Goats are one of the most popular animals which are being raised for the purpose of milk and meat production. There are different breeds of goats with each breed having a different meat and milk production rate. In order to get the most out of your goats, the right breed must be considered. Breeds of Goats can be classified according to their purposes i.e. for milk (dairy goats) and for meat.
First we will discuss the different breeds of goat for milk production below:
Goat Breeds for Milk (Diary Goats)
Goat milk contains less lactose than other types of milk. Some of the most popular goat breeds for milk includes:
The Alpine goats are derive from the French Alps, and are also often called French Alpine goats. The Alpine goat can produce 1 – 2 gallons of milk again, the average fat in the milk is about 3.5%, which is high and this milk is used to produce many thick substances made from milk, such as butter, cheese, and ice cream.
LaMancha goats are great for milk and are also friendly; they are characterized with small ears or no ears. They originate from Spain and their milk has about 4.2% fat concentration.
Nubian goats were first bred in England in the 1920s – 1930s. They can produce about 5 – 1.5 gallons of milk a day with the largest fat content of about 5% and can produce milk all year long.
Nubian goats are characterized with long, floppy ears, they are the largest of the dairy goats and can also be used for meat, they weigh more and have more meat.
The Saanen breeds of goat are the biggest dairy breed. Their males can grow to be over 200 pounds. They can produce up to 1 gallon of milk every day and its milk can generally contain 2.5 – 3% of fat. These goats can be used as pets and meat production as well. They are primarily domesticated.
This is one of the oldest breeds of goat known, and was first seen in the 1600s. Toggenburg goats are characterized with a straight face, full beards, and they are generally anywhere from light brown to dark brown with white markings. Flaps of skin on the neck are also quite common with this breed.
Toggenburg goats produce milk that has about 3.3% of fat, which is relatively low. However, the goat breeds well, which keeps it producing regularly. This breed is particularly hardy, making it ideal to breed with meat producing goat breeds.
Oberhasli goats produce less creamy milk with about 3.6% fat, and its milk can not be produced all year round. However, they can produce .5 – 1.5 gallons of milk a day. The milk is also very sweet.
They come from Switzerland. They are also quite small, so they are ideal for farmers in urban settings or with limited space. These goats have sweet personalities, but they have the power to cause some damage. For this reason, many times the horns are removed at an early age.
Read Also: Feed and Nutrition Management for Cattle
The Nigerian Dwarf goat originated from Africa, and are about half the size of average goats, they are great for producing your own milk at home because they only produce a couple of pints of milk a day, but the milk that they produce is 6.1% butter fat. This is extremely rich and desirable.
They come in a multitude of colors and usually don’t grow to be more than 23 inches. Many kids of this breed have horns removed. This breed is also extremely friendly and can be pets. They can even be trained to walk on a leash like a dog. One of the things that make Nigerian Dwarf goats such good milk producers is that they are prolific breeders.
Sable goats are an adaptation of the Saanen. The milk they produce is usually between 3 – 4% fat. The average weight for a Sable goat is 145 pounds. Girls will typically be 30 inches, and males will typically be 32 inches.
Sable goats have large ears, and they have short, thin hair. Some variations have dark coloring that can result in unusual patterns, which is one reason many people enjoy the breed. The dark coloring comes from recessive genes. If the coloring is lighter, the goat wouls be a Saanen.
The Guernsey goats which are sometimes called the Golden Guernsey. Like the name suggests, the goat is known for its gorgeous golden coloring.
The Guernsey is the smallest of medium sized dairy goats and generally produces about 3.16 kg of milk that contains about 3.72% fat.
Read Also: The Reproductive Rate of Sheep and Goat