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Why I prefer goats.

I am always totally amazed that anyone -- other than a large scale commercial dairy farmer -- would prefer the cow to a goat.

There are 10 economic reasons alone, plus a few others:

1) A goat -- 1/10 size, 1/10 cost to feed, will milk about 1/8 what a cow does, at quite an increase of production over feed costs.

2) A goat becomes productive a year earlier than a cow.

3) The cost of goat housing vs. cow housing is less as the goat, being smaller, needs less space.

4) Goats require less pasture, are easier on fences.

5) Goats compact the soil less and contribute less to erosion and are efficient on marginal land.

6) Goats are easier to butcher by homestead methods due to smaller size.

7) Goats yield lower cholesterol meat.

8) Goats require less initial investment and can be easily taken home in the back seat of a car.

9) A sick goat can be taken to the vet -- a savings of $20 farm call in our area. Two men can carry a goat that's down on a plank stretcher. Try that with a cow!

10) Goats are easier to milk and produce a delicious product that is naturally homogenized and easily digested; more quality for your feed dollar.

11) Goats are virtually unknown to have TB and brucellosis in the U.S. Not so with cows.

12) There need be no feast or famine syndrome with goats. Buy two, freshen early and late in the season. Enjoy a gallon-plus of milk a day. No glut of 10 gallons -- contrasted with a 60 day dry period and store-bought milk.

13) Enjoy the camaraderie of neighbors with shortages of mare's milk, orphaned puppies, rabbits, Llamas and bummer lambs. They all search for goat milk when they're in trouble. 14) Goats are clean, draw fewer flies, produce pelleted waste ideal for gardens. Gardeners will come and haul off your goat compost if you advertise -- not so with cows!

15) Goats are companionable creatures, devoted to their humans. It is relaxing to sit among the goats and "visit." Personality-wise, all the cows I've associated with are dull.

16) My daughter and I can manage a show-string of goats with a pick-up truck and the tack we can carry. We need no loading chute or trailer. Somehow, I can't envision a calf or cow trained to leap into the truck.

It seems the controversy remains within the mind of the cow-people. Most goat owners I've spoken to seem pretty well at ease with the facts.

Rebuttal is welcome--in a good natured manner!
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Author:Nickel, Nancy
Publication:Countryside & Small Stock Journal
Date:May 1, 1993
Previous Article:Ways to save on feed: cull feisty rabbits and buy smaller pellets.
Next Article:Little House in the Ozarks.

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