Nigerian Dwarf Dairy Goats

for people who love the littlest dairy goats

Deborah Niemann-Boehle
  • Female
  • Cornell, IL
  • United States
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Profile IconAaron Blair, Carrie Hartranft and Jennifer DePierro are attending Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event
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Creating Value-Added Products With Goats at online

April 6, 2015 from 8pm to 9pm
Learn the basics of making money with your goats by selling soap, dairy products, compost, and leather, and putting your goats to work in a landscaping business. This webinar covers the business and legal side of selling products from your homestead. To learn more about how to make products with goats and how they can enhance your homestead, check out "Goats as the Centerpiece of a Diversified Homestead."The webinar begins at 8 p.m. central time, and will last about an hour plus plenty of time…See More
2 hours ago
Aaron Blair is attending Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event
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Goats as the Centerpiece of a Diversified Homestead at online

March 30, 2015 from 8pm to 9pm
Did you know that goats can provide you with milk, meat, and fertilizer? We'll talk about equipment and ingredients used to make your own soap and a variety of cheeses, yogurt, butter, buttermilk, and meat. We'll also discuss whey and milk as fertilizer, as well as the basics of composting, so you'll never need to buy fertilizer again. If you want to make money with your goats, check out "Creating Value-Added Products With Goats."Regular tuition is $19, but group members can save $5 by using…See More
2 hours ago
Deborah Niemann-Boehle commented on Julieanne Cook's blog post blue cigars?
"I've actually never heard this before. In general, doe personalities change when they're pregnant and when they kid. It's not unusual for them to get more self-confident, which can translate as bossy or bucky. This is why I don't…"
4 hours ago
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Fourth Annual Mid-America Homesteading Conference at Joliet Junior College

September 5, 2015 from 8am to 5pm
Increase your self-reliance by learning how to raise livestock, keep bees, garden, and preserve the harvest. Network with others who have similar goals, and get inspired by those who are already doing what you want to do!See More
4 hours ago
Deborah Klenke might attend Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event
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Goats as the Centerpiece of a Diversified Homestead at online

March 30, 2015 from 8pm to 9pm
Did you know that goats can provide you with milk, meat, and fertilizer? We'll talk about equipment and ingredients used to make your own soap and a variety of cheeses, yogurt, butter, buttermilk, and meat. We'll also discuss whey and milk as fertilizer, as well as the basics of composting, so you'll never need to buy fertilizer again. If you want to make money with your goats, check out "Creating Value-Added Products With Goats."Regular tuition is $19, but group members can save $5 by using…See More
4 hours ago
Deborah Klenke might attend Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event
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Creating Value-Added Products With Goats at online

April 6, 2015 from 8pm to 9pm
Learn the basics of making money with your goats by selling soap, dairy products, compost, and leather, and putting your goats to work in a landscaping business. This webinar covers the business and legal side of selling products from your homestead. To learn more about how to make products with goats and how they can enhance your homestead, check out "Goats as the Centerpiece of a Diversified Homestead."The webinar begins at 8 p.m. central time, and will last about an hour plus plenty of time…See More
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Deborah Niemann-Boehle posted events
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Deborah Niemann-Boehle commented on Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event You Can Do It!
5 hours ago
Deborah Niemann-Boehle replied to Ruben Castellanos's discussion Help me out - Goat-Supplement-Addicting-based PROTEST !
"You need a mineral that is specifically labeled for goats, and it should have at least 1500 ppm copper in it. It should also be LOOSE minerals, not a block. Goats have a small, soft tongue, and there have been goats with a block that have become…"
5 hours ago
Deborah Niemann-Boehle replied to Cherissa Woudenberg's discussion First Time Disbudder Questions
"Horned baby bucks are born with horn buds that you can feel. We've had quite a few polled kids, and only once have I ever had a buckling that was horned that did not have horn buds the day he was born. Does are a little more challenging. Horn…"
5 hours ago
Esther Gonzales commented on Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event You Can Do It!
"I missed it!  How can I see it?  Was it recorded?"
yesterday
Barbara Jean Rondine commented on Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event You Can Do It!
"I'd love to do this but guess I have already missed it in Alaska!!! I have requested both the books from my library and have poured over Just Kidding--thanks so very much1 Barb"
yesterday
Barbara Jean Rondine might attend Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event

You Can Do It! at online

March 24, 2015 from 8pm to 9pm
Wondering if you're crazy to want to live a homesteading lifestyle? Curious if it's possible for someone who has spent his or her entire life living in a city or small town? Whether you are still dreaming or have already taken the plunge and started homesteading, you'll find inspiration in this FREE webinar where Deborah talks about how her family moved from the Chicago suburbs to 32 acres on a creek in the middle of nowhere. Their livestock experience consisted of two cats and a poodle, and…See More
yesterday
Deborah Niemann-Boehle replied to Rosalyn Abbott's discussion Nigerian Dwarf or Mini Mancha
"Keep in mind that you have to have two goats anyway so they don't get lonely, and two NDs eat less than two larger goats. "
yesterday
Deborah Niemann-Boehle replied to Cherissa Woudenberg's discussion First Time Disbudder Questions
"Bucks should be done NO later than one week of age. We have done it as early as two days with a buck that was born at 4# and had very prominent horn buds. We hold the iron on the horn bud firmly for a count of 3-4. I have seen people say they do it…"
yesterday
Profile IconGayle Reynolds, Channah Ranck and Branden at Healthy Hills Farm are attending Deborah Niemann-Boehle's event

You Can Do It! at online

March 24, 2015 from 8pm to 9pm
Wondering if you're crazy to want to live a homesteading lifestyle? Curious if it's possible for someone who has spent his or her entire life living in a city or small town? Whether you are still dreaming or have already taken the plunge and started homesteading, you'll find inspiration in this FREE webinar where Deborah talks about how her family moved from the Chicago suburbs to 32 acres on a creek in the middle of nowhere. Their livestock experience consisted of two cats and a poodle, and…See More
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Deborah Niemann-Boehle's Discussions

Homesteading group on Facebook

Started this discussion. Last reply by Rachel Griebenow Mar 6. 5 Replies

If any of you are interested in extending the online conversation to homesteading topics in general, I wanted to let you know that I have a Facebook group called Thrifty Homesteading. Click on this…Continue

Goat mineral basics

Started this discussion. Last reply by Trish Mar 8. 22 Replies

Hi everyone,Since goat mineral issues come up so often, I've decided to create a post with basic mineral info. Here is a link to an excerpt from Raising Goats Naturally:…Continue

Webinars! (with a discount for group members!)

Started this discussion. Last reply by Myra Isaac Feb 3. 9 Replies

Hi everyone!I wanted to let you know that I'm going to start doing homesteading webinars! People have been asking me to do them for years, and I finally decided that I'm just going to do it! You all…Continue

Is my goat pregnant?

Started this discussion. Last reply by Phebe Jan 10. 1 Reply

For those of you wondering if your goat is pregnant, I just wrote this blog post, complete with a photo quiz and a video!…Continue

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Comment Wall (261 comments)

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At 3:28pm on March 4, 2015, Ellen Petrick said…

I am SO excited to have found this community.  My brother got me your book as a sort of joke because I kept talking about how I wanted to move out to the country and raise goats - What Luck he picked YOUR book!  It was perfect.  I really wish I could come to your class this weekend, but I have to go to a fitness conference instead.  So I will plan to sign up for the homestead conference and the goat class labor day weekend as soon as registration opens.

At 7:42pm on September 27, 2014, M. K. said…

Rabbits are definately happier in a larger pen, although, my angoras never seemed particularly athletic.  Compared with other breeds, they sat around a lot.  I keep my rabbits in 4 foot by 8 foot wire pens set on the ground.   The walk-in pens look like little houses.  They  have tarps over the pitched roofs, and  wire floors.   The pens are all kept within the perimeter of a solar charged electronet fence for predator protection.  My charger and fence are from Premier. They are usually a good company to work with.

At 6:44pm on September 27, 2014, Myra Isaac said…
Thanks! Wow that's really sad! I recently got a Great Pyr LGD puppy to hopefully help with our predator issues. He comes from working bloodlines and both parents are guardian dogs as well as grandparents so hopefully he'll be up to the job. I want to build a hutch for my rabbits that has access to some dirt and grass. Completely enclosed with wire buried underneath it or else really deep around the edges. What did you use? I hate having her in that tiny cage even tho I know other people do it. It just seems So tiny and I don't want her to be miserable!
At 2:45pm on September 27, 2014, Myra Isaac said…
Thanks! My new girl was under the weather the other day and I was really worried about wool block. I'm making sure she has some good Timothy hay to much on if she wants now and she seems to be fine. What kind of cages or hutches did you use when you had them? I currently have a wire cage that I put a piece of ply wood in for her to sit on so it's not so hard on her feet. She really likes that board! What did you feed yours?
At 6:50pm on September 22, 2014, Myra Isaac said…
Hi Deborah, I recently purchased an angora rabbit for wool. I have your Homesteading book already but was wondering if you knew of a good Angora care/raising book? Seems like I can't find much online but I probably don't know where to look. Do you know of any good websites? I'd like to have a book with some in depth care/health info for angoras.
At 6:25pm on June 11, 2014, Dave Marschang said…

yeah I have a hell of a time on here knowing when someones replied to something

At 8:56pm on June 9, 2014, Dave Marschang said…

the lamancha doe is very gentle with ginny, and ginny actually seems to enjoy the attention. she appears to be a very gentle giant and even against the other lamancha does her threats seem pathetically gentle. and yes we do want a buck, I don't know that as beginners we need a $600 buck to start. your worst quality buck is 100 times better than the barnyard mutts we have around here so something on the cheaper side will work for us. what do you have available? you website gave me the impression all bucks were sold.

 

At 7:38pm on June 3, 2014, Dave Marschang said…

well a 6 yr old Lamancha has apparently taking a likin to Ginny, she follows her around pushing her across the stall with her head, then she will stick her head under Ginnys backend and lift her in the air. Not sure what any of that means but Ginny just stands there patiently and takes it. everyone is still doing good and Ginnys diarrhea appears to have gotten better. we have plenty of room at this farm for a buck and will be seriously looking to purchase one soon, not sure if you have any available or not but, will probably be calling soon.

At 10:00am on June 1, 2014, Dave Marschang said…

oh my god! Gertrude never shuts up! typical female......anyway thought I would let you know the girls are fitting in just fine, they get to meet the lamanchas today. Ginny has a little bit of diarrhea. we gave her probios yesterday so we will see what happens. while neither will take treats from us yet, Ginny is much more skittish than Gertrude so it makes sense to us that she would be the one with diarrhea. we don't think its anything to worry about yet.

At 8:01pm on May 17, 2014, Lyn Adams said…
Hey Deborah, I'd think your opinion on this, a member needs to find a home for her two withers. Do you think it would be a problem if I took them in, right now I have 4 , I was just concerned about them all being together . Can you help?

Visit Antiquity Oaks on the Web

Click here to visit the Antiquity Oaks goat website.
Click here to visit the Antiquity Oaks farm website.

Profile Information

If you already have goats, what's your herd name?
Antiquity Oaks originally, but now AOF
If you have a website, what's the URL?
http://www.nigeriandwarfdairygoats.com

Antiquity Oaks blog

Just Kidding ebook available

For those of you who like reading the goat birthing stories on here, I've created a collection of 17 kidding stories. In addition to the original birth stories, I also added commentary to each one. What went well? What would I have done differently? What would not have made a difference?

And if you ever wondered what happened when Coco gave birth two years ago, I finally tell the story in the book. If you've been reading my blog for that long, you might recall that she died of a ruptured uterus after giving birth to five kids. Actually we had to take her to the University vet hospital, and they pulled the last four kids there because they were quite tangled up. Although all five kids survived, Coco did not, and I was so upset, I was unable to write her birth story at the time. The book also includes the complete story of another goat that had birthing difficulties a few years ago.

I wrote the ebook because there are so many questions from new goat owners about what to expect when their goats give birth. The book includes several normal births, including those that are not textbook perfect but still not problematic. Those are the births that seem to confuse new people the most. And because everyone worries about the possibility of a caesarean section, I included stories of our two experiences.

The ebook is available in all formats, from a simple PDF to those that will work with a variety of ereaders from Kindle to Kobo. If you don't have an ereader, you can download a PDF or get the free Kindle reading app for your computer or iPad. The ebook is only $4.99 and is about 40 pages long. Click here to learn more and to order your copy.

Catching up ...

Since my last kidding post, six more goats gave birth and I hurt my back twice. I can't possibly provide all of the details on everything, so here is a short summary ...

 Emily's doe 
This year's goat births have been going extremely well! Of the ten goats that have given birth, no one has had any problems that required assistance, even though they had some challenging presentations, such as an ear first, a posterior, and a couple of breech kids. We had two sets of quintuplets, three sets of quads, three sets of triplets, and two sets of twins. That's an average of 3.5 kids per doe, which is unbelievably excellent! Even better, we've had 22 does and 13 bucks. Since these are dairy goats, the does are the most coveted because obviously boys don't produce milk. Of course, I should not get too excited because we still have eight does left to kid, and they could have lots of bucks and flip that ratio on its head.

 Scandal's doe 
Two weeks ago I stepped in a hole, which threw my back out, and I spent two days in the recliner on the first floor of our house because I couldn't walk upstairs. After a week I was doing pretty well, other than feeling like someone was following me around and randomly stabbing me in my lower back. Then on Tuesday I was doing chores, and the mud was just too much for my back. I was able to make it back to the house under my own steam, but then I spent the next 48 hours incapacitated, either in the recliner or in the guest bed on the first floor. Who knew that walking in mud could throw your back out? The chiropractor said I have a bulging disc, so tying my shoes could throw my back out. I am really hoping it won't get that bad.

In the meantime, Mike and I are talking about adding a first floor master bedroom because between my knees and my back, going upstairs is getting harder and harder. After 10 years, the house is still not entirely finished, so adding on sounds a little funny, but I need a first floor bedroom more than trim on the windows, so an addition sounds pretty important right now.

If you missed Friday's post about our upcoming farm dinner, click here for more details and to make reservations.




Tickets available for June 14 on-farm dinner!

 Chef Monika's créme brûlée 
I've been wanting to have on-farm dinners for awhile, and we are finally doing it. They are scheduled for Sundays, June 14 and August 30, starting at 4:00 with hors d'oeuvres and a farm tour. Dinner will begin at 5:00.

Monika Sudakov of the Chestnut Street Inn will be our chef for both events. We are still debating the main course for the August dinner, but the June dinner will feature heritage Plymouth Rock chicken for the main course and créme brulee for dessert, made with our fresh eggs. The Plymouth Rock chicken is on the Slow Food Ark of Taste. Although it was quite popular a century ago, you can't buy it today in supermarkets, and in blind taste tests, most people agree that the flavor is superior to modern hybrid chickens.

In addition to dinner, guests will get a tour of the farm so they can see the garden where their dinner salad and vegetables were grown, and they'll get to see the new baby goats that are due to be born in late May.

Dress is casual, as we will be dining outside. Because GPS has trouble finding us, don't hesitate to contact us for directions, if this will be your first visit to the farm.

Click here or page down for tickets to the June 14 dinner. There are only 36 seats available, and rumor has it that farm dinners sell out rather quickly, so it's a good idea to buy your tickets soon.


Victoria's twins

 February 9, 2015 
The day before Victoria kidded, I realized that I had not appreciated my senior does enough. You see, when a goat has given birth before, they are usually very stoic until the last minute or two before the kid is actually born. Victoria was a first freshener and completely freaked out by every little contraction. Sunday night after Cicada gave birth, Victoria was screaming her head off, sounding quite unhappy. I went running out to the barn a few times only to find her standing there screaming as if to simply express her displeasure. She was standing like a normal goat and just screaming. She wasn't pushing or laying down or pawing the ground or anything that a goat normally does when in labor. Even though she is not a friendly goat, she was very unhappy and would scream more whenever I left her. So I wound up staying with her for three hours! And then she was quiet. I came inside, and we went to bed and went to sleep.

Monday morning shortly after Mike left for work, she started screaming again. I decided to take a book out to the barn office and read because it was obvious that she was not going to stop screaming anytime soon. Even though it was a really dreadful scream, her body language just looked like she was mad about something, so I wasn't taking it very seriously.

An hour and a half after I went out there, she finally got serious, and it was obvious she was actually pushing. She's lay down, throw her head back, curl her tail over her back, and stretch her legs out in front of her as she screamed. She also quit eating. And then things got interesting.


A hoof was sticking out, but it was upside down. That meant that the kid was either posterior or breech. Breech would not have been such a bad thing, especially if it was feet first. It would actually be pretty easy for Victoria. However, after ten minutes of pushing the foot was sticking out about three inches, and there was no sign of progress. I ran my finger along the leg and bumped into a nose and mouth. That meant it was a posterior kid. The books tell you that in those situations, you should reach in and flip the kid over. Since I was home alone, the odds of Victoria standing there while I did that were somewhere between zero and never. The idea of doing that also worried me because of the risk of tearing the uterus. I went looking for some disposable gloves and some iodine, but I wasn't entirely sure what I'd do when I actually had them. In the meantime, Victoria kept pushing. About fifteen minutes later, the kid was born. The head actually came out sideways, which I don't recall ever seeing before, and the body came out with the kid's belly facing Victoria's tail, which is basically upside-down. The little doeling was in great shape, and as Victoria and I started to clean her up, I noticed another upside down hoof sticking out of Victoria's back end.

"Seriously?" I asked Victoria. "Another one?" I ran my finger along the leg, and when I came to a joint, I bent it. Since it bent in the direction of the top of hoof, that meant it was a hind leg, and I knew the kid was breech, which should be much easier than the posterior kid that she just delivered. And a couple minutes later, the breech doeling was born.

Victoria has been an excellent mom from the very beginning. I think she heard that I'm planning to seriously reduce our goat herd this year, and she wants to be sure that she makes the cut and gets to stay here. After all it was pretty impressive for her to give birth to doelings that weighed 3 pounds, 4 ounces and 3 pounds, 9 ounces, especially since one of them was posterior, which is never easy, even with smaller kids.


Cicada's quads

Six days after Vera kidded, it was Cicada's turn. Unfortunately, she was not as thoughtful as Vera, who gave birth in the late afternoon. Around 4 a.m. February 8, I woke up to see Mike getting dressed. I wondered if it was morning already and asked why he was up. He said, "Listen." The video monitor was on because we thought Cicada might give birth during the night, but I had not heard any screams. I listened carefully and heard a faint moan coming from the television. Mike headed outside while I got dressed. I took my time because it didn't seem like Cicada was in the middle of actually pushing out a kid. 

I arrived in the barn a few minutes before she gave birth to the first kid -- a buckling that weighed 4 pounds, 10 ounces! Yeah, that's big for a Nigerian! She took about a fifteen minute break and helped us clean off the kid. Then she plopped down and three kids -- all doelings -- shot out only about a minute apart. Two of them weighed 3 pounds 12 ounces, and one weighed 3 pounds, 7 ounces, which are all excellent sized kids -- and pretty unbelievable sizes for quads! Cicada had been as big as Vera and Agnes, which both had quintuplets, but their kids didn't weigh as much as Cicada's. When you add up the weights, they were all actually carrying about the same number of pounds of kids.

Cicada is one of our top milkers and has successfully raised quads in the past, so we were not worried about leaving all four of the kids with her. Since they were all big and healthy, I wasn't worried about everyone getting their fair share, and they are all doing really well.

We will be keeping one of the doelings because Cicada is 8 years old, and I've never kept a doeling from her, which has been a terrible oversight, especially considering what an excellent milker she is. Time flies! It's hard to believe that she is already 8, and she is a third-generation Antiquity Oaks goat. 

Unfortunately I don't have any other photos for you because I upgraded my computer with the newest operating system and now Photoshop doesn't work. Hopefully I can get that fixed before more kids are born. I'll be telling you about Victoria's kids within the next couple of days -- they were born the day after Cicada's. 

Now we are waiting for four more does to kid -- yep, right now. I don't think anyone will kid within the next few hours, but they are due now, so we'll have more kids within the next few days. From the looks of it, there will be some more multiples. We're hoping that four is the most anyone has, and I'd be happy with triplets, but I'm not holding my breath.

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Need goat equipment?

Yogurt Maker

2-quart milk pail


Mineral feeder (put minerals in one side and baking soda in the other!)

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