for people who love the littlest dairy goats
I will be picking up my first two goats in the next week or so. I have an area already fenced with 39" field fence. I'm concerned that will be too short and I will be catching loose goats. The goats are going to be 4 months in a week or so, will they be able to get over the fence already? I was thinking of possibly running a single strand of electric fence around their area. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!!!
I remember that ours could jump higher at 4 months than they can (or care to) now at 1 1/2 years. 39" is not even 3 1/2 feet, and our little ones regularly and easily floated up to the top of a stack of three 12" straw bales. So yeah, it might be trouble. No experience to share with you on the effectiveness of electric strands though, sorry! Best of luck!
It depends on the individual goats. If they are bottle babies, you will have a lot more trouble with goats escaping than if they were dam raised. I don't think we've ever had kids that age jumping our fences. They tend to look for openings that they can walk through. At 4 months, they should be too big to go through the squares in the fencing. Actually the only goats we ever had that went over woven wire were the LaManchas and an occasional young buck who wanted to get to does. Also, the best defense for keeping goats in a pen is to be sure they have everything they need in terms of food, water, and shelter.
None of my personal goats are fence jumpers because they would much rather stand at the hay trough and eat their chaffhaye all day, but I'm babysitting a 19" doe that can (and does) easily clear our 4' fence. I have to keep her in an area that's cattle panels with extra wire across the top making it about 5.5' tall or she escapes and feasts on my fruit trees.
I think one of the most important factors in fencing is making sure it's sturdy and you have plenty of posts in place. My goats love to lean into the fence to scratch themselves (especially in shedding season) and that can really wear on the fence, creating escape holes. My wether likes to play Jurassic Park and test the fence for weaknesses. I've never seen them try to jump.