Monday, January 25, 2010

Goatucation: All About my Stomachs - Yes, StomachS, Part I

We goats, like all ruminants, have FOUR stomachs! Isn't that pretty amazing? I am sure you have seen me use the word ruminant a lot on this blog but here is the definition:

Any of various hoofed, even-toed, usually horned mammals of the suborder Ruminantia, such as cattle, sheep, goats, deer, and giraffes, characteristically having a stomach divided into four compartments and chewing a cud consisting of regurgitated, partially digested food.
1. Characterized by the chewing of cud.
2. Of or belonging to the Ruminantia.
3. Meditative; contemplative
(from The American Heritage Dictionary)

I know that whole partially digested food thing sound disgusting to you humans but it's how we work. And I can be very contemplative....don't I look like a deep thinker here?

But back to how my digestive system works. We goats eat a very rough diet (except for my tasty apple treat at night. They are not rough) that includes hay, straw, weeds and grasses. In order for us to get the most nutrition out of these low nutrition foods we have those four stomachs but they are really chambers named  1) the rumen, 2) the honey-combed reticulum, 3) the omasum, and 4) the abomasum or true stomach. Don't worry, there won't be a test!

Our rumen is like a big fermentation vat. Our feed goes in there and then good bacteria breaks it down and causes fermentation. This helps to keep us warm. When we eat our hay or weeds it gets all full of our saliva and this mess is swallowed. This is our cud. Those same bacteria help to break it down and then we goats, well, bring it back up into our mouths to chew it some more. I know you humans don't like the thought of that, but cud is mighty tasty to us goats. We like to burp when we bring up our cud; the publicist is not fond of our goat gas. Heh heh.

After the cud is chewed enough it goes to our second stomach where any things we shouldn't have eaten are sifted out. This second stomach or reticulum is sometimes called our "hardware stomach."

This is a lot of information so I will cover our other two stomachs in next week's Goatucation. You can ruminate on this information for now.

Tomorrow:  Where DID Luke go?


  1. Mmmm did I really want to know all that before breakfast Pricilla?

  2. kinda sorry I'm reading this while eating... hey, you guys meditate?!

  3. This morning my one stomach feels like a big fermentation vat. Thanks for the biology lesson. You truly are that rare combo of wise and knowledgeable.

  4. That was very interesting. I knew they had more then one stomache. But not four. I didn't know about Giraffes either.

  5. Very interesting...I'm so happy that I had only had my coffee this morning...of course now that's all I will have...LOL!! (great diet aide)

    I do love to learn things that I had no clue thank you maaaaa friend!!!


  6. Very informative Pricilla. I didn't know about giraffes either.

  7. my cereal went into my one stomach as i read this but i thought i might tell you it came right back up like a good goat. not really but i thought it was funny! pretty cool goat machines you guys are!

  8. Can I eat more with another stomach? hmmm excuse me while I ponder this... I REALLY like food, and I really like to lay in the grass, maybe I should become a goat!

  9. What a smart goat you are! Thanks for sharing....

  10. I'm too much of a lady to perform a rumen burp at my lady's face but the wethers do! They wait until she leans over to give them a kiss and then they BURP! Uncouth boys! My lady tells them "thanks a lot". hee hee

  11. How do all those stomachs fit in your belly? Can they all be doing their particular purpose at the same time? You goats are very interesting!

  12. I'm so glad I read this after dinner. It will prevent me from snacking tonight. I think I might just read this post every night.

  13. I have noticed that cows don't get the same kind of winter coat as horses. I am guessing it's because of that heat making process which makes a heavy coat unnecessary. Hmmmm.

  14. Aunt Lynne - I am sorry if my discussion of my stomachs upset your stomach. But Goatucation isn't always pretty.

    Marlene - really we ruminate. heh heh

    Daisy - I am glad you think so. You should try it some time.

    Margo - I am a goat that aims to please. I am my goat gas at the publicist though.

    Grampy - to be honest I did not know that giraffes were my cousins either so I learned something in teaching this goatucation too.

    Regina - you didn't know this was a diet blog did you?

    jaz - we are very efficient eating machines.

    AB - you are welcome to join our herd!

    Ann - I am a goatucated goat. heh heh

    Isobelle - Luke, my love, gives the publicist a lot of gas. She does not appreciate it. Not at all.

    BeadedTail - you will learn about the rest next week. You will have to be patient.

    Jen - I am glad I can help you. That is what a good goat does.

    Julia - we goats grow winter fur though...


Maaaaaa away....


Related Posts Widget for Blogs by LinkWithin