Confined Environment

Heat stress is of concern in goats, particularly under intensive management situations. Reduction in feed intake and productivity are commonly observed in goats subjected to heat stress.[1] Feedlotting is not a common practice in the meat goat industry due to difficulties with disease management and a lack of economic viability. However, Flint and Murray[2] emphasized the importance of intensive management programs as one of the strategies to improving goat meat production. Under intensive conditions, environmental enrichment increases growth rate in goats, but does not affect feed intake or agonistic behavior.[2] Agonistic behavior indicates combative or submissive responses to each other in animals. Stress responses in goats are not influenced by stocking density when they are held in pens without feed,[3] although agonistic encounters are frequent in high-density groups.[2]

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