Goats are animals with a pretty strong digestive system that allows them to consume a wide variety of foods, together with some weedy and bushy plants.
Like sheep, buffalo, camels, and cattle, they are ruminants, which means they swallow grass and then store it in the rumen, a separate part of their stomach.
Unlike many others from the ruminant group, their forage dietary plans are enough to fulfill their nutritional requirements.
Still, there are some additional supplements you can provide them to boost the functionality of their body as well as allow them to get valuable nutrients from other sources too.
Such can be found in various fruits or vegetables, which leads us to answer our today’s question – can goats eat broccoli then? Let’s find out more!
What Are The Benefits of Broccoli?
Broccoli is a rather popular and nutritious vegetable that belongs to the cabbage plant family.
It’s an excellent source of protein, fiber, and plenty of valuable minerals such as calcium, magnesium, iron, potassium, and selenium. It’s also rich in vitamins A, B, C, E, and K.
Iron is important when it comes to transporting oxygen to different parts of the body through hemoglobin – plus, it’s also in charge of the respiration of cells.
Lack of selenium can lead to white muscle disease, worms, or some other issues goats can experience.
This element is also important when it comes to flushing out the placenta after the goat gives birth.
If the placenta stays inside the womb, it can cause infection – which is why selenium intake is especially important for female goats.
Fiber is vital for better digestion, while calcium does numerous other things such as aid in blood clotting in the case of injuries, regulating the activity of the nerves, and helping muscles to contract when making movements.
When a goat produces milk, it needs more calcium to decrease the chances of getting a disease called milk fever.
Broccoli is also a pretty good source of antioxidants.
Those are elements that protect body cells against the free radicals and oxidative stress they cause.
When an animal is having issues with oxidative stress, it produces yields of poor quality – plus, production of milk also decreases.
Can Goats Eat Broccoli?
Yes, you can give your goats broccoli.
Just a few of the benefits of this veggie for your goats is boosting normal reproduction, enzyme formation, vitamin synthesis, and hormone structure as well as helping with their immune system.
However, there are some things you should know about offering your goats broccoli.
Remember, broccoli and other vegetables are not supposed to be used as a replacement to staple feed.
Causing an unbalance in their diet weakens their immune system, which leaves them exposed to various types of infections and diseases.
Make it an occasional supplement to make sure your goat gets needed nutrients – but, without disrupting its primary diet.
Ways Of Feeding Your Goat Broccoli
Simply cut up smaller pieces of broccoli (together with stem), and give them to the animal as a treat from time to time.
Whichever way you serve the broccoli, make sure to cut it into bite-sized pieces so your goat doesn’t choke on the bigger bits.
If your goat doesn’t like the plain broccoli, you can always lightly boil it, and season with a bit of salt.
Mixed With Other Supplements
Broccoli is not the only valuable vegetable you can give your goat, so you can make a mixture as an occasional treat for the animal.
Coupled with that, keep in mind it’s best to feed the goat with fresh vegetables.
Don’t give your goat rotting or stale food; it can cause disruptions with its gastrointestinal functions, or lead to tummy aches.
Water is an essential requirement for a healthy goat, so make sure it always has enough fresh water within reach.
What Plants Can Be Toxic To Goats?
Goats have a complex digestive system, and some plants can seriously harm the animal and cause medical issues.
Some of those are:
- Berries (elderberry, inkberry, baneberry)
- Certain weeds (nightshade, milkweed, staggerweed, rattleweed, sneezeweed, pigweed…)
- Poison ivy
- Corn cockle
Some Final Words
All in all, can goats eat broccoli? Of course. As long as you keep it in moderate amounts, broccoli can be very beneficial for your goat.
It’s a rich source of numerous valuable nutrients needed for running the essential functions in the goat’s body.
No matter how great and highly nutritious broccoli can be for your goat, don’t replace the animal’s primary meals with it.
Excessive amounts mean the veggie won’t be beneficial anymore – it can cause an unbalance in the goat’s diet as well as lead to certain health problems.
However, getting supplements is important too, which is why it’s best to feed your goats with vegetables from time to time.
When giving it vegetables, cut it into smaller bits so the goat doesn’t choke.
What are your experiences with goats and broccoli?