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Your Water Source is Affecting Your Goat Herd’s Health

Your goats probably rely on you to provide them good quality water. But is it actually doing them more harm than good? Find out here…

Your Goat Herd Needs Good Quality Drinking Water or Their Health Will Be Affected

You may be doing everything just right with your animals.

You are feeding quality feed, you clean and fill their troughs on a regular basis, you have minerals out for them to use when needed, you’ve given them adequate shelter and all the resources needed to stay healthy.

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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: How Your Water is Affecting Your Goat Herd Video on YouTube

Curious goat looking up

But you can tell that your herd health is struggling.

Their hair isn’t shiny and lustrous.

Their tails look funny.

They seem to be struggling with fertility and are more wormy than normal.

And they are anemic.

This is a great free course on Anemia in Goats

What is going on??

This is an important lesson to pay attention to and learn from.

Your water source is key to your animal’s health.

And many, if not most, wells are high in sulfur, iron, and calcium. But what does that have to do with your goats? Those minerals actually bind the very minerals that your goat needs.

Including zinc and especially copper. Copper is so very essential to your goat’s health. And without copper, they will be dealing with a very obvious health decline.

And high levels of calcium affect the absorption of selenium. Selenium deficiencies will greatly affect your herd as well.

I experienced this with my goats. I couldn’t figure out the source of their health problems and at first, their water and its minerals never occurred to me.

Goat drinking water out of a hose

If your water source isn’t the best for your goats, the good news is that you are reading this now.

If you are moving your herd to a new area, now you know to test your water first.

Or if your herd is currently experiencing problems where they are but you don’t know why, you should test your water.

But there’s good news. It’s not the end of the world and this can be successfully managed.

Here are a few options and decisions you can make when you are faced with this problem:

  1. Change water sources. This may be moving to a new pasture or utilizing natural sources of water like collecting rainwater.
  2. Always, ALWAYS provide loose minerals to the goats. You can read more about goat minerals here.
  3. Supplement with copper. Because copper is so vital to goats, supplementing with a copper bolus 1-4 times a year is necessary to ensure that they get the proper amounts to remain healthy. Learn more about copper for your goats here: Copper for Goats
  4. Continually observe using all five senses. Especially watch their poop, their temperature, and eyelids. All three of these will give you a quick assessment and tell you if you need to worm or if they are having rumen-related illnesses or are struggling with anemia.
  5. Diligently track all health information including supplements, shots, and hoof trimming with this Goat Health and Information Binder.

Goat Essential ↓

Your quick action with the above-mentioned ideas will greatly enhance and help the health of your herd.

Also, remember that water quality will change and affect how much your animals drink as well. If the water doesn’t taste good or isn’t as pleasing to them, they will probably drink less. And this will affect milk production and even a slightly dehydrated goat will start to have health and rumen problems, become depressed, and potentially stop eating.

Does it make sense now how important not only water is to your goats but also what’s in the water as well? Take care of your goats by knowing how their water is affecting them. You will save yourself and your goats a lot of problems and heartache when you do.

You can read more about this Here, Here, and Here.

goat drinking from dripping water source



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Saturday 27th of May 2023

Hello, your channel is super helpful, thank you!!! Few questions. What am I testing for, just copper (my water has zero) and zinc (zero). Also, if mine tested levels of zero for copper, do I give them copper bolus? or do I wait for the deficiency signs, like fishtail (one goat has fishtail)?

Delci Plouffe

Wednesday 29th of November 2023

Keep a good mineral out for your goats at all time. And then watch for signs of deficiency. That's so good you tested!

Sarah Price

Wednesday 22nd of March 2023

We have been dealing with a decrease in our herd's health since we moved to a new property with a well. We have been starting to get testing done and getting all sorts of crazy results that make no sense. I'm curious if you might be able to help find some answers?

Delci Plouffe

Wednesday 29th of November 2023

I would suggest getting in contact with your local extension agent or Farm agency. They *should* be able to help you understand the results you are getting.

Lynde Bigsby

Thursday 3rd of February 2022

We have sulphur water here would some kind of filter help maybe?

Delci Plouffe

Friday 18th of March 2022

You can get one of those filters for a RV and put it on the hose. We've gotten them and used them during the warmer months.


Friday 2nd of July 2021

Can you please refer me to research that supports this? I would like to know what mineral levels in water should be. Thanks!

Delci Plouffe

Friday 25th of March 2022

Water that has high iron, sulfur and calcium will affect things like copper absorption. So you don't want those to be high.


Monday 1st of February 2021

Hi, we have just started watching your channel and it's great. This one has me thinking. Our water well is at a ph level of 4 and believe it's not well for us to drink...?? And then wondered about our goats coming Saturday what will we do for them. Could you let me know of insight on ph levels for the goats. Thanks You mentioned rain water what other ways do you get your well water source right for them?

Delci Plouffe

Tuesday 2nd of February 2021

Hello :) I do believe it's best to have the water between 6.5 and 8.5. Right now, we are still using well water and supplementing when they need it for mineral deficiencies. But rainwater collection really is a priority. We just need to figure out how to make it work during our cold winters. So, if you can start to collect rainwater and snowmelt, that would be ideal!