Goats for Milk, Meat and More

Learn about the many goat breeds and their use as dairy, meat, fiber and transport animals.

| June/July 1992

  • Oberhasli
    Oberhaslis, like this kid, are a Swiss dairy breed.
    OBERHASLI BREEDERS OF AMERICA
  • Angora goat
    Angoras are considered a fiber breed. Their soft, fine hair is highly prized by hand spinners.
    FLICKR/TIM GREEN AKA ATOACH
  • Saanan
    A dairy breed, Saanens are relatively calm and do well in cool climates.
    PHOTO: NATIONAL SAANEN BREEDERS ASSOCIATION
  • African Pygmy goat
    The African Pygmy makes an excellent milk or meat goat.
    FLICKR/RYAN SOMMA
  • Nubian goat
    Nubians are an energetic dairy or meat breed, with floppy ears and a tolerance for hot weather.
    FLICKR/JUST CHAOS
  • Alpine goat
    Alpines are a dairy breed, and can also make great pack goats.
    FLICKR/JUST CHAOS

  • Oberhasli
  • Angora goat
  • Saanan
  • African Pygmy goat
  • Nubian goat
  • Alpine goat

Goat breeds fall into one or more of the following categories: dairy, fiber, meat or transport. We've compiled a guide to help you get the most good out of your goat.

Dairy Goats

Handled properly, goat milk is indistinguishable from cow milk. Some people who are sensitive to cow milk find goat milk easier to digest.

Dairy breeds fall into three categories: Swiss, tropical, and miniature. The first two average 1,800 pounds (900 quarts) per year, the latter about a quarter of that.

The Swiss breeds — Alpine, Oberhasli, Saanen, and Toggenburg — are relatively calm animals with upright ears. They do well in cool climates. The tropical breeds — LaMancha and Nubian — are better at handling hot weather. LaManchas (which have tiny ears or none at all) are known for their laid-back personalities. By contrast, floppy-eared Nubians are definitely more energetic ...



The Nigerian Dwarf, a miniature dairy breed, gets along nicely on small lots. It is ideal for anyone who can't use the copious amounts of milk produced by larger goats. Instead of milking with your whole hand, be prepared to milk a Dwarf with two fingers and a thumb.

Dairy goats require a clean area in which to be milked. It may be part of the goat barn or a corner of a garage, mud room, or laundry room. A milkstand raises the does to comfortable milking height (about 12 inches) and holds them in place. Other equipment includes a stainless steel milk pail, a dairy scale to weigh the milk, a strainer with milk filters, and glass storage jars.






Mother Earth News Fair Schedule 2019

MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR

Next: February, 16-17 2019
Belton, TX

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!

LEARN MORE








Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

Money-Saving Tips in Every Issue!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).


Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard

Free Product Information Classifieds Newsletters