Mowing the Lawn with Goats and Other Animals

Ellen Telander
Winsted Organics Farm

Cutting the grass not only takes time and effort but it can also significantly impact the environment, depending on the type of lawn mower you currently use. An easier option, for those that can, would be to invest in a sturdy fence and let animals “mow” the grass for you!

Goats are great for this job. There are actually several small businesses in California that offer “goat mowing services” to manage fire hazard areas to control weeds and grasses. Companies like Google periodically bring in 200 goats to roam around for a week, eat the grass and fertilize it at the same time. Female dairy goats are the only goats to use for this mowing purpose in a fenced area. Trust me on this. You do not want to get a pygmy goat or a male goat for that matter. I don’t know why, but male goats are always, always getting into mischief. Female dairy goats are “lady-like” and don’t try to jump over the fence. They would after all, ruin their own udder and hurt themselves. Pygmies are escape artists as they are small enough to get out of most fence holes and are great jumpers.

If you live in the city, you can employ bunnies or “weeder geese” (check your local city authorities on household geese regulations before you buy them). Bunnies and weeder geese can manage a small area at a time. You can use rotating methods to fence them in the desired area and move them around as needed. That way they will eat the grass just in that area in a controlled manner.

Our neighbor employs llamas for mowing their front lawn. Each llama is tied up to a certain area and rotated daily to feed. Their grass is not mowed any other way all summer long.

We now save at least three hours per week as a result of fencing in our large lawn area, thus increasing the grazing areas for our dairy goats. They love the room and we love our time.

Mowing with Goats

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