Water and dry matter requirement of goats


  • The nutrient requirement of goats are influenced by breed, body weight, age, lactation, pregnancy, breeding season, market choice, environmental temperature etc.¬†
Water requirement of goats
  • Goats should be provided with ad-libitum clean water.
  • On an average a adult goat drinks about 400-700 ml, water/day.
  • Environmental temperature, lactation level, amount of body fat, age, water content of forage, exercise, salt and mineral content of ration¬† influences the total water intake.
  • Goats have the ability to conserve water by reducing losses in urine and faeces.
  • They are sensitive and reluctant to drink from foul tasting water sources than other species of animals, therefore taste of water also affects water intake.
  • When there is water shortage, it reduces feed intake, reduced performance and gradual starvation.
  • The mean DM, free water intake ratio for goats should be 1:1.2.
  • If hard water is given continuously, higher calcium and phosphorus deficiency will cause male infertility.
Dry matter requirement of goats
  • The dry matter requirement depends on the type of breed.
  • In meat type goat breeds the dry matter intake is on an average 3-4% of their live body weight.
  • While in milch type goats it is 5-7% of their live body weight.
  • The factors, which affect dry matter consumption or intake, are availability of feeds, palatability, moisture content and amount of fibrous material present is feed.

Sheep and goats require 3-5 % Dry matter on body weight basis

  • On an average an adult goat needs about 3kg dry matter/100 kg body weight for maintenance, 3.5 to 4 kg for growth, 3-3.5 kg during pregnancy, 3.5-5.5 kg for lactation and 2.5 to 3.5 kg for meat and hair production.

Grass and tree fodders are fed to goats to satisfy the dry matter requirement

Last modified: Sunday, 13 November 2011, 11:30 AM