Most owners of domestic goats have taken to giving their furry charges more than just the usual diet of hay and some occasional pellets.
In the wild, goats eat a surprisingly varied, but entirely herbivorous diet, and it’s possible to mimic some of that variety by giving them some choice produce, including fruits and vegetables.
Goats can eat a wide variety of fruits, including some exotic ones, but not all are safe for them. How about kiwi? Are kiwis safe for goats?
Yes, kiwis are completely safe for goats to eat, and they can get good nutrition from them thanks to abundant vitamins and minerals. However, goats don’t need much fruit in their diet and should only get kiwis on a limited basis.
Kiwis are one of those surprising fruits that seem to me like something a goat just couldn’t possibly get in the wild.
I don’t know if that’s true or not, and maybe it’s just because I always thought they were pretty exotic.
But whatever the case, you’ll be happy to know that your goats will love kiwis and can eat them safely, and even happier to learn they’ll get some good nutrition in the bargain. But, there’s more you’ll need to know before you add them to the diet of your herd.
I’ll tell you what you need to know below.
What Benefits Does Kiwi Have for Goats?
Kiwi is a surprisingly nutritious fruit, despite being most prized for its exotic flavor. Goats can get a good amount of energy and also needed vitamins and minerals from it.
The nutrients present in kiwis can improve basically every facet of a goat’s health in some way.
They improve nervous system function, immune system functionality, skin and fur health, and also organ function generally, especially the heart, kidneys and lungs.
The vitamins in kiwis play a vital role in many metabolic processes, and help a goat convert other nutrients into energy.
Eating kiwis occasionally will also supply goats with the nutrients they need to maintain good circulatory health, prevent oxidative damage to cells and even enhance DNA synthesis which is especially critical for pregnant does so they don’t miscarry.
The only thing your goats know is that they taste delicious, but only you will know how much good they are doing for them.
Nutritional Profile of Kiwi
Kiwis, as mentioned, are surprisingly nutritious and packed with vitamins and minerals that goats need. What kinds of vitamins and minerals? I’m glad you asked…
Let’s look at the vitamins where we will find abundant B complex vitamins, particularly lots of thiamine, riboflavin and niacin with a little bit of pantothenic acid and pyridoxine.
Kiwis are also absolutely loaded with vitamin C and have great amounts of vitamin E and vitamin K.
Kiwis are also, fairly surprisingly for tropical fruit, loaded with minerals, and goats need all of them, particularly calcium and copper but also manganese, magnesium, phosphorus potassium and iron, and finally just a little bit of zinc.
So in the end, kiwis are sweet and delicious, but also something of a secret superfood, including for your goats.
Is Kiwi Safe for Goats Raw?
Yes, your goats can eat kiwis raw with absolutely no problem. This is also the best possible option for your goats because raw kiwis have the most nutrients.
Is Kiwi Skin Safe for Goats?
Yes, kiwi skin is safe for goats. I don’t know about you, but that weird fuzzy skin of kiwis was always slightly unsettling to me. I can’t imagine biting into it!
But as unsettling as it might be, goats don’t seem the least bit bothered by it and will happily eat it. If they don’t, don’t worry about it, just peel it.
Are Kiwi Seeds Safe for Goats?
Yes. Those teeny tiny black seeds near the core of a kiwi are completely safe for goats to eat, nothing toxic in them.
They’re so small and delicately crunchy goats probably won’t even know they are there, and more importantly for you that means you don’t have to waste time seeding them.
Can Goats Eat Golden Kiwi?
Yes, they sure can, Golden kiwis are safe, tasty and nutritious for goats just like common green kiwis are.
However, they have more sugar compared to the green kind, so you’ll want to be even more sparing with the amount you feed your goats.
Can Goats Eat Dried Kiwi?
Yes, but cautiously. Dried kiwi is often “candied” with lots of added sugar, which is something you definitely don’t want your goats to have.
A piece now and then likely won’t harm them, but don’t make a habit of it and stick with the fresh fruit.
Can You Cook Kiwi to Give it to Goats?
Yes, you can cook kiwi for your goats if you really want to, but this is not a good idea. Not only it isn’t necessary, but cooking a kiwi will reduce the amount of nutrients that it has for your goats. Just don’t do it.
How Often Can Goats Have Kiwi?
I know I’ve talked up kiwi as something of a superfood, and they are quite healthy, but you don’t want to give them to your goats all the time. They shouldn’t even be a regular part of their diet.
Instead, treat them more like a treat or occasional supplement and give them a small serving of kiwi once a week.
This is more than enough for your goats to enjoy the health benefits of kiwi without risking serious indigestion, and it will also keep them looking forward to getting that weekly sweet treat.
Can Kiwi Cause Problems for Goats?
Yes, potentially, if you feed them to goats too often.
This problem isn’t specific to kiwis, but actually to any sweet or carbohydrate-rich food: anything like that, that includes kiwis, can potentially disrupt the delicate balance of a goat’s rumen.
When this happens, bad bacteria can either multiply out of control or the pH balance of the rumen can drop too far into the acidic range (a condition called rumen acidosis).
This is really bad news and potentially fatal for an affected goat. It usually results in depression, loss of appetite, an inability to digest food, diarrhea, vomiting and sometimes fatal inflammation of the stomach or the intestines.
And I promise, it is a bad way for a goat to die!
But luckily, you can prevent this grim fate by not overloading your goats with sugary or carbohydrate-dense foods. So go easy on the kiwis!
Goats Should Only Be Served Plain Kiwi
Your goats will love plain kiwis just the way they are: there’s no need to give them any kind of kiwi dessert or kiwis that have been sweetened with any sort of sauce, extra sugar or toppings.
Once again, that’s a great way to make them disastrously sick!
How Should You Serve Kiwi to your Herd?
Kiwis are super simple to serve to your goats. If you have small kiwis or large goats, you can just give them whole fruit, with the skin on if you want. They should be able to eat it easily.
But if your fruit happens to be a bit too big for them to eat easily, you can cut the kiwi into quarters or halves and try again. The pickiest eaters in your herd might want the skin removed, so keep that in mind.
Is Kiwi Safe for Baby Goats?
Yes, kiwi fruit is generally safe for baby goats so long as they’re grown up enough to be eating solid foods around the clock. Said another way, if they’re still nursing, do not give them any kiwi.
In any case, do be cautious because adolescent goats can easily get indigestion or suffer from malnutrition if they aren’t eating well, and kiwis are definitely a treat at this stage of life.
A few nibbles every once in a while is plenty for them until they grow up…
Don’t Leave Kiwi Scraps Lying Around After Your Goats are Finished
If you serve your goats kiwi or any other sweet fruit, make sure you pick up the leftover scraps if there are any. If you don’t, and a goat comes around and eats a piece that has started to rot that could make them seriously sick.
On another note, sweet, aromatic fruits quickly attract all kinds of pests, including insects, and you definitely don’t want that.
Tim is a farm boy with vast experience on homesteads, and with survival and prepping. He lives a self-reliant lifestyle along with his aging mother in a quiet and very conservative little town in Ohio. He teaches folks about security, prepping and self-sufficiency not just through his witty writing, but also in person.
Find out more about Tim and the rest of the crew here.