A Blog For The Farm Happenings And Whatever Else Strikes My Fancy.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

DIY "Pill Pockets" for Your Goats

So many farmers dread it when the time comes to give pills to their animals. It can be a nightmare. holding the goat still, prying their mouth open, shoving things down their throat. It's really not any fun. So wouldn't it be great if you could just head out to the barn, hand the pill to the goat, and watch them as they excitedly gulp it down and ask for more? 

I came up with this super easy recipe after being totally fed up with giving pills to a whole herd of goats. I knew there should be an easier way... so I created one. Mix these up for gang. You won't be sorry. 

All you need for this is: 
  • Peanut Butter
  • Molasses
  • and Flour

I know I didn't this time, but I would suggest a natural peanut butter. Some Peanut butters have chemicals in them that goats should not be eating. 

Either Baking or Blackstrap molasses is fine, but Blackstrap is better for the goats. 

As for the flour, I wouldn't really recommend bleached, white flour. But really any flour will do. It doesn't have to be wheat flour either. Almond flour, Coconut flour, Buckwheat flour, Rice flour. Even cornmeal should work fine. 

You need equal parts of each ingredient. I used, probably, 2-3 tablespoons of each. I honestly don't even measure. Mix them all up in a bowl until it's the constancy of play-dough.  Add flour if it's too goopy. 

I usually leave the dough in the bowl and head to the barn before I form it into the pockets. The dough "melts" a little if you let it sit; it's not too great at keeping it's shape. It might help if you were to add more flour, but I've never minded that it does this. 

When you're ready, roll the dough into tablespoon sized marbles. Select your pill and push it into the marble. Then pinch the dough so that the pill is entirely enclosed. 

You can then sit back as you watch your goat happily munch down her pills. Just like that. 

Just make sure to give them to the right goat and not to let them "share" with each other. We don't want Sally to get Bertha's meds.

Not all goats will think these are the bee's knees. I've had a few that absolutely refuse to eat them. In this case, you will still have to wrestle pills down their throat. I have a pill gun that is reserved for these "special" goats. If you're looking to buy a pill gun, don't buy one marketed for goats. I find the goat specific ones are never long enough and never rugged enough. I use a calf pill gun (Make sure it's for a calf not a cow or it will be too big) and that works beautifully.  It's messier and more effort than a neat little pill pocket, but sometimes it's still very necessary. 

Good luck with your herd! Let me know if you try this and how it worked for you. I love feedback! 

NOTE: Consult your veterinarian before feeding any pills (meds, boluses, supplements, etc) to your goats. Ask them about this form of feeding, it may not be right for your individual situation.  


  1. Hi Johanna,
    Sounds like great way to get your goats to take pills without fighting with them. Actually the mixtures sounds tasty enough to eat myself without the pill of course. When I was a child we had a pill pusher for our beef to get them to swallow pills when necessary. Thanks for sharing information and great pictures. Have a healthy, happy & blessed Easter.

    1. Marla,
      I have actually tried the dough, and it really is rather tasty :)
      Thanks for stopping by, I wish you a wonderful Easter as well!

  2. Oh, this sounds so easy! Thank you so much for sharing on the Homestead Blog Hop. I hope we see you there again today!

  3. Do they still chew it or swallow it whole?

  4. I am going to try this :-)
    And I am your newest follower
    many blessings, Linnie