Registered vs. unregistered

When you first step in to the world of goat ownership, you’ll quickly discover that there are two classes of goats: registered and non-registered. And depending on why you are wanting to raise goats, you’ll need to decide if you want your animals to be registered or not. This can be a difficult decision to make, especially if you’re in the same area as some registered goat owners. Depending on who you talk to, unregistered goats are worthless and you’ll never make it anywhere in the industry with them. But others will tell you that you’ll never make back all the money you invested in registered animals, which will cost upwards of $200 (I’ve seen doelings priced at $900) for a single weaned female, depending also on the breed. Whereas for an unregistered female, you usually won’t pay more than $75. At that reasonable price, you can have almost 100% guarantee that you’ll get the money back that you invested. The only way you will be able to sell an animal for $200 is if you already have buyers who are looking for registered stock. But in a pinch, you can’t just take that registered animal down to the local sale barn and expect to get any more than $100. That is when its nice to have those unregistered critters that you can turn around and sell to anyone and get back every cent you put in to them.

Another thing to consider when buying your goats is how much money can you invest right away? After all, you’ll need to buy feed, materials for a barn or shed, and fencing to keep your little escape-artists in.

Personally, I’d take an unregistered goat over a registered goat any day. I have purchased registered goats, and I doubt I’ll ever get my money back that I’ve put in her. Don’t get me wrong, she is a gorgeous goat, but not any more so than my unregistered goats, who are equally beautiful.

My goats are meant to be dairy goats, and a non-registered doe will produce just as much milk as a registered doe. The mother to my registered goat, Clover, out-produced all the other does her age (3 years old) after her second “freshening” (second time she had kids) and was giving about two quarts a day. Then I bought un unregistered buckling (weaned male goat) whose mother produced 2/3 to 3/4 gallon of milk a day. Milk production is what I’m looking for, with the ability to earn extra income by selling goat kids and milk. I’m not selling paperwork.

Registered goats can have valuable traits, but they can also have flaws. I spoke to a rancher recently, and discussed the pros and cons of registered stock. Here’s what the rancher had to say: “Registered breeds have done a lot for the industry. There are traits they have and don’t have, so why not take traits from both [registered and unregistered] and mix them together to have the best?” He went on to talk about how by crossbreeding the stock, you can get the most desirable animals and be able to get ahead in the market.*


Dye Your Wool with Kool-aid

What a cool idea! I’ve read that you can also add a splash of vinegar to the water water to help the color set better. 😁

Fiber and Pixels

alice-frenz-dye-wool-with-koolaid kool-aid dyed wool for felting

Dying wool with Kool-aid is non-toxic, fun, and smells great. You can find a variety of detailed instructions on the internet for dying wool yarn and wool batts in your microwave and on the stove. I especially like the information and color charts at Above are sample pieces of corriedale wool I dyed with Kool-aid on my stove top.

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Doc Kennedy’s Tips and Short Cuts

A very nice list of problems you may encounter with sheep and simple instructions on how to fix them.

Ask-a-Vet Sheep

1. Pneumonia-Nuflor and Draxxin simultaneously. You generally only have to treat them once.

2. Salmonella– Excede or Excenel injected. Neomycin orally.

3. Enterotoxemia and TetanusCDT 1cc and 1cc Penicillin Aqueous at processing, birth to 4 days. Use type CD at weaning eight weeks, repeat in two to three weeks. Why vaccinate ewes? Not necessary and not all that effective

4. Worried about scrapie?– Use RR Rams. QR Rams are ok if not retaining ewe lambs.

5. Pink EyeLA 200 or a generic substitute. Inject subq, individual eye treatment generally unrewarding. OK in very valuable animals.

6. Lice and Kids– use the approved permetherin pour-on. Ivomec is not all that effective.

7. Iodine– always use iodized salt. Sometimes that is not enough. Add 1# organic iodine to 50# iodized salt. Safety factor is 100 to 1. Our selenium/iodine premix will take…

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Milking Sheep

Milking sheep! I know I’m going to be trying this after my ewes lamb this spring!

Just another Day on the Farm

I got asked a question by a family member the other day that went along the lines of, I know you milk your sheep but did you have to buy special sheep to do it?

The short answer is, I would if I could! but no..

The long answer is that there are milking breeds of sheep, the main one I have researched being the East Friesian, this breed of sheep are primarily raised for milk, lots of milk, lots of lambs, issues with my area, does not like heat (we have heat in the summer) and requires lots of really good feed and high energy impute to put out that vast amount of milk.. still we do have a few breeders in my province but at this time, they are either keeping back their ewe’s to grow the flock or selling starter flocks are very high prices at the…

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Homemade bag balm

Here is a good, easy starter recipe for bag balm!
And here’s another good one:

Prairie Sunrise Homestead

Within the first week of having our cow, Happy, I realized the importance of a good udder butter.  She was dry and bugs were biting.  Commercial bag balms are petroleum based and come in big litre-sized, or bigger containers.  That’s a few year’s worth if you have only one cow.  So I decided to try making my own.  It turned out so easy to do and cheap!  The result is a nice thick cream that nourishes and lasts the day out in the sun and wind.  The use of essential oils is optional but why not take advantage of the properties?  Cedarwood, Sandalwood and Lavendar are both a natural antiseptic and an insect repellent.  I am using lavendar right now and it really does protect her from fly bites.  And smells good. 🙂  This cream is good for us too so spread it around!

3 Tbsp. olive oil
2 tsp. beeswax

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