clubs for info. Contact/research Ohio goat resources for breeders lists (( http://odga.org/ )). Visit local grain elevators/farm supply stores…they may also have breeders lists. Attend a local goat show and goat workshop! Hope this helps!

      Best wishes! Jenny

  4. In spring I would like to purchase an Alpine milking goat. What is your pricing on a female and where are you located? Do you have a female available?
    Thanks Claudia

    • Hi Claudia! Thanks for visiting our farm blog! My daughter and I have raised BOTH Alpine and Oberhasli dairy goats in the past. But, with the economic downturn (and to simplify farm matters since Katie is now away at college), we reduced our herd considerably and now raise only Oberhasli dairy goats. Best wishes! We love our dairy goats!

  5. What a great blog you have: I love sheep, goats, (all animals) yarns and what to do with it. The photos are amazing and I am looking forward to more of this! Warm greetings form Ohio, Johanna

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