Goats and sheep are all ruminant and cloven-hoofed vertebrates of the Bovidae family. A lot of people used to get an attempt to raise sheep and chicken together, and the result is quite amazing.
Since sheep can totally pair up and get along with chickens, is it possible to bond goats and chickens?
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Can goats and chickens live together?
Yes, goats and chickens are possible to live well together, of course, with some crucial notices and solutions. When you have the necessary knowledge about them, without a doubt, it would be a very exciting challenge to try.
Chickens clean for goats
We all know chickens are omnivores and they love eating insects, bugs, worms, etc. This habit of chickens can reduce bugs in goats’ living areas.
To be more specific, goats usually sleep on the hay which can be dirty with sheep droppings very quickly. When getting messy, the hay will draw on a bunch of flies and bugs that can make goats form deer worm parasites and feel uncomfortable.
In this situation, chickens will consume those insects and clean goats’ living spaces. (Source)
Further reading: Can sheep and chickens live together?
Goats can protect chickens from predators
Chickens are usually the attack targets of many predators such as hawks, dogs, foxes, etc since they are quite small and have weak self defense.
In the meanwhile, goats have large sizes that can scare those predators. Especially, goats bleat at night, so their vibrato and loud bleating can also frighten hunters getting close to chickens. That is why it is a good idea to let goats and chickens live together.
However, it is just right with some small predators and goats still can be onslaughted by larger and more dangerous carnivores. Therefore, it is essential to build a firm and safe living space to protect both goats and chickens.
Apart from some diseases which just can be transmitted from birds to birds, we are more concerned about diseases that have an impact on both mammals and birds.
Those diseases are caused by parasites that do not need specific hosts, so that is why they can spread out from birds to mammals and vice-versa.
- Firstly, there is a disease carried by infected chickens then spread to sheep and vice-versa, it is called Cryptosporidiosis. Cryptosporidiosis is usually common in confined babychicks.
- Secondly, Salmonella bacteria is also one of the diseases that can spread out from chickens to sheep. Salmonella bacteria is contained in chickens’ intestines and can be expelled through chickens’ droppings.
Since chickens can leave their excrement anywhere, female goats can be contaminated and become the source of illness. As a result, their children can get Salmonella bacteria and even can die. (Source)
Goats are not aware of where they take steps, so sometimes they can injure chickens accidentally. Chickens can be trampled if they do not run quickly enough from large goats.
Furthermore, if you raise goats with hens, you certainly need to watch chicken eggs carefully to prevent them from being stepped on by goats.
Different dietary food
Goats love eating chickens’ feed, especially grains. However, grains can create good conditions for rumen bacteria to develop and lead to diarrhea and bloating issues for goats. In the worst case, sheep can die if they are not treated timely.
Additionally, chickens are not picky eaters so they still can eat goats’ feed. But, goats’ diets do not provide chickens with sufficient protein and calcium contents. Therefore, chickens will lack the necessary nutrition and grow slowly.
How to help goats and chickens live well together?
Dividing specific food
As we said, it is harmful to goats and chickens having the same diet, that is the reason why we need to provide them with their own feed.
Particularly, sheep need a balanced diet with high-quality grass, hay, and some additional supplements. Meanwhile, chickens need to feed a high protein and calcium diet apart from their natural food.
Last but not least, make sure to allow both goats and chickens access to fresh water sources to perfect their dietary food.
Separating their houses
It is totally fine to let sheep and chickens interact during the day, however, it would be better if you give them separate houses.
Chickens and goats can live in harmony since there is not any serious problem between them, but both of them have their distinctive features which require different places.
To be more precise, chickens need a warmer coop than sheep. Besides, chickens can leave their feces on goats’ beds while roosting and can lead to diseases.
Therefore, separating goats and chickens’ housing is the best way to help them live well together for a long time.
Keeping their living spaces as clean as possible
Clean living environments can impede parasite appearance. Since it is hard to control when diseases spread out, it would be much better to take precautions.
And keeping both goats and chickens living spaces as clean as possible is the most economical and efficient method that you should take into account.
In conclusion, goats and chickens totally can have the room to live together. However, to help them live in harmony, you need to take up some caution as well as have proper solutions to deal with.
Once you prepare fully, it will be fine to tackle this task and you will also be surprised with its outcome.