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What herbs for goats & sheep?

We use a lot of herbs as a compliment to our animals diet. In the UK as grazing has been restricted over the years and our grassland is almost a monoculture, the variety of herbs and plants that our sheep and goats graze has diminished.

We send our potential owners with a 'plant list' that contains information of all the potential poisonous plants and trees ad those that are safe, so when designing and fending a suitable area for animals, all of this information is vital to ensure the wellbeing and longevity of your animals.

I will cover the list in another blog!

Herbs - so feeding a balance of herbs is a great way to enhance gut health and build immunity. Here is a short list of some of the vital ones you can safely feed your animals on a regular basis:

You can mix them up and feed approx. 1/4 cup per animal.

  • Nettles - dried nettles are just awesome for general health and rich in iron & Vit C. Think of it as your blood conditioner, also good for the lymphatic system and has anti inflammatory properties.

  • Mint is a perfect antioxidant with antibacterial, antiviral, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties. Mint helps the gut biome and good for helping animals absorb nutrients. It also contains menthol, a natural decongestant that helps break up phlegm and mucus in the lungs.

  • Hawthorn grows naturally in hedgerows, but your animals may not have access to these. You can pick tender shoots and feed to them or buy this dried. It has great blood circulatory properties. enhance digestion, lower blood cholesterol, and to support the heart.

  • Cleavers ( you will all know it as sticky weed.) Known to support the lymphatic system and as a diuretic. This means that it is particularly good for flushing out swellings and inflammation. It is good for allergies, for supporting the liver and kidneys and cleanses the blood. Great if you have an itchy animal.

  • Seaweed is one of natures saviors and can improve the immunity and overall health of animals whilst reducing the environmental impact of emitted greenhouse gases by ruminants such as sheep & goats. The huge health benefits of feeding seaweed are remarkable. Nutrients such as nitrogen, potassium and magnesium, seaweed contains over 60 minor nutrients and trace elements, including copper, selenium, cobalt, zinc, boron and iodine. The zinc and iodine in particular are good for healthy hoof growth.  Many smallholders find that feeding seaweed on a regular basis, almost entirely eliminates the occurrence of foot rot in their sheep and goats. The mild alkaline nature of seaweed helps keep the rumen pH well balanced, encouraging better digestion. Seaweed doesn’t have a high copper content, so is completely safe for sheep. Feeding it to your chickens is also of huge benefit.

  • Garlic is my go to everyday staple for all the animals on our farm - they have free access to pure garlic and this has meant that our x3 a year worm count always comes back negative! We use Wendals Garlic Lick (solid garlic in a lick - with no molasses)

These are only a few of the incredible herbs on offer but will help you to keep your animals in tip top condition. So good luck.


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