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Spanish Goat

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4.3/5

(6 Reviews)


Other common names: Brush Goat; Scrub Goat; Wood Goat; Hill Goat, Briar Goat

The basics:
Spanish Goats are said to have been brought to North and Central America by Spanish explorers in the early 1500s. The goats they had kept with them for meat mingled with the local breeds giving rise to inconsistent colors and standards. The population of Spanish goats is biggest in the state of Texas. They fell out of favor when Boer goats were introduced to the US in the 1990s. The Spanish Goat Association was established in 2007 to conserve the breed, which is under conservation priority by the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy.

Appearance / health:
A strict description of the Spanish goat is lacking due to intensive crossbreeding through the years. They are typically small- to medium-sized goats of various colors and coloration patterns. Considered the hardiest and most efficient goat in the US, the Spanish goat has a strong, muscular build, with somewhat pendulous ears. Does have small udders and teats, a preferred characteristic for foraging in wild brush.

Goats are sensitive animals that can suffer from various infectious and chronic diseases that are sometimes undetected until too late. Vaccinations, as well as de-worming and de-lousing applications must be conducted as needed. Milking goats should be checked regularly using prescribed mastitis tests for udder health. Milking areas should always be clean and the goat’s teats treated with teat dip after milking to prevent mastitis.

Goats must be inspected frequently to detect any signs of poor health, infections, or other ailments. Signs include cloudy or teary eyes, dull or fluffed up coat, droopy tail, hunched back, or poor appetite. A veterinarian should always be on call to address health concerns.

Behavior / temperament:
Goats are inherently curious, active, intelligent, and social. They are known to have the ability to overcome enclosures by unraveling the gate, climbing over the mesh, or pushing and ramming the fence down. Goats have good coordination and balance and can manage to climb low trees, ledges, and overhangs. Their curiosity leads them to constantly investigate items with their mouths; most items get chewed and swallowed. With a little patience, goats can be taught to carry or pull loads, respond to calls, and lead a herd. As social animals, they easily get along with other farm animals.

Housing / diet:
As herd animals, goats are best kept in pairs or groups. As grazers, they require an outdoor habitat that is securely fenced to prevent escape or foraging in restricted areas. The area should be large enough to allow the goat to roam. The recommended habitat per goat is 200 sq. ft. of yard or pasture plus a sheltered or indoor area of about 15 sq. ft. The sheltered area should be adequately built to keep the goats safe from rain and strong winds.

Keeping goats inside the house is not recommended because of the pet’s tendency to gnaw and chew on furniture and furnishings. Goats are also not known to adhere to toilet training.

The ideal food for domesticated goats is alfalfa hay and grass hay. This should be available daily in quantities of at least 3% of the goat’s body weight. Small quantities of feed grain and concentrates (often protein-enriched) like goat show or goat grain can also be given to add nutrition. Supplements are often used to address deficiencies inherent to local habitats.

Clean water is essential to a goat’s daily diet. It should always be available and provided where it cannot be soiled. Dirty and moldy water is hazardous to the goat’s health. Milking goats should be kept away from aromatic or strong-tasting foliage like garlic, onions, mint, and cabbage, which could taint the flavor of the milk.

wonderful

scrub goats, low maintenance, high quality meat, good temperament, healthy. eager breeders

challenging

hoof rot, slower muscle gains, wire fences

interesting

Texmasters

Helpful Spanish Goat Review

Spanish Goat

From Jul 24 2015 1:19PM

4.8/5

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