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DIY, Easy, Free Goat House

Below you will find an easy and brilliant way to build a goat house using pallets! It’s a cost-effective way to use easy-to-find material to make great winter and out-of-the-rain shelters for your goats. 

If you love your goats and are interested in more information, check out all of the information here: Raising Goats. 


DIY, Pallet goat house is great for winters and keeping goats dry and warm!

Please watch the video below, read the information in this post, OR BOTH!

If you like this information, my YouTube channel is full of even more goat information. Please click this link: Delci | A Life of Heritage and subscribe! You can also click this link to watch this information on YouTube: Pallet Goat Shelter Video on YouTube

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How to build a “goat house” using wood pallets

Goats are a wonderful addition to a family! And our family appreciates them so much! But as the first winter approached, it was time to build them a sufficient goat shelter for winter. 

To answer the question,

“Do goats need shelter in the winter”?

Yes. Yes, they do. Especially in our cold, snowy and windy climate. They do need protection from the elements as much as possible. A cold, wet goat will be a sick goat. And you don’t want to be dealing with pneumonia in your goat herd. 

So this summer, I spent some time building goat shelters that my goats could tuck into during the long, cold, deep winter drift days of Montana. Here is the outcome. They snuggle in and are quite happy!

These goats are snuggled into a goat shelter during a really cold snap in the north. Goats in winter can be kept healthy.

AND these are so simple to build!

Here are several reasons I like these goat shelters:

  1. Pallets, at least around here, are easy to find and are free.
  2. They are so very easy to make!
  3. Their “floor” is the ground, which means that all of the moisture from the poop and urine is soaking into the ground and not rotting a good piece of plywood. (I bet the earthworms are having a hay day under our goat houses!)
  4. They are small (compared to a barn) and the body heat from the animals keeps it relatively warm.
  5. They can be moved and relocated if needed.
  6. They effectively provide shelter from the wind, rain, snow, and elements.
  7. I plan to reuse old rain gutters on the side. This will accomplish two things: keeping the runoff from hitting the sides and it will drain into a water trough that will give our goats and chickens another option of freshwater to drink.

This is how you build a shelter out of pallets:

As you can see, the pallets are made into a square and screwed together. The three boards on the top will be what you will screw the roof onto. And in the following pictures, you will see that to make it more suitable for winter, more boards can be used to cover all the cracks and spaces in the pallets. 

Pallet goat house with no roof yet

Materials needed:

• 3 pallets

• 3 2×4’s from a torn apart pallet

• Screws

• Roofing Material

• More pallet boards to enclose the sides so the wind can’t get through

One pallet is standing so it is at its tallest and the other two pallets are on their sides. The pallets are then screwed together. A 2×4 is screwed to the bottom, front to hold it all together. The roofing material chosen is then screwed to the top.

The only downside to using pallets is that some of the boards are more fragile than others. So choose your boards wisely. You don’t want them breaking when you move the shelter. 

You can find a lot of articles here on A Life of Heritage that will teach you about goat care and be sure to check out The Goat Health, and Information Bundle–it’s full of to-do lists, checklists, record keeping sheets, and resource pages that will get your new (or old) goat herd off to a terrific start! In fact, if you don’t have this binder, you are really missing out.

Goat Essential ↓

Sign up for a free Prepare for Goats Course here: Prepare for Goats

As you can see in this next picture, I enclosed the sides with more boards. These weren’t pallet boards but they were really old, warped boards I found in the back pasture.

Backside of a pallet goat house

And I added a pallet on the front to help block the wind. The wind usually comes from the west in our area, so this board in front really helps keep the wind from whipping around the corner into the shelter. 

Pallet goat house fortified with more boards to keep out the wind

In the picture below, this is a frame of another pallet shelter. On this shelter, I added what I called a “porch” where the goats could sit out of the sun and yet have the moving air keeping them cooler in the hot summers. 

Pallet goat house with porch attached

These were built in the same way but you can see the board on the front that holds it all together so it doesn’t separate and break apart. Pallet goat house bare structure

These shelters will allow 2-4 goats to snuggle up, depending on their size. And the smaller size will also help them to have a little cubicle of warmth trapped inside with them. 

Pallet goat house with front wind break

Again, on these pallet goat houses pictured, I added a pallet on the front to block the wind more.

And I also screwed boards onto the outside walls to block more of the wind. Something else to consider about using pallet boards is that they will shrink with time. Well, any boards not kiln dried will shrink. One thing I intend to do with these shelters is to staple some tarp (or something of the like) on the inside of the walls. After four years of use and the boards shrinking, there are larger cracks than I would like that allow the wind to blow through.

Pallet goat house that will keep goats warm and dry all winter long

These shelters have been a great help in keeping my goats dry and warm(er) in the cold Montana winters. 

There are so many good ideas on how to make a goat shelter! For me, especially considering cost, these work best for us because we can always pick up free pallets in our area. And for these shelters, we had the roofing material given to us for free after a porch on a house was torn off. So really, I only paid for some screws. That works for me!

What goat housing has worked best for you?

Pallet goat house is so easy to make!

SHELTERS FOR SMALL ANIMALS

Notes

Pallet goat house fortified with more boards to keep out the wind

SHELTER OPTIONS:

  1. By far these are the cheapest and easiest Pallet Goat Shelters to build for your goats. They are a perfect size and can be made very inexpensively and don't require a lot of room.
  2. Double Sized Pallet Goat Shelter
  3. Barns or Lean-To's
  4. Tarp covering cattle panels hooked to pallets
  5. A-Frame plywood house


MORE OPTIONS:

  1. Follow this Pinterest Board for more great ideas and to see pictures of the ideas listed above.


READ MORE INFORMATION ABOUT SHELTERS FOR GOATS:

  1. Goat Care in Winter (Video). This video will walk you through how to care for goats in the bitter cold of winter. (And it was recorded when it was well below 0!)
  2. You can also read more about shelters ideas here: The Goat House


IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS:

  1. Your goats will need shelter from the rain, snow, wind, and elements. Goats, out of all the ruminants, struggle the most regulating their body temperature.
  2. Pneumonia Treatment and Signs (Video). Careful thought about shelters will help keep your goats warm and dry, which decreases their risk of pneumonia (Post), which is the leading killer in goats.


You may also want to check out this post on the goat feeder I built using pallet boards as well!

I also realized that this shelter wasn’t big enough for my family of goats in the spring. So I built a double-sized goat shelter <=== Check it out and let me know what you think!

This Pinterest board has more ideas to get you thinking about goat houses for your goats: more goat house ideas

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Marcia DeHaven

Monday 14th of October 2019

Thank you for the information on the pallet goat shelter. Our farm supply store gives pallets away so this will be an almost "free" shelter. I have had a fence put up to protect from predators at night. We are in the country and there has been a recent sighting of Bob Cats on our road. My goat is a pet. He has been disbudded and castrated. Since he is the only goat I have at this time he thinks he is a dog. He runs the property with the dogs in the morning, naps with them in the afternoon and will come running when I whistle for him anytime. Again thanks for the pen info. He will be dry and comfortable in his new "home"

Earl

Tuesday 20th of August 2019

Hello Delci, our family is about to get 4-5 Kikos and overwinter them... First off, thanks for the information. I have one question for you about predators. Do you have many? What kinds? Don't you need doors to help protect goats from them? What do you do to help protect the goats?

Delci Plouffe

Friday 20th of September 2019

Hello! We don't have predators right where we live. If we lived any more out of town I would have to protect them more. If I did move and there were predators, I would enclose them in a barn at night. Or make a shelter that had wire and the ability to close doors at night as well.

Melissa DeVore

Thursday 28th of March 2019

Thank you for posting these instructions. I am getting dwarf goats in May and my husband and I are gathering supplies now for the goat house. These instructions are easy to follow. We will have leftover metal roofing from our new roof, so we will use that for the roof (their house will match ours).

Delci Plouffe

Friday 29th of March 2019

That is so exciting and so great to be able to use the material you already have! I hope all goes well for you! Enjoy those goats!

Richard

Thursday 14th of March 2019

Is a goat house also called a pen?

Delci Plouffe

Friday 15th of March 2019

I would say that a goat house would be something like what this post shows or like the barn we also use during kidding. And a pen would be the outside area that they are enclosed into to keep them safe during the night (if predators aren't an issue) or when you are gone.

Toni Lozano

Thursday 14th of March 2019

Is a goat house also called a pen?

Delci Plouffe

Friday 15th of March 2019

See the previous answer :)