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Here is some helpful info for first time goat buyers. Remeber, if at any time you think something is not right about the goat or the purchuse, listen to your heart!

First time goat owners may be wondering what they should look for in a goat. In any breed, no matter what they will be used for there is several things that make a good, healthy goat.

  1. The goat, no matter sex or age should be healthy, without a snotty nose, coughing, clouded or clogged eyes, runny poop, or strong smelling urine.
  2. The goat should be well put together and shouldn't have any limps or problems walking. Their hooves should be trimmed and not overgrown.
  3. A goat should not have a under bite or over bite, this can cause problems down the road with eating.
  4. The goat should have a smooth coat without lumps or cuts. The hair should be shiny and lay with the rest of the hair.

Show goats:

  1. They should have good bloodlines, and not be inbred. Make sure to see the papers before you buy the goat.
  2. Get a breed standerd for the breed you are buying to make sure they conform to it and not have defects that prevent them from being shown.
  3. Most breeds require the goat to be dehorned, and not to have more then two nipples on their udder, if they have an extra nipple they might not be able to be shown.
  4. A doe or wether is your best bet for starting out in the show ring.

What to look for in a breeding buck:

  1. Remember, the buck passes on all his traits, good or bad onto his offspring.
  2. Buy the best buck you can afford. Even if you have grade  does, buying a registered buck will improve the offspring, and make them worth more.
  3. The buck should conform to the breed standerd. He should not be cow hocked (rear legs bow out) or pigeon toed (rear legs point inwards). He should have a thick coat and no lumps or cuts on his body. His scotum should be large, and both sides match each other. Don't buy a buck with one testicle undesended, he may be unable to breed and produce offspring.
  4. If possible, get a proven breeder, so you know he will get the job done. Look at his offspring to see if he carries any defects. See his dam and sire as well as any siblings.
  5. The buck should move freely and not have any limps or overgrown hooves which can prevent him from breeding.
  6. He shouldn't be aggressive towards you or the does. Sometimes in the rut (breeding season) he may be more bossy then normal but he shouldn't come after you or beat up on the does.
  7. If possible get a dehorned/disbudded/polled buck so you don't have problems with him using his horns on fencing and you.

What to look for in a breeding doe:

  1. If she has kidded before she shouldn't of had problems with birth or raising her kids.
  2. She should have good sized hips to make birth easier on her and the kids.
  3. Her udder should be attached high but easy for the kids to nurse off of. The nipples should be able to pass milk without problems, and not to small or too large which can cause problems with the kids nursing.
  4. She should be able to carry her kids without needing special care, or have problems during the pregnancy.

Pet goats:

  1. For people wanting a pet goat you should always get a pair. Goats are herd animals and it makes it easier for them to have a buddy.
  2. Two does, two wethers or a wether and doe make the best pets.
  3. Bucks DO NOT make good pets due to their smell, breeding interest, and can be aggressive.
  4. Pet goats should be friendly and non-aggressive to their owners.
  5. Even pet goats should have a good conformation, and no problems with their hooves or limping.