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Things You Need to Know About Miniature & Pygmy Goats

Pygmy, Nigerian Dwarf, and Pygora are the popular miniature goats. Among the different types of miniature goats, the pygmy goat which originated in West Africa is very popular. Miniature goats are kept as pets by individuals. Irrespective of their smaller size they have good resistance and they are unaffected by climatic changes. While Pygmy goat is a meat breed Nigerian Dwarf is a dairy breed and Pygora is a fiber breed.

Are Miniature goats good pets?

guy with a little goat in his hands in the spring garden

These miniature goats are quite friendly and they attract us with their good nature. Of course, they are stubborn and want to be independent. The blend of stubbornness and friendly nature make them really exciting pets. Apart from keeping them as pets, miniature goats are widely used to produce milk. The pygmy goats produce milk with 4.5% – 11% fat content. However, these goats yield milk only for 4 – 6 months in a year.

How much is a miniature goat?

The pet quality miniature goat can cost around $70. The goats that are from registered breeders and having breeding ability may cost not less than $350. Among the miniature goats, the pygmy goats are the smallest in size and a healthy female goat weighs 60 – 75 pounds. Though they are excellent companions it is not desirable to allow them inside the home.

How much space is needed?

Those who want to grow miniature goats have to provide 200 square feet for each goat. The shelter for the miniature goat should ensure protection from rain as well as cold. These goats like clean and dry shelters and they cannot withstand rain. In fact, miniature goats do not like rain at all. The female goats, as well as the neutered males, are free of odor whereas the male goats which are uncastrated produce a bad smell. These goats always need a companion. If left alone, they become noisy.

How long do miniature goats live?

Normally, the miniature goats live for 12 – 14 years and some of them live longer also. The most outstanding quality of miniature goats is that they are very social. They easily get along with sheep, cows, horses, donkeys, cats and different types of dogs.

Food for miniature goats

The miniature goat will consume daily 3 – 4 pounds of hay. The hay can be either grass or legume and they eat hay minimum 2 times a day. While alfalfa and clover are considered the best hay, dry grass hay which is eaten by horses can also be given. In addition to grass, the goats eat brush and forbs. The miniature goats drink plenty of water. These goats are likely to develop bloat as a result of over-eating. In case a goat develops bloat it may die within 24 hours. Over-eating can also lead to diarrhea or scours. While roaming around the yard the miniature goats eat grass, grass clipping, and weeds. Though the miniature goats require very little healthy foods only their appetite is really big.

Why Nigerian Dwarf is more expensive?

When compared to Nigerian Dwarf, the pygmy goats are less expensive. The higher price of the Nigerian Dwarf is because it is a dairy breed miniature goat. Both Nigerian Dwarf and Pygmy goats are similar in size and appearance. Nigerian Dwarfs come in a variety of color combinations. They are known for their nice blue eyes. Their necks and legs are long as well as lean. Because of its slim body, it is quite easy to milk this goat. Per day the Nigerian Dwarf will yield 2 – 3 quarts of milk. Another outstanding feature of the Nigerian Dwarf is that they give the creamiest and the sweetest milk. Those who consume the Nigerian Dwarf’s milk said that the milk of Nigerian Dwarf is almost similar to cow milk.

Male domination

Though small in size, the miniature goats also fight among themselves for dominance in the herd. Since the female goats are easily submissive, the male goat easily assumes dominance. When the herd is exclusive of female goats they keep on butting the horns till one among them is able to defeat all others. When there are two males in a herd they crack horns until one defeats the other one. However, it will not be a bloody fight, unlike the larger breeds. The advantage of keeping a male goat in the herd is that it protects the female goats when they are out on pasture.

More about Pygmy goats

The miniature goats are highly energetic as well as playful irrespective of their smaller size. They want to play and climb and never like to be caged or tethered. Pygmy goats always want sufficient space to run around and to jump. They enjoy climbing on rocks, tree branches, raised platforms and tables. The miniature goats also enjoy kicking around large balls. The Pygmy goats can be easily trained just like other pet animals. Though they are not tall it will get a little chubby.


The male pygmy goat can weigh up to 85 pounds and the female Pygmy goat will weigh up to 75 pounds. The male Pygmy goat is called buck and the female is called nanny or doe. When these goats are treated with love and affection they will also remain loving and affectionate. Another great advantage of the goat is that they easily adapt to all climates. Hence it is easy to manage pygmy goats in any season. They enjoy staying in an open place and they go sad if they are kept in a cage. Pygmy goats are in fact the most playful pets and they are talented leapers. Apart from being very friendly as well as loving the goats are very easy to nurture. Despite their small size, they produce a considerable quantity of milk. Pygmy goats will not drink muddy or contaminated water. They require only freshwater.

Breeding Information

Pygmy goats are very productive breeders. They start to breed when they are 2 months old if care is not taken properly. you need to separate them early from male goats. Every 9-12 months the female pygmy goat gives birth to the maxium of four kids after a 5 months gestation period.

Normally, they appear in white caramel, red caramel, dark caramel, solid black or patched black. They enjoy human touch, human love, and human contact. They also love the company of sheep. Since pygmy goat is a herd animal, it enjoys more the company of another.


Pygmy Goats are also called Cameroon Dwarf Goats. They are known to have come from the former French Cameroon area. They were exported from Africa to zoos in Sweden and Germany where they were on display as exotic animals. From there they made their way to Canada, England, and the United States.

Pygmy Breed Characteristics
Scientific name – Capra hiscus.
Height- 16 to 22 inches at the withers.
Weight – 50 to 90 pounds.
Lifespan – 10 to 15 years.
Female pygmies are called does and males are called bucks. Young pygmy goats are kids.

Different Types of Miniature Goat’s Picture

  • Pygmy Goat
Pygmy Goat
Baby Pygmy Goats
  • Nigerian Dwarf Goat
  • Kinder Goats
  • Pygoras and Nigora Goats

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a miniature goat?

Miniature goats include dwarf, Pygora, Kinder and pygmy breed goats as well as miniature goats (a standard goat breed to a dwarf or pygmy goat).

Are goats noisy?

Goats bleat occasionally, but the average bleat is quieter than the average dog bark. Unlike dogs which tend to bark if they see or hear another animal, goats are a “prey” species that stays still and quiet in response to a perceived threat or unusual situation.

Do goats first have to give birth before being able to provide milk?


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  1. Thank you for writing such an interesting article. I raised milk goats (Alpines) many years ago while I was living in Nova Scotia, Canada. They were so much fun. I had 13 in all, including one buck. All the best to you, and bravo on such a great site.

  2. How big is a pygmy goat?

  3. @Brandon Deaton
    The Pygmy goats are the smallest in size and a healthy female goat weighs 60 – 75 pounds and stand between 16 and 23 inches tall at the shoulder.

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