Welcome our newest caprine friends, Luna and Bridgit. You may remember during the month of December I helped care for and milked these goats for their owner, my friend Traci. Well, Traci and her family have since decided to focus on full-size breeds instead of these Nigerian Dwarf goats and so they needed a new home.
Since my birthday is coming up soon I told my mother–who just happens to own a truck– that the only thing I want for my birthday is goat transportation. It also gave my parents an excuse to come out to visit, but honestly, I couldn’t have gotten them out here very comfortably in my little sedan. So my parents stopped by my friends house, loaded two very round goats into their truck bed, hooked them in, and very carefully drove an hour, and across the river, to our house.
When they arrived Trevor and I hopped into the back of the truck with leashes and walked the two new goats to the goat pen. I felt a little ridiculous walking this short, little, stubby thing to the goat pen on a leash. After spending so much time with the tall Freyja and graceful Heidrun, walking a Nigerian Dwarf to the pen felt how I would imagine walking a pig on a leash: leading a heavy, round, and perpetually hungry porker on not much more than a string.
My mom thought that the taller, super model goats might give the new girls an inferiority complex. But her dog Smokey, a dachshund, thought they looked beautiful just as they are.
All the humans stood outside a few moments to make sure the two pairs of goats, short and tall, met each other and tested the fence. When the new goats tried out the fence they busted out like mini bulls and I realized that their noses only reached the second wire, a cold wire. So we set that straight by switching all the low wires to be “hot” electric wires and made the grounding wire one of the higher wires. After adjusting the fence I touched the nose of both goats to the wire so they would learn the boundary and not plow right through the fence again. Success. Electric fences really do work as long as you have lots and lots of hot wires, have a high enough charge, and it is always on.
Luna (black and white) is the mother of Bridgit (tan and white). They both have been dried off for about a month and are ready to breed again. It will probably take a few weeks to let them adjust to their new home, the other two goats, and also to find a local with a Nigerian Dwarf stud to breed them with. Just like any other animal, you can breed the female with a smaller breed, but never a larger breed buck because the resulting offspring would cause complications due to sheer size. And since Nigerian Dwarves are about as small as it gets, I will need to specifically find a Nigerian Dwarf stud.
When I am ready to breed Freyja (Nubian) and Heidrun (Toggenburg/Nubian), I can technically breed them with any other breed since they are large-breeds themselves. I will do my best, however, to find a dairy-breed stud to breed them to.