a preponderance of punctuation marks (reedrover) wrote,
a preponderance of punctuation marks
reedrover

About Pygmy and Dwarf goats

Pygmy goats and Dwarf goats are very different. Although they have similar origins, they are separate and distinct breeds. Pygmies are bred to be "cobby" and heavy boned. (The best pygmies look like beer kegs with legs.) Dwarves are bred to have the length of body and structure, in proportion, of a dairy goat. Both are prolific breeders.

For cuteness and lovability vs. attitude, I'd go with Nigerians. If all you want is pets, get wethered males. They don't have stink or breeding problems.

Places in Washington State that have either type of goats for sale:
http://www.schoonoverfarm.com/index
http://www.amethystmoon.netfirms.com/
http://ctcfarm.com/goats.html
http://www.glimmercroft.com
http://www.geocities.com/kaprinekids/ -- having a herd sell-off



The Pygmy Goat was originally called the Cameroon Dwarf Goat. The goat is mostly restricted to the West African countries. Similar forms of Pygmy goats also occur in all of northern Africa, in the south western African countries, and also in east Africa. However, what we call the Cameroon Dwarf goat is the one that we are concerned with and have in the United States. It is the breed that actually came from the former French Cameroon area.

The Cameroon goats were exported from Africa to zoos in Sweden and Germany where they were on display as exotic animals. From there they made their way to England, Canada, and the United States. In 1959, the Rhue family in California and the Catskill Game Farm in New York received the first documented shipments of Pygmy goats from Sweden. Offspring of these animals, as well as earlier imports, were sold to zoos, medical research, and to some private individuals.

Breed Characteristics:

A full coat of straight, medium-long hair which varies in density with seasons and climates. On females, beards may be non-existent, sparse, or trimmed. On adult males, abundant hair growth is desirable; the beard should be full, long and flowing, the copious mane draping cape-like across the shoulders.

All body colors are acceptable, the predominate coloration is a grizzled (agouti) pattern produced by the intermingling of light and dark hairs, of any color.

Breed-specific markings are required: muzzle, forehead, eyes, and ears are accented in tones lighter than the dark portion of the body in goats of all colors, except goats that are solid black. Front and rear hoofs and cannons are darker than main body coat, as are the crown, dorsal stripe, and martingale; except in goats that are solid black. On all caramel goats, light vertical stripes on front sides of darker socks are required.




The Nigerian Dwarf is a miniature goat of West African Origin. Its conformation is similar to that of the larger dairy goat breeds. The parts of the body are in balanced proportion. The nose is straight. The ears are upright. The coat is soft with short to medium hair. Any color or combination of colors is acceptable, though silver agouti (roan) is considered a moderate fault.
Height of the Nigerian Dwarf Goat
--------Ideal Maximum
Does 17" to 19" 22.6"
Bucks 19" to 20" 23.6"
Ideal weight is suggested to be about 75 pounds based on HES evaluation information.

Animals are disqualified from the show ring for being over-sized for the breed standard, curly coat,roman nose, and pendulous ears or evidence of myatonia. (This is associated with fainting goats.)

Dwarf goats are gentle and loveable. Even breeding bucks are handled easily. They make wonderful pets and great animal projects for young children in 4-H.

Breeders of other types of goats find that their Dwarves blend in with the rest of their herd well and do not need special quarters, just adequate fencing to contain them because of their small size.

Dwarf goats breed year round. New born kids average about 2 lbs. at birth but grow quickly. They reach sexual maturity at a young age so be sure and separate the bucks and does. Those little guys have been know to breed and be fertile as young as 7 weeks of age. Does can be bred at 7 to 8 months of age if they have reached good size. Some breeders prefer to wait until they are at lest 1 year or older.

Dwarf does can have several kids at a time, 3 and 4 being common and sometime even 5. Dwarfs are generally good mothers and able to take care of their babies should you leave them to do the raising of the kids.

They can also provide a surprising amount of milk for their size. They can give three to four pounds per day of 6 to 10% butterfat.

http://www.goatweb.com/discover/miniature/nigerian/index.shtml
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