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What are some tips for buying pygmy goats?

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Quick Answer

When buying a pygmy goat, consider the goat's age, what it is fed, how much it eats, its vaccination status and if its herd is regularly tested for diseases. Additionally, the buyer should inquire about the goat's registration status and if it is fit for its intended purpose, be it breeding or showing. Buyers should also ask breeders for a lesson in hoof trimming and recommendations for reputable local veterinarians.

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Full Answer

Goats should not be sold before eight weeks of age, as they are not yet weaned from their mother. When purchasing pygmy goats in pairs, the buyer should be aware that both sexes are fertile starting at 12 weeks of age; if breeding is not intended, they should be separated. If breeding is intended and an older goat is purchased, it is important to note that both males and females can safely produce kids until they are nine to ten years old.

Purchased goats, no matter their age, should have a diet consisting of grain and hay. If the breeder feeds a food that is not preferred by the buyer, the buyer should request enough feed and hay to allow them to change the goat's diet over seven to ten days.

Pygmy goats should be given the first in the series of clostridal vaccinations, as well as dewormed, by 10 to 12 weeks of age. Additionally, the breeder should provide proof that the goat's herd is tested yearly for Caprine Arthritis Encephalitis, Tuberculosis, Brucellosis, Caseous Lymphadenitis and Johne's disease. All of these are extremely contagious, and they can remain dormant in the herd's environment for years.

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