Like many people, we started out two doelings, and after they had their fluffy bouncing babies.........you know what happens. Goats are addicting y'all! This year we bred four does and ending up with 11 cute, big-eyed, snuggley, little fuzz balls.
Our herd had:
This is our first set of quads! Aren't they adorable? I sure think so.
This kidding season was pleasantly uneventful. My niece got to see the quads born, but after watching two kids slide out she said "I'm done!" and evacuated. :-) Now my other niece is dying to see kids born too. Maybe next year........
If you want babies of your own next year we still have some kids for sale (hint hint) :)
Who's ready for squishy baby pictures? I am! I am!
As I see it, when you raise goats, the seasons are not divided into traditional spring, summer, autumn and winter, but are instead divided into
kidding, showing, breeding and waiting. Depending on your herd and location, the proportions of each season might be a little different, but in northern California, our show season usually runs from May through September. We recently went to the 1st annual Mother Lode Dairy Goat Association show, and we had an absolute blast! Showing is really exciting, especially when you have nice animals who place good, but even when our does place not-so-good, we still learn a lot and have loads of fun.
I would really, really recommend working with your animals, so they will actually walk nicely in the ring. Just a few minutes several times a week can greatly reduce all the jumping and dragging. I like to use the lead I will use in the ring, for Nigerian Dwarves you can get away with a nylon lead, but ADGA recommends using a chain collar for all breeds.
I use tail pulling as a last result only. At first, I try to coax my does to walk, and use rewards, but there are just some does who even after many walking sessions, just need a firmer hand.
Gather your supplies. When at a show, you will probably not be able to run home and grab the supplies you forgot, so be sure to double check that you have everything. Our show list includes:
When you get to the show location, and get all your goaties settled in their pens with feed and water, now you pretty much just wait. At most ADGA shows, there are several, if not all dairy breeds represented, and if your breed(s) go first, great! If you don't go first, have fun waiting! Don't worry, they usually call each breed when it's time to go. Keep an eye on all the other goats of your breed, and follow their cue.
Finally! Time to show! Grab your goat, keep your registration papers handy, and head to the ring! There is not much to explain about the actually showing. The judge will tell you where to walk, and when. Keep your eye on him/her and you'll be fine. Once you walk/drag your goat into position, just pose her, and that's about it!
If you win, GREAT! Congratulations! If you lose, don't worry too much about it. Young jr does, and first fresheners don't usually win a whole lot, especially when put up against older more developed animals. Remember, even if you have a whole line-up of absolutely gorgeous animals, one will need to be at the end. Before I let you go, I need to warn you about some people. Most goat people are really, really nice, and are good winners and losers, but in every competition there will be those people. Some people just get way too competitive with their animals, and feel the need to win every show they go to. Just letting you know, that there will be type those people out there.
Now go out there, and have a great time!
How many times do I have to tell you?
You need to stay on your side of the fence!
What do you mean "your pen isn't fun"? You have an A-frame to climb and play on in your pen. You have hay. You have water. What does this pen have that your pen doesn't have?
You are too old to stay in the doe's pen.
I'm only doing what's best for you.
Boys, boys, boys........
How many times do I have to tell you?