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How Big Do Nigerian Dwarf Goats Get?

Ever wondered how big Nigerian dwarf goats get? In this article, we will cover everything about this topic.

The Nigerian dwarf goat is a miniature dairy goat that originated in West Africa. They are known to be very friendly and playful, making them a good companion for children, the elderly, and the disabled.

How big do Nigerian dwarf goats get?

The Nigerian dwarf does (female goats) do not grow taller than 17 to 19 inches, and the bucks (male goats) do not grow taller than 19 to 20 inches. The ideal average weight of a Nigerian dwarf goat is 75 pounds, and they vary in color and pattern.

The Nigerian dwarf goats came into the United States from West Africa in the early 20thcentury. Presently the Nigerian dwarf goats are found across several countries of the world – it easily adapts to different climates.

The Nigerian dwarf goats are mainly bred for milk, as it produces high-quality milk that is tasty and rich in butterfat, and some argue that its milk is the best. The U.S. Department of Agriculture has also approved the Nigerian Dwarf goat as a livestock dairy goat, making them eligible for youth 4H and FFA projects. They produce about 1.9 liters of milk a day, half a gallon, and they have a lactation period of 305 days.

Nigerian dwarf growth spans 1015 yrs and produces 1 to 4 kids per birth. Due to their small size, you don’t need ample space to rear them, as you can simply keep them on your homestead.

At what age is a dwarf goat fully grown?

A Nigerian dwarf goat is said to be fully grown at 24 months. At 24 months, it is said to have reached maturity, despite its small stature.

It comes in diverse coat colors, with black or brown hair being the most common colors.

Nigerian Dwarf Goat Behaviour

Dwarf goats are exceptionally playful, friendly, gentle, and lovable goats. Their calm and well-controlled temperament makes them good companions for all classes of humans, including children, the elderly, and even the disabled.

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They are lovely pets and the most suitable goats for projects for young children in 4H or FFA.

They can co-exist peacefully with other herbivorous animals on the homestead. They can share pasture and eat peacefully with donkeys, cattle, horses, and llamas. They can serve as a great help on the farm, and they help eat off brambles, and undergrowth (including weeds) that other bigger animals can’t reach, which will improve your farmland.

In terms of shelter, they are very cost-effective as you don’t need to build any unique tents for them. All you have to do is make a small fence to ensure their protection on the homestead.

Accommodation for Nigerian dwarf goats

If you are looking for a goat that won’t stress you on the homestead, the Nigerian dwarf goat is an excellent option. As stated earlier, they don’t need special shelter. All you have to do is ensure that their pen is clean and free of dampness, rodents, and insects.

Please don’t keep them in an airtight building, as you will be killing your goats. They need proper ventilation for healthy living and proper growth.

To make their bedding, all you need is fresh straw or hay to give them warmth as they sleep. Ensure you properly feed them so that they can produce enough milk and stay alive.

Nigerian Dwarf Goats Feeding

The Nigerian dwarf goat is a herbivore that feeds mainly on fresh hay or pasture. Ensure the pasture or hay is fresh and free of urea, as it can be very toxic to a goat when eaten.

These should be supplied to the goat in abundance. You can add grain to their diet, but if there is enough pasture, you can lower the quantity of the grains.

Also, you can feed them with 12–18% protein goat feed or dairy ration. This special goat protein diet can be found in grocery stores and animal feed stores. Also, provide enough water for them in clean containers.

Nigerian Dwarf Goats Health Care

The Nigerian Dwarf goats need primary care for optimum growth and development like other breeds. You can start by vaccinating all your goats for tetanus and types C&D centermost – these two are the essential vaccination you must give your goat.

After which, you can consult your local vet for other vaccinations recommended for your region. You can take your goats over to the vet for the vaccination, but if you are experienced enough, you can do it at home.

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Also, the importance of deworming cannot be overemphasis. Ensure you deworm your goats regularly. You can consult your local vet to recommend a dewormer for your goats and help you draft a worming schedule that suits your goats’ breed and region. Special supplements (such as selenium) can also be beneficial.

Ensure you trim the hooves of the goats regularly. You can do it every four to eight weeks; it can be less or more, depending on how fast the hooves grow. An adequately trimmed hoof should look like a kid goat’s hoof.

Breeding Nigerian Dwarf Goats

The Nigerian dwarf goats breed all year-round. The gestation period of a dwarf doe is 145 to 153 days, and they usually have very few kidding problems.

Bucklings can be fertile at seven weeks, too young, right? The does can breed at 7 to 8 months if they have attained a mature size. So I will advise you to wean bucks and does separately to prevent unplanned breeding.

However, you can decide to wait until your doe gets to a year before allowing her to breed. Dwarfs’ kidding rate is one to four. It is common for a dwarf doe to give birth to three or four kids at once, and in some cases, they can have quintuplet births.

The dwarf does are great mothers and they produce enough milk during this period. At this period, you can milk it every morning to obtain some milk.

Nigerian Dwarf Goat Coloring

The Nigerian dwarf goats are very popular for their coloring. One funny thing about this breed of goat is that you can never be sure of the color of the kids to be born because it might change.

Most dwarf goat families are black, chocolate, and gold, with various color combinations that you can ever imagine. Some dwarfs are pinto-patterned, tri-colored, or dalmatian-spotted. Some are classy shades of white, chocolate, solid jet black, or gold.

Most dwarfs have brown eyes, but currently, dwarf goats with blue eyes are becoming increasingly popular in China.

The Bucks are known for their unique skin patterns described by contrasting facial stripes, called a “cape” located around the shoulders areas with a coordinating dorsal stripe and some leg markings.

Nigerian Dwarf Goat Body Conformation

A Nigerian Dwarf goat’s body is in balanced proportion, just like other big dairy goats. It has a straight nose, which may have a small break at the level of the eyes. The coat is soft with short hair. The ears are upright. It comes in different color shades and patterns.

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The ideal height of the Nigerian Dwarf goat buck is 19″ to 21″, with bucks up to 23″ accepted in the breed. While for the does, the ideal height is 17″ to 19″, with does at 21″ still accepted in the breed.

The ideal weight is 75 lbs. If the goat is overweight, it might be a problem as it makes it susceptible to some disease. Dwarf goats don’t have curly hairs, but we have seen some with curly hairs in rare cases. In this case, you have to consult your local vet.

What is the Worth of a Nigerian Dwarf Goat?

A well registered Nigerian dwarf goat is worth about $200 and $500. Breeds with unusual coloring, champion pedigrees, and quality milk production may be worth more than the average cost.

Dwarf wethers (neutered males) are generally worth lower than the bucks and does. You can get them for around $50 to $100.

How long do Nigerian Dwarf goats live?

The Nigerian dwarfs can live between 15 and 20 years on an average scale. The longevity of their lives is greatly influenced by the quality of diet they feed on and appropriate immunization.

Do Nigerian Dwarf Goats Get Along with Dogs?

Due to the playful and friendly nature of the dwarfs, they live peacefully with cats and dogs on the homestead. However, you should ensure that the dog isn’t a hunter dog that sees goats as prey.  

The Nigerian dwarf goats are one of the best dairy goats on your homestead, especially if you have children around. Ensure you feed them properly and they get the recommended immunization. Lastly, they are economically beneficial.

Mark Lockett

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