If you have goats, you may want to give them something a little extra as a treat now and then. Whether you are just looking for a sweet treat for your herd, or maybe you grew a large harvest of oranges on your own, you may wonder: can goats eat oranges?
Goats, like any other type of animals, have their typical diet and then they have other foods they can have as treats. However, they also have foods that can be dangerous as well. So, before you start handing out any non-typical goat foods to your herd you need to be sure they are safe to eat.
Below we go over everything you need to know about whether you should or should not feed your goat oranges.
Can Goats Eat Oranges
Yes, goats can eat oranges and orange peels. Oranges are a safe, healthy and nutritious treat for your goats.
You're goats probably aren't going to encounter oranges while grazing about unless you live somewhere nice and warm and have some of these citrus trees on your property. However, they are a nice treat to buy and share with your goats occasionally. Goats tend to really enjoy the sweet and juicy taste of the orange.
Like with any type of treat out there, you will need to limit consumption. Goats who have their diet thrown off will end up with an upset stomach.
Can Goats Eat Orange Seeds?
Yes, goats can eat orange seeds. There is no reason for you to try and scoop the seeds out. They won’t harm your goat.
Can Goats Eat Orange Peels?
Yes, goats can eat orange peels. In fact, the orange peel actually contains a higher dose of Vitamin C than the flesh of the fruit does. Orange peels are the healthiest part of the Orange. If you can get your goat to chow down on them, it’s a huge plus.
As you can probably tell from the answers above, it’s safe to let your goat eat every part of an orange. Just remember that too much of a good thing will upset their stomach.
Can Goats Eat Orange Leaves?
If your goat somehow manages to chow down on leaves from your orange tree, there is no need to worry. Unlike some other types of plants like potatoes, the orange tree is safe to consume and won’t place toxins inside of your goat's body.
With that being said, the leaves aren’t the most nutritious thing that your goat could be eating, and their munching can damage your tree.
It’s best to keep your fruit trees, and your goats separate when possible. If you let them wander around, consider keeping a fence around your tree to discourage any midday snacking that might occur. Trust me, they will devour your fruit trees, we have a lot of experience with this!
How to Feed Your Goats Oranges
If you would like to treat your goat to some oranges, there are a few things that you should keep in mind. For starters, while a goat can safely consume all parts of the orange, many fruits are sprayed with pesticides that are harmful to both humans and goats when they are ingested.
The best way to ensure that your goat isn’t taking in any toxins is to thoroughly wash the orange off. You should also make sure to remove any stickers that have been placed on the fruit and get off any sticky residue they leave behind.
Once you are done washing the fruit, you should cut it into slices to serve to your goat. While they can and will eat an orange whole, this is a choking hazard.
Dividing the orange into bite-sized chunks is also a good way to make your goat think that they are getting more treats.
Oranges should never make up more than 20% of your goat's diet, and you need to be careful as they are quite high in sugar. You may actually want to try feeding your goat a bit less as citrus fruits are known for easily upsetting a goat's stomach.
Oranges contain a large boost of vitamins that can help keep your goat healthy when fed in an appropriate amount. Vitamin A is present, which helps boost the immune system, and so is Vitamin E, which helps increase the health of your goat's body. Vitamin C is what oranges are best known for and can help remove free radicals from your goat's body as it’s actually an antioxidant.
Oranges also have Fiber and Folate Acids that helps cells to divide. Calcium is also present, which can help with your goat's bone health. Finally, oranges have Potassium, which helps with heart and muscle functions.
Keep in mind that the orange peel has the highest concentration of vitamins and if you can get your goat to snack on them, it is a great way to keep them healthy.
If it’s your first time feeding your goat an orange, give them a small piece and monitor them closely. Once you verify that your goat isn’t having an adverse reaction to the fruit, feel free to start feeding them more.
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Can goats eat orange trees?
Yes, goats can eat orange trees. If a goat somehow decides to start munching on the bark of a tree, they should be ok. Of course, this isn’t preferable due to the fact that they can easily kill a tree off if left to eating it too long.
If they are just eating the leaves or plucking off oranges, they should be fine. You just want to ensure that they aren’t eating enough to upset their stomach. Fencing is a great way to keep goats out of your produce.
Can goats have orange juice?
If you make the orange juice yourself, everything should be fine. Steer clear of any store-bought juices as even the organic ones usually have preservatives or extra sugar added in. These ingredients aren’t made for goat consumption and should be avoided at all costs.
You also will want to be careful with the amount of juice they ingest as it can be easy to lose track of how much sugar they are taking in.
Can goats eat mandarin oranges?
Yes, if you bought the oranges yourself and washed them off, it should be fine. Avoid canned mandarin oranges, though, as these will have a high amount of sugar and will likely have harmful preservatives that your goat shouldn’t ingest.
You also may still want to slice small oranges up, to ensure there is no choking risk.
What fruits can goats eat?
You do need to make sure to wash them off and be careful of the amount of fruit you are feeding them, especially if they are high in sugar. Avoid giving your goat fruits that aren’t ripe, especially if you are giving them something like a Tomato that has toxins in it until it fully ripens.
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