Can Goats Eat Oats? Simple Answer & Feeding Tips

Can goats eat oats? Yes, most goats love oats and will eat any variety. Oats are a great source of nutrition for goats and when fed as part of a balanced diet, oats will give a big energy boost.

There are a couple of things to remember when preparing oats and feeding them to your goats. Read on to find out everything you need to know about feeding oats to your goats.

can goats eat oats

What are Oats?

Oats are a cereal grain that is in the same family as grasses. There are three main types of oats- white, rolled, and steel-cut. When buying oats for your goats you will want to purchase whole oats instead of processed oaks such as rolled or instant oats. Whole oats will have a longer shelf life and more of the natural nutrients that come from the grain itself.

So if your goats love oats and you want them to be happy then give them some whole oats on occasion.

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Can Goats Eat Oats?

Goats will eat oats as part of a balanced diet. In addition to feeding your goats whole oats, you will also want to consider mixing grass hay and other pasture weeds into their feeding routine.

Oats are a great source of nutrients for your goat but they can’t have too much of a good thing. Goats need access to clean water at all times and should never be fed moldy or dirty oats as they may become sick and possibly die if they eat the mold and/or dirt that is on the oats.

So make sure you keep their feed fresh and don’t overfeed them with oats.

Are Oats Safe for Goats?

Yes, oats are completely safe for goats to eat. As long as the goat has access to clean water and is fed fresh oats they should be just fine.

If you notice your goat acting lethargic after eating their oat supply then it may be time to cut back on feeding them oats. Always listen to your animal’s body language when it comes to feeding time, if they don’t want the food then don’t push them into eating what you give them.

Health Benefits of Oats for Goats

oats in jar

Oats are a great source of fiber and nutrients for your goat. Feeding your goats oats can help to improve their digestive health, support healthy cholesterol levels, and even give them more energy.

Feeding oats to your animals will also reduce stress levels in the long run. If you have ever owned an animal that is easily spooked or shows high levels of stress when eating or being handled at the vet then try giving them some oats before trying any other methods to calm them down.

The type of starch found in oats has been known to reduce cortisol levels which is good news for both the animal’s owner and the goat itself.

Are there any Risks in Feeding Oats to Goats?

As long as you follow proper feeding procedures with your goats then there is no risk of giving them oats.

There are a few things to be aware of when it comes to feeding oats, though. Goats can’t have too many oats otherwise they may become obese and/or develop certain health problems such as laminitis.

It is best to limit the number of oats a goat gets in a day and make sure that there is always fresh water for them to drink from.

How to Prepare Oats for Goats?

goat and kid

It is best to prepare oats for your goats in a food processor, blender, or grinder.

Allowing the oats to be ground up before they are fed to your goats will allow them to digest faster and easier as well as ensure that the goat gets all of the nutrients that it needs from its daily serving of oats.

Can Goats Eat Cooked Oats?

Goats can eat cooked oats but, as with most foods for your animals, they are fine to have raw.

It is easier to give them their daily serving of oats by mixing it in with the water that you already use to mix up their food.

To prepare their oat supply simply put enough oats into a blender or small food processor until it is ground into a flour-like consistency then add some of their normal drinking water and blend until mixed.

Once blended together you can pour this mixture over your goat’s regular feed and they will love having something new to try!

Can Goats Eat Raw Oats?

Yes, as long as the oats are fed in moderation your goats will be just fine.

Just like most foods for your animals, they can eat raw oats without any discomfort or health issues. It is best to keep a close eye on their eating habits and make sure that they don’t eat too many oats at one time or they may become sick from it.

If your goat shows any signs of illness such as diarrhea, vomiting, bloating, loss of appetite, constipation, seizures, difficulty breathing/swallowing, skin irritations such as hives and hotspots, or lethargic behavior then they may have eaten too many oats and need to see a vet.

How Often Should I Feed my Goats Oats?

goats eating

You should only give your animals oats once a day.

For small animals, you can simply mix their daily serving of oats into their feed but for larger animals, it is best to keep them in individual containers or bins marked with the goat’s name and how many times per day they should have access to the oat bin.

This will prevent them from eating too much at once if they are hungry enough for more than one serving throughout the course of the day.

Can Kids Eat Oats?

When baby goats are first born they have a well-developed digestive system that allows them to eat the same food as adults. If your goat is under four months old then there’s no problem feeding it whole oats along with its mother’s milk.

Just remember that if you give your baby goat oats that aren’t whole then the little one will need to spend more time chewing which can cause an upset stomach or maybe even cause it to choke.

Can Goats Eat Oats – Final Thoughts

It is important to remember that oats are not a substitute for hay or pasture and should only be fed as part of a balanced diet. When combined with good quality hay, fresh water, and grazing on green pastures, oats can provide your goats with the nutrition they need.

If you’re interested in getting more information about feeding oats to your goat herd, have a read of similar articles on this site.

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Jill Taylor Happy Farmyard

Jill Taylor

Jill is a full-time homesteader who enjoys learning about sustainable living and practicing self-reliance. She'll most likely be found tending to her many animals including chickens, ducks, goats, and alpacas. You find out more about her on LinkedIn.