If you are considering raising goats for profit, there will be initial cost for setup just like everything else if you plan on raising well bred goats with good blood lines.
Like most things the initial cost can be expensive but once you get your setup, your ongoing cost will not be so bad. The initial cost also depends on the goats and equipment you select.
So, lets look at some of the cost of raising goats for profit or homesteading.
Start raising goats they said, it will be fun they said!
The Initial Goat Cost
1: The first thing you will need is a goat. Will it be a milk goat? Regardless the cost or a pure bred goat is more expensive than if you go to a stockyard and purchase one off of the line in the auction or out in the yard.
This price range can be from a few dollars up to several hundred depending on the goat selected. The difference in cost will depend on gender, male or female? Does it have horns or no horns, age, breed, health and where you decide to purchase the goat. This all comes into focus as to how much you will pay.
Registered young females are highly sought after goats and typical speaking, they fetch a better price than others. Many unregistered males are very inexpensive and on occasion you can find them being given away. If you purchase from a quality breeder you are going to pay more than if you purchase from a sale barn. If you are planning to raise milk goats and breed goats, a health guarantee is a must Cae, Cl, and Johne’s testing will be among the most important decisions you will make. Have the prospects been tested for these?
The reason this is so important is that these diseases can spread through an entire herd. These can make your whole hear sick and can be passed on to the next generation or even kill your whole herd! Testing, testing, testing, check the health!
This in itself is a pretty good cost. We are over $250.00 at this point. If you don't want to milk by hand and want a Milking Machine, the cost can go between $500 - $1500.00!
Veterinary Care and Visits
If you are going to raise goats, consider this a part of your regular yearly cost. Will you be trimming their hooves? Your cost will be approx, $35.00 - $40.00 for a good hoof trimmer. If you take them to a vet to get this done, expect to pay $25.00 - $35.00 per visit per goat depending on where you live. Will you be giving them all their shots and checking for worms regularly? If not, this is another trip to the vet for fecal samples, worm medicine and vet fees. This can cost upwards to, $100.00 per goat per year, twice a year. This is jsut standard and routine maintenance. If you goat gets sick, depending on the illness it could be pretty costly!
Breeding Choices for Your Milk Goat
Are you wanting to raise Milk Goats? If you raise milk goats the girls will have to be bred! There are a few ways to accomplish this. There is Artificial Insemination, Driveway Breeding or you can rent or purchase yourself a buck. Either way you go, it can be costly.
If you rent a buck, you will be charged per doe you plan to breed. This can cost you $50.00-$100.00 per doe plus boarding and feed.
If you purchase a buck the initial cost will be high as you will need to fence him in, feed him, and house him. this can be costly up front but may work out in the long run if you plan of doing this for a long period of time.
Artificial Insemination can cost $25.00 - $100.00 per doe plus shipping, straw container and AI Specialist.
Driveway Breeding is when the doe is taken to the buck. She is let out to the buck while in heat for a few minutes and then loaded back up and goes home with the hopes that the breeding has taken. This can cost $50.00-$100.00 per doe per trip.
Feeding your Goats
What do you feed a goat? Although grain prices vary, you should be able to find good grain for around $12.00-$15.00 per 50lb bag. A good quality alfalfa hay will cost you around $10.00 per bag normally. You might luck up on some that are less expensive but I would not count on it. Although goats are foragers, they like good quality hay, fresh vegetables, and good grains for food. Expect to spend around $50.00 from time to time for vitamins and minerals for your goats. They need this just like any other animal.
Is this the Final Cost?
Although we have already spent some serious money, it does not stop here. We haven't covered all the feed bill, fencing, housing, feeders, waterers, bedding, etc. The initial set up for raising goats is always going to be your most costly part with all the equipment and other items mentioned. Once you have completed this setup, the cost will drop dramatically per goat per year.
Now, do you still want to raise goats for profit? I really hope so, they are truly a wonderful animal but you need to know going in that it will be costly your first year!