I love all Nigerian Dwarf Milk Goats! Registered goats or unregistered can be a wonderful addition to the homestead and may fill the milk pail. I choose registered for several reasons but the following 2 reasons are most important.
Let me count the ways…
Number 1: Because I like dairy part of the goat best!
Knowing the foundation of genetics a goat has helps me know if a goat doeling has a potential to be a good milker or not. Buying a doeling is always a gamble. Without being about to look at a pedigree you’re really in the dark!
Especailly because Nigerian dwarf goats are often breed for reasons other than milking.
If traits aren’t bred for consistantly they can easily be lost. Add that on to the fact that most people who breed nigerian dwarfs never milk them! You really have no clue what you’re getting unless its a freshened doe in milk and you can milk her out yourself!
A pedigree doesn’t have to be loaded with milk stars but I need to see some good foundation lines if the person I’m buying a kid from doesn’t milk. If they do milk then its an easier, less risky gamble.
Also, the ND can easily be bred to a pygmy goat and no one will be the wiser 99% of the time. That is, until milking time comes. Mixing a dairy breed with a meat or fiber breed will cut your length of lactation like nothing else.
In my experience milking the meat/dairy mixes at best I got 4 milking months before the milk dropped off to an amount not worth milking. Not acceptable for a dairy goat imho…
Number 2: Because Size Matters!
To many people are breeding oversized Nigerian dwarf goats! Unregistered goat breeders tend to not care about breed standards. Part of the ND’s charm is it’s a super small dairy goat! Not needing the space or large amounts of food other dairy goats do. Yet they give plenty of creamy, high quality milk!
Which leads me to the ‘mini goat trend’. Mini goats are mixed with ND. If mixed with alpine or another erect ear breed its hard to tell when they are kids. You can insist on seeing both parents but even then there could be something else mixed in.
They not only get to big but they will also loose the quality of their milk. Those bigger breeds do not have the creamy high butterfat that makes ND milk the best! It may also have that ‘goaty’ taste many people find unpleasant.
You may also get some unpleasant temperaments. I personally find the alpine goat temperament something I usually do not like to put up with in my barnyard!
Registered Goats for the Win!
Those are my 2 main reasons. There are a couple of other reasons but those 2 are the ones that matter most to me.
If you do choose not to buy registered goats but you are wanting a goat for milking do yourself a favor, buy your does in milk!
If you must buy a doeling, buy it from someone who actually milks and ask to see an udder pic. Ask how many hours its ‘filled’ before the pic was taken. Of course ask how much the mother gives a day.
Even if you are buying registered these are good things to ask. As a newbie I bought registered dairy goats from someone who saw my inexperience coming! She totally ripped me off and sold me the 2 worst nubian milk goats and a nubian mix that had the most horrible temperment!
So buying registered goats can’t isn’t going to insure a good milker. Its just a big part of the process I like to have access too. I also like to make sure breed standards for size are being followed.
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