Can Goats and Chickens REALLY Live Together?

Wondering if your Goat and Chicken can cohabitate peacefully? Read on to learn more

Goats and Chickens can cohabitate together peacefully, as long as appropriate steps are taken to mitigate conflict. Neither animal has been known to be confrontational or engage in conflict with each other, and so long as both are kept clean and well-groomed, you can expect a pleasant experience.

What are ways that you can mitigate potential issues from arising between the two animals? Read on to learn more

Shared Diseases

This is one of the main risks associated with allowing these two animals to cohabitate, they share diseases and parasites. The main parasite that effects both of these animals is known as Cryptosporidium. This parasite is generally transmitted through the feces of a given animal as well as contaminated water.

To make matters worse, they are very effective parasites in terms of their ability to spread, and have even adapted to be resistant against chlorine based cleaning agents, making them even more difficult to stop. This makes goats and chickens living in close quarters a dangerous proposition, as it makes it much easier for parasites to transmit from chickens to goats. With this in mind, it is necessary for goats and chickens to have their own individualized quarters to prevent the spread of this disease.

Another common disease that is spread between chickens and goats is Salmonella. Salmonella is a bacteria that resides in the intestines of many birds, such as chickens. While Salmonella doesn’t normally affect chickens themselves, it can be very harmful to other mammals. Anything that comes in contact with these chickens feces could potentially be affected by salmonella, which if left untreated, can even be fatal.

Obviously a goat living within such close quarters can easily step in chicken feces, making it an easy candidate to catch salmanilla. This is especially dangerous for a goat, because when a goat catches Salmonilla, the bacteria can enter into the milk it provides for its children. If this occurs, it can quickly spread to several other goats, as well as getting many goats very sick, and even running the risk of being potential fatality. The way to mitigate this is by creating a barrier that seperates the chickens from the goats.

Goats eating Chicken Feed

Another risk associating with allowing Goats and Chickens to live together is the reality that goats will try to eat chicken feed. Anyone who has spent much time around a goat can understand that goats, quite literally, will eat anything. The issue with this that chicken feed is harmful towards goats. If a goat consumes too much chicken feed, they can have a surplus of chain, which can cause them to become colic. Being colic, if left untreated long enough, can even be fatal to the goats.

Additionally, as you would expect, chicken feed does not have the appropriate nutrients needed for a goat. Because of all the negative health effects that result from a goat eatin chicken feed, it is in you and your goats best interest that you keep an eye out. Clearly, this is not something that can simply be overlooked and disregarded. You must be proactive about separating the chicken feed from the goats, and making sure that they have no access to it. Keep in mind, this process can be a much more tedious one that you may expect, as goats are quite mischevious, and are known to be good at escaping their confinements.

One way that you can accomplish this task is by putting the chicken feeders inside the chicken bin and creating large barriers that prevent any entry from the goats. Because goats are also effective climbers as well, you will need to ensure that the fence that seperates the chicken feed from the goats is sufficently high, as to ensure that not even the most talented goat will gain access to the chicken feed.

Chicken Feces

Anyone who has much experience with a chickens can attest that chickens are by no means a sanitary animal. Chickens will poop anywhere they want, which can quickly make their environment quite unsanitary. Fortunately goats are particular about eating clean food, and are generally uninterested in eating anything that may consume goat feces on it, thank goodness. This helps prevent a lot of potential problems, as goats avoid intentionally eating anything that is clearly contaminated and dirty.

Unfortunately, even with the best judgement of the goat, there will always be mistakes that occur. Chickens oftentimes contaminate their own water bucket, but walking in their own feces prior to standing along the edge of the bucket. As you can imagine, this leads to a wide variety of problems for the goats, who are largely dependent on water for their milk production. Similar to how they are towards their food, goats are rather particular about their water, and refuse to drink it if it looks unclean.

The now unclean water caused by the chickens fecal pollution will prevent the goats from drinking it until it looks clean again, which will force you as the owner to replace the water, a rather expensive process when repeated. With the realities in mind, it is neccesary that your chickens and your goats are separated and have different sources of water. Applying these two things should prevent a lot of potential problems in the future, as well as keeping the health, and relationships between your goats and chickens, at bay with one another.

Benefits of Cohabitation

Now that we have discussed some of the tricky aspects involved with chicken and goat cohabitation, and how to mitigate those problems, we can now focus on the numerous benefits associated with allowing them to live together.

Less Bugs affected your goats

Chickens love to eat bugs of all shapes and sizes, as they find them delicious as well as receiving nutrients from them. The consumption of bugs by chickens in not only beneficial to them, but to the goats as well, as goats hate bugs. The lowered number of bugs due to the chickens make the goats much happier, as the chickens happen to prey on one of the goats biggest pests. From common flies that get into the eyes of the goat, to everything in between, chickens are there for the goats. This convenient relationship helps the two species get along with each other wonderfully.

Protection of Chickens provided by the Goats

Yes, you read that correctly. It doesn’t take much time to realize that chickens are not particularly dominant animals, and as a result they have many predators. This natural vulnerability makes any way to stay safe a huge asset. Fortunately, if they cohabitate with goats, they can have a sigh of relief. Goats, which are much larger and dominant mammals, can provide protection for the chickens not only on land, but also on air as well. The mere presence of these goats will scare off many potential predators for entering into the territory of the chickens, saving them a lot of potential stress and heartache.

Even outside of the survival that this protection ensures to the chickens, there are benefits to you as the owner. With all of the money you invest in purchasing and maintaining these chickens, having one of them eaten by a predator is one of the biggest tragedies you can experience. Having a goat to protect these chickens not only saves you stress, but also saves you a lot of money, making this a win win situation for both you and the goats.

Chickens help clean up the mess of Goats

Ironically enough, although chickens can be messy and disorganized in and of themselves, they can also be of assistance in cleaning up the mess made by the goats. Chickens help lower the population of pets such as flies by consuming them, which makes the place cleaner already.

Additionally, they consume other dirty bugs such as snails and slugs, which inadvertently helps protect the goats in the long run from catching parasites carried by these bugs. Chickens further keep the area clean by preventing mice and other small rodent from entering the area, which also prevents further diseases that could enter the pin and afflict the goats that reside there. The last way that chickens help clean up for goats is by willingly consuming the rations that are left by goats.

Although this may not seem like something particularly convenient, it saves you as the owner money, as well as allowing both of your animals the ability to receive nutrition from a single food source. This makes life easier for both of your animals as well as your bank account. The chickens willingness to consume the rations is yet another way that they prevent unwanted pests, bugs, and rodents from entering and contaminating the area as well.

Why it is worth it

To conclude all of these points, the net benefit associated with allowing these two animals to live together far outweighs the costs. The relationship is synergetic and beneficial for both parties. The goats provide well needed protection for the chickens, while the chickens help keep the area clean while ridding the area of pests and rodents that can spread parasites to the goats.

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