I want goats! How many should I get?

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Many people contact me asking for 1 doe (female) & 1 ram (male).

It is much better for the goats if you get 2 does & a ram.

Goats are herd animals. They need the company of other goats. If you get 2 & something happens to one of them, you have an immediate problem. If you start with 3, then you have a less urgent problem. The heartache is the same!

It is also unlikely that you will be able to let your ram stay with the does once they have kidded.

I have never had a ram that has hurt a kid but the does will come back into oestrus within a month of giving birth. They are pregnant for 5 months; they could kid 6 months after giving birth!

That isn’t fair on the goat.

When you separate the ram, you can have him in a camp alongside the does, then he doesn’t get lonely. There is also a good chance that you will have had a least one male from the kids & if he is castrated you can keep him as a companion for the ram.

If you plan to milk your does, you can have them kid at different times. That way you will have a constant supply of milk.

What if I want them as pets?

I still recommend getting three. If something happens to one, then your goats still have a friend.

Castrated males make the best pets.

Rams are not pets. They are smelly & can be dangerous when they go into rut – even if they love you dearly.

Does can be lovely pets, but they do have hormones! Even if you don’t plan to breed them & you don’t have a buck, they can go into oestrus up to once a month & can be VERY loud when they are!

If you want a goat for a pet or milk – then plan to get three!