Here are some of the questions I am asked by people considering buying pygmy goats. I hope you find them useful.
Can I keep pygmy goats in my garden?
Yes, providing there are no conditions in your lease to say otherwise. I did check with my council to be on the safeside.
Can I keep one pygmy goat?
No, pygmy goats are herd animals and they must be kept in a pair.
Are they noisy?
Kept in the proper conditions, pygmy goats should only bleat when something is wrong or when they see you coming with supper. During the mating season, Sept to Feb, the adult female will come into season every three weeks and will call for a mate. If she is not mated this will reoccur every three weeks and last between one and two days. She can be very vocal at this time and if not intending to breed from your females I suggest you buy wethers instead (castrated males)
Will they keep my grass cut?
Pygmy goats are browsers, not grazers and will eat all you shrubs and flowers before they would eat any grass.
Can I let them wander in the garden?
This is not a good idea, they should be confined behind a 4` high fence. If allowed to roam your garden it is quite likely they will find something poisonous to eat and could die.
I would like to get a goat as a companion for my pony and someone suggested a pygmy goat would be a good idea. Would they get on OK?
Pygmy goats need the company of their own kind, a pony is not a suitable companion. They are too small, I would not be happy for either animals as the goat is likely to get under the pony`s hooves.
Do pygmy goats make good house pets?
No. Pygmy goats are farm animals, they should be kept in a suitable environment outside. If you allow pygmy goats to come indoors and treat them like a family member it is possible that they could develop undesirable tendancies, such as aggressive behaviour towards you or your children. In their correct place, pygmy goats make wonderful pets for young and old, just enjoy them as they were meant to be.
I have two wethers who I think are wonderful. I would love to take them to a show but I`m a bit nervous as everyone there seems so professional and have lots of pedigree goats.
Go for it. Most goat keepers who look `professional` started with a couple of wethers themselves. All Pygmy Goat Shows have classes for wethers and new exhibitors are made very welcome. If you belong to the Pygmy Goat Club most shows are listed in the quarterly magazine, just look down the list and find one close to you. Contact the show and ask them for a schedule and that will give you all the information you need. More help and advice can be obtained from Regional Advisers. Good Luck.
I would like to mate my two females but I do not know how to find a suitable male.
This is a problem most small breeders have and there is no easy answer. First try the Breeders List on the Pygmy Goat Club Website. In the club`s quarterly magazine there are usually a few adverts for stud goats although it depends where you live if they will be of use. If you plan ahead and visit agricultural shows in your area where they are holding pygmy goat shows then you could meet breeders, and once you have got talking to them they may be prepared to loan you a male.
How much space do a couple of pygmy goats need?
Pygmy goats do not need an enormous amount of space, a well fenced area of about 30` x 30`would probably be the minimum I would recommend. In that area they would need a shelter and if possible something to climb on so that they did not become bored.
Are they like dairy goats and need milking as I would not be able to manage that.
Pygmy goats are not suitable for milking, they only give enough milk to rear their kids and then they should dry up naturally.