9 DIY Goat Pen Ideas: Creating Functional Spaces For Your Herd

Goats are wonderful animals to raise on a homestead. They’re great for milk, meat, and fiber production and offer excellent companionship.

Building a well-designed goat pen is essential to provide your goats with a safe and comfortable space. Herein, we’ll explore ten creative and practical DIY goat pen ideas that inspire you to create the perfect environment for your goats.

Repurposed Portable Chicken Crate Shelter

Consider repurposing portable chicken crates to create a moveable goat shelter or pen. This idea allows you to easily add temporary enclosures to different pasture areas, giving your goats access to fresh grazing areas.

When repurposing portable chicken crates, you can modify them to suit the needs of your goats. These crates can be transformed into suitable shelters by adding a roof, securing gaps or openings, and ensuring proper ventilation.

The advantage of this approach is that it offers flexibility in managing your goat’s access to grazing areas. By utilizing moveable shelters, you can ensure that your goats have access to fresh vegetation while preventing overgrazing in any one particular area.

This rotational grazing system promotes healthier pastures and allows for more efficient land management.

The portable chicken crate shelters protect your goats from adverse conditions such as rain, wind, or excessive sun exposure.

While repurposing portable chicken crates as a goat pen or shelter offers certain advantages, there are also some drawbacks to consider:

Size Limitations

Portable chicken crates house chickens, which are smaller animals than goats. As a result, the size of the crates may not be sufficient to accommodate goats, especially if you have larger breeds or multiple goats comfortably.


Chicken crates are not specifically designed to withstand the activities and behaviors of goats. Goats are more active and playful. They may exert more force on the crate’s structure. This can lead to potential damage or the risk of the goats escaping if the crates are not sturdy enough.

Lack of Shelter Features

Portable chicken crates may not provide adequate protection against the elements for goats. While they offer some level of shelter, they may not provide enough insulation or weatherproofing for goats during extreme weather conditions such as heavy rain, strong winds, or intense heat.

Limited Flexibility

Although the ability to move the goat pen or shelter to different pasture areas is a benefit, using chicken crates may limit your options. The size and design of the crates may make it challenging to adapt them to various terrains or uneven ground, limiting their mobility and placement options.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Chicken crates may not have features that facilitate easy cleaning and maintenance. Goat pens should be cleaned regularly to prevent waste buildup and minimize the risk of diseases.

Repurposed chicken crates may require additional modifications to ensure easy cleaning and proper sanitation.

Pallet Goat Pen

Using pallets is among the creative DIY goat pen ideas. Utilize discarded pallets to build a cost-effective goat pen. With some creativity, you can construct sturdy pens with adequate ventilation and space for your goats.

Look for discarded pallets that are in good condition. These can often be obtained for free from local businesses or construction sites. Ensure that the pallets are sturdy and not treated with harmful chemicals.

Decide on the size and layout of your goat pen. Consider the number of goats you have and their space requirements. Sketch out a design that utilizes the pallets effectively.

Clear the area where you plan to construct the goat pen. Remove any debris or obstacles to create a level surface. This will provide a solid foundation for the pen.

Start by placing the pallets vertically in the desired configuration to form the pen’s walls. Secure them together using screws or nails. Ensure the corners are appropriately reinforced for added stability.

Create an entry point by attaching a pallet gate or building a separate gate using additional pallets. Make sure the gate is secure and easy to open and close.

Add pallets horizontally across the top to provide shade and protection from the elements to form a roof. Alternatively, you can use corrugated metal sheets or other suitable materials to create a weatherproof shelter.

Ensure adequate ventilation within the pen by leaving gaps or spacing the pallets slightly apart. Proper airflow is essential for the goats’ comfort and health.

Lay down a layer of straw, wood shavings, or other suitable bedding material to create a comfortable surface for the goats. This will also help absorb moisture and provide insulation.

Ensure that the pen is securely fastened to the ground or anchored to prevent it from being easily knocked over or moved by the goats. This will help maintain the structural integrity of the pen.

Once the pen is complete, inspect it for sharp edges or protruding nails that could harm the goats. Sand down rough areas and remove any potential hazards.

  • A pallet goat pen has the following demerits:
  • Pallets may not be as durable as other materials
  • It may not provide sufficient protection against predators
  • It can be difficult to clean thoroughly
  • Limited customization
  • Ventilation and light issues

Cattle Panel Pen

If you’re looking for a versatile and portable option for your goat pen, constructing it using old cattle panels is a great choice.

Cattle panels, which are sturdy and durable, can be repurposed to create a secure enclosure for your goats. Their design allows for easy movement, enabling you to relocate the pen whenever needed.

You can quickly assemble a sturdy structure that provides ample space for your goats to roam while ensuring their safety and containment.

This solution offers the convenience of adaptability and allows you to efficiently manage your goats’ grazing areas or integrate them into different parts of your yard as required.

Here are some cons of using a Cattle Panel Pen as a goat pen:

  • It can be more expensive
  • Cattle panels are susceptible to rust and wear over time
  • Safety hazards
  • Limited flexibility
  • Predation risks

Elevated Platform Pen

One of the most functional DIY goat pen ideas is building an elevated platform. An elevated platform pen is an innovative way to keep your goats safe from predators and damp ground.

The solid floor prevents moisture from seeping into the pen, keeping the area dry and reducing the risk of health issues caused by damp ground, such as hoof problems.

The sturdy posts provide stability and durability to the structure, ensuring the goats’ safety. This innovative approach to goat housing enhances their security and provides a comfortable space for them to rest and engage in playful activities, contributing to their overall well-being.

Below are some drawbacks of this goat pen idea.

Constructing an elevated platform pen may require additional materials and labor compared to traditional ground-level pens.

The elevated platform design may limit the goats’ grazing area, as they won’t have direct access to the ground for browsing on grass and vegetation.

The design and construction of the elevated platform should ensure proper drainage to prevent any accumulation of water or waste, which could create unsanitary conditions and potential health hazards for the goats.

Straw Bale Shelter

Straw bales make excellent building materials as they provide insulation and create a cozy environment for your goats.

You can stack the bales to form walls, leaving openings for proper ventilation. This natural and affordable solution offers a comfortable space for your goats to rest and helps regulate the temperature inside the pen.

Here are some considerations when using straw bale shelters as goat pens.


Straw bales may not be as durable as other building materials, especially when exposed to moisture or heavy use. Goats are curious animals, and they may scratch, nibble, or push against the walls, potentially causing damage to the straw bales over time.

Pest Attraction

Straw bales can attract pests such as mice, rats, and insects. These critters may find the straw a comfortable nesting place, which can lead to issues with infestations or damage to the shelter’s structure. Proper pest control measures should be in place to prevent such problems.

Fire Hazard

Straw bales are highly flammable and can quickly ignite in the event of a fire. Fire safety precautions should be implemented when using straw bales as part of the shelter.


Straw bales require regular maintenance to ensure they remain structurally sound. They may need to be replaced or reinforced periodically, which can be time-consuming and potentially increase the overall maintenance requirements of the goat pen.

Simple A-Frame Shelter

The A-frame design is a classic choice for goat pens. The triangular shape of the A-frame provides stability and helps with water runoff during rainy weather.

Its straightforward design makes it relatively easy to construct, especially if you have basic carpentry skills. Additionally, the A-frame structure provides ample headroom for your goats while ensuring protection from the elements.

For durability, start by constructing the frame using sturdy lumber, such as pressure-treated wood. Then, cover the frame with weather-resistant materials like metal roofing or plywood that have been properly sealed. Ensure the shelter is well-ventilated and includes openings or windows for air circulation.

Here are the potential drawbacks of A-frame goat shelters:

  • Limited space
  • Lack of customization
  • Insulation challenges
  • Limited ventilation

Geodesic Dome Shelter

For those looking for unique and aesthetically pleasing DIY goat pen ideas, consider building a geodesic dome shelter for your goats. This design offers excellent stability, ample space, and allows for natural light and ventilation.

The dome shape distributes weight evenly, reducing the risk of collapse and providing a secure environment for your goats.

The spherical shape allows for maximum use of interior space, giving your goats plenty of room to move around and rest comfortably.

Geodesic domes provide natural light and ventilation due to their multiple triangular panels. This natural lighting can create a pleasant environment for the goats, while the ventilation helps maintain good airflow and prevents the buildup of odors or excessive moisture.

Constructing a geodesic dome can be more complex and time-consuming than simpler shelter designs. It may require specialized knowledge, tools, and materials, making the construction process more challenging.

Another potential drawback of a geodesic dome shelter is its cost. Building a geodesic dome can be more expensive than other shelter options due to the unique design and materials required.

Finding suitable materials for the triangular panels of the dome can be a bit more challenging, which may further increase the overall cost.

The curved shape of the geodesic dome can make it slightly less versatile in terms of interior layout and usage compared to rectangular or square shelters. This might limit your options for adding additional features or partitions within the shelter.

Portable Electric Fence Enclosure

A portable electric fence enclosure offers flexibility and ease of use when containing your goats. These enclosures are lightweight and easily movable, making them ideal for rotational grazing or for relocating your goats to different areas.

The electric fence provides a reliable barrier to keep your goats within the designated area and prevent them from wandering off or getting into places they shouldn’t.

The portability of this type of enclosure allows you to adjust the grazing area according to your goats’ needs or the availability of fresh forage.

You can easily move the fence to give your goats access to new grazing areas while giving previously grazed areas time to recover. This rotational grazing system can help improve the overall health of your pasture and optimize the use of available forage.

While a portable electric fence enclosure for a goat pen has its advantages, there are also a few cons to consider:

Power Dependency

Portable electric fences require a power source, usually in the form of batteries or a connection to an electrical outlet. This reliance on electricity means that if the power source fails or is unavailable, the fence may not function effectively, compromising the containment and safety of the goats.

Training and Maintenance

Electric fences require proper training for the goats to understand the boundaries and respect the electric shock. Training them to associate the fence with the shock can take time and effort.

Regular maintenance is essential to ensure the fence remains in good working condition. This includes checking the battery charge, inspecting for damage, and clearing vegetation that could interfere with the fence’s effectiveness.

Limited Physical Barrier

While electric fences can deter most goats from attempting to cross them, there may still be instances where determined or aggressive goats manage to breach the fence.

If a goat does break through, the lack of a physical barrier means it can wander off or enter areas it shouldn’t, potentially putting them in danger or causing damage.

Susceptibility to Environmental Factors

Extreme weather conditions such as heavy rain, snow, or strong winds can affect the performance of electric fences.

Heavy vegetation growth or overhanging branches can also interfere with the fence’s effectiveness by grounding the electric charge or short-circuiting the system.

Underground Burrow Pen

Effective DIY goat pen ideas should be capable of protecting goats from the elements. Consider building an underground burrow pen for your goats in areas with extreme climates.

This pen involves excavating a partially underground structure where the goats can seek refuge. The underground construction helps regulate temperature, offering a cooler and more comfortable environment for the animals.

Maintaining air circulation and preventing moisture or stale air buildup is vital when building an underground pen. Adequate ventilation can be achieved by installing vents or windows that allow fresh air to enter while expelling stale air.

Proper insulation provides thermal protection and prevents excessive heat or cold from penetrating the structure.

Underground burrow pens have the following drawbacks:

Drainage and Moisture Management

Building an underground burrow pen requires careful consideration of drainage and moisture management. Without proper design and measures, there is a risk of water seeping into the pen, leading to dampness and potentially causing health issues for the goats.

Limited Natural Light

Underground burrow pens lack natural light, which can be essential for the well-being of goats. Goats thrive with exposure to sunlight. Insufficient natural light can impact their health and well-being, potentially affecting their behavior, Vitamin D synthesis, and overall vitality. Provide artificial lighting solutions to compensate for the lack of natural light.

Potential for Flooding

In areas prone to heavy rain or flooding, an underground burrow pen may not be suitable due to the risk of flooding. Flooding can pose a serious threat to the safety of the goats and damage the pen’s structure.

Get Creative

Building a goat pen is essential in providing your goats with a safe and comfortable space. Whether you choose to repurpose materials or construct a more elaborate structure, these nine DIY goat pen ideas offer a range of options to suit your needs.

Consider your goats’ specific requirements, such as space, ventilation, and protection from predators, while implementing these creative ideas.