Pygmy goats have a rich history, originating from West Africa. They were brought to the United States in the 1950s as zoo exhibits and later became popular as household pets.
Pygmy goats are smaller in size than standard goat breeds, making them perfect backyard pets for those who love animals but don’t have a lot of space. Despite their small size, pygmy goats are still hardy and resilient animals that can withstand different climates.
Why They Make Great Backyard Pets
Firstly, pygmy goats make great companions because they are incredibly social animals that thrive in human company. Secondly, they are easy to care for and do not require much space or special attention.
Thirdly, pygmy goats produce milk which is high in fat content and can be used to make delicious cheese or yogurt. These adorable creatures with their playful personalities will bring joy and happiness to your backyard – whether you have children or not!
Getting Started with Pygmy Goats
Choosing the right breed and gender
When choosing a pygmy goat, it’s important to select the right breed and gender for your situation. The African pygmy goat is the most common breed of pygmy goat, but there are also Nigerian dwarf and Pygora goats. Different breeds have different characteristics, so it’s important to do some research before making a decision.
As for gender, if you only want one pygmy goat as a pet, it’s recommended to get a doe. If you want multiple goats or plan on breeding them, getting a buck may be necessary.
Preparing a suitable living space
Before bringing home your new pet pygmy goats, make sure you have prepared an appropriate living space for them. It should be large enough for them to move around comfortably in and include shelter from extreme weather conditions.
The area should also be securely fenced in to prevent escapes or predators from entering. You can use straw or wood shavings as bedding, but make sure to clean their space regularly.
Feeding and watering requirements
Pygmy goats require fresh water at all times and will need access to hay or grass for grazing throughout the day. In addition to these staples, they will also need some additional supplements such as grain or pellets that can meet their nutritional needs perfectly well in case they are not getting enough nutrition from grazing alone. Don’t forget to give plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables that would keep them healthy and playful!
Caring for Pygmy Goats
Pygmy goats have a thick and soft coat that requires regular grooming. You should brush your pygmy goat at least once a week to prevent matting and tangling of hair.
During the shedding season, which typically takes place in the spring, you may need to brush them more frequently. You can also trim their hooves regularly to prevent overgrowth and foot problems.
Health concerns and preventative measures
Like all animals, pygmy goats are susceptible to certain health conditions. One of the most important things you can do is to ensure that they receive proper vaccinations and deworming treatments on time.
Some common health issues include respiratory infections, parasites, and foot rot. By keeping their living space clean and providing them with a healthy diet, you can help prevent these issues from occurring.
Exercise and playtime
Pygmy goats are active animals that enjoy exercise and playtime. You can provide them with toys such as balls or ropes to play with or create an obstacle course for them in the backyard.
They also love climbing on structures like rocks or stumps. Regular exercise not only helps keep your goats physically fit but also prevents boredom and destructive behavior such as chewing on furniture or fencing.
Caring for pygmy goats involves providing them with proper grooming, preventative measures against health concerns, as well as exercise and playtime to ensure their well-being. By doing so, you will be able to enjoy happy and healthy pygmy goat companions in your backyard.
Training Pygmy Goats
Basic commands to teach them
Pygmy goats are intelligent animals and can be trained to follow basic commands. Start with simple commands like “come” and “stay.” The key is to be consistent in your training and use positive reinforcement such as treats or praise when they successfully complete a task. Teaching them how to walk on a leash is also important, especially if you plan on taking them for walks outside of their enclosure.
One fun trick you can teach your pygmy goat is to jump over an obstacle like a low hurdle or log. This not only builds their confidence but also provides exercise and mental stimulation.
Socializing with other animals
Pygmy goats are social animals that thrive in the company of others, whether it’s other goats or different types of animals. It’s important to introduce them slowly and watch their interactions closely at first. If you have dogs, make sure they are well-trained and supervised when interacting with your pygmy goat.
Some dogs may see goats as prey, so it’s essential to establish boundaries early on. If your goat seems scared or uncomfortable around dogs, try introducing them gradually by keeping the dog on a leash until trust is established.
Introducing your pygmy goat to other farm animals like chickens or ducks can also provide unique opportunities for socialization and playtime. Just make sure all parties are comfortable with each other before allowing unsupervised interactions.
Training and socialization are crucial components of raising happy, healthy pygmy goats in your backyard. With patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement techniques, you can train your goat to follow basic commands while providing opportunities for socialization with other animals in a safe and controlled environment.
Fun Facts about Pygmy Goats
Their playful personalities
Pygmy goats are known for their playful and curious nature. They love to climb and jump on things, so you’ll often find them standing on top of rocks, benches, or even your car!
They are also very social animals and enjoy being around their human family as well as other goats. They will often follow you around the yard just to see what you’re up to.
Unique physical characteristics
Despite their small size, pygmy goats have many unique physical characteristics that make them stand out. They have short legs and a compact body, giving them a cute and chubby appearance.
Their coats come in a variety of colors including black, brown, white, and gray. Some even have spots or patterns on their fur.
In addition to their cute appearance, pygmy goats also have horizontal pupils in their eyes which give them excellent peripheral vision. This helps them detect predators from all angles.
How they communicate with each other
Pygmy goats are very vocal animals and use a range of sounds to communicate with each other. They bleat when they are hungry or need attention from their owners.
When males are trying to attract females during breeding season, they emit deep grunts that can be heard from afar. Additionally, pygmy goats use body language to communicate with each other.
For example, if one goat wants another goat to move out of its way it will nudge it with its head or push its body against it until it moves over. Overall, pygmy goats are fascinating creatures with unique personalities and physical characteristics that make them great companions for those looking for backyard pets.
Pygmy goats make excellent additions to any backyard. They are small, gentle and affectionate creatures who enjoy interacting with their owners and other animals.
Unlike larger breeds of goats, pygmy goats don’t require a lot of space or expensive equipment to care for them. They are easy to handle and can be trained to do basic commands.
If you’re thinking about adding a pygmy goat to your family, we highly recommend it! Not only are they fun and entertaining pets, but they also have many benefits such as being excellent weed eaters and producing delicious milk.
However, before adopting a pygmy goat, it’s important to do your research and ensure that you have the necessary resources such as time, space and money required to take care of them properly. With proper care and attention, a backyard pygmy goat can bring joy and laughter to your life for years to come!