Everyone knows that tomatoes are an extremely nutritious fruit for human health and we process them every day into many different dishes. So, what about the goats? Can goats eat tomatoes?
Keep reading until the end to find out the answer.
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Can goats eat tomatoes?
Yes. Ripe tomatoes are very healthy for goats when they eat in moderate amounts.
The high content of water in the tomatoes is good for the digestive system of your goats, especially when they have constipation. The tomatoes are also loaded with vitamins and minerals which do wonders for their immune system.
That’s being said, do not overfeed your goat with tomatoes because it can cause stomach upset and other gastrointestinal issues. In the worst-case scenario, your goat can suffer from diarrhea which is quite dangerous.
Having too many tomatoes also make your goats lose their appetite and their stomach does not have much room left for other plants. As a result, your goats will soon suffer from malnutrition due to a poor diet.
So, it is recommended that ripe tomatoes should not be considered as the main diet but a tasty treat every now and then.
Can goats eat tomato vines?
Tomato vines are also not suitable for goats. It is because they contain alkaloids, which are toxic to animals, including goats. Also, you probably don’t want your tomato garden to be ruined by goats.
So the question is whether goats are aware of which plants are hazardous to them and avoid eating them. The answer is no because goats are browsers that will eat anything they come across.
So, in order to protect the tomato garden as well as the curious goats, you should keep an eye on them.
Can goats eat tomato leaves?
Just like tomato vines, the leaves are also not edible for goats because they also contain a high level of alkaloids. Eating just a small amount of tomato can make your goats sick with some early symptoms such as overheating, vision problems, and confusion.
It is believed that the leaves have a pungent smell that makes goats uncomfortable. So they will usually avoid eating tomato leaves when looking for food.
However, this is not necessarily true for baby goats with very little life experience, hence you should pay more attention to them.
Can goats eat green tomatoes?
Unlike the ripes tomatoes, green ones are inedible. Unripe tomatoes có high tomatine concentration, which is also a poison. Its harmful effects are the same as solanine in potatoes.
It’s also important to note that green tomatoes are the most toxic part of a tomato plant, even more than the leaves. Whereas, the leaves have a higher amount of toxicity than stems and vines. So, absolutely do not feed your goats unripe tomatoes.
Check more: Top 5 Electric Fence for Goats
What if your goats get tomato poison?
First of all, you should remember some specific symptoms as below:
- An increase in body temperature
- Vision issues
- Vomiting, sometimes
- Death, rarely
If you see your goats with these above symptoms, they may have had tomato poisoning. It is best to call your veterinarian right away. You can also try the following alternatives:
- Force the goat’s mouth open and take out the remaining plant
- Give it clean water and if it gets dirty with vomiting, change the water
- Let it rest in a quiet, dry place
- Give it baking soda, about 1 teaspoon every hour to dilute the toxin
Create a risk-free environment
There is an old saying that prevention is better than cure. So, to prevent any troubles with your perfect tomatoes patch as well as your goats, you should create a risk-free environment for them. Here are some ideas for you:
- Fence off your tomatoes garden carefully
- Do not plant tomatoes near the fence
- Make sure the goats have no access to your neighbor’s tomato gardens
- Keep goats contained in certain areas
- Make sure they are fed well with other safe plants
- Don’t let them taste the tomatoes so they won’t realize the deliciousness of the tomatoes.
In conclusion, the answer to the question “can goats eat tomatoes” is yes if it is the ripen tomatoes fruit with a moderate amount. Other parts of the plant including vines, leaves, and green tomatoes, are quite poisonous and can pose serious health risks to your goats.