Bulletin No. :37
I. 1 Ir C; 1971
444 N. Hil,.lLii.rti, A%&.
A,,. Univ. of Florida
ei~.,.st ir' 9
STATE OF FLORDA
DOYLE CONNER . . Commissioner of Agriculture
Introduction 5-------------- ---- .. 5
Breeds of Milk Goats ----------.-------... 6
Nubian -----------------. -------- 7
Saanen ------------------------ 9
Toggenburg ---------------------- 10
French Alpine ------------------ 11
American La Mancha ---------------- 12
Other Breeds --------------------- 13
Getting Started ------- .. ---- 14
Breeding and Management --------------- 15
Pastures, Feeds and Feeding ---------------- 16
Housing --------- ......................... 19
Goat Health -----..------------. 20
Internal Parasites .-----------.. ---- 20
Raising Kids -------- ---.----.- 21
Milking ------------------------. 23
Fences ---------- -..................... 23
Uses of Goat Milk ------------------------- 24
Characteristics of Goat Milk 25
Profits from Goat Farming ----------------- 27
Goat Herds -------------------------- 28
Angora Goats ----- 30
Common Goats ------ ....- -.... 32
Books About Goats ------------- -- 33
COVER: Puritan Jon's Jennifer II, Registered Toggenburg TI21022, who
holds the top All-Breed Record for quantity of milk produced on official
test 5750 pounds of milk, 191 pounds of butterfat in 305 days. She is
owned by Mrs. Carl Sandburg, Flat Rock, N. C.
Goats In Florida
GOAT dairying is a growing industry in Florida. There are
large and small goat dairies near all the large cities and in
more and more of the smaller towns. Since there has never
been any experimental work on milk goats in the State, the in-
formation herein must come from the goat owners, themselves
and other sources outside of Florida.
Many countries of the Old World have used a large number of
goats since the earliest days of recorded history, utilizing them
in many ways-for meat, milk, beasts of burden, hair for clothes,
beds, etc. Goats are found in all parts of the United States, with
California and Texas probably leading in goat population.
There are many in the Central States with several large, active
goat Associations. The new England States have many fine
herds, also with their Associations. Perhaps the most active
Association is the Capitol Dairy Goat Association in the Wash-
ington, D. C. area. At the present time Florida has one goat
association, the South-Central Milk Goat Association. This is a
young, rather small organization drawing its membership from
a rather large area. There are members as far north as Winter
Haven and Tampa, south to LaBelle, and east and west to the
The slowness with which the milk goat business has developed
in this country is due to several reasons. Probably the most im-
portant reason is the inability to convince the health authorities
that a little 150 pound goat will not take up as much room as a
1000 pound cow, hence making building costs prohibitive.
The next reason is the unreasonable prejudice against these
animals, especially in the medical profession. However, this is
being gradually overcome and there has been a great change in
the general attitude in the past ten years. Still another reason is
the difficulty in obtaining a steady flow of milk throughout the
year. Goats are seasonal breeders and their natural time to kid
is in the spring, making it hard to produce an adequate supply
of winter milk. This has been remedied somewhat by lengthen-
ing the breeding season by selecting does that will breed both
before and after the regular season which is September through
January. Another way to be sure of winter milk is to lengthen
6 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
the lactation period of does that hold up well in their milk,
many does milking profitably for 15 months or even 2 years.
The best natural conditions for goats are found in hilly or
mountainous regions where the climate is reasonably cool. The
Nubian breed, however was built up with goats from hot coun-
tries like India and Egypt. None of them like wet land and if
kept in such a place, they should be kept in dry lot pens with
cement floors and not pastured at all. Many herds are kept
very successfully under these conditions. Goats will adapt them-
selves with more or less success to many different sorts of
climate and feed conditions.
BREEDS OF MILK GOATS
There are four principal breeds of milk goats in the United
States. They are as follows in numerical order: Nubian,
Saanen, French Alpine, and Toggenburg. There are a few of
other breeds but none in Florida. In the past few years great
interest has been shown in the "British" goats. These are
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA 7
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Nubian Doe (Courtesy American Milk Goat Record Association)
built up by using purebred males on high-producing grade
females, the female offspring, in turn being bred to a pure-
bred male of the same breed and on until they have the char-
acteristics of the breed being used and are, to all intents and
purposes purebred. A number of "British Saanens" and
"British Toggenburg" bucks have been imported to this country
to be used as herd sires. A section of the herd books of the
American Milk Goat Record Association has been opened to them.
This same association is encouraging this same type of breed-
ing in the United States, the seven-eighths offspring being
called "American." In this, only the female offspring are
recorded at present. The American Goat Society does not
recognize these new breeds, registering only purebreds.
This breed leads in the number registered yearly. Anglo-
Nubians were developed in England in the period 1850 to 1875.
Bucks were brought from India and Egypt and mated to native
British goats and the breed was developed. This breed was ad-
mitted to the British herd books in 1910. The first importa-
8 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
tions to this country were in 1909. Later more importations
followed and the name was shortened to "Nubian" in the
United States. The breed is so registered in both Associations.
Nubians are large and rangy with short, glossy coats, large
dark eyes, and a curved roman nose, the more curved the
better, and long, pendulous ears, the longer the better. They
may or may not have horns. Nubians are all colors and com-
binations of colors, spotted animals being common.
Standard weights and measurements for Nubians: Doe-
Height at Withers, 30 inches and up, weight 130 pounds and
up. Buck-Height at Withers, 35 inches and up, weight 175
pounds and up.
The Nubian has not been considered a heavy milking breed
until recent years but has had a high butterfat average. By
careful breeding the production has been increased until, in
1949, Katrein's Oharmaine, on official test produced 4248.3
pounds of milk, 184.61 pounds of butterfat in 305 days, giv-
ing her the milk and butterfat record of all breeds in this
country. This record she held until 1955, when a Saanen, La
Suise, Ida-Bee produced 4905.1 pounds of milk and 182.7947
.c (Courtesy ."' "
Saanen Buck (Courtesy AMGRA)
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
pounds of butterfat. Charmaine lost the milk record but still
holds the butterfat record. Nubians do well in Florida. In
1959-60 Araby Royal Holly M N 121471 produced 193.9
pounds of fat to top all previous all-breed fat production. How-
ever Charmaine still holds the Nubian milk production record.
This is a Swiss breed having been bred in the mountains
of Switzerland for many generations. Saanens are white or
light cream color, white preferred. Black spots are allowed on
their skin but not in their coat. They may. be long or short
haired, hornless or with horns.
Standard weights and measurements for Saanens: Doe-
Height 30 inches at withers and up, weight 135 pounds and
up. Buck-Height 35 inches at withers and up, weight 185
pounds and up.
The Saanen has straight or slightly dished facial lines, ears
erect or pointed forward. The buck usually has a beard and
the doe may have one.
F. -- W w " :-^-v-.-... -"-- :- .. ..... ..
: ,. f ". ;'*.. / ; in
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Saanen Doe (Courtesy AMGRA)
10 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Saanens are heavy, steady producers, usually quiet and docile,
and are good dairy animals, much in demand for commercial
This was the first breed to be imported to this country.
It has been immensely popular and led all other breeds for
many years. However, at present Toggenburgs stand fourth in
The Toggenburg is a Swiss breed, may be long or short
haired, horned or hornless, both does and bucks usually have
beards, and short erect ears. They are solid color, varying
from light fawn to dark chocolate, with two white stripes on
i at .ter 2 .t 1 ice w 1 5p
B e t w ice w. h 16 p..
an up.o '
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Toggenburg Buck (Courtesy AMGRA)
face, the ears outlined in white and white on legs and rump.
Standard weight and measurements for Toggenburgs: Doe-
Height at withers 27 to 31 inches, weight 115 to 150 pounds.
Buck-Height at withers 33 inches and up, weight 160 pounds
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
This is a docile, friendly, breed, the does being wonderful
producers, considering their small size. Their butterfat con-
tent is usually rather low.
Glenview Peg, one of the great producers of the breed
made an official record of 3973 pounds of milk and 124.195
pounds of butterfat in nine months and twenty-nine days.
Toggenburg Doe (Courtesy AMGRA)
There are very few Toggenburgs in Florida but there is
no reason why they should not thrive in the State as they
are a very healthy, rugged breed.
This is an increasingly popular breed in the United States.
French Alpines are very beautiful. They are different colors
and combinations of colors, some of these combinations desig-
nated as cou-blanc, cou-clair, sungau, chamoise, etc.
They have long, slender necks, graceful, alert heads, rangy,
short haired bodies, glossy coats, horned or hornless, beards
Standard weights and measurements for French Alpine.
Does-Height 29 to 36 inches at withers, weight not less than
125 pounds. Bucks-Height 34 to 40 inches at withers, weight
not less than 170 pounds.
12 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
This breed is very large and the does are very heavy milkers
of medium butterfat content.
AMERICAN LA MANCHA
A new breed was admitted to the Herd Book in 1958. It is
known as American La Mancha.
This breed was developed by Mrs. Eula Fay Frey, then of
California, now living in Oregon.
The original foundation were Spanish La Manchas brought
into this country from Mexico. Their outstanding character-
istic were their very short ears. This characteristic has been
kept in the American La Mancha.
During the years, Mrs. Frey judiciously added new blood from
all four of the major breeds, using outstanding animals in
their line. Her object was to produce a breed of heavy milkers,
of high butterfat, fine quality milk combined with hardy,
strong bodies capable of producing great quantities of milk
over a long lactation. During this time Mrs. Frey milked does
as long as 3 and 4 years between kidding.
American La Mancha Doe
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA 13
By 1958 she had established the short ears to a point that a
La Mancha bred to the longest eared Nubian would produce
kids with short ears.
La Manchas may come in any color or combination of colors,
is a medium sized animal, very alert and active.
Mature bucks-Minimum height at withers 33 inches, weight
150. Mature does-Minimum height at withers 28 inches,
weight 130. Facial lines straight or slightly concave.
Ears, (a) Bucks-Almost no ears (gopher ears only allowed)
membrane longer than 1/2 inch disqualifies. (b) Does-almost
without ears, having small membrane never to exceed 1
~.r r '-** -
American La Mancha Buck
inches in length; anything other than regular length La Mancha
ears disqualifies. This should prove a very useful breed to the
There are several other breeds in the United States but
they are in such small numbers that they are not generally
known. Among these are Swiss Alpines, Rock Alpines, Norskas
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
French Alpine Buck (Courtesy AMGRA)
The best way to get started with goats is to buy two good
grade does. Never buy just one goat as goats love company
and get very homesick when kept by themselves. It is better
for a beginner to start with grades for several reasons. The
cost is not so great as a good grade doe can be purchased
for about half the price of a purebred. The grade is not as
excitable and temperamental and is easier to learn on. She
will give the inexperienced milker as much and probably more
milk than a purebred. After working with the grade doe and
making sure he wants to keep goats, the beginner is then ready
It is better to buy a doe that is bred and near her time
for kidding since she will accept her new home more readily
if she has her kids there. Milking does almost always go down
in production when moved, sometimes not recovering pro-
duction till the next kidding. Or the beginner may start with
doe kids taken after weaning, about four months old. This is
the ideal way if he is willing to wait till the kid is old enough
to produce milk.
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
The beginner should not buy a buck unless he has five or
more does. A purebred buck should always be used for breed-
ing. He should come from production stock on both parents.
The beginner should be very careful not to use all naturally
hornless stock. It is fine to have hornless kids but it has
been proven that horns, vigor and vitality are closely related.
Using entirely hornless stock causes hermaphorditism. If one
parent has horns, that is sufficient.
BREEDING AND MANAGEMENT
The age at which to breed a doe has two schools of thought.
One is to wait until the young doe is 15 months old or even
2 years old. The other is to breed the young does at about
9 months of age. Most breeders compromise and breed at
I _oo 4
1 7 -. -
.. -~ a -f
French Alpine Doe (Courtesy AMGRA)
about 1 year old. The first way is slow and expensive. If the
doe is well grown and healthy the breeding at one year is very
satisfactory and she goes right on growing through her first
A pregnant doe should be well fed. After she has been dried
off for her two months rest she should be fed just as usual
except the protein content should be decreased the last two or
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
three weeks. She should be left with the herd until labor
starts as goats fret and worry if put by themselves. The
pregnant doe should be given all the mineral she will take;
it should be kept before her at all times. During the last
month she should be given tasteless, steamed, bone meal once
a week. Most kidding troubles come from a calcium deficiency.
A swollen or caked udder may occur. The doe should not
be milked dry for the first two days, the udder should be re-
lieved but not stripped. If congestion does occur, the udder
should be relieved by milking, then cloths wrung out of HOT
water applied, followed by applying carbolated vaseline or an
udder ointment or balm.
The doe should come into production gradually, not reach-
ing full production for two or three weeks or even longer.
She should be fed very carefully being sure not to overfeed
for the first week or ten days. Does have been known to have
as many as six kids but usually have from one to three, twins
being most common.
Bucks should never be kept with the does for several rea-
sons. He may wear himself out and become sterile. The odor
of a buck during breeding season may get on the does and
flavor the milk. Does may get bred too young or too soon after
kidding. It is considered decidedly bad practice to ever let
the buck run with the does. This applies to milk goats. A
buck can be used as young as five months of age but very
sparingly, letting him serve a doe but one time. From one
year old he can be used as needed. The buck should be fed and
cared for exactly like the does. After all, he is one-half the herd.
Buck banks are being started in different sections of the
country from which frozen semen can be bought. This is
shipped in dry ice and can be shipped great distances. Thus
the serious goatbreeder can secure semen from the very finest
bucks of the different breeds. So far this has not been too
successful. Several universities are working on this.
PASTURES, FEEDS, AND FEEDING
Goat feeding in Florida probably follows the same general
rule as in other parts of the country.
Most of the nationally known brands of concentrates are
available but at a higher price than in the north because of
the very high freight rates. Alfalfa, the goat's best feed, is
available but, since most of the chopped alfalfa is shipped from
Colorado, it costs almost as much per hundred pounds as the
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA 17
Alfalfa has been grown in different parts of Florida experi-
mentally, sometimes quite successfully, but in no appreciable
quantity as yet. However, the State Experiment Stations are
working with many different hay and pasture grasses and
legumes and have already found several that are proving sat-
Coming in From Pasture
The most widely grown of these at the present time is
pangola grass. It is used for pasture and also for a very good
quality hay. Several cuttings can be made during the year.
Goats soon learn to relish this hay. This grass is subject to
cold so it is not a good winter pasture. A new hay has been
available in limited quantities the past few years. This is
alyce clover. This is a legume that compares very favorably
with alfalfa. Goats must learn to eat this but after forming
a taste for it, eat it in quantities and thrive on it.
18 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Another very successful pasture grass is Pensacola bahia
and this makes a good winter pasture since it is cold resistant.
Hubam clover grows well and is being planted extensively.
Lupines are grown in parts of the State.
Many other varieties are in the experimental stage and,
no doubt, many of these will be grown later.
The big roughage crop in Florida is citrus pulp. This by-
product from the citrus processing plants has become big busi-
ness, the demand being greater than the supply. The price has
accordingly increased. However, it is still the cheapest roughage
obtainable in Florida.
As to feeding procedure, each goat owner has his own ideas
and no two feed exactly alike. The general consensus seems to
to be to feed a lower protein content than is recommended.
Instead of 16% total protein 12 or 13% seems better in this
year-round warm climate. For the Northern part of the State
16% is probably right. During the rainy season when the
pastures lose some of their food content or during an ex-
tremely cold snap more protein may be added by feeding one
of the high protein calf feeds.
A good method of feeding is as follows: Grain, either pre-
pared goat feed or regular dairy feed, twice a day, the amount
the does will clean up, followed by citrus pulp. Each doe should
have either a stall or be tied so she will get her full amount
of feed. Alfalfa and/or hay should be kept in large feeders
available to all when they are turned loose. They should be
allowed to stay in long enough to eat this before being turned
out to pasture. They should not be put in the pasture until
the grass is dry in the morning and should have shelter from
rain and shade from the hot sun. Highly bred milk goats can-
not be kept out in the rain as they are very susceptible to
If it is possible to run the goats on wild land in Florida,
they are in "goat heaven". They can browse on leaves, bark
of trees, roots, etc. While doing this, they also clear the land.
Goats enjoy oranges, tangerines, guavas, and papayas. The
citrus fruits and guavas give them all they need of vitamin "C".
And now, perhaps the most important thing in Florida feed-
ing-minerals. This can be furnished in the large block of
mineralized salt, which they lick. Goats seem to need a greater
supply than they get this way so a supply of the loose, powdered
"range minerals" used for cattle should be kept before them.
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
In addition to all this, pregnant does should be watched care-
fully and be given extra calcium and phosphorus by feeding
them a teaspoon of steamed bone meal in molasses once or
twice a week the last two months. If pregnant does have enough
minerals there will be few kidding troubles.
While housing in Florida is much simpler than in a colder
climate, the goats must have shelter. A person owning only
two or three animals can use a shed or small building. Just
An Afternoon Siesta
so it has a good roof and tight sides to keep out wind and rain.
For a larger number of goats a barn is necessary. Concrete
floors are best since they can be kept clean and goats like
them. Box stalls can be used, these having wooden floors
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
or the goats can be tied or put in stanchions to be fed. Each
doe should have her own feeder so she will obtain her proper
amount. If fed together, some will get cheated as goats enjoy
fighting and the strong ones will bully the weaker ones. The
milking room may adjoin the barn but be separate. The feed
room should also be connected with the barn for convenience
in feeding and should be tight and rat proof.
Goats are normally very healthy animals but, like other
animals, they do get sick.
They are subject to pneumonia if exposed to wet, inclement
weather. This is quite fatal to them so at the first symptoms
call the veterinarian.
Digestive upsets occur but a good laxative will usually be
sufficient. Pregnant does will sometimes develop what is
known as pregnancy disease. This is generally from poor diet
or lack of sufficient minerals. Sometimes one-half cup of corn
syrup a day will help this but, if a severe case, the veterinarian
will need to give glucose intravenously.
Goats do not have tuberculosis and, in the United States,
seldom have brucellosis (Bang's disease). They should, how-
ever, be tested for this yearly.
Goat's feet must be cared for regularly. Since domesticated
goats cannot run over rocky ridges and cliffs as their wild
ancestors did, their hooves must be trimmed. This should be
done every three or four weeks. A knife or pair of clippers
may be used, trimming the hard outside hoof even with the
soft frog in the center. The heel should also be trimmed so the
foot has a flat standing surface. If neglected, the hooves will
curl under or out and make a very mis-shapen foot which be-
comes tender and inflamed. Sometimes they are so sore that
the animal will not stand but will crawl around on her knees.
A goat in this condition cannot do her best in production.
The feet should be trimmed as regularly as any other chore.
This is one thing that the average goat owner neglects.
Since Florida has a warm climate the year round goats have
to be watched closely for worms of different kinds. The most
common ones in kids are round worms and tapeworms. In
adult goats the stomach worm causes the most damage.
Phenothiazine is used for stomach and round worms or tablets
prepared of copper sulphate, nicotine, and kamela may be used.
These last named tablets also control tapeworms somewhat.
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
The United States Department of Agriculture recommends the
use of lead arsenate capsules for tapeworms also-
If phenothiazine is used on milking does, it will turn the
milk pink for 2 or 3 milkings so it cannot be used for human
consumption but may be fed to kids. If the copper sulphate-
nicotine is used the doe must not have feed for 12 hours before
using but it does not affect the milk. If worms are suspected,
droppings from each doe should be taken to the local veter-
inarian to be examined under a microscope and his advice
as to treatment followed.
Usually, with milk goats, the kids are taken away as soon
as they are born and hand-fed, either by pan or bottle. There
are good reasons for doing this. The doe makes less fuss than
if they are left with her for several days, the kids learn to
eat much easier, generally drinking from a pan the first time,
the doe's udder isn't bruised by the kids butting it, and most
important, the kids can be put in the pasture with the older
goats as young as two weeks old, since never having nursed the
doe, they never try, and the doe, never having had her kids, does
not even recognize them.
The colustrum should be milked from the doe and fed to
the kids as it is very necessary to start their digestive system
working properly. The dam will usually give much more
colustrum than the kids will take but this should be kept in
the refrigerator and fed as long as it lasts, warming it care-
fully over hot water. It must be stirred constantly while warm-
ing as it will thicken otherwise. It should be heated to about
110 degrees. The young kid will not drink it if it is not warm
enough and it may be necessary to add hot water to it before
it finishes eating. The kid must be handled gently as it is
very timid and, if frightened, will not eat. The nose should
be put down to the milk gently and it will soon try to drink.
If the kid chokes, let it raise its head and repeat. Once in
awhile, one will refuse to eat the first time. Just let it go
and wait several hours and try it again. As soon as it is
hungry enough it will eat. Kids should be kept warm and
dry. A box with a false bottom of hardware cloth is ideal for
the first few days. At first a grain sack can be put in the
bottom and changed as it gets wet and soiled. Goat milk is
best for kids although they can be raised on cow's milk.
Some people use the milk substitutes on the market. A goat
breeder usually feeds goat milk to the kids for at least three
months. The kids should be fed three or four times a day
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
the first two weeks or longer. Later they can be fed milk twice
a day with hay and grain at noon.
If the kids show promise of horns, they should be disbudded
at three days to a week old. This can be determined by ex-
amination. Usually the tiny tip of the horn can be felt. If
the hair is in a swirl where the horn is to come, there will be
horns. If the hair is smooth and the skin is loose, the kid will
If an electric disbudding iron is used it should be heated
to red-hot. The hair should be clipped around the tip of horn
and the iron applied to each bud ten seconds using a rotary
motion. One person should hold the kid's head and another
apply the iron. As soon as the iron is removed apply carbolated
vaseline to each burned area, then sift sulfathiazole powder
over it. In a few moments the kid will be playing around as
usual. If kids are on the ground, an anti-tetanus shot is ad-
visable as goats are rather susceptible to lockjaw. If they are
on wire this is not necessary.
The horns can be removed by caustic sticks or paste. The
directions come with it. These sticks are very severe and direc-
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
tions should be followed exactly. Removing the horns is not
pleasant but is very necessary as long, sharp horns are
dangerous to humans and even to the other goats. Horns also
get caught in fences as goats will push their heads through
and then the horns hold them there until help comes. Horns also
detract from the value if sold.
Doe and buck kids should be separated before three months
of age as there is danger of the young does getting bred from
Does are usually milked on a stand 12 to 18 inches high.
The stand should be long enough for the doe to stand comfortably
and should be 18 to 20 inches wide. There should be a stanchion
at the front to fasten the doe's head and a feed box for grain.
Some does like to eat while being milked, others prefer just
Some milkers prefer a high stand so they can stand up to do
the milking. There should be a runway built up to such a stand
since it is not wise to make a pregnant or old doe jump onto
Does are milked from the side exactly like a cow. They
are milked twice a day and this should be at a regular time
each day. Very heavy milking does, anything over 8 pounds a
day, should be milked three times a day until production starts
The milking should be done in a room separate from the
barn, or partitioned off from the main barn.
The udders should be washed with a warm chlorine solu-
tion and dried. Paper towels are very satisfactory for this and
are not expensive. The milk should be strained or filtered,
cooled and kept in a refrigerator until used. Goat's milk, taken
care of properly will stay sweet longer than cow's milk.
Pastures and lots for goats must be WELL FENCED. A
three foot woven wire with two rows of barbed wire on top
is satisfactory but five foot woven wire is better. The wire
should be strung inside the posts except at the corner posts
on account of the goats' habit of rubbing against the fences.
They will soon push the staples out if the wire is fastened
in the usual way. Care must be taken to stretch the wire
very tight and posts must be set about 8 feet apart or not
more than 10 feet. They will seldom jump a fence topped
with barbed wire but may go through between the top of
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
the woven wire and the first strand of barbed wire. To pre-
vent this, tie the top of the woven wire to the first strand
of barbed wire every 20 inches. Electric fences are very suc-
USES OF GOAT'S MILK
Goat's milk can be used exactly as cow's milk. It is more
easily digested than cow's milk, thus can be used in many
instances where cow's milk cannot be tolerated, especially with
babies and invalids. It is used very successfully in cases of
stomach ulcer. Most people allergic to cow's milk can drink
Goat's milk has been generally used in Europe and Asia for
many generations. There the goat is known as the "poor man's
At first in this country, goat milk was produced for direct
consumption but more and more goat dairies are taking over
and at the present time there are large dairies near most large
cities and they are increasing in smaller towns. This has been
accomplished in spite of the unreasonable prejudice against
goats and also by the lack of cooperation of the medical pro-
There are two large companies producing evaporated goat
milk and several smaller companies producing dried goat
Arkansas has several cheese factories making cheese from
goat milk exclusively. Very good cheese can be made in the
home. This is a soft cheese somewhat like Swiss or Brie. Goat
milk makes a very delightful cottage cheese also. Wisconsin
has a factory making goat cheese, also one in the state of
Butter of the finest quality is made from goat milk but
here a cream separator is almost a necessity since the cream
does not raise readily on goat milk. If the milk is put in shallow
pans and kept in the refrigerator 12 to 24 hours, about half
the cream will come to the top and can be skimmed off and
used for butter.
To make butter, a little sour milk or buttermilk should
be added to the cream to be churned and the cream kept at
room temperature until it begins to thicken. Then it should
be refrigerated until it is not over 60 degrees, 55 degrees is
better in the summer. It is then ready to churn in a hand or
electric churn. A small amount can be churned in an electric
mixer. It takes only a few minutes to churn, usually ten min-
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
utes or less. After the butter comes it should be taken out of
the buttermilk into a bowl and washed in ice water, then
salted, about a tablespoon of salt to the pound. The butter
should stand a few minutes for the salt to dissolve, then it
should be worked with a spoon or paddle and the excess water
poured off after which it can be molded into prints or put in a
Always Ready to Eat
bowl and is ready for use. Goat butter is white but a vegetable
coloring may be added. The only difference from butter made
from cow's milk is a lower melting point.
Goat milk can be used in cooking just the same as any other
milk and very delicious ice cream is made from it.
CHARACTERISTICS OF GOAT MILK
Goat milk produced under clean conditions is very delicious
with no odor. It is seldom that a person, not used to goat milk,
can tell any difference from cow's milk. If given goat milk with
nothing said, he never knows he is not drinking extra good
cow's milk. Goat milk tastes slightly sweeter and has a rich
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
smooth taste from the butterfat being evenly distributed through
As was mentioned before, a buck running with the does may
ruin the milk. Goat milk as a rule, has a very low bacteria
count. Absolutely bacteria free milk has been taken from a
goat, something that has never been done with a cow. Thus,
Two Heavy Milking Does
with a low bacteria count, goat milk keeps sweet for unusually
long periods of time. In cool weather it is sometimes hard to
sour goat milk properly and cow's milk may have to be added.
Comparative tables show goat's milk and cow's milk having
almost the same composition. The butterfat varies as much in
different goats as it does in different cows. The main differ-
ence is the fat globules in goat's milk are much smaller and
the curd of goat's milk is very fine which many authorities
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
consider the reason of the much easier digestibility of goat's
PROFITS FROM GOAT DAIRYING
It is not likely that the goat will ever compete seriously
with the dairy cow as a milk produced in America. Goat
dairying will always be more or less a specialty. Although
in consideration of size and food consumption, goats are more
efficient producers of milk than cows. A goat that produces
two quarts (4 pounds) of milk a day is equal to a 4 or 5
gallon cow. Then, when you consider how many goats make
4, 6 and the top producers 8 and 9 quarts a day, you can see
what this little animal can accomplish.
One of the principal reasons why the goat dairyman is
forced to ask such a high price for milk is the irregularity of
Ready for Supper at Waterman's Goat Dairy, Sarasota
28 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
his sales. People who need and require the milk will buy it
until they recover somewhat or the baby that has been doing
so well on it will now tolerate other milk, and a customer
is lost. A goat dairyman must take this into consideration
when setting his price. There are goat dairies throughout
the state operating successfully and the price varies from 40
cents a quart in some places to as much as one dollar a quart
A goat dairyman, whose herd averages 2 quarts a day per
head, should be able to operate at a profit. This takes into
consideration the lower production in the latter part of the
doe's milking period and her dry two months. A good doe
should milk ten months and have a two months rest. How-
ever, many does now milk twelve, fifteen months or even two
years profitably and they are the dairyman's dream.
Not everyone can succeed wth goats. They require quiet,
gentle treatment and must have affection to do their best.
Then they must be fed intelligently. Each goat must be studied
as to her own requirements. A goat will starve before she will
eat food she dislikes.
Goats are not placid like cows but are highstrung, tem-
peramental animals. Making a change in the barn or shift-
ing an animal to another stall may upset her for several days,
even a change in the weather may affect her production.
Goats can be and are profitable but it must be in their
way, not yours.
Prices for milk goats range from practically nothing on up.
But generally speaking, a good grade doe will sell from $25.00
to $50.00. Registered purebreds from $50.00 up to several hun-
dred dollars, about $100.00 being an average price for a good
one. Registered doe and buck kids may be bought from $25.00
to $150.00. Recently a French Alpine doe sold for $1,000.00.
There are two registry Associations: The American Milk
Goat Registry Association and The American Goat Society.
At the present time there is one goat magazine, Dairy Goat
Journal, Columbia, Mo.
GOAT HERDS IN FLORIDA
There are many herds of goats in the state at the present
time, ranging from the family herd of one to five or more
does to the large commercial dairies.
Most of the large dairies have several breeds and most of
them are grade animals. There are exceptions, one being the
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA
herd owned by Mrs. Godfrey Anderson of Pompano Beach. Her
herd is purebred Saanen. Another is the Peter Rozma Goat
Dairy of Miami which is purebred Nubian.
Other dairies reported in the state are:
0. P. Reese, Miami; George Mazer, Jacksonville; Vic's Goat
Dairy, Ft. Myers; Rosema Dairy, Mami; Pinecrest Goat Dairy,
Winter Haven, Mr. and Mrs. Chas. B. Schmidt, owners.
There are undoubtedly more throughout the state which have
not been reported.
A very incomplete list of goat breeders in the state:
Mr. Matthew Aprile, Tampa; Mr. Paul P. Bird, Ft. Lauder-
dale; Miss Cedonia Browder, Miami; Mrs. C. W. Channel,
Arcadia; Mrs. Mary K. Ditto, Ft. Myers; Mrs. Earl L. Fitts,
Ocala; Mr. Edward E. Flowers, Jr., Pensacola; Mr. Ernest W.
Rau Lutz; Mr. Merle Rhinesmith, Dade City; Mr. John Rosen-
THE AMERICAN MILK GOAT RECORD ASSOCIATION
Members in Florida
Anderson, Mrs. Virginia, Route 1, Box 1400, Pompano
April Matthew, 2102 East Hanna, Tampa
Barber, Mortimer K., P. 0. Box 101, Ft. McCoy (n)
Channel, Mrs. C. W., 444 North Hillsboro Ave., Arcadia
Cogliano, Mrs. Doris R., Box 244, Chattahoochee (A)
Craven, A. B., 1101 North Main Street, Crestview
Ditto, Mrs. Mary K., R. D. 2, Fort Myers (N, n)
Lee, Mrs. M. Taylor, 735 East 56th Street, Hialeah
Moore, Dr. Castles W., 311 Blount Building, Ft. Lauder-
Morlock, William E., 1111 S. Tennessee Ave., Lakeland
Rhinesmth, Merle, Yokelawn, Route 1, Dade City
St. Laurent, Miss Emma Marie, 6011 Sixth Street,
Scott, H. H. 4319 Woodmere Street, Jacksonville (N, T)
Ward, H. B., 724 Gotham Ct., West Palm Beach
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
barger, Palmetto; Mrs. Marguerite Parks, La Belle; Mrs. Dora
E. Santin, Ft. Myers; Mrs. J. L. Worsham, Thonotosassa.
There are several other dairies, large and small, also many
other owners and breeders that this writer has not been able to
Some of the breeding herds in the state:
The Yokelawn Herd of Crystal-line Toggenburgs owned by
Merle Rhinesmith of Dade City. This herd was brought to
Florida two years ago and is nationally known. Crystal Vivian
of Yokelawn T86994, AR 1226, 15.56, 1905 is in this herd.
She was breed leader for 1950 and her twin Crystal Lil-Allie
was runner up.
The Chanubian Herd of Nubians owned by Mrs. C. W.
Channel of Arcadia. This herd has been built up during the
past 16 years and has some of the best blood-lines, Jelinski,
Chikaming, Twin Cedars, and Ononedada. Unfortunately,
through lack of testing associations within reach, this herd has
never been put on test, although Mrs. Channel keeps milk
records, every drop of milk being weighed and recorded.
There are many other small herds of purebred animals that
can and probably will develop into breeding herds in the future.
The Angora also seems to succeed best on hilly and moun-
tainous land. At present large numbers of them are found in
Texas, New Mexico, California and other southwestern states.
The fleece of the Angora is known as mohair, and it is longer
and stronger than the wool of sheep. The amount of fleece
secured is somewhat less than from sheep, but it brings a
much higher price, occasionally three times that of wool.
The Angora is medium or small in size, weighing from 60
to 100 pounds. Both sexes have horns and are able to protect
themselves from enemies better than sheep and most breeds of
goats. One great use of the Angora is for clearing off brush
land, as it is naturally a browsing animal and will destroy
young trees and brush very effectively.
The adaptation of the Angora to Florida conditions does not
seem especially good from past efforts. It does best in a dry
climate; rainy, warm weather seems against its nature. Consider-
able numbers have been brought to this state from Texas and
region. Trouble with both external and internal parasites is
Tennessee, but they do not seem to thrive as well as in cooler
more likely to occur, and foot-rot is more common on wet soils.
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA 31
This Herd Includes Some Angoras
Prices for a registered Angora buck, or doe, are rather
high, ranging from $40 to $100 each for fair individuals.
Some breeders have attempted to cross the Angora with the
common goat, but without much success. If you contemplate
investing in Angoras, be careful as to the exact purpose you
have in mind. Limit the amount of money you spend in securing
breeding stock until you gain experience or knowledge along
GOATS IN FLORIDA
Year No. Farms No. Goats Value
1920 2299 45890 $146,331
1925 1939 36944 34,420
1930 2014 31698 46,193
1935 2643 42027 37,824
1940 1910 23519 24,428
1945 1819 21118 38,965
1950 1786 20000* t
1955 t 25000* t
Authority: U. S. Census
Estimated by Author-(Milk Goats only)
t Information Unavailable
32 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
Some Farmers Use Goats to Browse Off Briars
There are more common, native goats in the woods and on
the ranges of Florida, as well as most other southern states,
than there are of all other types combined. They are small in
size, are hardy and thrive well under adverse conditions. In
most cases they get nothing to eat beyond what they find on
the open ranges, and ordinarily their shelter consists of the
gifts of Providence. A few owners provide a little care during
VALUE OF GOATS is such that there are few sold for
meat on the open market, since many of the goat owners kill
only for their own use. The price per head on some of the live-
stock auction markets has dropped noticeably from $5 to $7 per
head a few years ago to presently $2 to $4 per head with very
few numbers offered. Nannies are still bringing in $7 to $9 per
head, according to the Florida State Marketing Bureau.
DAIRY GOATS IN FLORIDA 33
BOOKS ABOUT GOATS
Dairy Goat Journal, Columbia, Missouri
Aids to Goatkeeping, (5th Edition), by Carl A. Leach-$2
Dairy Goat Husbandry and Disease Control, by C. E. Leach-
The ABC of Goat Dairying, by Coutant-$1
Starting Right with Milk Goats, by Walsh-$3
Improved Milk Goats, by Will L. TeWalt-$1.50
1946 Yearbook of the British Goat Society-$1
1952-60 Yearbook of the British Goat Society-$1.50
The Milking Goat, by Dr. M. S. Steffen-$1.50
The Modern Dairy Goat, by Joan Shields-$2
Primer for Goatkeepers-50c
Butchering, Chevon, and Goat Hides-25c r Get
Home Cheesemaking-25c ] All
Goat Products Cook Book-25c 4 5
Butter from Goat Milk-25c I For
Formula for Infant Feeding-25c [ $1.00
Understanding Heredity, by Goldschmidt-$3.75
Cheesemaking, by J. L. Sammis-$3.75
Practical Veterinarian, by Dr. G. H. Conn-$2.50
Success on the Small Farm-$2.50
Successful Part-Time Farming, by Pearson-$3
The Artificial Insemination of Dairy Cattle, by Herman-
Artificial Insemination of Farm Animals, Rice-$4
The Home Veterinarian's Handbook, by Dr. E. T. Baker-
Feeds and Feeding, by Morrison-$7
Five Acres and Independence, by Kains-$2.50
Breeding Better Livestock, by Rice-$6.50
Available Free from:
Ralston Purina, Checkerboard Square, St. Louis 2,
Lots of Milk from Dairy Goats
Plans for a Dairy Goat Milk House
Milk and Feed Chart
Livestock Farming Guide, Dr. Hess & Clark, Inc., Ashland,
Goat Milk Marketing, Dr. David Roberts, P. 0. Box 297,
Waukesha, Wisconsin, free.
How to Make Cheese, Chr. Hansen's Laboratory, Inc., Little
Falls, N. Y., free.
34 DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
How to Make Butter, Chr. Hansen's Laboratory, Inc., Little
Falls, N. Y., free.
Profitable Dairy Goat Management, by P. E. Newman, The
Beacon Milling Company, Inc., Cayuga, N. Y., 25 cents.
Farm Sanitation, Parke Davis & Company, Detroit, Michi-
Calf Manna for Goats, Albers Research Station, 1060 Stuart
Building, Seattle 1, Washington, free.
There are also a number of other publications available from
various state departments of Agriculture, from the U. S. Depart-
ment of Agriculture, and from the organized goat associations
in each state.