One animal helping another
When we started our goat dairy in 1993, on an abandoned farm in British Columbia, we needed our herd protected from coyotes, bears and cougars. Our first livestock protection dog was Pino the Komondor, a Hungarian Sheepdog. He was amazing. In his puppy-hood we raised him in the barn with the goats and his natural instinct was to protect the goats from there on. He was bonded to us, but he would never approach a stranger, on the contrary, no stranger could enter the barn. Every morning he patrolled the pastures, and often came home with his head full of blood (not his own) and we often wondered what he had encountered.
Cindy and Pino as a team
We also had a donkey named Cindy. She was sweet but stubborn and didn’t care much for people, but was very protective of her goats. She would protect them and it was quite the site to see her and Pino work together. I never forgot that day when 200 goats were out on pasture and suddenly 10 coyotes approached them. Cindy immediately herded the goats and chased them towards home while Pino viciously attacked the intruders. As soon as the goats were running home, Cindy turned around and also attacked the coyotes, hammering at them with her front hooves. It was quite the spectacle!
Pino had his share of raw goat milk everyday. He lived to be 13 years old. For a large breed this is a very good age, taking into account that he lived mostly outside. Our next Komondor, Franky, who also consumed raw goat milk lived to be 13, and so did our first English Mastiff, Baghira and our second English Mastiff Leon.
Fermenting the raw goat milk
At first we just fed them left over milk after milking. Later we started to ferment the milk. We added yogurt bacteria to the warm raw milk and let it ferment. This created a probiotic power drink. Fermenting milk means that all the lactose gets converted into lactic acid, so it becomes lactose free. A lot of dogs can have issues digesting lactose, so it is very beneficial to let the milk sour. Later we started to use specific bacteria strains that are known to do well for dogs like: lc lactis, leuconostoc mesenteroides, Bifidobacterium longum and animalis. All these probiotics boost the immune system and can have all kinds of positive effects on the digestive system. They can reduce allergies, kill candida and detoxify.
Benefits of raw goat milk for dogs
Goat milk is one of the most complete nutrient sources that exist. It has a near perfect spectrum of macronutrients ( fat, carbs and proteins) and micronutrients ( vitamins and minerals). For more information on nutrition, check the end of the article. Goat milk is easy to digest and is easily absorbed by the body.
Why raw goat milk:
Pasteurization of milk for human consumption is mandatory in Canada and many other countries. The reason is that pasteurization kills off all pathogens (disease causing) microorganisms. But it also takes out some very valuable enzymes. Dogs have an extremely low pH in their stomach, which explains why they can eat all kinds of things including horse poop. Properly collected raw milk contains all the beneficial ingredients for dogs, especially after being fermented. The fermentation with wanted bacteria makes them grow in the billions and will eliminate all other non wanted bacteria.
Raw Goat Milk Products as Toppings for fussy eaters:
Often dogs get bored of their daily ration. A topping like raw fermented goat milk can do wonders. All it takes is half a cup poured over their kibbles and even the fussiest eater will get hungry. Giving your dog goat milk is also good for hydration. Dogs who don’t drink enough water, will find it easy to drink goat milk.
Raw goat milk can be turned into delicious cheese. Cheese is nothing else than highly condensed milk. Most of the milk’s nutrients make it into the cheese. Out of a cup of milk we get about a 25g treat of cheese. Most dogs go crazy over cheese, so keep in mind not to feed too much. It also works well to crumble cheese over kibbles. Most cheeses are lactose free and also contain beneficial bacteria.
Raw Goat Milk and Goat Milk Soap for Dogs with skin and fur problems:
There are well over 100 skin disorders in dogs and, most likely. a vet analysis and treatment helps. However Goat Milk has highly anti allergenic properties. Often skin problems, like itchiness, flakes or hair loss is caused by dietary issues and goat milk products can help prevent or cure it.
Goat Milk soap is one of the most gentle soaps available. Since dogs lick themselves , we want to make sure to only wash them in completely chemical free products. Goat Milk soap is a natural moisturizer, it protects the skin, and, along with goat milk as a supplement, might just be the cure for some allergies.
Our dog’s well-being:
We all want only the very best for our four legged best friends. In today’s world we have to be careful what we feed to our dogs. A lot of health problems are caused by compromised food or environmental influences we can’t change. Goat Milk products, especially from raw milk, can aid in regulating a dogs metabolism. Raw goat milk can further prevent unwanted health issues from arising, mainly because it has such a positive influence on the gastrointestinal tract.
It’s truly like one animal helping another!
Information on nutritional facts about Goat Milk
Goat Milk has a large variety of oligosaccharides. These pre-biotics, have a huge impact on the digestive system and the hindgut. The combination of these naturally occurring prebiotics and the added probiotics bacteria make fermented goat milk a real superfood.
Alpha S1 casein:
Goat Milk is considered low allergenic. One of the reasons is the low level of alpha1 -casein, which is a protein found in cow’s milk and can cause intolerance in humans and dogs. Another reason is the highest level of polyamines in goat milk, compared to other mammals. Polyamines are crucial for growth, cell function and can reduce allergic reactions.
Medium and short chain fatty acids:
One of the most distinguishing characteristics of goat milk is its high content of short and medium chain fatty acids that lead to significant health benefits, especially in the gastro-intestinal tract. Fermented goat milk can help dogs with chronic digestive problems. In addition to the medium and short fatty acids, goat milk shows much higher concentrations of polyunsaturated- , monounsaturated and branch-chain fatty acids than cow’s milk. These types of fatty acids have significant anti-inflammatory effects in dogs.
To learn more about Pet goat milk products and how to find the highest quality Canadian goat milk check out Happy Days Dairy