Designing your pens requires thinking ahead. Even if you are only getting two pet goats, you might want more than one pen. It can be hard to clean a pen with the goats in it. Being able to put them in another pen can make cleaning faster and easier. Although it can be cute to have them stand on the shovel or in the wheelbarrow.
So I am not going to cover dimensions of pens, it requires math which I avoid whenever possible. Instead, I am going to talk about how you might want to design your pens to have more than one use.
I have four pens with one more being planned out. The first one is called the milking pen. It has a small sliding door to let goats out one at a time and a swing open door for letting them all in and out. They go in this pen at night.
The second pen is the dividable pen. This pen is also my kidding stalls. It can be divided into three small pens, but the dividers can be removed to make different size pens. I can use the pen as an extra pen or for bringing in the bucks for their feet trim or for weaning kids or raising abandoned/bottle raised kids. So one set of pens has many uses. Because this pen can be divided into three pens, it has to have three doors.
The third pen is called the inside/outside pen. It is the same size as the milking pen, but this pen opens into the walkway to the outside pasture. This is where planning the doorway comes into play. I wanted this pen to be able to still be used even if I needed to get out to the pasture. So instead of including the entrance to the pasture directly in the pen, we created a walkway and the door to the pen swings into the pen, latching on the wall, so it remains open. Then if I need to, I can lock the goats into the pen or leave the pen door latched open so they can go in and out.
Another plus with this is that when reorganizing the goats, it is easier to do because the walkway can be closed off to make a small pen and even if a goat got out it could not go out of reach.
The third pen is what I refer to as the TLC pen. It is in what used to be the milk house, so it is in a different room than the other goat pens. This makes it a good place to put sick goats so that the other goats can not get sick. The milk house is also heated in the winter making it good for goats that need to be kept warm. It keeps goats that need extra attention in a place easy for me to give them individual attention. It also works well for quarantining new goats. Plus having a new goat in a small pen helps to get it accustomed to me.
The fourth pen is called the big pen. It is twice the size of the milking pen and is used for mothers and kids than weaned kids or when the weather keeps them inside. It has a table, balance been, and platform. Because this pen is in the middle of the barn and needed a large door, it has a sliding door.
This pen is going to be linked to the pen still being planned. The new pen will be attached with a small door, like a dog door, so that kids can go from the big pen to the kid pen. That way I can feed the kids separately.
Each pen has more than one use. So if you think you don’t have much space, consider how you can use the space you have for many things.