Do your goats receive regular copper supplementation? Find out why it’s so important and how to properly give copper bolus for goats!
Copper Bolus for Goats
Do you give your goats copper? If yes, then do your goats like taking their copper bolus?
If you answered No to either of these questions then you definitely NEED to read this Post!
First of all let’s talk about what a copper bolus is and why goats need copper.
Copper bolus is basically a copper supplement for livestock.
It is a capsule that contains copper oxide particles. They are tiny little copper rods that, when ingested, lodge in the lining of the stomach and slowly release copper into the blood stream over time.
Copper bolusing is the best way for livestock to get the proper amount of copper.
While feeds and mineral supplements contain some copper, it usually isn’t sufficient. And depending on where you live, there probably isn’t enough copper in the soil to keep your goats healthy!
If you would like to watch a video showing you exactly how to copper bolus your goats, you can get it for FREE by scrolling down below and entering your email! You will receive the video directly in your inbox!
Copper is an essential nutrient for all livestock. But different animals require different amounts.
Sheep should never be given copper supplements, while goats, cattle and horses require copper supplementation. It is a very important dietary requirement in goats!
Copper Deficiency In Goats
Copper plays a part in enzyme production which in turn helps a number of different body systems to maintain balance. This provides vitality, health and productivity.
Copper is essential for the formation of collagen which helps with proper bone formation. It also helps to strengthen blood vessels and arteries as well as being excellent for ligaments, tendons and the skin.
It is also important for the central nervous system, iron metabolism and it protects the body from oxidants.
Also, one of my favorite benefits of copper is it’s ability to treat internal parasites and worms! While it doesn’t completely rid the animal of worms, it does help greatly! Supplementing your goat with copper in addition to a natural wormer should take care of any internal worms!
How awesome is that?! Are you convinced yet that your goats need copper?!
Copper for Goats
Ok, now that we know that they need copper, let’s get to the fun part! I’m going to share with you the EASIEST way to copper bolus your goats!
Normally copper boluses are administered using a balling gun, which is basically a long plastic or stainless steel stick!
You place the pill on the end of the stick, grab the goat in a head lock, and shove it in their mouth all the way to the back forcing them to swallow it.
Not a very pleasant experience for you or the goat! The method that I use is much less stressful for both of you!
I actually learned this method from my good friend Maureen at Earthsong Farms. She has taught me almost everything that I know about goats!
Maureen and her daughter have been raising dairy goats for show and milk for years. She has so much knowledge about anything goat related! I really don’t know what I’d do without her, she’s amazing!
Here is a list of what you will need to copper bolus your goats using our method:
Copper bolus (I buy this big copper bolus for cattle called copasure because you get more for your money and we’re going to open the capsules anyways so it doesn’t matter that they are bigger.
Or you can get this copper bolus for goats. I still recommend opening the capsules and weighing it out according to your goats size.
A kitchen Scale that has TARE and can weigh in grams.
Pen and paper
Bananas and a knife (you will probably need one banana for every two- three goats depending on how big your bananas and your goats are)
Ok, are you intrigued yet?! Now that we have all of our ingredients let’s get busy!
Copper Supplement for Goats
First you want to cut your bananas into chunks, peel and all, like in the picture.
It is easiest if you put your goat on a milk stand before starting.
Then, using your weigh tape you are going to determine how heavy your goat is.
You are going to measure the girth of the goat just behind the front legs and shoulders. Some also measure the length of the goat to get a more detailed estimate, but I measure just the girth.
To keep everybody’s weights and dosages straight I write down everything on a piece of paper. I include the goats name, weight, the name of the supplement or med that I’m administering, the dosage, and also the date. It should look something like this:
Copper Bolus for Goats Dosage
Next, we are going to calculate how many grams of copper our goat needs based on our weight measurement.
You are going to give one gram of copper for every twenty-two pounds.
I don’t recommend giving a goat younger than 4 months a copper bolus and I personally wait until 6 months.
After we determine the dosage and write it on our paper, we are going to weigh it out.
You need a scale that can weigh in grams. I place the lid of the bolus container on my kitchen scale, hitting the TARE button so that it doesn’t include the weight of the lid.
Very carefully open a copper capsule and slowly dump the tiny rods into the lid until you reach your desired weight in grams.
Next take a knife and cut out a chunk of the banana on one end of one of your pieces, leaving the peel intact.
Carefully dump the copper out of the lid into the hole in the banana.
Then press the chunk that you cut out back into the banana so that the copper is sandwiched inside the banana.
Now the only thing left to do is to give it to your goat! Most goats love bananas!
The majority of my goats inhale it, making this process super easy.
Now, I will tell you that a few of my goats do not like bananas.
Most of the time it’s because the goat wasn’t fed bananas as a kid and is not familiar with them. If you give your goats banana treats regularly you will not have a problem.
For the goats that are not interested in bananas I do unfortunately have to shove it in! But the majority of my goats love them!
This is especially nice when copper bolusing stinky bucks! I don’t know about you but I avoid getting that stench on me as much as possible!
You want to start copper bolusing your goats when they reach six months of age.
And depending on where you live and how much copper your goats get in their diet, you NEED to copper bolus two to three times per year.
I live in south Florida, and we have nothing in our soil. Actually it’s more like sand! So I prefer to copper bolus my goats 3 times per year.
And that’s it! Super simple and much easier on your goats than the traditional bolusing method!
Have you ever copper bolused your goats before? If so how do you do it? Do you have a special technique that works for you? If so please share, I’m always interested in hearing new ideas from my readers!