How To Build A Baby Goat Warming Barrel

A baby goat warming barrel is so easy to make. With basic tools and a little time, you can have your baby goats safe within an hour. Jump To The Build

baby goat barrel

Winter time can be a really difficult time for farmers across America. Over here in Louisiana we don’t have terrible winters thankfully! It only gets lower than 20 degrees here for about 2-3 months out of the year. Whenever it does get below freezing here, we always take precautions to keep our goats nice and comfortable since they have to live in the thick of the cold. We do have a four sided shelter, which helps keep them out of the wind. Despite that it can still be uncomfortable, especially for babies.

Our first kidding we ever had landed on the coldest night of the year, it was 20 degrees with high winds. Of course our lovely doe gave birth at 12 am and we were incredibly thankful to have the diy baby barrel with the heat lamp. It saved the babies and gave me a piece of mind while sleeping at night, that the babies were safe and warm.

Why Do I Need A Baby Goat Warming Barrel?

Anyone who has goats knows that they can be very fragile as little babies, especially the first few days of life. For the first 3 days of a baby goat’s life they can’t regulate their body temperature properly. This causes a need for assistance in the heat and in the cold. I stumbled across this idea and it has saved our babies on those extremely cold nights. We made our own modifications that work better for us, but you can modify it for your needs how you see fit. I had to share this in hopes of helping other goats farmers out and I think your babies will love it too!

Baby Goat Warming Barrel For All Seasons.

This baby barrel is crucial for the safety of your goat babies. It is important in all seasons. With a heat lamp added, it has been a cozy hiding place in the winter. It can be stuffed with hay or wood chips for comfort and insulation. Note: If using bedding with a lamp, BE SAFE!

During the summer time we use this barrel without the heat lamp. It has a dual purpose for us and for the baby goats. We find that baby goats love to have a safe place to hide, especially if the bigger goats are rough. We also freeze gallon water jugs and put them in the barrel during summer. This is a great way for the baby goats to cool off since they struggle to regulate their body temperature in the beginning. Our babies have always used the barrels in every season to stay safe!

Top 3 Reasons Our Babies Love Their Barrels.

baby goats warm in a barrel

1. Warmth- these barrels stop draft and hold in the heat on those cold nights

2. Comfort- the baby goats love the small space, they love having their own safe place the big goats can’t get to.

3. Protection- the big goats can be rough sometimes and the babies need a place to go until they are big enough to get on our goat platforms to feel safe.

Basic Tools And Supplies You Will Need For Your Baby Goat Barrel

  • Power drill
  • Marker
  • Clamp
  • Heat lamp
  • Jig saw
  • Safety glasses
  • Self tapping metal screws

How To Build A Baby Goat Warming Barrel

1. Mark the center of the barrel 1″ from the top on both sides. The center can be seen on plastic barrels by looking for the seams on both sides.

2. Drill the hole with a 1″ bit. This can be drilled bigger or smaller depending on the clamp you use.

3. Mark the opening 9″x 11″

4. Cut the opening

5. Put clamp through the holes(keep metal latch on barrel for extra strength)

6. Screw self tapping screws so the lamp will stay centered.

7. Secure the heat lamp

8. Strap barrel to the barn

Safety First.

When using heat lamps there is always a risk. I secure the heat lamp from the hook and the electrical cord. If the hook gives out, the electrical cord will hold it. I like to intertwine the cord between as much as it can to resist possible tugs from the baby’s mom. We haven’t had any issues with the barrel and the heat lamp. Always use your best discernment when it comes to using heat lamps, if you don’t feel comfortable using them, don’t! You can always use the barrel without the heat lamp and do thick straw for the babies to cuddle together and stay warm together.

For questions or ideas don’t hesitate to comment below. I hope you and your babies enjoy the new cozy addition to your barn!

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  1. Thank you so much for this great idea! My daughter lives in southwest Iowa and she is raising pygmy goats. There are times when the goats give birth when it is very cold. She currently uses heat lamps over the nursery beds, but your idea helps to better retain the heat for the health and well-being of the baby goats. I have six blue 55-gallon drums that I will clean out and make into six goat nurseries for her.

    1. Hi Judy,

      That’s awesome, if you are uncomfortable with the heat lamp, you can leave the heat lamp out and leave the lid on with thick bedding for the babies. We have done that as well depending on how cold it is! I hope it helps your daughter out and those sweet babies 🙂

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