Anyone who has talked homesteading with me for any length of time knows that getting goats has been a huge dream of mine. Despite what everyone says about them being mischievous, getting into everything, eating everything, etc. I was still determined to get them. And this Spring my dreams have come true 😀 We had an opportunity to get two Mini-Nubian goat kids for a much lower price than they would normally be and I was somehow able to convince Ryan that this would be a good idea. After all, think of the milk, cheese, and soap!
So a few weeks before we were set to pick up the babies, I started thinking about how to go about building an easy DIY shelter for them. I had read that all they really need is a three sided shelter, or lean-to to make sure they have a wind break, and a place to get out of the rain and snow because goats HATE to be wet. I started brainstorming the most affordable option that I could DIY. Of course I had to go with pallets. I’ll break down the cost at the end of the post. I was able to source pallets from someone near me through searching on Facebook marketplace, and luckily I was able to find some with full sides so there are no big holes allowing for drafts.
Method for the Goat Shelter Build
I just stood the pallets up on their sides, then used a drill and long self drilling screws to attach them together. This makes it so that if I need to reconfigure or make the structure bigger at any point, I can easily take it apart and add more. I will need to do this by next year since we plan on breeding our doe for milk, and she will need a separate area to kid. I added 2x4s along the bottom for extra structure and in case we want to add wheels to the back and make it mobile.
In my infinite wisdom, I bought the cheapest 2x4s not realizing they aren’t pressure treated so I’m sure those will need to be replaced sooner rather than later, but they are working for now. The next step was to run additional 2x4s up the sides of the goat shelter to support the roof. I basically decided how much I should pitch the roof and marked it with a pencil. Using a tape measure, I measured how long it was then used a circular saw to cut two to that length. I cut two more to a shorter length for the other side. These 2x4s are pressure treated, and also provide additional support for the corners of the structure.
The last step was to run a couple more 2x4s along the top to provide structure for the roof. I cut them long enough that the roof would hang over the shelter on both sides and provide protection from the rain. Honestly, our drill wasn’t powerful enough to drill through the corrugated steel roofing I got from Home Depot, so I improvised and each spot I needed to put a screw, I tapped a nail through the roofing first, then followed up with the screw, attaching it to the wood. I put about 5 or 6 screws along the 2×4 on each side, putting longer screws where it needed to go all the way through and attach to the vertical 2x4s.
I really went into this with no plan and was pleasantly surprised by how well it turned out. On the inside I mounted this hay feeder that I got from Tractor Supply, as well as this mineral feeder for their loose minerals. Mounting the hay and mineral feeders on the inside ensures that the hay stays out of the rain and won’t mold.
And of course I had to include a picture with our adorable goat babies, Jam and Olive watching me take pictures from the background and wondering why I’m not feeding them treats.
Cost Breakdown for Goat Shelter:
Pallets – 5 at $10/each = $50
2x4s – 2 @ $3.35 = $6.70 / 6 @ $4.98 = $29.88
Pack of assorted outdoor screws – $12.67
Hay feeder – $54.99
Mineral Feeder – $8.49
Corrugated steel roofing – 3 @ $19.98 = $59.94
TOTAL = $222.67
We will definitely be expanding and making it more of a permanent structure since we will have more animals than just the two goats and we’ve already picked up four more of the full sided pallets to do so. But in comparison to a local builder we were considering that was about $900 for the smallest shelter I would say we saved a lot in doing this ourselves. I also love that it’s changeable, and I can adjust it to fit our needs. So if you’re considering goats or sheep, and you are able to source them, pallets are a great tool for building easy DIY goat or sheep shelters. Let me know in the comments if you have any questions about the build or if you would try this for your animals!