Goat & Kid Yokes
I have 8 strands of barbed wire on 2 sides of my place; I made the yokes to stop them from going through the fence. Also I use it as a handle. I can walk up to almost all of them and pet them but if you want to check something on them, they can get excited and the yoke is a lot easier to grab. When my young goats start going through the cattle panels into the yard I put a small yoke on them to get them used to staying on the right side of the fence. I have a big heavy one for Billies, but I don’t use it much, these haven’t had it on. The smallest yoke is what I have on the 2, 8 week old kids now. It is made from 1/8 x ¾ strap iron. The top and the bottom are the same, 2 bolts with locknuts hold it together. The next size is made from 1/8 x 1” strap iron, a bigger curve for the neck. The small yoke you see with the side pieces is for the kid that wants to go under the fence that is 2 inches off the ground. I had one go under on his side. A 3” piece on each never stopped him, so I put that one on his sister, and made this one with 6” side pieces, that stopped them both. The lighter weight big one I show is made out of ½” conduit bent to shape. The other big one is made from 3/16” x 1” strap iron, with a short piece welded on the tip, after I twisted and put a bend on it. Depending on the thickness of the goat’s neck. I will use no pipe spacer, 1”, 2” or 3” pipe spacer, so it’s not too tight on their neck. I had one old Billy that would butt an old section of woven wire, it being brittle would break a hole and through he would go. The big yoke (1/4” x 1 ¼”) made it so he would end up butting air but still couldn’t go through so he gave that up. Another would go under; the side pieces put a stop to that. The Billies will bend the lighter yokes up, just as some nannies will bend the ½” conduit yokes. Then they get the 3/16” x 1” yoke. You need to smooth up the inside of the yoke, and even then it will wear the hair off some goat’s neck but they build up a tolerance for it.
It also keeps them from going through the dog doors that I have between pastures.
They are easy to make. Both sides are the same. They don’t have to be exact. For an adult goat I use 2 pieces of flat iron 1” X 3/16” X 24”. I cut 3” off of each piece to weld on top of the bend. I put one end in a vice and bend the neck area by hand. Then clamp the vice above that bend and using a pipe wrench I twist the flat iron and then bend the top bend. You can have someone weld the top piece on. Once you have both pieces bent, put it together as you see these and drill a hole through one end and through the other piece. Put a bolt through that hole and then drill the other holes. If it’s tight on the goat, put a spacer pipe between the side pieces as you see on these.