Kelp for Goats

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One of my favorite goat resource books is Natural Goat Care by Pat Coleby, and this is where I learned of the incredible benefits to be had by feeding kelp to my goats.  Kelp contains over 60 minerals and elements including iodine, selenium, 21 amino acids and 12 vitamins, and feeding kelp helps make up for what is lacking in pastures and commercial mineral mixes.  The iodine in kelp improves feed utilization by regulating metabolism, leading to improved milk production and weight gain, along with higher butterfat levels.  Dairy goats fed kelp have reduced breeding problems, reduced white muscle disease, reduced incidence of mastitis and milk fever.  Kelp also noticeably improves their hair coat.  It should be fed free choice, as goats seem to know what they need and when they need it.  I’ve noticed mine eat more kelp in the winter than they do in the summer.  My local co-op doesn’t carry it but they order it for me when I need it.  A 50 pound bag costs about $50 and lasts my 4 goats anywhere from several weeks to several months.

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