Protein or no protein? That is a popular question among sheep and goat breeders. Protein is arguably one of the more expensive nutrients in the diet, yet it is essential to the proper health and wellness of the flock and herd. Do you need protein year-round? Probably not. However, there are critical times in your ewes and does’ production cycles when added protein is a wise investment.
Lactation is definitely when the female’s nutritional needs are the highest. Not only are those ewes and does trying to take care of their own bodies, but they are nursing babies – hopefully twins – and providing them with the best nutrition possible. This is a crucial time in their diet, and a time when adding protein is vital.
Supplementing your ewes and does’ nutritional needs, including adding protein during their last 30 days of gestation all the way through breeding ensures those mamas get the added health benefits they need during the last days of their fetus’ development all the way through their highest nutritional needs. Additionally, those nutrients are passed on to their offspring both through the womb and through their milk, making sure they are healthy and growing to their fullest potential.
Once the ewes or does are bred and settled, and their young are weaned, their nutritional requirements are not quite as high. They still need forage – either hay or grass to keep their rumen functioning – and water. However, you don’t focus on your health and nutrition only during specific times of the year. So, providing your flock or herd a vitamin and mineral supplement just makes sense.
DuraFerm® Sheep Concept•Aid® and DuraFerm® Goat Concept•Aid® are organic vitamin and mineral supplements specifically designed to target cycling, embryo production and conception when fed 30 days prior to lambing through breeding. Both of these products are a loose mineral that comes in 50-pound bags.
However, when you do want some added protein for your goats or sheep, DuraFerm also makes products for both sheep and goats with added protein. The DuraFerm® Concept•Aid® Sheep Protein Tub is a cooked tub for sheep with 16% natural protein. The 125-lb. tub has many of the same benefits of the loose mineral in an easy-to-feed tub that when put out during lambing, lambs like to lick on too.
The DuraFerm® Concept•Aid® Goat Protein Tub is a 50-lb. tub with 20% added protein, and it offers many of the same benefits with the added protein that does need during lactation and breeding.
DuraFerm products contain organic zinc and manganese, selenium yeast and high levels of vitamins E to support maximum reproduction and health. In addition, all products also contain Amaferm®, a precision-based prebiotic created to enhance digestibility by amplifying the nutrient supply for maximum performance. It is research-proven to increase the energy available to the animal resulting in more milk production as well as the ability to initiate and maintain pregnancy and fertility. Amaferm is research-proven to increase intake, digestibility and absorption of available feedstuffs.
When healthy lambs and kids matter and productive ewes and does matter, your nutrition should be a top priority. That’s when investing in extra protein pre-parturition through breeding becomes like an insurance policy for you. Invest in the DuraFerm Sheep and Goat Protein Tubs and start seeing a difference.