Our Nigerian Dwarf Goats!
I am so excited to announce the arrival of our first bred and kidded Nigerian Dwarf Goat buckling! He kidded last night at around 10:30 pm to our doe, Lola. This is her first kidding, and I was a bit anxious as she is older to be having a first kidding. However, all went well, and Lola is a natural mother in all respects! I was worried about her getting much of an udder as she has always had really tiny teats, but she gargantuan. It seems she will be able to produce a lot of goat milk for my goat-milk soaps and goat-milk lotion!
People ask if our goats are Pygmy goats because they are so small. They are Nigerian Dwarf Goats, which is a miniature dairy goat breed with West African ancestry. They do have their own registry, the Nigerian Dwarf Goat Association (NDGA) and are also registerable with the American Dairy Goat Association (ADGA) and American Goat Society (AGS). Pygmy goats are not dairy goats and are smaller, cobbier, and stouter. The Nigerian Dwarfs have the conformation of a dairy goat, meaning the goats are judged largely on their udder size, capacity, and quality, as well as the milk that they produce. Nigerian Dwarfs typically stand at around 22 inches at the withers for does (girls) and 23 inches for bucks (boys).
Nigerian Dwarf Goats are gaining in popularity because of their small stature, friendly nature, and endless color possibilities! They can even have blue eyes, which is not a genetic defect. Nigerians are incredibly comical and love to play, jumping, kicking, bucking and balancing. If you are not careful, they can be little escape artists, which can be part of their charm. Even though Nigerian Dwarf Goats are a small dairy goat breed, they produce one of the highest butter fat in milk and also produce more milk for their size than other dairy goat breeds. As you can see, the Nigerian Dwarf Goats are perfect little goats for milk producing on small acreage, as well as pure entertainment! My husband and I can sit for hours just watching them play!
Since this is my first year of actual kidding, I am certain to be posting a lot on my experiences with these fun little babies! We started out with Smudge as a two-day-old bottle baby and needed to get her a friend ASAP, which is how I found Lola. She was 10 days old when I brought her home and started her on the bottle as well. I tried breeding them at two, but they did not take. Worried that I had started too late in their life, we had the buck over here for a two-month extended date with our girls. After not knowing if our girls were pregnant or not, I decided to search for another goat that was pregnant. I came home with Elsie as a First Freshener (first time pregnant), as well as a three-month old doeling. We are hoping that the trip was not too much for Elsie and that she was able to maintain her pregnancy.
As of now, Lola kidded last night as a First Freshener with one DARLING buckling! All went smoothly, and Lola is turning out to be an unbelievable mom, both in the nuturing department, as well as udder development! I am pleasantly surprised as she has always been so tiny. A large udder means more fresh goat milk for my goat milk soap, goat-milk lotion and other goat-milk products!