One of the most interactive and playful animals at the farm are the goats. They like to jump, climb, make cute noises, and eat from your hand. They come in many different sizes and colors and are very easy to fall in love with. They can also make great pets. However, before getting one, you must do lots of research. You should begin by checking the regulations in your town to make sure they’re allowed. And, as with any pet, you must always be ready for the care commitment required for that animal. Surprisingly, there are over 210 different breeds of goats in the world. Of those, two of the most popular breeds that are kept as pets are the Pygmy and Nigerian Dwarf goats. Both breeds are small in size, similar to a medium sized dog. The breed is usually very friendly, which helps make them a good and loving pet. Before selecting the breed you’ll want, you must first decide what you want your goat for. If you plan on having your goat produce milk, it’s important to know – just like cows, goats must be pregnant to do so. Which means, you’ll need a male and female and will have to deal with the babies or kids, as they’re known. This obviously requires an additional commitment and should be considered very carefully before moving forward. Pygmy and Nigerian Dwarf goats are two really good breeds to have as pets, and they are also good milk producers. Their small size makes them easier to handle compared to other breeds. Goats are a herd animal, so it’s good to keep more than one. Goats are known to snack on things they aren’t supposed to. Which is why, just like cows, goats have a four-chamber stomach to help digest their food. This four-chamber stomach helps goats digest food like grass and hay. Contrary to actual belief, goats are actually known to be picky eaters. The reason people think otherwise is because they are very curious creatures. They’ll nibble at most anything and sometimes even tug on your clothes or your hair to see what it is. But that doesn’t mean they’re eating it. Keeping a goat can be pretty simple. First, you’re going to want to make sure your yard is safe by clearing away anything that can be harmful to the animal. You will also need a fence around the area your goats will be staying – making sure the fence is high enough, because goats are known for climbing and jumping. You’re also going to want to have a barn like structure to keep your goats protected from the rain and snow. Goats are pretty easy animals to take care off. With the proper environment, and understanding of their care commitment, goats can make a great addition to any family or farm.
Victoria’s Fun Facts and Tips:
• A Billy goat is a male. Female goats are called does or nannies.
• A baby goat is called a kid.
• The average life span of a goat is 15-18 years.
• Goats are one of the first animals to be domesticated by man.
• Both male and female goats can have horns. They can also both grow beards. Generally, male goats will grow a longer and thicker beard compared to the females.
• Goats produce neat pelletized droppings, and their manure doesn’t typically attract insects or burn plants as does manure from cows or horses. Goat manure is virtually odorless and is beneficial for the soil. One of the most common uses for goat manure is as a fertilizer, which can help gardeners produce healthier plants.
Written by Victoria Bonavita